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Master of Politics and Public Policy with the degree of Master of International Relations


Faculty of Arts
Master of Politics and Public Policy with the degree of Master of International Relations (MPPPMIntRel)
Admission Requirement:
• Australian level 7 bachelor's qualification or recognised equivalent in social sciences, politics, international relations, law, sociology, media, communications, history, cultural studies, or a related discipline
• GPA of 4.50 (out of 7.00)
• Relevant work experience
Required Supporting Documents:
• CV
English Language Proficiency:
IELTS of 6.5 overall with minimum 6.0 in each band, or equivalent
Study Mode:
Full-time, Part-time
Attendance Mode:
Internal, External
Candidature Length:
Full-time: 2.5 years
Part-time: 5 years
North Ryde — Session 1 (February)
North Ryde — Session 2 (July)
External — Session 1 (February)
External — Session 2 (July)
Volume of Learning:
Equivalent to 2.5 years
General requirements:
Minimum number of credit points 80
Minimum number of credit points at 800 level or above 80
Completion of other specific minimum requirements as set out below

In order to graduate students must ensure that they have satisfied all of the general requirements of the award.

Specific minimum requirements:

Credit points

800 level

International Security (4)
Theories of International Relations (4)
International Political Economy (4)
International Law and Institutions (4)
Public Management and Governance (4)
Policy Design and Practice (4)
Research Methods in Politics and International Relations (4)
International Relations Practice (4)
Comparative Public Policy (4)
Politics and Policy: An Advanced Introduction (4)
Studying Public Policy (4)
8cp from
Case Studies in Politics and Policy (4)
Health Policy (4)
Gender and Policy (4)
Public Policy and International Law (4)
Parties, Elections and Campaigns (4)
Intergovernmental Relations (4)
8cp from
The Politics of International Human Rights Law (4)
Europe, the European Union, and the International System (4)
The United States, East Asia and the World: Hegemony, Conflict and Rivalry (4)
The International System (4)
International Relations of the Middle East (4)
Asia-Pacific Politics (4)
War and Violence in World Politics (4)
20cp from
Race, Nation and Ethnicity (4)
Development Theory and Practice (4)
Social Impact Assessment and Cross Cultural Negotiation (4)
Globalisation and Sustainable Development (4)
The Politics of International Human Rights Law (4)
Europe, the European Union, and the International System (4)
The United States, East Asia and the World: Hegemony, Conflict and Rivalry (4)
Master of International Relations Internship (4)
The International System (4)
International Relations of the Middle East (4)
Asia-Pacific Politics (4)
War and Violence in World Politics (4)
Climate Change Law (4)
International Environmental Law (4)
Indigenous Peoples and the Law (4)
Policy Research Project (4)
International Relations Research Project (4)
Parties, Elections and Campaigns (4)
Intergovernmental Relations (4)
Internship Project (4)
Evaluation and the Policy Process (4)
Activism and Policy Design (4)
Political Economy for Social Policy and Research (4)
Work and Employment (4)


AQF Level Level 9 Masters by Coursework Degree
CRICOS Code 095118M
Overview and Aims of the Program This double degree program develops your understanding of the structure and processes of policy formulation, implementation and evaluation from an Australian perspective, and develops a comprehensive understanding of the political, social, economic and legal components and processes of the international system. The units of this degree are offered within the context of political science and international relations. The degree emphasises the politics surrounding public policy, and the changing landscape of policy making and Australian public policy. It develops a comprehensive understanding of current debates in public policy including evidence-based policy, accountability, federal-state relations, globalisation, policy transfer, political parties and citizen engagement. It also examines core aspects of the study of international relations, including international relations theory, democratisation, human rights, security, regionalisation, global political economy, as well as area specialisations in the politics of Asia, Europe, America, Africa, Australia and the Middle East.
Graduate Capabilities

The Graduate Capabilities Framework articulates the fundamentals that underpin all of Macquarie’s academic programs. It expresses these as follows:

Cognitive capabilities
(K) discipline specific knowledge and skills
(T) critical, analytical and integrative thinking
(P) problem solving and research capability
(I) creative and innovative

Interpersonal or social capabilities
(C) effective communication
(E) engaged and ethical local and global citizens
(A) socially and environmentally active and responsible

Personal capabilities
(J) capable of professional and personal judgement and initiative
(L) commitment to continuous learning

Program Learning Outcomes By the end of this program it is anticipated you should be able to:
1. analyse and explain how public policy is formulated, implemented and evaluated using a range of different theories from contemporary public policy literature (K, T)
2. explain how problem definition is affected by political, social, economic, and cultural factors, and identify alternative arguments and positions which are applicable in the given context (K, T, P, J)
3. critically analyse the links between evidence and policy decision making in a range of different contexts (K, T, P)
4. investigate, analyse and synthesise complex information, problems and theories related to public policy, apply this to real-world case studies (K, T, P, J)
5. communicate key concepts and arguments to specialist and non-specialist audiences (K, J, C)
6. apply theories of power, regulation, accountability, integrity and ethics to real-world situations, and identify strengths and weaknesses in current governance practice (T, E, J)
7. plan and undertake in-depth self-directed research, applying key relevant concepts, theories and methodologies, and drawing on a wide range of cross-disciplinary sources (K, T, P, E)
8. research, prepare and communicate policy recommendations and policy briefs which are well-informed, persuasive and practical (T, P, J, C).
9. discriminate between competing theories that seek to explain current and historical conflicts in the international arena and selectively apply those theories to stated cases (K, T)
10. outline critically the institutional growth of international and global society, showing a detailed knowledge of selected aspects of institutional change (K, T)
11. integrate political, legal, social and economic reasoning to the extent possible in explaining cases of conflict in the international arena (K, T,J)
12. explain how ideational, cultural and personal factors interact to influence perception and understanding in world affairs (C, E, J)
13. analyse critically the balance of causality as between actors, institutions and ideas in explaining national and supra-national linkages in disputes and dispute resolution in international affairs (T, P, J)

The number of PLOs that a program should have is not specified. As a guide, between eight and twelve PLOs would be a reasonable number.
PLOs are made publicly available and so will be read by a wide audience. When writing PLOs it is useful to ask "is this written in a way which would be intelligible, accessible and meaningful to our students and prospective students?". Generally speaking, learning outcomes should be expressed in a form that includes action verbs, describing something your students can actually do, and can be assessed to have successfully done, like "identify", "describe" or "differentiate".
The AQF asks that PLOs should address the areas of Knowledge and Understanding, Skills and Capabilities, and the Application of Knowledge and Skills. It isn't necessary for each PLO to be classified under one of these headings. However it is important for the overall collection of PLOs for a program to clearly address all of these factors.
Each program learning outcome should be mapped to the graduate capabilities it fosters, using the standard letter codes given.
Learning and Teaching Methods This degree program is a postgraduate program which is designed for students who have relevant work experience, and the program builds on this range of experience by creating opportunities for collaboration, reflection and discussion among students, and building networks for learning and inquiry. Students are encouraged to consider their own work-based experiences and share these with fellow students, within an atmosphere of mutual trust and respect. Furthermore, a number of the assessment tasks are designed to encourage students to apply their study to areas in which they already have some familiarity or expertise.

Most units in this program consist of formal lectures which are recorded for external students. Each unit uses learning technologies to encourage collaboration, debate and discussion between students and teaching staff. Internal students attend weekly seminars in which they participate in discussion, small group work, and learning activities designed to consolidate learning from readings and lectures, and assist in the application of theory and knowledge to contemporary and historical real-world situations. Learning activities include problem-based learning exercises, debates, critique, role play and discussion based on video or written stimulation. These learning activities are also provided to external students at the compulsory on-campus sessions which are held on two weekends over the semester.
Assessment This program is designed to develop and assess a range of skills and capabilities which are relevant to work in policy and international relations. Assessment tasks are varied across and within units to allow you to develop and refine your skills and knowledge throughout the degree, and to build a portfolio of a diverse selection of work. All units allow you to develop expertise in specific and varied aspects of public policy and international relations. The capstone unit draws on theory and practical skills developed in earlier units and provides you with an opportunity to apply these to in-depth contemporary case studies, considering all aspects and stages of the policy process in a holistic manner.

All assessment is based on individual effort, and clear guidelines and marking criteria for each unit are provided in the unit guide. The program includes formative and summative assessment in order to assist your development during the unit.
Recognition of Prior Learning

Macquarie University may recognise prior formal, informal and non-formal learning for the purpose of granting credit towards, or admission into, a program. The recognition of these forms of learning is enabled by the University’s Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) Policy (see and its associated Procedures and Guidelines. The RPL pages contain information on how to apply, links to registers, and the approval processes for recognising prior learning for entry or credit. 

Domestic Students
For undergraduate RPL information visit
For domestic postgraduate RPL information visit

International Students
For RPL information visit

Support for Learning

Macquarie University aspires to be an inclusive and supportive community of learners where all students are given the opportunity to meet their academic and personal goals. The University offers a comprehensive range of free and accessible student support services which include academic advice, counselling and psychological services, advocacy services and welfare advice, careers and employment, disability services and academic skills workshops amongst others. There is also a bulk billing medical service located on campus.

Further information can be found at

Campus Wellbeing contact details:
Phone: +61 2 9850 7497

Program Standards and Quality

The program is subject to an ongoing comprehensive process of quality review in accordance with a pre-determined schedule that complies with the Higher Education Standards Framework. The review is overseen by Macquarie University's peak academic governance body, the Academic Senate and takes into account feedback received from students, staff and external stakeholders.

Graduate Destinations and Employability This degree develops skills which are relevant for political and policy-related work in government and non-government organisations, international organisations, international NGOs and multinational corporations with international operations, and in businesses with an interest in public policy decision making. Students develop an in-depth knowledge of international relations, political and policy processes, and analyse a wide range of current and real-world policies and issues. Graduates include public servants in Commonwealth, state and local government, including the diplomatic corps, ministerial advisers, parliamentary and electorate staff, lobbyists, and policy advisors in international organisations, multinational corporations, community and advocacy organisations, or work in media, law or government relations.
Assessment Regulations

This program is subject to Macquarie University regulations, including but not limited to those specified in the Assessment Policy, Academic Honesty Policy, the Final Examination Policy and relevant University Rules. For all approved University policies, procedures, guidelines and schedules visit

Accreditation This is an Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) accredited qualification.

Inherent requirements are the essential components of a course or program necessary for a student to successfully achieve the core learning outcomes of a course or program. Students must meet the inherent requirements to complete their Macquarie University course or program.

Inherent requirements for Macquarie University programs fall under the following categories:

Physical: The physical inherent requirement is to have the physical capabilities to safely and effectively perform the activities necessary to undertake the learning activities and achieve the learning outcomes of an award.

Cognition: The inherent requirement for cognition is possessing the intellectual, conceptual, integrative and quantitative capabilities to undertake the learning activities and achieve the learning outcomes of an award.

Communication: The inherent requirement for communication is the capacity to communicate information, thoughts and ideas through a variety of mediums and with a range of audiences.

Behavioural: The behavioural inherent requirement is the capacity to sustain appropriate behaviour over the duration of units of study to engage in activities necessary to undertake the learning activities and achieve the learning outcomes of an award.

For more information see

2018 Unit Information

When offered:
S1 Day
Permission of Executive Dean of Faculty
HSC Chinese, CHN113, CHN148