East European Studies is a Master of Arts program providing 120 credits according to ECTS standards. 12 modules have to be completed in our master program in order to earn the degree.
East European Studies seeks to equip you with the capacity to apply theoretical concepts to pressing issues in Eastern Europe and to design recommendations for policy-making. Throughout our modules, you will gain research techniques and theoretical tools for assessing policy issues, and then train your negotiation and project management skills.
The final module is the completion of a master thesis.
Introduction (12 credits) - 1 Module
Within the framework of the Introduction and Tools module you are familiarized with the basic working methods of the different disciplines integrated in East European Studies. You are getting acquainted with prevalent approaches and theories and their application. As students are expected to have rather diverse backgrounds, this introduction also aims at achieving a common basis from which to proceed to the specific modules.
Disciplines (48 credits) - 6 Modules
Economics encompasses an economic analysis of the current developments in Eastern Europe. You will get acquainted with the basic concepts and terminology in order to study specific economic problems encountered by transition economies. You will be provided with a working knowledge of macroeconomic policy making, the functioning of national and international institutions and the basic controversies surrounding transition policy.
History provides knowledge of basic concepts shaping East European history (nation, religion, ideologies) and comprehend the pathways of East European history against the background of broader European history. The current grand debates of history will be presented and discussed, together with present East European landscapes of memory. You will get acquainted with instruments providing a better understanding of East European history.
Humanities will help you examine the role of literature and arts in communist and post-communist societies in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. Thereby, you will read literature and study culture in its historical and political context. You will be also familiarized with the evolution of culture and the impact of Soviet cultural imperialism.
Law aims not only at conveying knowledge of East European law in a comparative manner. It is also at providing the skills to process individually legal information and thus broadening the acquired knowledge on the topic. Moreover, you will get acquainted with the legal approach towards political and social developments.
Politics deals with the current developments in Eastern Europe from a political angle. You will identify and apply various approaches to the study of Soviet-type systems and transformation processes. Furthermore, you will reflect upon an overview of pressing challenges facing the newly established political systems.
Society takes a historical-thematic approach in order to identify both similarities and differences in the development of East European societies. Thus, the module examines the key social aspects of transformation, the emerging fault-lines in the region and the wider international context. Within the module you will be able to analyze the main social groups in the post-communist societies and a range of social processes and issues.
Practice (8 credits) - 1 Module
Preparation for professional life constitutes an essential part of the study program. Theory and practice are linked with each other. The Project Management module conveys knowledge in the area of project design, implementation, control and documentation. You will be given an overview of the theoretical framework and phase-model of project management.
Multidisciplinarity (32 credits) - 4 Modules
The following four modules treat topics in a multidisciplinary way, focusing on innovative theoretical and methodical concepts.
Intercultural Communication conveys basic terms as well as knowledge about concepts of culture and value systems. The module addresses students from East and West independent from their professional orientation. Thus you are enabled to assess and classify examples and trains working methods and skills to manage real life situations.
Within the framework of the Migration module you will study the interdisciplinary nature of migration phenomena and the causes and outcomes of international migration. You will deal intensively with a variety of migration movements from and to Eastern Europe ranging from asylum and refugee movements to labor and undocumented migration. Moreover, you will be able to address the current migration challenges in a systematic manner.
Globalization encompasses the study of the causes, history and basic definitions of globalization. The broad impact of globalization will be analyzed in areas of governance, economics, culture and environment with special focus on developments in Eastern Europe. You will examine the effects of globalization on global equality, conflict and security.
Energy focuses on energy policy and energy security stressing the different perceptions on energy security of importing and exporting nations. Special attention will be given to EU-Russia energy dialogue as well as to energy policy of the former Soviet Union states. You will analyze the current developments in this sector from political, economic, legal and environmental perspective.
Master Thesis (20 ECTS)
East European Studies is concluded with a master thesis. This is your opportunity to demonstrate that you are able to independently work through a research project in the field of global politics or area studies on an advanced academic level. You create a research design, work through the theoretical approach and empirical data, and present the results adequately.
You write the master thesis in English within 12 weeks for the full-time program. It should comprise about 15,000 words. An oral exam is part of the master thesis. You will receive your certificate during a festive graduation ceremony in Berlin.
East European Studies offers a virtual exchange option with the Aleksanteri Institute (AI) in Helsinki. One of our modules may be substituted with up to two online modules offered by Aleksanteri Institute (depending on the modules' length and credits).