• Offered by School of Culture History and Language
  • ANU College ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
  • Classification Advanced
  • Course subject Asian Studies
  • Areas of interest Non Language Asian Studies, Cultural Studies, Asian Studies, Security Studies, Asia Pacific Studies
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Chintana Sandilands
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Offered in Winter Session 2017
    See Future Offerings

Students will explore issues relating to international relations, transnational security and regional trade. They will also explore the experiences of various ethnic minority groups in considerable detail. This course will engage students in an interactive approach to learning the Thai and Burmese languages alongside a structured introduction to the cultures, societies and politics of mainland Southeast Asia's frontiers.

On the ground in northern Thailand students' developing linguistic and analytical skills will be tested and refined during four-weeks of structured field exercises, language training and academic seminars.  Taking account of the broad complexities of these Southeast Asian borderlands, this course puts the challenges of greater regional integration in comparative and transnational perspective.

Placements will be subject to availability and security assessment. Students are advised that due to circumstances beyond the University’s control (for example: the onset of specific international security concerns, or international health crises) it may not be possible for this program to run or it may be terminated at short notice or without notice. STUDENTS ENTER THIS PROGRAM AT THEIR OWN RISK.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

Students who satisfy the requirements of this course will have the knowledge and skills to:

-         Execute a multidisciplinary research project in a field environment;

-         Communicate appropriately in a wide-range of situations encountered along the Thailand-Burma border;

-         Analyse contemporary political and economic change in a frontier zone;

-         Locate the Thailand-Burma borderlands within academic, journalistic and policy literatures;

-         Explain the social and cultural dynamics of Thailand and Burma in transnational perspective;

-         Reflect critically on field research as a key component of academic output.

Other Information

Please note that this is an in country study tour course, and there will only run if there are a minimum of eight students enrolled. Enrolment in this course will be through the terradotta studio abroad site (https://anu-au-sa.terradotta.com/) as a Short Program. Students are required to register on the system in order to apply for the course. There are a number of scholarships and grants available for student who undertake this course in order to assist them to go. Please contact the CAP student centre  (cap.student@anu.edu.au) for  more information.

The course will complement the following existing courses: Thai 1A and 1B, Thai 2A and 2B, Thai 3A; Burmese 1A; Security and Strategic Studies A and B; Individual and Society in Asia A and B; Burma/Myanmar: A Country in Crisis.

Indicative Assessment

Assessment will be based on four components:

1.  In-country attendance and participation in academic activities (10 per cent)

2.  Thai language communication skills. Assessment will be based on student’s efforts to communicate with local people in the Thai language throughout the duration of the course. Assessment will be conducted by the Thai language convenor. (25 per cent)

3.  Burmese and other ethnic language skills. Assessment will be based on students’ efforts to communicate throughout the duration of the course. Assessment will be conducted by appropriately qualified language staff. (25 per cent)

4.  Research paper based on field experiences in Southeast Asia. (40 per cent)

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


This intensive course is the equivalent of two semester-long ANU courses conducted over 4 weeks in winter session.The first week of the course is an intensive preparation held at ANU in Canberra.Students will conduct field study and researchin Thailand and the border area following.

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must currently be studying a graduate coursework program

You will need to contact the School of Culture History and Language to request a permission code to enrol in this course.

Preliminary Reading

Chachavalapongpun, Parvin, A Plastic Nation: The Curse of Thainess in Thai-Burmese Relations, Lanham, University Press of America, 2005.

Fink, Christina, Living Silence: Burma Under Military Rule, Bangkok, White Lotus, 2001.

Lang, Hazel, Fear and Sanctury: Burmese Refugees in Thailand, Ithaca, Cornell University Press, 2002.

Pasuk Phongpaichit and Chris Baker, History of Thailand, New York, Cambridge University Press, 2005.

South, Ashley, Mon Nationalism and Civil War in Burma, London, Routledge Curzon, 2003.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
12 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

12.00 0.25000
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2017 $6432
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2017 $9180
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Winter Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
6339 19 Jun 2017 30 Jun 2017 07 Jul 2017 21 Aug 2017 In Person N/A

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