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International Relations: Travel a Successful Career Path

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What Is an International Relations Degree?

International relations usually falls within the field of political science, although some online and traditional universities do have a separate international relations degree program.

With the growth of technology and today's international climate, it's more important than ever to understand diverse cultures and societies. Hence, a degree in international relations has become increasingly valuable.

Course topics may include:

  • Comparative foreign policy
  • Comparative politics
  • Conflict resolution
  • Diplomacy
  • Economics
  • European Union's contemporary challenges
  • Foreign languages
  • International law and organization
  • Modern Arab Thought
  • Political science
  • Sociology

An online degree program allows you the freedom to take courses from any program in the world, which could greatly benefit those wishing to learn about foreign cultures. If you have the means, you can even travel while earning your online degree to gain additional international experience.

Career Opportunities with an International Relations Degree

Graduates of an international relations degree program have gone on to work for the federal government, in journalism, for multinational corporations, or even as political advisors.

The federal government is the largest employer of international relations graduates, meaning that Washington D.C. is where you can find the most jobs. The following departments in particular hire those with an international relations degree:

  • Central Intelligence Agency
  • Department of Agriculture
  • Department of Commerce
  • Department of Defense
  • Department of State
  • Peace Corps
  • U.S. Agency of International Development
  • U.S. Information Agency

In 2007, political scientists earned a median annual salary of $100,900, although those working for the federal executive branch did even better with a median annual salary of $114,580.

On the whole, job prospects for political scientists are expected to grow a bit slower than the national average, meaning those with advanced degrees should have the best opportunities. However, due to the varied skill set offered by an international relations degree program, you have a wide range of career paths from which you can choose.

Sources:
Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, Political Scientists, May 2013 Wages
MakingtheDifference.org, International Relations Jobs in the Federal Government