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Bachelor of International Studies

Degree Type Bachelor

Duration 3 years full-time or part-time equiv.

SATAC Code 314961


The International Studies program at the University of Adelaide offers you an opportunity to explore the inter-relations between nations and peoples, and to examine global politics, problems and actors from a variety of perspectives. Our program has three important specialisations: Asia's Rising Powers, International Security, and Global Governance and Justice.

The Asia's Rising Powers specialisation explores the political and economic implications of the shift of wealth and power to new and rising powers in Asia. Courses within the stream have a particular (though not exclusive) focus on India and China. Students analyse the domestic and global politics of these emerging powers, the social and political impact of rising powers, as well as their impact on global and regional governance. In addition, the stream includes courses that explore Australia's engagement with the international order, and particularly examines the domestic political implications of Australia's engagement with the Indo-Pacific region.

International Security explores the nature of security, conflict and intervention in global politics. It investigates contending theoretical perspectives on international conflict, violence and war on human populations. Courses within the stream focus on the role of strategic culture in defining interests, intelligence, the impact of globilisation on changing forms of security and violence, and the increasing level of human insecurity. Other areas of focus include non-military, cross border issues that impact on human security including environmental degradation and change, migration and trade. 

Global Governance and Justice explores the role of international institutions and regimes in the governance of complex issues. It pays particular attention to how governance is now increasingly complex involving non state actors such as credit rating agencies and/or private security firms. It also focuses on new forms of governance at the national, regional and global levels dealing with cross border issues such as the environment, migration and finance.  

The comprehensive array of electives on offer will reinforce these different streams of our program.   

Study Abroad and Exchange Opportunities

The University has student exchange links with over 100 overseas institutions. You can study overseas for one or two semesters which counts as credit towards your degree program at the University of Adelaide. In addition there are no extra tuition fees for this study. What better way to test out newly developed language skills or experience another culture as you learn?


  • Program Structure

    Students study core International Studies courses over the duration of their degree. They will also choose a discipline area from within the Humanities and Social Sciences as their Minor, for example French or History. The remainder of the degree is made up of free choice electives from within the Faculty of Arts or another faculty.

    Studies in a foreign language are highly recommended and students are encouraged to spend one or two semesters at an overseas university to gain valuable international experience and cultural perspective.

  • Related Programs
  • Admission and Fee Information

    Choose your applicant type to view the relevant admissions information for this program.
    I am a:

    Domestic applicants

    Not a domestic applicant?

    SATAC Code 314961
    2013 CSP ATAR 65.9
    Adelaide Approved Score 70
    2013 CSP IB 24
    Annual tuition fees
    Commonwealth-supported place: $6,075
    Mid-year entry? Yes
    Deferment? Yes - 2 year
    Enquiries Ask Adelaide
    Selection Criteria
    Year 12 applicants
    You must not have completed more than 2 years full time equivalent university study (48 units). You compete for a place with your Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR).

    Alternative entry pathways
    • Higher Education applicants
      You must have completed at least half a year full time equivalent university study. A Grade Point Average (GPA) is calculated for each separate program you have undertaken (apart from some double degree programs where the GPA is combined). You compete on the basis of your best GPA. GPAs earned from non-award study within the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences are also considered.
    • VET applicants
      You must have completed an AQF Certificate IV or above from a Registered Training Organisation. Your application will be ranked according to the level of the award.
    • Special Entry applicants
      You must be 18 years or over before February 1st of the year that you will be studying. If you have studied a higher education program within the last two years, you must not have studied more than 2 years full-time equivalent in that program and you must not hold a completed higher education level award. If you meet this criteria, you will be ranked according to your result in the Special Tertiary Admissions Test (STAT). Personal Competencies (PC) and Employment Experience (EE) statements may also contribute to your rank. Your STAT result is not weighted between verbal and quantitative components. If you submit a PC or EE statement, and one of these ranks higher than your STAT score, then the highest ranking statement will contribute 50% to your overall rank and the STAT will contribute the remaining 50%. If you do not submit a PC or EE statement, or if the statements have a lower rank than the STAT, then you will compete for a place on the basis of your STAT result only. Indigenous applicants may be eligible for entry through the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Access Scheme. See Wilto Yerlo for further information.
    • Without formal qualifications?
      You may be eligible for our special access schemes.
    • Other Entry Pathways
    How to Apply
    SATAC Code: 314961

    International applicants

    Not an international applicant?

    IB 25
    IELTS Overall 6 [more info]
    Annual tuition fees International student place: $24,500
    Mid-year entry? Yes
    CRICOS 022493C
    Enquiries Ask Adelaide
    Selection Criteria
    Equivalent Scores
    IB 25
    A-Level 6
    UEC [Malaysia] 25
    SAT [US] 1540
    OSSD OAC [Canadian Pre-U] 65
    Eynesbury Foundation Program 339
    Bradford Foundation Program 70
    How to Apply

    International applicants applying with Australian year 12 results

    Not an international applicant applying with Australian year 12 results?

    Annual tuition fees International student place: $24,500
    Mid-year entry? Yes
    Enquiries Ask Adelaide
    Selection Criteria
  • Areas of Specialisation


  • Study Plans

    The study plans given are examples of pathways through this degree.

    Current students, please visit the below link for your study plan templates:

     All courses are worth 3 units each.


    Level I

    Level II

    • POLIS 2129 Indo-Pacific Foreign Policy
    • POLIS 2124 Global Justice and International Order
    • 2 x Advanced Level International Studies closed elective
    • 2 x Advanced Level Minor course in Humanities and Social Sciences
    • 2 x Advanced Level open elective course

    Level III


    • Core courses may not be double counted towards your minor.
    • The Bachelor of International Studies has specialisations in three areas: Asia's Rising Powers, International Security, and Global Governance and Justice. The International Studies closed electives have been grouped into these three streams to enable students to focus their elective studies in a particular specialisation if they so choose. This is optional.


  • Career Opportunities

    Graduates find successful careers in numerous roles. Potential Careers are listed below.

    Potential careers

    Foreign Affairs, Government or Corporate Policy Adviser, Humanitarian / Aid Worker, International Government and Trade Policy Adviser, Non Government Organisation Worker, Ministerial Adviser, Parliamentary Adviser, Political Adviser

  • Work Placement

    An opportunity for your third year is to take part in an internship with an organisation from within the arts, media, parliament or environment. These include State Parliament and a range of public and business sector agencies, where you can use the knowledge from your university study in a practical work environment, building valuable networks and gaining experience that counts towards your degree program and prepares you for your future career.

  • Program Rules

    The Calendar is a comprehensive handbook of the University's academic program rules.

  • Further Information

    Please direct enquiries to the Ask Adelaide
    Phone: +61 8 8313 7335 (toll free 1800 061 459)

    The annual Open Day and Information Night events provide an excellent opportunity to see our campus, meet with academics, and discuss your study options.

  • Useful Links

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.

Last updated: Wednesday, 16 Apr 2014


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