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Unit Overview


This unit explores the major political, social and cultural issues which have characterised the relationship between Australia and the Asian region. It critically examines a range of arguments about the way in which the Australian nation-state has dealt with the external and internal dimensions of an Asian presence, from issues of security and trade to immigration and multiculturalism.

The unit also explores cultural issues in the relationship including the representation of 'Asian' peoples and cultures within Australia, and the construction of identity.

The unit draws on and teaches students to use and apply the latest research in political and cultural history, international relations, identity politics and cultural studies.

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 2UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 2 option in the Asian Studies; CHNSI Chinese Studies; CHNSA Chinese Studies; INDNI Indonesian Studies; JPNSI Japanese Studies major sequences
  • Level 2 elective

Students are able to (1) identify and critically analyse key social and cultural issues in relations between Australia and Asia; (2) understand and critically assess the various economic and geopolitical issues in relations between Australia and Asian nations and peoples; (3) understand and apply relevant theoretical approaches to the analysis of these issues; (4) construct cogent analyses of the changing nature and significance of these issues over time; (5) express information and ideas coherently and logically in written forms; and (6) recognise and practise ethical scholarship and develop more advanced research skills related to the discipline.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) in-class assessments; (2) tutorial participation; and (3) research essay. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Student may be offered supplementary assessment in this unit if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Unit Coordinator(s)
Associate Professor Stephen Dobbs
Unit rules
Successful completion of
any level 1
or POLS unit
ASIA2206 Understanding Asia–Australia Issues
Contact hours
lectures: 20 hours
tutorials: 9 hours
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.
  • Contact hours provide an indication of the type and extent of in-class activities this unit may contain. The total amount of student work (including contact hours, assessment time, and self-study) will approximate 150 hours per 6 credit points.