International Relations

The study of International Relations offers you insight into the causes, consequences and challenges of contemporary global politics and economics. It also provides an opportunity to contribute to global solutions. You’ll gain a solid intellectual grounding in key global debates, international historical events, and political institutions. You’ll address questions such as ‘What economic forces shape our international political life?’ and ‘How can we end poverty, hunger and promote norms of cooperation and justice?’ These are just some of the topics you’ll explore in the study of International Relations at Monash.

Available as a major or minor.

What is it?

International Relations – a subfield of the discipline of Political Science – is concerned in general with the operation of power within and across states and internationally. We ask critical questions about the world including ‘Who or what has power?’, ‘How does power function?’ and ‘Why does power generate security and insecurity?’

We look at the political avenues open to us to tackle the global challenges of our time, from environmental destruction to terrorism and political violence, from poverty and gender inequality to refugees and development. We look closely at states and empires, international organisations (the United Nations, the World Bank, and the World Trade Organisation), intergovernmental organisations (NATO, the European Union, ASEAN, and the Arab League), and global social movements (eg, environmental, Indigenous people’s, women’s and anti-poverty movements).


How to Study

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Click here for fees, entry requirements and intake information for domestic and international students.

Major: 8 units (48 points) taken over 3 years. This is the area of study you choose to specialise in.

Minor: 4 units (24 points) taken from an area of study that is different to your major.

You must complete 48 credit points (8 units) of your course before you are eligible to go on exchange. Usually this means waiting until your second or third year of study to go on exchange.

We consider you an international student if you are not:

  • an Australian or New Zealand citizen, or
  • an Australian permanent resident.

Note: We consider Australian and New Zealand citizens and Australian permanent residents as local students.

Find out more information on how to apply as an international student

An extended major made up of 12 units (96 points) taken over three years.


Study Overseas

You have the option to undertake elective units and cultural experiences in Prato (Italy), Gallipoli (Turkey) and East Asia. You could undertake the intensive unit War and Peace which includes a European field trip based out of Prato, or you could apply for the exciting opportunities to work in an embassy or EU political institution, as part of a dedicated European Union internship

Find out more

Career Prospects

You’ll develop a dynamic range of interpretative, analytical and conceptual skills, enabling you to engage and apply expertise in the areas that interest you most.

Find out more