Apr 19, 2024  
2023-2024 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog

International Affairs, M.A.

On April 25, 2022, the CSU Chancellor’s Office issued a memo that GWAR will no longer apply to new and continuing graduate students (regardless of catalog year) at CSULB. Catalog copy has been updated on 07/21/2022 to account for this change.

The professional Master of Arts in International Affairs (MAIA) is designed to prepare leaders for a changing world. It combines interdisciplinary, policy-oriented, intercultural and global studies with career development. Through a cohort design, students focus on attaining both the general and specific skills employers demand for the global workforce of the 21st century. This 18-month program includes 12 months in residence followed by a carefully placed internship (3-units, on-line) and a budgeting course (3-units, on-line).

Graduates are prepared for local careers of an international nature, national careers, and global careers in areas such as International Business, Trade Policy, International Development & Relief, and Migration Advocacy.

Admission Requirements

Program Admission Requirements

Admission decisions are based on consideration of the applicant’s previous academic record, statement of purpose, resume, and letters of recommendation:

  • A bachelor’s degree in a social science, language, or related field from a regionally accredited university
  • A minimum GPA of 2.7 in the last 60 semester units attempted, and good standing at the last college attended
  • A graduate GPA of 3.0 or better in the program course requirements as follows. 
  • A statement of purpose
  • A recent resume
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • International applicants must demonstrate English Language Proficiency. For more information, visit the International Education English Language Requirement page
  • Although there is no prerequisite coursework, applicants are strongly encouraged to have completed Introduction to Macroeconomics and Introduction to Microeconomics.
  • Intermediate competency in a second language is recommended, but not required for admission; however, CEFL B1 proficiency level or equivalent is required by the time of graduation. Proficiency can be acquired through work experience, immersion, and/or coursework.

University Graduation Requirements

  • Completion of 33 units of approved graduate courses with a 3.0 GPA or better.
  • Successfully complete the culminating activity.
  • Satisfaction of all university graduation requirements.


Program Course Requirements (33 units)

Track Options (Choose One-Offered in Summer Term) (9 units, 3 courses)

Additional Requirements (6 units, 2 courses)

Culminating Experience

The goal of the Capstone Project is to help students further develop and refine relevant skills such as research design and implementation, monitoring and evaluation, data analysis, production of professional quality deliverables, and public speaking skills. In addition, completion of the capstone within a group setting will demonstrate the ability of group members to collaborate as a group and negotiate. Students will:

  • 1) undertake a supervised international affairs-related internship
  • 2) create a Client-Serving Project,
  • 3) write a Final Report where they will be expected to contextualize their learning experience in their internship through the literature and practical skills acquired throughout the program. While precise content will vary, it is expected that the final report will reflect on project management, policy, and budget considerations in the work at hand as well as the international placement of the organization, the potential challenges this creates, and sector specific (e.g. migration, development) issues.
  • 4) Oral Presentation of findings from the Final Report.

Although capstones are conducted under the guidance of a faculty member, students have considerable agency throughout the process and are encouraged to be ambitious. At the end of the Capstone experience each student will have several deliverables: a written product for the client organization, a written report for the course instructor to assess for a grade and the MA International Affairs committee to assess for completion of the program, an oral presentation of the findings at a public event, and diverse methodological outputs - both quantitative and qualitative.

The course is necessarily designed to help students unpack the learning process during the internship, problem-solve with the faculty member and peers, and make connections between course theories/concepts and real-world experiences while ensuring that students complete and submit required reporting and e-portfolio elements. The internship component requires a minimum of 250 hours in an approved internship over the course of the fall semester.

Language Competency

Students will be required to demonstrate competency in a modern second language. This can be fulfilled in a number of ways:

  • presenting evidence of successful completion of 6th-semester level language
  • completion of a 300-level heritage language speakers course
  • completion a B1 certificate or equivalent from a language school
  • passing an intermediate level national exam (such as the Diplomas de Español como Lengua Extranjera or Diplôme d’études en langue française)
  • online examination
  • submission of the Request for Confirmation of Completed Language Requirement completed by a professional in the language to the program director

See the department website for more information.