• Offered by Department of Political and Social Change
  • ANU College ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
  • Course subject Political Science
  • Areas of interest International Relations, Political Sciences, Sociology, Asian Studies

Internal armed conflicts, violent contests of power within sovereign states, have emerged as the deadliest form of political violence in Asia. Over the past seven decades, more than a million people have been killed and countless others displaced as a result of civil wars, mass killings, ethnic riots and terror attacks across the region. Apart from the tragic loss of human lives, these conflicts have and continue to impede economic and political development of the nation states they seek to contest. This course examines the major ideological, economic and sociological drivers of internal armed conflicts in Asia. We will review influential theories from political science and sociology that explain the onset, conduct and termination of armed conflict and will assess how they apply to past and ongoing conflicts in Asia. The course will pay special attention to empirical issues in the study of political violence and the challenges of collecting data in information poor environments. We will also look at the success and failures of peace-making efforts and the precarious process of post-conflict recovery.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of major conceptual and theoretical frameworks in social science for explaining armed conflicts.
  2. Identify factors that drive various types of sub-national armed conflicts in Asia.
  3. Critically assess the role of the state in deepening armed conflicts and resolving them.
  4. Apply different theoretical and empirical approaches to the analysis of armed conflicts.
  5. Communicate effectively about past and ongoing armed conflicts in Asia with academics and policy-makers.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Class participation (10) [LO 1,5]
  2. In-Class Quizzes (20) [LO 1,2,3]
  3. Policy Brief (1,800 Words) (30) [LO 1,2,3,5]
  4. Final Take-Home Exam (2,400 Words) (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.


Approximately 130 hours comprising seminars, lectures, as well as associated preparation, independent study, and assessment time.

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Prescribed Texts

Prescribed texts will be made available in Wattle prior to course commencement.

Assumed Knowledge



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
2024 $4440
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2024 $6360
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.

Second Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
8658 21 Jul 2025 28 Jul 2025 31 Aug 2025 24 Oct 2025 In Person N/A

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions