Australian Foreign Policy - 2016

Unit summary


  • Level of Study: Undergraduate Level 3
  • Study load: 0.125 EFTSL
  • Delivery method: Fully Online
  • Prerequisites: Yes
  • Duration: 13 weeks
  • Government loans available: FEE-HELP, HECS-HELP
  • Availability for 2016: SP1 , SP2
  • Availability for 2017: Sem1
  • Assessment: Essay - Minor Essay (15%) , Essay 1 - Research Essay (30%) - Learn more

Unit provided by

2016 Fees
Domestic 782.00
HECS 782.00
International 1,032.00

This unit was previously known as PLT350 Australian Foreign Policy.

This unit offers students an introduction to the activity of foreign policy making in Australia. It provides an overview of the history of Australian foreign policy making since Federation, and students will also be introduced to the broad trends that have characterised Australian foreign policy-making so that they will be equipped to engage with foreign policy in a more analytical way. The unit also pays significant attention to Australia's current position in the global arena as a background to the making of foreign policy, and considers some of the dilemmas of policy making. Topics to discuss include security, war, whaling, climate change, refugees, the rise of China and the US alliance and the impact these have on policy-making.

At the completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. analyse and express their judgment about Australian foreign policy
  2. read and critically interpret texts and primary documents relating to Australian foreign policy
  3. think more critically and systematically about Australian foreign policy and how and why it is made
  4. appreciate the relevance of past global politics in understanding the present.
  • Essay — Minor Essay (15%)
  • Essay 1 — Research Essay (30%)
  • Non-Invigilated Exam — Take-Home Exam (40%)
  • Participation — Reading Game exercise, Discuss (15%)

Equivalent units

You cannot enrol in this unit if you have successfully completed any of the following unit(s) because they are considered academically equivalent:

  • PLT350 — Australian Foreign Policy

Students should have studied some politics at 200 level prior to undertaking this unit.

  • Broadband access — Students are required to have regular access to a computer and the internet. Mobile devices alone are not sufficient

This unit addresses the following topics.

1Introduction: Making Foreign Policy
2Empire/ALP Tradition
3Alliance/Liberal Tradition
4Australia and Asia: the rise of China
7Near neighbours/security issues
8Human rights/humanitarian intervention
9Foreign aid
10Global environment
12International Trade

This unit is delivered using the following methods and materials:

Instructional Methods

  • Discussion Forum/Discussion Board
  • Interactive Games
  • Online assignment submission
  • Standard Media

Online materials

  • Resources and Links

This unit is part of a major, minor, stream or specialisation in the following courses:

This unit may be eligible for credit towards other courses:

  1. Many undergraduate courses on offer through OUA include 'open elective' where any OUA unit can be credited to the course. You need to check the Award Requirements on the course page for the number of allowed open electives and any level limitations.
  2. In other cases, the content of this unit might be relevant to a course on offer through OUA or elsewhere. In order to receive credit for this unit in the course you will need to supply the provider institution with a copy of the Unit Profile in the approved format, which you can download here. Note that the Unit Profile is set at the start of the year, and if textbooks change this may not match the Co-Op textbook list.

Textbooks are subject to change within the academic year. Students are advised to purchase their books no earlier than one to two months before the start of a unit.

Click on the titles of the listed books below to find out more:

Required textbooks

  • Australia in International Politics: An introduction to

    By:Stewart Firth

    ISBN: 9781742372631


    Supplier:Go to The Co-op Bookshop

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