Master of Public Policy

Conceive and create the frameworks of society  

Public policy shapes our lives. It governs everything from how we do business, to how our health, welfare and education systems operate, and how our nation engages with the world.

Those who set and/or influence policy can create profound change by improving things like community equity, diversity, wellbeing, security and prosperity. Our Master of Public Policy prepares you to take the lead.


What will you do?

The Master’s program is studied over two years full-time, or 18 months if extending a past bachelor degree.

It provides specialist knowledge in policy processes and governance institutions; advanced skills in policy analysis and research; and the capability to design and implement sound policy in complex environments.

Highly interdisciplinary, the degree integrates knowledge from the University’s world-class experts in: politics; international relations; economics; law; environmental and social sciences; strategic communications; philosophy and more. You will gain:

  • deep understanding of political, legal and ethical issues affecting public policy
  • broad awareness of public policy’s underlying economic principles
  • advanced skills in community engagement and its analysis
  • the opportunity to explore interests in specialist areas, such as international trade, human rights, environmental planning and governance, global food and agribusiness, public health, education and more
  • high-level research skills, through a major final-year research project.


Where could it take you?

You might pursue a career in politics or the public service. You could analyse and develop policy in a major industry body or consulting firm. Perhaps you’ll interpret policy and advise on its application for a large company, a lobbying organisation, or not-for-profit.

  • Learn with our world-class discipline experts
  • Specialise in policy processes and government institutions
  • advance your skills to design & implement complex environments

Entry Requirements

Please note: For programs including placements and/or study-related activities in settings where COVID-19 vaccination is mandatory, it is an inherent requirement that all students be fully vaccinated prior to undertaking the placement and/or study-related activity.
For our students who are studying offshore in 2022, the University will continue to offer high-quality access to the learning resources remotely for most programs. This includes all lectures, tutorials and other support material. Students will be advised in advance if there are course components that cannot be provided in remote mode and, wherever possible, offered alternative courses.
Please refer to the COVID-19 FAQ page for further information and a list of programs where in-person attendance is required.

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

Domestic applicants

SATAC Code 3CM240
Deferment Yes - 2 year
Intake February and July
Selection Criteria
Graduate entry

Higher Education Study Conversion Masters (48 units):

Bachelor degree or equivalent with a minimum GPA of 4.0 OR
Successful completion of the Graduate Certificate in Public Policy OR
Successful completion of the Graduate Diploma in Public Policy.

Extension Masters (36 units):
Bachelor degree (minimum GPA 4.0) in the following fields (political science or policy studies) OR relevant cognate discipline: public administration, environmental policy / environmental studies, public health / health policy, economics, international relations OR
Bachelor degree (minimum GPA 4.0) and 3 years relevant professional work experience. Applicants must provide a detailed Curriculum Vitae with their application. OR
6 years relevant professional work experience. Applicants must provide a detailed Curriculum Vitae with their application.

How to Apply
SATAC Code: 3CM240

Fees and Scholarships

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

Domestic applicants

Indicative annual tuition fees
Australian Full-fee place: $30,000

Where the standard duration of the program is less than one year the full cost of the program is displayed.


These scholarships, as well as many others funded by industry and non-profit organisations, are available to potential and currently enrolled students.

Find a Scholarship.


Potential careers

Project Manager, Project Officer, Diplomat, Diplomatic corps, Resource Management, Resource Manager, Risk Analyst, Environment Protection Officer, Environmental Compliance Officer, Environmental Consultant, Environmental Economist, Environmental Management, Environmental Manager, Environmental Project Officer, Environmental Remediation Officer, Social Worker, Foreign Affairs, Foreign Aid Worker, Sustainability Manager, Government Policy Advisor, Government or Corporate Policy Adviser, UN Human Rights Officer, ...

Degree Structure

Academic Program Rules

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


The University has numerous support networks to assist students with adjusting to their new lifestyle, and the difficulties this may bring.

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, 28 Sep 2022