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Degree programmes (first-cycle,second-cycle, long-cycle) - 2023/2024

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Interdisciplinary Studies on Social Change: Mediterranean and Other European Borderlands, full-time, second cycle

Code S2-ISSC
Organizational unit Faculty of "Artes Liberales"
Field of studies Interdisciplinary Studies on Social Change: Mediterranean and Other European Borderlands
Form of studies Full-time
Level of education Second cycle
Educational profile academic
Language(s) of instruction English
Minimum number of students 10
Admission limit 30
Duration 2 years
Recruitment committee address rekrutacja_al@al.uw.edu.pl
tel. (22) 55-25-910 wew. 141, 142, 144
WWW address http://al.uw.edu.pl/kierunki-studiow/
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Field of studies : Interdisciplinary Studies on Social Change: Mediterranean and Other European Borderlands (ISSC)

Form of studies: full-time, second cycle

Responsible units: University of Warsaw „Artes Liberales” Faculty and University of Warsaw Centre of Migration Research.

Language of instruction: English and Spanish or Italian

ISSC are studies offering broad understanding of sociocultural issues, describing problems and challenges faced by the modern world, in perspective of Poland, the borderland and the Mediterranean. Courses are conducted by scientists working at the „Artes Liberales” Faculty and at the Centre of Migration Research, who also carry out research in the areas of interest of ISSC studies.

Program combines the following elements:

  • extensive familiarity with books and research („the canon”) in the field of sociocultural sciences and critical thinking skills;
  • in-depth interdisciplinarity allowing to prepare for future academic career and operating in the highly competitive and dynamic labour market;
  • methodological discipline, regarding both quantitative and qualitative approach, as well as various research methods typical of cultural science , sociological science, political science, economy;
  • participation in the research process;
  • cultural awareness and language skills - compulsory linguistic-cultural module (languages: Italian, Spanish and English) is a significant component of the didactic offer.

Studies are highly individualized: students will be able to choose from among seminars, lectures and monographic discussion sessions, workshops and cultural-linguistic classes. This allows each student to create a different program, adjusted to individual needs and expectations. We provide three main thematic pathways and two linguistic pathways - Italian and Spanish.

Main themes of studies:

  • Subject matter: the issue of mobility / liquidity / variability and various dimensions of contemporary and future crises;
  • Pathway 1: country / sovereignty / institutions (a model of sovereign authority, national state, population managing, globalization, institutions);
  • Pathway 2: social change and identity (social movements, revolutions, wars, post-modern condition, post-colonialism, religion, liberalism / individualism);
  • Pathway 3: risks and crises (historical and contemporary crises, the idea and dimensions of risk, risks / crises) taking three perspectives into account:
  1. methods (managing and authority relations),
  2. institutions’ perspective and
  3. individual perspective (e.g. of migrants or other mobile persons).

Other raised issues include for example: fluid life, security, risk, crisis, state of emergency, disaster; (illustrative subjects: climate catastrophe, mass global and local migrations, authority of science in the culture of post-truth, democracy quality, new social movements, hybrid wars, global threats to public health (pandemics), precarity, work automation, digitization, global economic crises, demographic aging, inequalities and social mobility); lessons from the past: ancient and modern standards of politics / society / entity, revolutions and social changes, role of knowledge and philosophy.

Types of classes:

  • seminars (conducted in tandems);
  • linguistic modules (consisting in acquiring language skills and cultural competences at the same time);
  • methodological workshops: methods of cultural studies research and methods of social research;
  • lectures and monographic discussion panels, often monodisciplinary and detailed;
  • optionally - intensive courses offered by leading researchers from abroad (in close connection with thematic pathways) and serving useful purpose (e.g. academic writing).

Graduate’s profile:

The graduate will acquire extensive humanistic knowledge and basic social knowledge. They will ultimately have a high level of skills regarding interdisciplinary approach to cultural and social issues; they will understand the meaning, but also problems with regard to intercultural communication; they will acquire many soft skills (teamwork, creativity, ability to learn efficiently, ability to present one’s ideas and views in speech and in writing, ability to collect, categorize and synthesize data, especially digital data). They will also acquire extensive language skills (the linguistic-cultural module). They will additionally acquire the ability to obtain / use / interpret / visualize - in a conscious and reflective manner - different types of data, including the so called big data regarding complex social phenomena such as crisis situations, identity issues, migrations, inequalities, or demographic changes.

The graduate will have the possibility to acquire practical skills useful both in the potential future research work and in the labour market:

  1. the ability to plan / prepare / carry out the research process;
  2. the ability to process and visualize data in an innovative manner;
  3. the ability to link knowledge regarding social processes with evidence-based policies.

The graduate equipped with such competences will be prepared to work for state cultural and social institutions and for non-governmental organizations of similar profile, for companies and institutions dealing with culture animation and introducing to the culture of other countries, as well as for companies and institutions looking for intercultural contacts specialists.


Limit of places

20 places in the first round of enrollment conducted in June-July

10 places in the second round of enrollment conducted in August-September


Admission rules for candidates with Polish diplomas

Qualification threshold: 60 points

Studies are intended for candidates holding a bachelor’s, master’s or engineer’s degree (or their equivalent) with at least good overall grade on the diploma - cf. pt 1*, or for candidates who are just before thesis defense - cf. pt 2**.

1*. Candidates holding one of the above-mentioned degrees, or a thesis defense certificate containing information on the overall grade on the diploma confirmed by their home university, upload the scan of the document to their personal IRK (Internet Recruitment of Candidates system) registration account.

2**. Candidates who are just before thesis defense, upload to their personal IRK registration account the scan of certificate issued by their home university, confirming the planned date of their thesis defense and containing information on their grade point average for the entire period of studies. Those candidates are obliged to present (by uploading to their personal registration account in IRK system) the original diploma or a thesis defense certificate containing information on the overall grade on the diploma confirmed by their home university, no later than 12 o’clock on the day preceding the interview.

Failure to upload the scan of document confirming the overall grade on the diploma to IRK system within the indicated period will result in candidate’s disqualification and awarding 0 points to them in the recruitment procedure.

The qualification procedure includes:

  1.  interview
  2.  overall grade on the diploma (bachelor’s / master’s / engineer’s degree, or their equivalent)

The purpose of the interview is to verify the level of comprehension of selected texts put forward by the examination board*, the ability to discuss about them freely in the English language and the ability to draw conclusions regarding cultural and social status of contemporary Poland and of the region which is the subject of studies.

The list of texts from which the candidate picks three to be the base for the interview is available on the website of the programme: https://issc.al.uw.edu.pl/admissions/interview-reading-list/

Evaluating the candidate’s interview, the examination board will take the following criteria into consideration:

  • familiarity with the content and creation context of selected texts;
  • ability to have a discussion regarding the issues contained in them;
  • ability to compare issues between the texts;
  • preparation to drawing conclusions based on reading material related to contemporary cultural, social and political situation.

It is possible to obtain a maximum of 80 points during the interview.

It is required to obtain no less than 50 points during the interview in order to consider it successful.

Obtaining less than 50 points during the interview, results in candidate’s disqualification and awarding 0 points to them in the recruitment procedure.

For the overall grade on the diploma the candidate can obtain:

  • 20 points - excellent grade
  • 15 points - very good grade
  • 10 points - good plus grade
  • 0 points - good grade

Neither satisfactory plus grade, nor satisfactory grade qualifies to apply for admission to the second cycle studies Interdisciplinary Studies on Social Change: Mediterranean and Other European Borderlands.

Candidate may obtain a maximum of 100 points in the qualification procedure.

Sum of points obtained during two stages of the qualification procedure determines the candidate’s position on the ranking list.


Admission procedure for candidates with foreign diplomas

Qualification threshold: 60 points

Same rules apply as for candidates with diplomas obtained in Poland.

Results on foreign diplomas will be adjusted accordingly to the grade scale presented in the recruitment procedures for candidates with diplomas obtained in Poland.


Checking the candidates' competence to undertake studies conducted in the English language

Candidates are obliged to present the document recognized by the University of Warsaw confirming their command of the English language at least at the B2 level. In case the candidate does not have a document confirming their English language command, the examination board will verify the candidate’s language competence to study at the Interdisciplinary Studies on Social Change: Mediterranean and Other European Borderlands course of study during the interview. Examination board verifies the ability to formulate verbal statements, as well as the ability to communicate in English, including having an academic discussion.

Positive result of qualification procedure means confirming the candidate’s ability to undertake studies conducted in English at least at the B2 level.

Information on documents certifying knowledge of the English language. >> Check! <<



The exam: 18th of September, 2023, 10 a.m. the Faculty of "Artes Liberales", ul. Dobra 72, room 4.

ATTENTION: The interview is conducted at the Faculty of "Artes Liberales". However, candidates who are unable to participate in the interview at the faculty are asked to contact the Admission Committee by email (at:rekrutacja_al@al.uw.edu.pl) to arrange a remote interview after registering and paying the application fee. The Admission Committe should be contacted before the last day of registration for studies in the IRK system at the latest. Candidates should attach a scan of the statement on taking the exam/ interview in the remote form on their personal registration account in the IRK system.


Announcement of results: 22nd of September, 2023

Reception of documents: 

  • I round: 25th -26th of September, 2023
  • II round (in case of not fulfilling the limit during the I round): 27th - 28th of September, 2023



Application fee

Student's ID payment (ELS)

The studies are payable for citizens of Non-UE/EFTA countries (EEA parties) and Switzerland - tuition fees


Required documents

List of required documents submitted by candidates qualified for studies


Additional information

Find us on the map: Collegium Artes Liberales