The IR Department welcomes part-time students in our programs. All of our programs except for the IRJD are open for part-time study, and we have had many part-time students who have been very successful in our programs.
Applicants interested in pursuing the IR/MBA program part-time should contact the Graduate School of Management (GSM) Admissions Office for more information. IR/MBA students abide by the regulations of GSM.
GRS Based Programs
Applicants interested in part-time study in one of the GRS based programs (MAIA, IRRN, GDP, LAS, IREP, IRIC, IREL) should complete the GRS application for admission as per the instructions in the How To Apply section. Applicants should simply indicate, in response to the appropriate question, that they wish to study part-time.
There are three important constraints on the flexibility of part-time study which applicants should be aware of, as described below.
Our programs are geared primarily toward full-time students, and we therefore schedule about 85% of the IR Department’s course offerings each semester during the day. While we are happy to do our best to accommodate part-time students, the restrictions of the course schedule may mean that part-time study is not a viable option for some students. We do not recommend part-time study in our department for students unable to take coursework during daytime hours.
Additionally, GRS sets a time to degree limit of three years for students in any GRS degree program. While this does not usually present a problem for the shorter degree programs, it may cause difficulty for students who wish to pursue the lengthier programs. Students enrolled part-time in an MA program may be permitted to exceed the usual time to degree limit, at the discretion of the IR Department, provided that they are making regular progress towards their degree.
Finally, the study-abroad portion of the LAS program can not be completed on a part-time basis. Students are welcome to complete the other components of that program on a part-time basis, but the study-abroad term must be done full-time.
Applicants, especially current BU employees, interested in studying toward an IR degree as a part-time student are encouraged to contact the Graduate Programs Administrator to discuss the possibilities and limitations of part-time study.
International students may not enroll in any of our degree programs part-time. The requirements of American student visas restrict international students to full-time status only.