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International Relations Major

What is a Major in International Relations?

We foster creative thinking about complex global problems and our graduates successfully serve their communities and the nation. Our program emphasizes the methods of analysis used in the social sciences and humanities to help you think critically about international phenomena and analyze the choices and challenges that arise.

Why Study International Relations at Virginia Tech?

Study with our renowned faculty who are experts in international relations. We offer broad training in the liberal arts, emphasizing the study of foreign languages. Opportunities to pursue undergraduate research, conduct field studies, and participate in study abroad are available. Many of our students also engage in the Department of State’s Diplomacy Lab Program and Wonk Tank competition.

Languages to Study

Average Class Size

Programs to Study Away in D.C.

Careers and Further Study

What can you do with a major in International Relations?

Jobs Held by Our Graduates

  • Military officers
  • Financial consultants
  • Political organizers
  • Teachers
  • Journalists
  • Lawyers
  • Foreign aid administrators
  • Engineers
  • Law enforcement

Beyond the Classroom

Experiential Learning

Get Involved

Participate in our active student organizations including (Inter)National and Regional Model UN, International Model NATO, International Model Organization of American States (MOAS), National and Regional Model Arab League, and National Model African Union.

Get Experience 

Internships and cooperative education programs give you an opportunity to receive academic credit for working in a professional setting. Our students complete internships with the U.S. government, international organizations, and national, state, or local administrative agencies. Talk to an advisor who can help you find and secure a meaningful internship opportunity.

Travel and Learn

Although studying abroad isn't required, it can often be a pivotal experience for you. Living in a different country is the best way to understand the differences and similarities between cultures. It allows you to develop personal expertise in a specific national or regional context while developing your language skills. 



Our faculty members are productive authors, scholars, and award-winning teachers who are always eager to mentor students on research projects in their field of interest. We have experts on Japan, the European Union, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, the United Kingdom, and other nations, as well as specialists in topics like health politics and policies, global economy and development, health security pandemics, and environmental policy. If you'd like some guidance on an undergraduate research project, just ask.


Bachelor of Arts in International Studies Degree

International Relations Major Requirements

  • Theoretical Approaches to Global Order
  • World Politics
  • The Global Economy and World Politics
  • Nations and Nationalities
  • Comparative Government and Politics
  • International Law
  • International Organizations
  • International Conflict Management
  • Violent Political Change
  • Global Environmental Issues
  • The Politics of Race, Ethnicity, and Gender

Minor and Elective Hours

Our program gives you the opportunity to build knowledge in another area by pursuing a minor, double major, or cognate.

120 hrs
B.A. International Studies

45 hrs
General Education

57 hrs
Major Requirements

36 hrs


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