• 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
  • Mode of delivery Online or In Person

The ability to influence and persuade is a key skill for policymakers and public managers, used when presenting advice to Ministers and Secretaries, influencing a group in a meeting, and building support with stakeholders.

This subject provides a practical introduction to persuasion, exploring both classical and contemporary theories and ideas. It draws on the art of rhetoric and the fields of social psychology, communication and management. Students will be introduced to the key concepts and tools underpinning persuasion and learn how to influence, build rapport and trust. The use of persuasion will be explored in a range of scenarios at the individual and group level through case study analysis and practice-based tasks which will develop students’ hands-on skills.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Identify and apply theories of persuasion in a policy and public management context.
  2. Analyse and critique different persuasive techniques and their influence on audiences.
  3. Craft and present persuasive communication, both written and verbal.
  4. Understand the key principles that underpin influence and develop effective strategies to build support.

Other Information

This is taught as an intensive mode course and students are also be expected to undertake reading and preparation prior to the first class.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Persuasive summary of course reading (500 words) (30) [LO 1,2,3]
  2. Policy problem and proposal: in-class oral presentation (30) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  3. Policy problem and proposal: written submission and analysis (1,500 words) (40) [LO 1,2,3,4]

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 standard workload for a 3 unit course is 65 hours including independent study.

Prescribed Texts

There is no set text for the subject. The following texts are recommended for those interested in background reading.

Cairney, P. (2021). The Politics of Policy Analysis (1st ed.). Springer International Publishing AG. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-66122-9

Stone, D. A. (2012). Policy paradox?: the art of political decision making (3rd ed.). W.W. Norton & Co.

Cialdini, R. (2009). Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion. HarperCollins, US.


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

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There are no current offerings for this course.

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