M.Sc. International Development Studies

Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU)

Application deadline: December 1st (International apllicants); June 1st (Norwegian applicants)
Tuition fee:
  • Free (EEA)
Start date: August  2015
Duration full-time: 24 months
  • English
Delivery mode: On Campus
Educational variant: Full-time

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Why International Development Studies?
o You want to learn about the challenges facing developing countries
o You want to study in an international environment and experience a developing country
o You want to contribute towards poverty reduction and a sustainable world.

You will learn about conditions for human development at the local and global levels as well as relationships between development and ecological processes.

After graduation, you will be able to:

o Understand and analyse policy issues related to poverty, human development, wealth creation, social justice, equality and environmental protection
o Formulate and assess development policies and project interventions
o Undertake studies that link theories to practical development projects


The first year consists of course work covering development theory and policy, research methodology plus elective subjects.

A two-month field course in rural development and project management at Makerere University, Uganda, and possibly in Tanzania, will give you valuable field experience. The field course is normally followed by field research for the master thesis.

Most students do their research in a developing country. You will write your thesis in the final spring semester at UMB.

Compulsory Courses:Introduction to Development Studies
Development Theory and Policy
Research Methods
Development Classic
Methods in Environment and Development Research
Rural Development and Project Management (field course)

Recommended 300-level Courses:
Political Ecology
Advanced Readings in Development Studies
Conflict and Development
Gender and Development
International Relations Theory
State Formation: Historical Issues and Contemporary Debates

Additional Elective Courses:Sustainable Agriculture and the Environment
Political Structures and Processes
Linking Ecological and Social Resilience
Health and Development
Global Environmental Change
Anthropology of Development
Development Aid and Politics
Land Rights: An Introduction to Theory, Applications and Policy
Management of Genetic Resources: Law and Policy
Global Political Economy
Management of Dryland Resource Systems
Global Change and Development
Research Ethics and Philosophy of Science I
Research Ethics and Philosophy of Science II

Students will design individual study plans during the first semester. Compulsory courses can be waived for students with a strong background in the subject.


Admission requires a bachelor´s degree, a Norwegian cand. mag. degree, or an equivalent background in a relevant field, e.g., political science, education, anthropology, sociology, resource management, or economics.
Applicants must meet the university´s requirement for English language proficiency.

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