Master of Political Economy

The information on this page applies to future students. Current students should refer to their faculty handbooks for course information.

Political Economists study the economy as social scientists. The Master of Political Economy looks at economic questions in their social and political context and from different perspectives. It develops a deeper understanding of issues of power and inequality, the forces of globalisation and their impacts on national economic policy settings, to trade-offs between the free market and broader social concerns.

Taught by the largest group of political economists at any Australian university, and as the only course of its kind nationally, the Master of Political Economy provides unparalleled knowledge of the important trends underlying the global economy and its transformation.

This unique course complements a broad range of training and experience, preparing graduates with the necessary skills for careers across the business, journalism, social, community and public sectors.

The Department of Political Economy is recognised as a leading centre for economic analysis and research, and the Master of Political Economy attracts a diverse spectrum of social scientists seeking a deeper knowledge of economic issues and perspectives. This program is also suitable for those holding existing qualifications in economics, business or finance wanting to understand the social context and alternative perspectives on economic processes.

You’ll acquire a multifaceted understanding drawn from pluralist and at times conflicting perspectives. Core units on research methods of political economy are matched with the opportunity to specialise in particular issues, including trade regulation, finance and economic change, migration, human rights and development.

Course outline

For an up-to-date list of units of study for this degree, please refer to the online postgraduate handbook.

Study plan


Graduates of the Master of Political Economy must complete:

(a) a minimum of 18 credit points from core units of study; and
(b) a minimum of 18 credit points from core elective units of study; and
(c) a maximum of 24 credit points from elective units of study. With the permission of the Degree Coordinator a maximum of 12 credit points can be taken as elective units from units of study outside those listed in the Political Economy subject area of the Postgraduate Unit of Study Table, including units of study offered by other faculties.
(d) a minimum of 6 credit points of capstone units of study.

Embedded courses

Further course information

Progression rules

Under normal progression, a student shall undertake and successfully complete all units of study to the value of 24 credit points per semester as prescribed for the course. Candidates must maintain a credit average result or above, normally over at least the first 4 units of study, in order to qualify for admission to the dissertation units of study. Students are required to attend all lectures, tutorials and other activities prescribed for their units of study.

Capstone experience

Eligible candidates undertaking the degree of Master of Political Economy have the option of completing a long essay/project on an approved topic with a value of 6 credit points, under the supervision of an academic staff member.

Course outcomes and further study

Graduate opportunities

Graduates of the Master of Political Economy will be prepared for a range of careers in international companies, finance and research. Opportunities for further study are also available. Graduates of the Master of Political Economy who have completed a dissertation with a meritorious grade are eligible to pursue a higher degree by research in their chosen subject area.

Further study

Graduates of the Master of Political Economy who have completed a dissertation with a meritorious grade are eligible to pursue a higher degree by research in their chosen subject area.

Admission

Admission requirements

Admission to candidature for the Master of Political Economy requires:

a bachelor's degree with a minimum credit (65%) average calculated over the whole degree, from the University of Sydney, including a major in the Social Sciences, or an equivalent qualification

Upgrade is possible from a Grad Cert to a Grad Dip or Masters in the embedded degree.

Upgrade is possible for a Grad Dip to Masters in the embedded degree

How to apply

Domestic students

How to apply

Australian citizens, permanent residents, New Zealand citizens, and holders of a permanent humanitarian visa, apply through the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences - click on the 'Apply now' icon on this page to proceed with your application.

International students

How to apply

Overseas applicants may apply:

(i) directly to the University via the International Office. Further information on applications and English language requirements and support services for international students is available on the International Office website; or

(ii) through a University overseas representative (education agent).

Fee disclaimer

Domestic students

Annual review for postgraduate student contribution amount

Importantly, student contribution amounts are subject to annual review by the University, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study (subject to a Commonwealth specified cap), effective at the start of each calendar year.

Postgraduate Domestic Tuition Fee

This 2015, tuition fee for a domestic postgraduate student represents the fee that is payable by you in the calendar year you commence your course, commencing in 2014 for a standard annual full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). If your study load is more or less than the 1.0 EFTSL your fee will differ.

Annual review for postgraduate domestic tuition fee

Importantly, tuition fees are subject to annual review by the University, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study, effective at the start of each calendar year.

Additional incidental fees

For some courses there are incidental fees additional to the student contribution and/or course fee. Some of those fees are significant, for example, faculty-specific materials, tools, protected clothing and equipment. For further information about these additional incidental fees, please visit the University's Future Students' website.

Potential for inaccuracy

Whilst every reasonable effort has been made to include correct and up to date information in this prospectus, you are also advised to consult directly with the Student Centre for domestic students or the International Office for international students so that they can provide you with specific and up to date information about those fees.

The academic requirements that are displayed are applicable to currently available courses only, and are updated annually in October and may be changed without notice. The Faculty Handbook and the University of Sydney Calendar are the official legal source of information relating to study at the University of Sydney, and you are referred to those documents

Please note that if you are classified by the University as a Research Training Scheme student in accordance with the Other Grants Guidelines (Research) 2010, you will be exempt from the payment of any SCA or tuition fees for courses undertaken as part of a Research Masters degree and Research Doctoral degree. More information about your eligibility for this Scheme is available here.

International students

International tuition fees for postgraduate students

This 2015, tuition fee for international postgraduate students represents the fees that are payable by you in the calendar year you commence your course, commencing in 2015, for a standard annual full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). If your study load is more or less than the 1.0 EFTSL your fee will differ.

Annual review

Importantly, tuition fees are subject to annual review, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study, effective at the start of each calendar year.

Additional incidental fees and health insurance

For some courses there are incidental fees additional to the tuition fees. Some of those fees are significant, for example, faculty-specific materials, tools, protected clothing, and equipment. The University's Future Students' webpage has further information about these additional incidental fees for postgraduate coursework students and postgraduate research students.

In addition to the fees indicated here for the course of study, International Students studying on an Australian Student Visa must have appropriate health insurance for the duration of their studies on a Student Visa through an approved provider of the Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) scheme. This is a requirement of the Australian Government, unless otherwise exempted by the Government.

Potential for inaccuracy

Whilst every reasonable effort has been made to include correct and up to date information here, you are also advised to consult directly with the Student Centre for domestic students or the International Office for international students so that they can provide you with specific and up to date information about those fees.