International Studies


Seek out global opportunities

Students of International Studies are often natural diplomats, some have a gift for languages, but all have a heightened curiosity about the world. The Bachelor of International Studies challenges you to examine the dynamics of global and regional change, explore key developments in international politics and economics, and evaluate why the world is changing around us.

With this knowledge you will be able to understand changes to the nature of sovereignty, nationalism, conflict, humanitarian aid and movements of people across the globe.

Overseas exchange

You will learn through experience as you live and study in another country on a one year exchange program, plunging headfirst into local language and customs. 

UNSW has over 200 partner universities in over 38 countries and no need to worry, your overseas classes can be taken in English.

Grants of $1,000 are available for eligible students to assist with travel costs. There is also funding to assist students to cover the costs of an international experience subject through the Australian government's OS-HELP loans.


What you will study

The Bachelor of International Studies is a rigorous four-year degree during which students will complete

  • A dedicated International Studies core, which provides a thorough grounding in world events, specialist regional knowledge and professional electives aimed at enhancing your chosen career.
  • A year-long Overseas Study Program (OSP) component in the third year, which allows you to spend your entire fourth year at UNSW to prepare for graduation.
  • A minor stream with options from: Asian Studies; Chinese Studies; Development Studies; Environmental Humanities; European Studies; French Studies; German Studies; International Business; Japanese Studies; Korean Studies; Politics & International Relations; Sociology and Anthropology and; Spanish and Latin American Studies.
  • A stream of language study (Chinese, French, German, Greek, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean or Spanish

Studying a Bachelor of International Studies will give you an opportunity to enhance your global engagement as well as offer a greater emphasis on careers, internships and professional networking events.

You may also have the opportunity to complete additional electives from Arts & Social Sciences and other faculties as part of your International Studies degree.


Internationally acknowledged skills

International Studies graduates are prepared for careers in the global market. Our undergraduate program cultivates skills and experience highly valued by employers and the professions, including:

  • cross-cultural communication and negotiation
  • high level expertise in problem solving, research, critical analysis, and evaluation
  • accomplished presentation techniques
  • language proficiency
  • intellectual flexibility and superior interpersonal skills
  • in-depth understanding of contemporary global issues

Worldwide opportunities

International Studies graduates are prepared for careers in the global market. As a graduate you will have highly developed skills in cross-cultural communication and negotiation; expertise in problem solving, research, critical analysis, and evaluation; an in-depth understanding of contemporary global issues and language proficiency. Our graduates can be found in industries worldwide including

  • International business
  • Government agencies (including foreign affairs)
  • Investment banks and other financial institutions
  • United Nations agencies
  • Journalism and media
  • Tourism and trade
  • Humanitarian aid and human
  • Rights organisations
  • International development organisations


Vocational placements

As a student in Arts & Social Sciences you have the option to enrol in a degree credit internship course.

Our internship program provides an exciting opportunity for International Studies students to put theory into practice and gain valuable professional experience.

Getting involved

Our students have further opportunities to gain ‘real world’ experience through a variety of options both locally and globally, including:

  • projects in coursework
  • volunteer and paid roles (find out more on the UNSW Careers and Employment website)
  • leadership in student organisations

Dual degrees

A dual degree means you can study your International Studies degree concurrently with another degree. You will graduate with two degrees, broadening your graduate options.

The Bachelor of International Studies can be combined as a dual degree with:

UNSW handbook

Degree program structure and academic rules information:

If you are a current student, please refer to the Online Handbook in the year you commenced your degree.

Student Profiles

See what some of our students have to say about their International Studies degree.

Anthony Lachlan McRae Clifford - Bachelor of International Studies/ PR & Advertising

Kade Newell - Bachelor of International Studies

Alumni Profile
Alumni Profile Ellis Cowan

Sydney, Japan, Israel - where next! 

See the highlights and amazing opportunities Ellis took part in during his Bachelor of International Studies. 

Alumni Profile
Alumni Profile Leah Moss

See how Leah is making her mark on the world and what she's been up to since finishing her Bachelor of International Studies degree.

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Domestic International
4FT/ 7PT
Term 1
90 (2019 Lowest Selection Rank) / 90 (2020 Guaranteed Entry)
On Campus
Accepted Qualifications
Band 1
Degree Structure
Degree Stucture (PDF) [237 Kb]