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Politics, Policy and International Relations

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We all know that citizens in some countries have more political freedom than citizens in others. But how do you measure freedom? If climate change is a global issue why doesn’t policy reflect that? If tomorrow’s technologies will make critical decisions autonomously, how do we develop them to think ethically? There are many questions confronting society today and only through understanding different moral, economic and political perspectives can you consider all answers: technical, ethical and practical.

Political Science is the study of human relationships that involve power, rule, or authority. It is about how societies govern themselves and how societies ought to be governed. It is about the political behaviour of individuals and groups that occurs in all societies according to the power they have access to. Specialities in the field include comparative politics and political theory, as well as a deep dive into the institutions of Australia in a globalised world.

Human Rights explores the theoretical frameworks, policy instruments, and contemporary issues in the field of international human rights. It seeks to understand the evolution of human rights in its philosophical, historical, and political contexts, various policy tools and actors for the promotion and protection of human rights, the interplay between human rights theory and practice, and important country cases around the globe.

The study and teaching of International Relations (IR) is at a crossroads within and beyond Australia. The field has traditionally focused upon the (often hostile) engagements between nation-states and/or their diplomatic elites seeking to advance the national interest by war or other means. These are still important themes in the contemporary IR agenda. However, at the beginning of the 21st century, analysts and policymakers require a more comprehensive body of knowledge and deeper understanding of the world and how it operates. As such, IR at ANU brings forward historical modes of analysis into our current era, by examining their application in contemporary scenarios.

Public Policy explores the nature and challenges of government and administration within particular nations and also takes a look at how policy approaches are expressed globally. Multidisciplinary in nature, it develops key theories, principles and approaches providing a foundation for public policy analysis, development and implementation across a range of contexts. It maintains a keen awareness of current social issues, as well as the practical limitations involved in administration of resources, and examines how professionals can best produce outcomes that benefit individuals, groups and countries as a broader whole. Additional themes underpinning this discipline include problem-solving and communication.

Check the School of Politics & International Relations website for more information on the faculty, research, projects, latest news, upcoming events and more.

*QS World University Rankings by Subject 2021

^Times Higher Education - Global University Employability Ranking 2020

Degree programs

Bachelor of Arts

Key facts

2 in Australia
21 for Arts and Humanities in World*

3 year full-time
Semester 1 & 2 intake

#1 in Australia for graduate employability^

UAC Code: 131003
CRICOS Code: 074016B

Bachelor of Development Studies

Key facts

1 in Australia
15 for Development Studies in World*

3 years
Semester 1 & 2 intake

#1 in Australia for graduate employability^

UAC Code: 131143
CRICOS Code: 073987C

Bachelor of European Studies

Key facts

1 in Australia
9 for Politics in World*

3 years
Semester 1 & 2 intake

#1 in Australia for graduate employability^

UAC Code: 131147
CRICOS Code: 073994D

Bachelor of Middle Eastern and Central Asian Studies

Key facts

3 years
Semester 1 & 2 intake

#1 in Australia for graduate employability^

UAC Code: 131157
CRICOS Code: 074006D

Bachelor of Political Science

Key facts

1 in Australia
9 for Politics in World*

3 years
Semester 1 & 2 intake

#1 in Australia for graduate employability^

UAC Code: 131162
CRICOS Code: 086219C

Bachelor of Politics, Philosophy and Economics

Key facts

1 in Australia
5 for Philosophy, 9 for Politics and 33 for Economics in World*

3 years
Semester 1 & 2 intake

#1 in Australia for graduate employability^

UAC Code: 131161
CRICOS Code: 076183D

Bachelor of Public Policy

Key facts

1 in Australia
12 for Social Policy & Administration and 9 for Politics in World*

3 years
Semester 1 & 2 intake

#1 in Australia for graduate employability^

UAC Code: 131159
CRICOS Code: 097615M

Graduate Certificate of Social Research

Key facts

1 Year PT
Semester 1 & 2 intake

#1 in Australia for graduate employability^

UAC Code: 830016

Graduate Certificate of Studies

Key facts

0.5 Year FT or 3 Year PT
Semester 1 & 2 intake

#1 in Australia for graduate employability^

UAC Code: 830584
CRICOS Code: 082261M

Master of Middle Eastern and Central Asian Studies

Key facts

1-2 years
Semester 1 & 2 intake

#1 in Australia for graduate employability^

UAC Code: 830067
CRICOS Code: 082338F

Master of Political Science

Key facts

1 in Australia
9 for Politics in World*

1-2 years
Semester 1 & 2 intake

#1 in Australia for graduate employability^

UAC Code: 830956
CRICOS Code: 096437K

Master of Social Research

Key facts

1-2 years
Semester 1 & 2 intake

#1 in Australia for graduate employability^

UAC Code: 830014
CRICOS Code: 082351J

PhD & MPhil

Key facts

2-4 Year FT or 4-8 Year PT
Semester 1 & 2 intake

#1 in Australia for graduate employability^

My brilliant career

Seeing inequality deeply gripes me, and rectifying inequality really strives and motivates me like nothing else does.

Emma Henke, Bachelor of Development Studies and Bachelor of Law (Hons)

Hear from our students

If you're at all interested in people then you need social research skills

Stephen Lawton, Graduate Certificate of Social Research

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Study Political Science at ANU

Bachelor of Politics, Philosophy and Economics

Study Public Policy at ANU

Study International Relations at ANU

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Updated:  2 December 2021/Responsible Officer:  CASS Marketing & Communications/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications