My learning experience was highly transformative. By exploring the connections between conflict, violence, peacebuilding, the ecological crisis and resilience, I have learnt so much about this field and about myself as a peacebuilder. I enjoyed meeting fellow students with nuanced experiences as well as pedagogies that embody reflective learning. I came here as a curious practitioner, and I came out of this programme even more curious - ready to keep on learning while making my surroundings a little better.
You can choose to include an internship as part of your course, in which case you will study over 15 months rather than a year. To do this, you should initially register for the one-year programme and then transfer to the 15 month programme when you have secured a placement, any time up until the middle of Semester 2.
The internship / placement further enhances the development of professional experience and practical skills during your Masters programme, integrating practitioner community engagement with your academic studies.
This element is student-centred and student-led, and therefore the initiative for identifying and applying for internships is driven by you. Academic staff can facilitate and support the identification of suitable opportunities with leads and suggestions, help with the writing of applications, and provide supporting letters of reference. They provide customised preparatory training before, and mentoring support during, the placement or internship.
The internship / placement can be taken with an organisation anywhere in the world. You'll need to detail your proposed activities and receive approval before the opportunity is finalised.
Once the internship / placement is complete you'll return to the programme, submit a completion report summarising key learning points, and then undertake your Masters dissertation. Students often use their placement period and experience to inform and shape their dissertation.
Learning and assessment
Throughout your time on the MA Peace, Resilience and Social Justice, you will be actively engaged in a diverse range of online and offline learning activities designed to develop your capacities for thoughtful analysis and reflective practice.
These will include individual and group tasks that require you to apply theoretical concepts to real-world dynamics and scenarios. As such, the emphasis in timetabled online and campus-based teaching sessions will often be on active, problem-based learning activities, with students undertaking reading and other preparatory work beforehand. This ‘flipped classroom’ approach maximises opportunities for discussion and feedback, whilst using selected inputs – such as short lectures, readings, or videos – to both frame and deepen the learning experience.
There will be an emphasis on practice, feedback and reflection throughout the programme. You will have opportunities to develop your own interests, e.g. via case studies chosen for study and assessment and the design and execution of your final dissertation project. Building many and varied opportunities to engage with and learn from each other into the programme is integral to fostering an inclusive learning environment.
Our approach to learning and teaching makes a conscious effort to encourage collaboration and honest dialogue and puts significant emphasis on the development of interpersonal and intercultural skills. Throughout, the curriculum is designed to encourage reflection on the relative (un)peacefulness of relationships, and this includes the interpersonal level and the wider structures in which interpersonal dynamics are situated. Reflections on power, inequality and privilege will open up difficult conversations about dynamics that can stand in the way of inclusion, while other parts of the curriculum explore the question of how constructive changes can be fostered and encouraged.
Our overall aim is to develop reflective practitioners who take a thoughtful approach to engaging with others, and our own practices as a teaching team seek to model and foster this ethos.
The teaching and learning in Peace Studies and International Development happens in a variety of spaces: lecture theatres, seminar rooms, flexible spaces with moveable furniture where students can work in groups.
We reach outside the classroom – for example, inviting guest speakers from around the world to debate via Skype to debate, and organising study sessions that make use of our innovative eco-friendly campus, and the diverse city of Bradford. We also take students on field trips, in the UK and abroad (for example, around Yorkshire, to Northern Ireland, to The Hague, and to a different African country each year), and extended role plays (in a youth hostel somewhere picturesque).
We have a lot of extra-curricular activity, guest speakers, seminars and training sessions. Our Student Liaison Officer also organises lots of social activity - our central, cosy common room is a great place to meet and learn from fellow students and host to quiz nights, international potluck suppers, free breakfasts, coffee breaks. And don’t let’s forget the annual Peace and Development Ball, and our very own Peace football team…
The JB Priestley Library has excellent resources, especially for Peace, Politics and Social Change, and International Development, in which the university specialises - see details of our Special Collections.
The library is open 24/7, as are other safe, welcoming and interactive spaces around campus designed for students’ to meet and study together.
The University and the Division are very global in outlook, and so are the students we attract. For that reason we offer free Modern Foreign Language classes for beginners in Arabic, French, German and Spanish. These two-hour weekly classes are led by experienced language teachers and result in a certificate of attendance. A much wider range of languages, such as Brazilian Portuguese or Korean, is taught – also for free – under a peer-to-peer scheme. Often PSID students get involved both as teachers and learners.
A comprehensive support network is here for you to ensure you reach your academic potential and go on to further success in the future.
You’ll benefit from a range of support services, including:
- Personal academic tutor
- Student support/administration team
- Academic Skills Advice Service
- Career and Employability Services
- Award-winning Disability Services
- Well stocked libraries and excellent IT facilities
Much of our teaching at the Department of Peace Studies and International Development is directly informed by our own research.
For the MA Peace, Resilience and Social Justice, this includes recent work on how professionals and communities might engage more collaboratively with the difficult challenges of climate adaptation.
It also includes research related to pedagogic approaches in our own community of practice as critical and reflective peace educators. For more on our research, please take a look at our staff profiles via the links below.