University of Sydney Handbooks - 2012 Archive

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European Studies

European Studies is an area-studies and intellectual history program administered by the School of Languages and Cultures (SLC) with participation from other Departments. European Studies is designed to provide information on and analysis of the identities, societies and cultures of contemporary Europe and on the social, cultural, and intellectual developments which generated the Europe of today, including both the European Union and the Europe of tradition and history. Europe is Australia's largest trading and investment partner and an understanding of Europe and its institutions is important for immigration, tourism, commerce, trade and strategic and cultural alliances.

Students must register with the European Studies Director in addition to their normal University enrolment. The Director of European Studies will help to plan a course in which European Studies and the various disciplinary areas are combined into a co-ordinated program of study.

Program structure and content
The undergraduate program in European Studies offers students:

  • an interdisciplinary approach to understanding Europe, its nations, cultures, societies and identities
  • a cross-cultural approach to European intellectual history
  • a comparative perspective in the study of European societies and cultures
  • an introduction to social and cultural theories as tools to understand Europe.

While the undergraduate units cover broad aspects of European society, literature, culture and history, the main theoretical basis lies in understanding Europe and the concept of Europe and of European civilization through the study of long-term historical, cultural and socio-political developments. In the core upper-level European Studies units we study the context and intellectual history of key aspects of contemporary Europe, such as the state of European civilisation, origins and development of the European individual, regional, national and ethnic identity in contemporary Europe, European and western modernity, and other key aspects of European civilisation. Aspects of European identity are studied through literature, film and historical, political and sociological texts, and theoretical discussions of European identity, civilisation and culture are monitored and critically examined. Optional units may be chosen from a broad range of cross-listed units in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. Students intending to major in European Studies must fulfill the requirements of language study or its equivalent. However students taking EUST units do not require any ability in a language other than English.

Students do not need to speak, read or write a European language to enrol in units of study offered in the European Studies program, as all classes are conducted in English and use English-language texts. Students are encouraged, however, to gain competence in at least one European language and to deepen their cultural knowledge and understanding through a period of exchange study at one of the many University of Sydney partner universities in Europe.

Students wishing to take EUST units of study at senior level must have completed 48 junior credit points. There are as yet no specific EUST units of study at a junior level.

EUST senior units of study can be credited towards the major, taken as electives or can be cross-listed towards other majors in SLC, or towards a major in other departments, in accordance with the cross-listed requirements of those departments.

The following EUST units of study will be offered in 2012: EUST2611 European & Middle Eastern Myth & Legend; EUST2606 Europe and the Balkans.

Requirements for a major
In order to complete the requirements for the major in European Studies, students need to have done the following:

Completed at least 36 credit points in senior units of study comprising:

  • a minimum of one unit of study (6 credit points) of European Studies units (ie with EUST coding); and
  • a maximum of five units of study (30 credit points) of Europe-related study selected from specified Cross-listed units of study (see Table A of this handbook).

No language units of study may be counted towards the major, but all literature, society and culture units taught in European languages are accepted for the purposes of cross-listing to the European Studies major.

Summer and Winter School
Relevant units of study offered as part of Summer and Winter School may be counted towards a major in European Studies.

Intending Honours students must obtain a credit average in the units taken for their European studies major and 12 additional senior credit points. Students intending to do honours are encouraged to make use of their proficiency in relevant European languages and to consider cognate units in relevant language disciplines.

The Honours program consists of two seminars and an 18,000-20,000 word thesis. As with the undergraduate European Studies major, all units and the thesis will be in English. However we encourage students with European or other relevant language proficiency to utilize sources in that language for their thesis research, and to substitute European-language Honours-level coursework in their coursework component.

Contact/further information
Department Website:
Program Director: Professor Peter Morgan;

or contact the SLC office .