The Master of Arts in Development Studies offers a solid academic and professionally relevant training in theory and methods for development studies. It is designed for those wishing to start or continue their professional careers in the area of development. In the MA program, you learn about the most recent theories and debates. You will also learn to apply this knowledge to practical issues of development and social change.

Critical thinking

MA students are encouraged to develop a critical understanding of major debates, theories, and strategic interventions and of the skills to analyze the issues and to design and assess interventions aimed at tackling these issues. An essential part of this process is to develop skills in research methodology, which will be applied in a research paper prepared as a requirement for the Master's degree.

Period of study

The 15.5 month MA program consists of coursework (40 weeks of full-time study, 61 ECTS credits) and the research paper (25 weeks of full-time study, 27 ECTS credits).

ISS offers the possibility to do the one-year coursework at ISS and to work on the Research Paper at home with supervision being available through the electronic learning environment.


The MA Program in Development Studies is organized into five Majors.

You must select one of these Majors when you apply to the MA program.

Program overview

Cost & Fees

ISS also charges a € 115 registration fee to be paid when you formally register in a program.

To take an MA course as auditor will cost you €200,- per ECTS credit.

Have a look at the table below for other fees and costs.

Fees MA Program
Registration fee € 115
Immigration fees* € 307
Study material expenses € 100
Health insurance € 640
Study visit -
Program taught in:
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Sep 2019
15 - 16 months
14,500 EUR
By locations
By date
Start Date
Sep 2019
End Date
Application deadline

Sep 2019

Application deadline
End Date