Accredited courses from leading Australian universities, TAFEs and colleges

Australian Foreign Policy

  • Qualification:

    Undergraduate unit

  • Study mode:


  • Payment options:

    HECS-HELP may be available

  • Duration:

    13 weeks

  • Start date:

    Enquire now for upcoming start dates

  • Awarded by:

    Macquarie University

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Saturday and Sunday: 9am - 5pm

Course Unit
A course unit is a single subject offered as part of a program of study, but can be completed individually. You may receive Recognition of Prior Learning for studying this unit.

What you'll learn

About this unit

The online Australian Foreign Policy unit offers students a detailed overview of Australia's foreign policy-making process, from Federation in 1901 up until the present day.

Provided by Open Universities Australia, and awarded by Macquarie University, this unit examines Australia's current standing in international affairs by looking at topics as varied as the country's relationship with superpowers such as China, the Australian stance on climate change and the controversial, ongoing issue of refugees and asylum seekers.

Australia's stance on these particular issues, plus many more, will be examined in-depth, and students will gain an insight into how such issues impact upon the policy-making process.



To be eligible to apply, students must have studied politics at 200 level prior to undertaking this unit.

Course pathways

This unit is an approved elective requirement in the following course:

  • Bachelor of Arts, Macquarie University

Content may also be relevant to other courses, and could qualify you for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) for a course offered by another institution.

Areas of study

In this Australian Foreign Policy unit, the topics you will study include:

  • Introduction: making foreign policy
  • Empire/ALP tradition
  • Alliance/Liberal tradition
  • Australia and Asia: the rise of China
  • Refugees
  • Defence
  • Near neighbours/security issues
  • Human rights/humanitarian intervention
  • Foreign aid
  • Global environment
  • Peacekeeping
  • International trade
For two decades, Open Universities Australia (OUA) has partnered with leading Australian educators to make tertiary-level courses easier to access for people, no matter their background, their work status or their other life commitments. OUA has built up their reputation by making education more flexible, easier to tailor and available almost entirely online.

OUA's devotion to online education remains to this day, but where they once focused on higher education, today they offer the broadest set of post-secondary education and training programs in Australia.
Open Universities Australia offers a range of administrative and student support options. As a student of OUA you will have access to four hours of free expert tutoring support for each unit undertaken through the tutoring service SMARTHINKING. This on-demand service allows you to get fast, detailed feedback on your assignment drafts and gives you access to your tutor in real time.

The My OUA portal is an online student medium that allows you access to all your course and enrolment information as well as access to student forums and assessment tips.

Career outcomes

This unit is useful for those who wish to enter the realm of politics and pursue the process of policy-making further. During this unit, students will learn how Australia's politicians make decisions based on a number of current and historical events and issues. The Australian Foreign Policy unit would also be ideal for anyone looking to find employment in international relations or diplomacy, as the unit will allow them to systematically critique Australian foreign policy and how key decisions are made.

In terms of more general skills, students interested in the humanities will find that this unit allows them to develop their critical interpretation of key source texts and their ability to construct a clear and coherent written argument. For those with a keen interest in history, the unit looks in-depth at the politics of the past - particularly during the early weeks, enabling students to appreciate the importance of past events in defining the politics of the present.

Finally, students who take this unit will find their understanding of Australia's place among the global community enhanced.

Payment options & support

Finance options

If you are an Australian citizen, you may be eligible to receive a government HECS-HELP or FEE-HELP loan, meaning you can defer payment of your fees.


You may be eligible to receive HECS-HELP for this course!

This course can be paid for through the HECS-HELP government loan scheme. If you are an Australian citizen or hold a permanent humanitarian visa, this means you don’t need to pay upfront.

Instead, the Australian government will pay your course fees on your behalf. You’ll begin repaying your loan through the tax system once you start earning more than the minimum threshold of $54,869 (2016-17 income year).

Find out more about government study loans here.

Get more information

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FREE CALL 1800 063 523

Monday to Friday: 8am - late
Saturday and Sunday: 9am - 5pm

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