• Offered by Crawford School of Public Policy
  • ANU College ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
  • Course subject Policy and Governance
  • Areas of interest Policy Studies
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Colette Einfeld
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Offered in Winter Session 2024
    Spring Session 2024
    See Future Offerings

The complexity of contemporary problems and challenges governments face has necessitated the use of innovative tools to achieve policy priorities. This course on policy tools and mixes provides students an overview of contemporary tools used by governments, how they are deployed across policy sectors, and in different countries. The course is structured around three questions a) what tools do governments use in different policy areas such as healthcare, education, energy, social protection, etc; b) how are these tools are assembled together as ‘portfolio’ or a ‘policy mix’; c) what factors determine the efficacy of policy tools and mixes. The courses uses a combination of lectures, case studies, group and plenary discussion, and guest speakers to achieve its learning outcomes.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. identify different policy tools governments used to address contemporary challenges;
  2. understand why governments choose certain types of tools;
  3. understand what factors determine the effectiveness of different tools;
  4. apply frameworks developed in the course to analyse the design of a program or a policy;
  5. evaluate the effectiveness of program and policy design

Indicative Assessment

  1. Tools Mapping Assessment (30) [LO 1,2]
  2. Policy Mix Mapping Assessment (30) [LO 3,4]
  3. Policy Effectiveness Essay (40) [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.


3-day intensive format + all three assessment tasks for students enrolled in the MPA program or seeking 3-unit credit

18 contact hours plus 40-50 hours of class preparation and assessment.

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Prescribed Texts


Preliminary Reading

Dodds, A. (2018). Comparative public policy. Macmillan International Higher Education.

Peters, B. G. (2018). Policy problems and policy design. Edward Elgar Publishing.

Howlett, M. and M. Ramesh (2009) Studying Public Policy: Policy Cycles and Policy Subsystems. (3 edn). Toronto: Oxford University Press

Howlett, M. (2019). The policy design primer: Choosing the right tools for the job. Routledge.

Capano, G., & Woo, J. J. (2017). Resilience and robustness in policy design: A critical appraisal. Policy Sciences50(3), 399-426.

Bali, Azad Singh, and M. Ramesh. "Policy capacity: A design perspective." In Routledge handbook of policy design, pp. 331-344. Routledge, 2018.


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:
3 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.

3.00 0.06250
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.

Winter Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
6550 13 Sep 2024 20 Sep 2024 20 Sep 2024 18 Oct 2024 Online N/A

Spring Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
9446 01 Oct 2024 18 Oct 2024 18 Oct 2024 31 Dec 2024 Online N/A

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