- BA-IR (Bachelor of Arts in International Relations): A three-year undergraduate academic degree programme in International Relations.
- MIR (Master of International Relations): A one-year graduate academic degree programme in International Relations.
- EMIR (Executive Master of International Relations): A one-year degree programme designed for professionals in the field of International Relations.
- DIR (Doctor of International Relations): DIR by Research (3 year degree programme, by distance) and DIR by Dossier
As we believe in an individual and specialised learning environment at GSD, class sizes are in average 15 students per course on the BA, EMIR and DIR level and around 25 students on the MIR level.
Although GSD does not offer online-learning programmes by distance, several programmes can be done on a flexible basis and partly by distance:
GSD's BA-IR and MIR programmes are full-time programmes held from Monday to Friday. The EMIR and DIR programmes can be done on a part-time basis and are therefore designed to combine your professional career with your academic studies.
GSD uses the system of ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System). ECTS makes teaching and learning in higher education more transparent across Europe and is aimed at facilitating the recognition of studies internationally. The system allows for the transfer of learning experiences between different institutions, greater student mobility and more flexible routes to gain degrees. It also aids curriculum design and quality assurance.
Click here to find out more about the ECTS system.
In 1999, the ministers of education of 29 countries and university leaders from the whole of Europe met to discuss the future development of higher education in Europe. The post-summit declaration issued by the ministers – the Bologna Declaration – as it is known – expressed the goal of developing a European Higher Area by 2010. This development process is known as the Bologna Process.
The Bologna Process is pan-European. All signatories of the European Cultural Convention (which is administered by the Council of Europe) may apply for membership. 40 countries are members: Albania, Andorra, Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Holy See, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russian Federation, Serbia and Montenegro, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, ‘the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia’, Turkey and United Kingdom.
In addition, the European Commission is a voting member. The council of Europe, ESIB (National Unions of Students of Europe), EUA (European University Association), EURASHE (European Association of Institutions in Higher Education) and UNESCO-CEPES (European Centre for Higher Education) are consultative members.
The Bologna Process defines ten action lines or objectives on the road towards the achievement of a European Higher Education Area. These objectives overlap, or are inter-dependent, but each goal is also important in itself: The goals defined in the Bologna Process include the adoption of a comparable degree system with two main cycles, aimed at facilitating movement between countries. This in turn is a condition for achieving the goal of increased mobility for students and academic and administrative staff in higher education. The promotion of quality assurance and increased inter-institutional cooperation is also an objective.
To find out more about the details of the Bologna Process, click here.
GSD's certificates are awarded for the following categories:
- Summer School Programme
- Short Term Certificate Courses
- Auditing a course: You may audit a course at GSD during a full term. However, auditors will not receive credits, neither are they expected to fulfill the required assignments (e.g. oral presentation, exam, paper, etc.). For the current rates, please click here.
- Specialised courses: You will receive a certificate of attendance as an attestation of your participation in any of the following courses: Leadership courses, Diplomatic Training courses, GSD-UPEACE Disarmament Course.
GSD does also offer tailor made training courses for individuals or small groups upon request.
Since the vast majority of our students have a multinational background, they tend to be already fluent in at least three languages before coming to GSD. However, language skills are always an asset and Geneva offers an enormous choice of courses in almost any language you wish to learn. Click here for more information.
GSD's current application deadlines for the two intakes per academic year can be consulted under: http://www.genevadiplomacy.com/prospective-students.
Late applications from Swiss / Swiss-based candidates as well as European residents may be considered as spaces remain available. However, students who need a student Visa to enter Switzerland, must be aware that due to immigration regulations it takes an average of four to six months to obtain a student Visa.
DIR applications can be submitted anytime throughout the year.
No. Only complete applications are taken into consideration by the Admissions Committee. Should part of your documents arrive from external institutions (e.g. official transcripts sent directly by your university, etc.), please mention this explicitly on the cover letter and as to when the Admissions Office can expect the documents.
In case your last university enrolment has exceeded a time period that does not enable you to acquire letters of recommendation from academic referees, you may also submit one academic and one professional reference in lieu of two academic references.
Once the online application form has been submitted, you will be automatically notified via e-mail. Please note that only complete applications will be considered by the Admissions Office and Committee. You will be notified by e-mail and surface mail of the decision of the Committee. Please allow around two weeks for your application to be processed by GSD.
The registration fee for Bachelor, Master and Executive Master candidates is 200 CHF (Swiss Francs). The fee for Doctorate candidates is CHF 250.-.
If you are applying from outside of Switzerland, the best way to proceed with the payment of your registration fee is through an international bank transfer. You have to attach the payment receipt to your application dossier as a proof. Please be aware of additional fees charged by your bank for international transfers and currency conversion.
All applicants must pay the registration fee; no student can be granted a waiver for the registration fee.
GSD does not discriminate of the basis of the age of an applicant nor on any other grounds. You can apply at any age.
If you will obtain your final transcript and diploma only after the application deadline, we advise you to submit the transcripts of your last two years of school / university to the Admissions Office. On the basis of these, your application will be considered for the intake you applied for. However, until submission of the final documents to GSD, your admission status will remain conditional.
Interested candidates are at any stage of the application procedure very welcome to visit the school. Please be aware, however, that GSD might be closed on specific holidays (see academic timetable). In order to prepare your visit in the best possible way, we highly recommend to schedule a meeting well in advance. This will allow us to ensure that a staff member can spend quality time with you and that you can sit in a class. To arrange a visit, please click here.
No, but it is highly recommended as it is an excellent way of getting to know each other - for you and for us. An admissions interview is held in a rather informal setting in the way of a personal meeting with one of our staff members and can, once we receive your application, form part of your dossier. The admissions interview can be scheduled before or after submission of your application. The best way is to combine a school visit with the interview.
The Geneva School of Diplomacy is following a system of rolling admissions, i.e. admissions may be submitted anytime throughout the year for an intake in the future as long as you respect the application deadlines. GSD may offer a place to a successful applicant for a later intake than ticked on the application form.
Once the Admissions Office acknowledges receipt of your application, the Admissions Committee reviews the application.
From the moment you receive the confirmation of receipt of your complete application to the moment the Admissions Committee takes the decision, you should count around two weeks for GSD to process the paperwork.
The payment has to be done by bank transfer in Swiss Francs to the school’s account. You will be billed according to the payment option that you chose (for the entire programme OR per trimester). Please note that GSD does not offer payment by credit card nor by cheque other than in Swiss Francs.
No. The tuition fees are separate from other fees and do NOT include travel, accommodation, meals, medical or health insurance. Book fees and study trip fees are charged in addition.
Geneva is one of the most expensive cities in the world. An estimated budget of CHF 18.000,- per year (in addition to your study fees) is a realistic estimattion of what you should be prepared to pay in order to cover housing, insurances, food and other daily expenses.
- Fellowships: GSD awards a small number of fellowships every year. An applicant awarded a fellowship will receive a partial waiver of tuition fees. Please note that only Bachelor and Master students are eligible for fellowships.
- Bukurie Gjonbalaj Fellowship: GSD is pleased to announce the establishment of a new Fellowship for Master's degree students from Bosnia, Croatia, Kosovo, and Serbia. This is the Bukurie Gjonbalaj Fellowship for the Master of International Relations (MIR) university degree offered at Switzerland's Geneva School of Diplomacy.
- GSD Loan Scheme
Account Holder: Geneva School of Diplomacy
Bank: UBS SA
Account: 228-558164. 01 Q
IBAN: CH46 0022 8228 5581 6401 Q
SWIFT: UBSWCHZH8 0A
Please indicate the student’s full name as a reference on all payments and be aware that your bank might charge fees for transactions to Switzerland and for the currency conversion to Swiss Francs.
- Non-European nationals: YES. You need to apply for a student Visa from your home country or country of residence before entering Switzerland. Please contact your nearest Swiss Embassy or Consulate to get further information.
- European nationals: NO. You can enter Switzerland without any Visa requirements. However, you need to register yourself within the first three months upon your arrival in Geneva at the local Immigration Office (Office Cantonal de la Population, OCP) and request a Study Permit (permis d’étudiant/permis B).
No. It is not possible to enter Switzerland on a tourist Visa and to then extend your stay by applying locally for a student permit. You have to apply beforehand from your country of residence. The Swiss authorities are very strict in this regard.
A student Visa gives you the right to legally enter Switzerland for study purposes; the student permit gives you the right to stay in Switzerland for study purposes.
Everybody. Any non-Swiss national needs to register at the local immigration office (Office cantonal de la population, OCP).
It is the responsibility of the student to apply for and to obtain the necessary student Visa and the student permit on time. GSD cannot apply on behalf of a student nor be held responsible for obtaining the required authorisations for entry and residence in Switzerland.
Although it is the student’s obligation to ensure that all requirements by the Swiss authorities are met, GSD will assist you by providing documents (admission letter, attestation, etc.) that are necessary for the completion of your Visa or permit application. However, GSD will only provide these documents to you, once you have paid at least the first trimester tuition fees; this is a requirement set by the Swiss authorities which we have to abide to.
In addition, all new students receive detailed briefing during the Induction Programme at the beginning of each trimester about exact procedures, documents to be delivered to the Swiss authorities, etc..
The GSD internship programme is part of the BA-IR and MIR curriculum and of the requirements towards your degree in these two programmes. The aim is to adapt the academic knowledge to the professional life – acquire relevant hands-on practice and make important professional contacts (networking).
EMIR and DIR students are required to have 5-10 years of professional experience before joining GSD and are therefore not the target group of the GSD internship programme.
While GSD will assist you in the best possible way to find a suitable internship and with all of the necessary documentation and support (Swiss working regulations, CV & cover letter preparation), it is your individual responsibility to proactively find and secure an internship placement. GSD has a limited number of offers, especially, since each student has a different background and cannot always fulfill the internship requirements (academic or professional level, language skills, etc.). Remember that you will be competing for internships with students from Switzerland and from all over the world.
All internship projects need to be approved by the GSD Internship coordinator – who guides you to the fulfilment of written and other requirements. Moreover, students are requested to research and write a final report on their internship experience (12 pages minimum). The final phase of the GSD programme evaluation is characterized by the School’s evaluation of the student’s internship report, the employer’s evaluation of the intern and the student’s evaluation of the employer.
- Undergraduates: The internship is one trimester and receives a maximum of 9 ECTS (144 hours).
- Graduates: The internship is one trimester and receives a maximum of 3 ECTS (48 hours).
We encourage our students to make the maximum use of the location of Geneva as the most diplomatic neighbourhood on the planet and to gather direct working experience with one of the IOs, Missions, NGOs, etc. situated in a five-minute walking distance. Therefore, the answer is no.
Most internships are not paid; however, there are limited cases in which the organizations decide to cover the intern’s expenses (transport, material, food, etc.) or even pay a stipend to the intern.