5–year Joint BA/MA Programme

The Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies and its liberal arts college partners in the US, have established a programme that will enable a small number of students to complete a BA from their respective college and an MA from the Graduate Institute in five years, instead of the normal six years.

Applications are only possible for students of the Graduate Institute's partner programmes:


  • Students coming from liberal arts colleges in partnership with the Graduate Institute will spend the fall semester of their senior year in Geneva, at the Institute.
  • They will return to their home university for their final semester and for graduation.
  • They will then return to Geneva for a fifth year.

Most classes are taught in English. Students with limited or no French will study French as part of their programme in Geneva.



There are two categories of MA programmes available at the Graduate Institute:

  • Disciplinary masters: Master in Anthropology and Sociology, Master in International Economics, Master in International History, Master in International Law, Master in International Relations/Political Science.
  • Interdisciplinary masters: Master in International Affairs, Master in Development Studies.


For more information, please contact :



Carrie Lee Lancaster

Carrie Lee Lancaster (2018-21) | Smith College

Read her story




Davan O'Donnell and Javeria Kella (2018-219) | Mount Holyoke College

Read their stories



BA 2019, MA 2020, Smith College

"I was first attracted to the partnership program with The Graduate Institute with practicality in mind; its international location, fast-track timeline, and cost savings were outstanding compared to American graduate schools. Once in Geneva, I fully understood the value of the program and The Institute itself. From the access students have to cosmopolitan professors performing cutting-edge research to the exposure to international peers with stimulating and interdisciplinary ideas, I can’t imagine a better program or setting in which to study. Without a doubt, the Joint BA/MA Program was the best choice for me."


Wellesley ‘18, Master in International History

"Partaking in the Joint BA-MA programme was one of the best decisions that I made while at Wellesley: it provided me with a great education and a unique opportunity to experience International Geneva. I was grateful to be surrounded by people from diverse backgrounds and to live right by Lac Léman, which is as spiritual as Lake Waban at Wellesley. I believe that this programme has enabled me to reflect on my own philosophies and to grow positively."


BA 2019, MA 2020, Smith College

"The BA/MA program tested my adaptability and built my personal resilience. It was a challenge, but a challenge that was definitely worth it. It gave me the opportunity to confront and overcome any intellectual self-doubts I had. It also gave me an affordable MA degree in half the time with twice the adventure. If I could redo Smith, I would always choose this path."


Wellesley ‘18, Master in International Affairs

"The Graduate Institute experience is strongly rooted in both professional as well as personal development, and the school gears its abundant global network of partnerships, platforms, opportunities, and connections towards the individual growth of its students. The 4+1 program offered an incredibly seamless transition from my Wellesley Bachelors degree to my Masters along with complete financial support – I could not possibly have stumbled upon a better opportunity!"


Wellesley ‘19, Master in Development Studies

"The Institute offers truly unparalleled education and expertise in international studies and an incredible balance of academic and professional learning. Since starting my studies at the Institute, I’ve been challenged to contribute meaningfully to the field I am working in and  excited about my education like never before! The support offered through the partnership has exceeded all expectations, and the student community is no less welcoming. Geneva is almost spilling over with organizations doing meaningful and fascinating work, and the Institute is essentially the same."