Political Science and International Relations major

Societies can only continue to exist if they solve the problem of internal order and are able to protect themselves from external threats. Political Science and International Relations studies how societies govern themselves and the collective decisions, or public policies, they need, or choose, to make. Attention is given to the different ways government is organised; values such as liberty, participation, majority rule and minority rights which inform political institutions and public policy; and ideologies such as conservatism, liberalism, socialism, feminism and environmentalism which have motivated much political action in modern societies. International relations focuses on the ways in which states and peoples interact with other states, regional or global political organisations, and social movements in an increasingly interdependent world.

Outcomes

Students are able to (1) Demonstrate advanced knowledge about the nature of politics and the functions of diverse political ideas, theories, actors, institutions and systems; (2) Critically evaluate key political and policy dynamics at local, national, transnational, regional and international levels; (3) Creatively apply critical thinking and problem-solving skills to independently and collaboratively address challenges, crises and change in the political world; (4) Competently apply basic Political Science and International Relations methods and skills to designing and executing social research; and (5) Effectively communicate political knowledge, ideas, analyses and arguments in different formats..

Broadening guidelines

All students studying towards a Bachelor's Degree at UWA are required to Broaden their studies by completing a minimum of four units (24 points) of study outside their degree specific major. Broadening is your opportunity to explore other areas of interest, investigate new disciplines and knowledge paradigms and to shape your degree to suit your own aspirations and interests. Many of you will be able to undertake more than this minimum amount of broadening study and we encourage you to do so if this suits your aspirations. Over the next few months you will find here some broadening suggestions related to your degree-specific major. While we know that many students value guidance of this sort, these are only suggestions and students should not lose sight of the opportunity to explore that is afforded by your Broadening Choices. Advice can also be sought from your Allocated Student Advising Office.

Political Science and International Relations can be taken as a degree-specific major in the following degree courses:

BP001 Bachelor of Arts
BH005 Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours)

Overview of unit sequence

Political Science and International Relations is a degree-specific single major comprising:

  • two Level 1 units
  • three Level 2 units
  • three Level 3 units
Key to availability of units:
S1 = Semester 1; S2 = Semester 2; N/A = not available in 2021; NS = non-standard teaching period

Note: Units that are indicated as N/A may be available in 2022 or 2023.

Level 1

Degree-specific major units
Take all units (12 points):
Availability Unit code Unit name unit requirements
S1 POLS1101 Understanding Politics and Policy
S2 POLS1102 Understanding Global Politics

Level 2

Degree-specific major units
Take unit(s) to the value of 18 points:
Availability Unit code Unit name unit requirements
S1 POLS2201 Foundations of Public Policy
Prerequisites:
12 points of Social Sciences and/
or
Humanities study at level 1
Incompatibility:
POLS3301 Public Policy
S2 POLS2202 Foundations of Comparative Politics
Prerequisites:
12 points of Social Sciences and/
or
Humanities study at level 1
S1 POLS2214 Foundations of Foreign Policy
Prerequisites:
12 points of Social Sciences and/
or
Humanities study at level 1
S2 POLS2220 Foundations of Global Political Economy
Prerequisites:
12 points of Social Sciences and/
or
Humanities study at level 1
Incompatibility:
POLS3320 International Political Economy
S1 PPHE2211 History of Political Ideas
Prerequisites:
completion of any POLS
or
PHIL unit
or
24 points in the Bachelor of Arts
Incompatibility:
POLS3311 History of Political Ideas; POLS2211 History of Political Ideas

Level 3

Degree-specific major units
Group A—take units to the value of 18 points from Group A and B.
Availability Unit code Unit name unit requirements
N/A POLS3204 The Politics of Gender
Prerequisites:
12 points of Social Science and/
or
Humanities study at level 2
S1 POLS3231 Politics of the Mass Media
Prerequisites:
12 points of Social Science and/
or
Humanities study at level 2
Incompatibility:
POLS2231/POLS3331 Politics of the Mass Media
S1 POLS3302 South Asia and the Middle East: Foreign Relations and Politics
Prerequisites:
12 points of Social Sciences and/
or
Humanities study at level 2
N/A POLS3308 Politics in Greater China
Prerequisites:
12 points of Social Sciences and/
or
Humanities study at level 2
Incompatibility:
POLS2208 Politics in Greater China
N/A POLS3324 Islam and World Politics
Prerequisites:
12 points of Social Sciences and/
or
Humanities study at level 2
Incompatibility:
POLS2224 Islam and World Politics
S2 POLS3334 The International Politics of Africa
Prerequisites:
12 points of Social Sciences and/
or
Humanities study at level 2
N/A POLS3335 Social Movements and the Politics of Change
Prerequisites:
12 points of Social Sciences and/
or
Humanities study at level 2
S2 POLS3342 Global Environmental Politics
Prerequisites:
12 points of Social Sciences and/
or
Humanities study at level 2
Incompatibility:
POLS2229 States, Welfare and Environmental Policy
S1 PPHE3327 Contemporary Political Theory
Prerequisites:
any Level 2 POLS
or
PHIL unit
or
PPHE2211 History of Political Ideas
Incompatibility:
POLS2227 Contemporary Political Theory; POLS3327 Contemporary Political Theory
Degree-specific major units
Group B—take units to the value of 18 points from Group A and B (maximum value of 6 points from Group B).
Availability Unit code Unit name unit requirements
S2 PARL3399 WA Parliamentary Research Program
Prerequisites:
Completion of 96 points
or
Faculty approval. Acceptance is also subject to Faculty placement and prior approval of availability in student study plans for this unit
N/A POLS3304 Policy and Diplomacy in Practice
Prerequisites:
2 x POLS L1 and 3 x POLS L2 units. POLS1101 Understanding Politics and Policy POLS1102 Understanding Global Politics POLS2201 Foundations of Public Policy POLS2202 Foundations of Comparative Politics POLS2214 Foundations of Foreign Policy POLS2220 Foundations of Global Political Economy
Incompatibility:
PARL3339,
and
WILG3001
NS, S1, S2 WILG3001 Professional Experience Practicum
Prerequisites:
completion of at least 48 point of units and enrolment in the Political Science and International Relations major
or
the Linguistics major and approval by the unit coordinator
or
completion of 96 points of units and enrolment in the Business Management major
or
Enterprise and Innovation major
or
Global Business major. For students in the Creative Writing Studies Minor: completion of ENGL1501 Reading Creatively/Writing Creatively
and
ENGL2501 Creative Writing: Theory and Practice.
Incompatibility:
BUSN3348 Business Practicum
or
HUMA2901 Arts Practicum
or
POLS3326 Political Science Internship
or
WILG2201 Professional Experience Practicum
or
PARL3399 WA Parliamentary Research Program.

Choosing your degree-specific major

Specialised degrees – Bachelor of Advanced Computer Science (Honours), Bachelor of Automation and Robotics, Bachelor of Environmental Design, Bachelor of Music

You must satisfy the requirements of the degree-specific major in your degree before you complete your course.

Bachelor of Philosophy, Politics and Economics

This comprehensive degree does not require you to choose a degree-specific major.

General degrees

You must satisfy the requirements of a degree-specific major before you complete your course. The flexible structure of an undergraduate course allows you to try out a number of different subjects to see what interests you before nominating your degree-specific major. You have the choice to either nominate your degree-specific major when you first enrol in the course or delay nominating it until your second year.

To plan the first year of your study without nominating a degree-specific major, you are advised to choose units that will pave the way to two or more degree-specific majors that are of interest to you. For examples of the choice of units available in first year, search the first-year study plans .

To fully understand the structure of an undergraduate course, read the course structure information and the Undergraduate Degree Course Rules.

The following example illustrates how the Political Science and International Relations degree-specific major can be included in the Bachelor of Arts course.

Example: Course Study Plan: CSP001-POLSC

There are more choices open to you. For more examples, search the study plans .

Choosing a second major

You also have the option to choose a second major from those available in the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Biomedical Science, Bachelor of Commerce, Bachelor of Design Only available to re-enrolling students. and Bachelor of Science courses, giving you the opportunity to pursue your interests no matter how different they are.

The following example illustrates how the Political Science and International Relations degree-specific major can be combined with a second major in the Bachelor of Arts course.

Example: Course Study Plan: CSP001-POLSC-Generic

For more examples of combinations of majors, search the study plans .