2 x 1-hour lectures weekly
1 x 1-hour tutorial weekly
Assignments, Examination, Tutorial participation
Topic description

Australia is one of the most longstanding democracies in the world, and has at times, led the way in introducing new democratic innovations to the world. Yet, since federation in 1901, Australian politics has changed dramatically and faces a new set of challenges, tensions and threats, which include: globalisation, changes in the party system, environmental and climate threats, growing inequality and the disruption of new technologies. This topic introduces students the key pressures and changes in the Australian political system. How have Australian governments responded to new economic, social and environmental challenges? This topic examines how the Australian Political System has changed over time, and the future of the nation. The topic examines the key institutions and actors that seek to respond to and shape the key political, economic, social and environmental challenges.

Educational aims

This topic aims to:

  • Introduce students to the key Australian political institutions and actors
  • Enable students to understand how Australian governments, political parties, NGOs and key actors are seeking to change the Australian political system
  • Introduce students to the range of the political, economic, environmental and social pressures on the Australian political system
  • Develop skills, knowledge and new learning in political science and related fields
  • Acquire and develop appropriate research, communication, and critical thinking skills and knowledge
Expected learning outcomes
On completion of this topic you will be expected to be able to:

  1. Describe the fundamental elements of the Australian political system
  2. Explain the range of political, economic, social, and environmental challenges to Australian democracy
  3. Explain the role of key political and policy actors
  4. Apply critical thinking, communication, and research skills in an appropriate environment