University of Sydney Handbooks - 2013 Archive

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Government and International Relations

The Department of Government and International Relations is part of the School of Social and Political Sciences (SSPS).

Program structure and content
Government and International Relations is a comprehensive political science department. It offers systematic and extended study in all major aspects of government and politics. It covers national, comparative, and international politics. It focuses on Australian politics, regional politics in Asia and the Pacific, comparative authoritarian and democratic politics, the ways in which societies deal with problems such as environmental issues through public-policy making, the interactions of states and other actors in international relations, and political theory. Students are invited to follow their interests through the range of elective units the department offers. These electives cover topics such as Australian politics, Australian foreign and defence policy, international relations, international business and politics, the state and the economy, politics in Asia and the Pacific, American politics, European politics, communist and post-communist systems, public policy and public management, international security, human rights, political institutions, political theory, and more. The junior units offer fundamental concepts and structures that support further study in senior units. The honours preparation units offer an additional opportunity for high achieving students who wish to pursue an honours year of concentrated political science study.

Requirements for a major
For a major in Government and International Relations, students must complete the following units of study:

  1. 12 credit points of compulsory junior units in Government and International Relations.
  2. At least 6 units of study (36 credit points) of senior elective units of study selected from the units offered.

Up to 12 credit points of units from the approved table of cross-listed units on the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences website may be counted towards the major.

Honours in Government and International Relations is a challenging, one-year program designed for students seeking to develop and apply their skills in Political Science at an advanced level. Students intending to proceed to Government IV Honours must complete 48 senior credit points in Government and International Relations with a credit minimum in each unit of study, and including completion of GOVT2991, GOVT3993 and GOVT3994. Requirements for the Pass degree must be completed before entry to level 4000 honours units of study.

Contact/further information
Department website:

Chair of Department: Professor Allan McConnell

Phone: +61 2 9351 3087

Undergraduate Coordinator: Dr Peter Chen
Phone: +61 2 9036 9079

Honours Coordinator: Dr Susan Park (Semester 1)
Phone: +61 2 9351 6593

Honours Coordinator: Dr Anika Gauja (Semester 2)
Phone: +61 2 9351 3733