• Offered by School of Culture History and Language
  • ANU College ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
  • Classification Transitional
  • Course subject Asian Studies
  • Areas of interest Australian Studies, Cultural Studies, Development Studies, International Relations, Asia Pacific Studies
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Dr Ross Tapsell
  • Mode of delivery Online or In Person
  • Co-taught Course
  • Offered in Autumn Session 2023
    See Future Offerings

This course continues the long legacy of the Australian National University’s ambitious Asia programs, which were created more than 75 years ago to support the Australian Government's?post-war?national re-orientation toward Asia. Australia's engagement with the region continues to fluctuate, but it is also true to say, it is not getting easier. 


The central question this course asks is: how can Australia successfully engage more with Asia? The course is divided into two main parts: i) Australia’s history and links with Asia, and ii) Asia’s current and predicted trajectory and what this means for Australia. It is suitable for students looking to understand more about the ‘rise’ of Asia, but also the shifting nature of Australia’s place in the region and the world. It involves an examination of the changing nature of Australia’s relationship with the Asian region. It utilises cases studies from government, business, trade, media, digital start-ups, education, NGOs, environmental, migration and other people-to-people links. The course provides a conceptual understanding and debates of the Australia-Asia relationship through terms like ‘people-to-people links’, ‘Asia literacy’, ‘Asian engagement’ and the growing literature around the role of ‘Asian-Australian’ diaspora. 


The course will be of particular interest to students intending to pursue a career in Asia, but also for those looking to build up expertise for practical work of?a number of?government and non-government organisations dealing with Asian issues, such as NGO and development organisations, education, media, public policy, trade, business, foreign affairs and think tanks. 


Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Examine past and present debates regarding 'Asian engagement', and critically engage in the theories that apply to Asian studies scholarship in this field.
  2. Analyse the political and social implications of Australian engagement with Asia over a historical period, by learning how the traditions and cultural roots of bygone years continue to influence cultural behaviour between Australia and Asia today.
  3. Examine the current social and cultural environments of Asia-Australia relations beyond government-to-government approaches, and use this knowledge to develop critical thinking.
  4. Demonstrate critical research skills and the ability to synthesise and critique existing scholarship, including primary source documents such as policy papers, media content, diaries and letters and official speeches, amongst others.
  5. Display high level reading comprehension and writing skills, and presenting in the style of a professional environment suitable for the workplace.

Other Information

This is a co-taught course. Any cap on enrolments in one course applies to both courses combined.

The course starts on 1 April. All course materials and instructions will be provided through the course Wattle site shortly before the start of the course. Students should familiarise themselves with the course plan, and read selected articles ahead of the first intensive seminar on 21 April.


In order to allow more flexible learning for ANU students, including full-time workers and carers, but also encompassing in-class experiences and peer-to-peer learning, this course involves two intensive seminar weekends. To complete the course the intensive seminars are compulsory attendance, conducted in-class at the ANU in order to maximise group work, learning and class discussion. Only in certain circumstances can someone Zoom into this course, and this must be approved by the convenor. The seminars are as follows:


First intensive seminar 'Australia and Asia', 21-23 April. Friday 21 April, 5-8pm. Saturday 9am-1pm, Sunday 9am-1pm.

Second intensive seminar '21st Century Asia and Australia', 12-14 May. Friday 12 May 5-8pm, Saturday 9am-1pm, Sunday 9am-1pm. 

There are no other in-class components to the course other than the above intensive seminars, but students continue to work, review readings and undertake assessments throughout all of April and May via the Wattle page.


The course ends on 1 June when the final assessment is due.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Workshop participation (10) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]
  2. Discussion posts (35) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]
  3. In-class presentation (20) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]
  4. Research Essay (3000 words) (35) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]

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.


The total workload for the course is 130 hours including in-class time and independent study.

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Requisite and Incompatibility

Incompatible with ASIA3021

Prescribed Texts



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

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you 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). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2023 $3960
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2023 $5820
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

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.

Autumn Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
3521 01 Apr 2023 15 Apr 2023 28 Apr 2023 01 Jun 2023 In Person View

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