Master of Social Sciences in Development Studies
Master of Social Sciences in Development Studies
Award Title
Master of Social Sciences in Development Studies
Offering Academic Unit
Department of Asian and International Studies
Mode of Study
Combined mode

Normal Period of Study

- 1 year (full-time)
- 2 years (part-time/combined mode)

Maximum Period of Study

- 2.5 years (full-time)
- 5 years (part-time/combined mode)

Credit Units Required for Graduation


Programme Aims

This programme aims to offer advanced training in international development theory and practice with special emphasis on recent and contemporary development experiences in East Asia. Students will rigorously engage major theoretical and policy debates and enhance their skill sets and competencies for employment across a range of relevant professional fields.

Programme Intended Learning Outcomes (PILOs)

Upon successful completion of this Programme, students should be able to:

  1. Critically engage with major theories, concepts, and debates in development studies and identify their historical, contemporary, and regional significance;
  2. Evaluate the appropriateness of perspectives for the analysis of key development and social change issues spanning politics, the economy, and environment;
  3. Systematically explore and assess options (including policy options and advocacy strategies) for addressing specific development problems in a range of settings;
  4. Compare and explain similarities and differences in development experiences and outcomes in East Asia across different countries, regions, and social groups (e.g. women);
  5. Collaborate in an effective manner with professionals from diverse backgrounds.

Programme Requirements

Programme Core Courses (18 credit units)
Course CodeCourse TitleCredit UnitsRemarks
AIS5001Theories and Approaches in Development Studies3
AIS5003Project Planning and Management for Development3
AIS5048China and the Developing World3
AIS5300Politics & Social Movements in Developing Asia3
AIS5312Comparative Development in Asia3
AIS5336Cutting-edge Cases in Development under Late Capitalism3
Programme Electives (6 credit units)
Course CodeCourse TitleCredit UnitsRemarks
AIS5014Special Topics in Development Studies3
AIS5032Authoritarian Resilience and Democratic Change in East Asia3
AIS5034East Asia and the US: Conflict and Interdependence3
AIS5038Environmental Challenges in Asia and the World3
AIS5039Human Rights in Asia3
AIS5040BRIC Countries and the Emerging Global Order3
AIS5041Special Topics in Asian and International Studies3
AIS5044Religion and Development3
AIS5049International Organisations3
AIS5051Women and Politics in Asia3
AIS5055History of Sino-Japanese Relations3
AIS5056Power and Culture in Buddhist Southeast Asia3
AIS5304Development Policy and Advocacy3
AIS5308Gender and Development3
AIS5335Welfare Regimes and Social Protection in Asia3
AIS5337Disaster Management, Development and Regional Governance in Asia3
AIS5338Indonesia: Politics and Society3
AIS5339Labour and Development3
AIS5340Infrastructure Development in China3
AIS5800AIS Postgraduate Internship3For full-time AIS postgraduate students only

Professional Recognition