Program Overview

Committed to a liberal arts tradition of intellectual curiosity and diversity, the International Relations Department at Koç University offers students a rigorous program of study that prepares them for successful careers in a rapidly globalizing world.

Koç University offers BA, MA and PhD degrees in International Relations.The students examine the basic questions of International Relations, including how nations struggle over power and wealth, how political communities reconcile claims of authority, liberty, and justice, and how governments and societies produce the policies that influence our lives. Students choose courses from the major subfields of international politics, comparative government, Turkish politics, and political theory. They develop critical analytical skills allowing them to explain, compare, and generalize about political phenomena in a broad range of countries, employing the key methodologies of the discipline.

Master of Art and Ph.D. in International Relations program reflects the Department’s emerging strength in the areas of European Integration, International Political Economy, and Security Studies.Graduates of the program are continuing their studies in top-ranking programs throughout the world in addition to working in multinational corporations, non-governmental agencies, and for the state.Scholarships are offered.

The Center for Research on Globalization Peace and Democratic Governance (GLODEM) has been operating as a research center at Koç University since November 2004 to enrich the debate about globalization and democracy on campus and to promote the flow of ideas between Koç and the global policy arena. The Center encourages comparative and multidisciplinary research on globalization and democratic governance, and serves as an intellectual platform for dialogue between academic and research scholars.

Koç University is the first university from Türkiye to partner with the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations. This was established, at the initiative of the Governments of Spain and Türkiye, under the auspices of the UN to promote understanding among societies.

Qualification Awarded

PhD in International Relations and Political Science

Admission Requirements

Based on an evaluation of complete application packages, a short list of candidates will be invited for an interview. Therefore, applicants are strongly recommended to ensure that all items arrive well before the application deadline.

A complete application package includes the following:

– Three Reference Letters for PhD applications. These should be by persons well qualified to speak from first-hand knowledge about the applicant’s potential for graduate study. Letters of recommendation must be submitted online.

– Statement of Purpose, which should not exceed 2,000 words, focusing on why the applicant wants to study at Koç University and in this particular program as well as explaining career objectives and research interests.

– English Language, when applicants’ native language is not English, they must ensure to provide their official scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL,) or any equivalent testing system. (Please see minimum required scores below).

– ALES or GRE Score: (Please see minimum required scores below)

Transcript that contain all courses taken and grades for each course completed for each degree obtained.

On-Campus Interviews:Based on an evaluation of complete application packages, a short list of candidates will be invited for an on-campus interview on pre-specified dates. For candidates residing outside of Türkiye, it may also be possible to arrange an online interview through Skype. Completion of this interview is an essential part of the application process. The final list of successful candidates will be determined after interviews, which will evaluate their analytical abilities, English language skills, general knowledge in politics and international relations, and in intended fields of specialization.


PhD in Political Science and International RelationsAdmission Requirements
Scores With BA Degree With MA Degree
ALES(Equal Weighed) 80 70
GRE (Quantitative) 156 153
GPA*  3.00 3.00
TOEFL (IBT) or 80 80
 YDS or  80  80
 YÖKDİL  80  80


Exchange Opportunities

The number of exchange program partners has increased rapidly over the years and the number of partner institutions has exceeded 100.

+ Click here for the full list of the institution that have a partnership agreement with Koç University.

Examination Regulations, Assessment and Grading

Examinations Letter Grade Number Grade Equivalents

A+ 4.00
A 4.00
A- 3.70
B+ 3.30
B 3.00
B- 2.70
C+ 2.30
C 2.00
C- 1.70
D+ 1.30
D 1.00
F 0.00


+ Graduation Requirements and Curriculum

Occupational Profiles and Access to Further Studies

Graduates of the PhD Program in International Relations and Political Science can work in many national and international academic positions, ministries and undersecretaries, banks, insurance companies, national and international companies, national and international non-governmental organizations and print and visual media organizations.

Career Development Center, supports all Koç University students and graduates in career Development and Planning, in preparing graduate education plans, and in professional life decisions. For more information about the Career Development Center, please visit