• Class Number 4015
  • Term Code 3430
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Topic Online
  • Mode of Delivery Online
    • AsPr Andrew Kennedy
    • Dr Sue Regan
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 19/02/2024
  • Class End Date 24/05/2024
  • Census Date 05/04/2024
  • Last Date to Enrol 26/02/2024
SELT Survey Results

With the world rapidly changing and populations around the globe faced with crisis as well as ongoing inequalities, the study of public policy and the ability to do it well, matters. This course introduces students to the fundamentals of contemporary public policy making. Students will explore core debates in policy studies and consider concepts, models and tools for understanding, designing, implementing and evaluating public policy for a rapidly changing world. To provide a deeper understanding of the policy process, students will be introduced to analytical perspectives on the policy process with the aim of provoking critical inquiry into policy practices and outcomes. Students will consider a variety of policy actors, power relations, and inequalities in the policy process, and reflect on how competing values and interests influence what issues get policy attention, how they shape decisions, outcomes and evaluation procedures. 

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Demonstrate a working knowledge of key terms, concepts and ideas in the study of public policy;
  2. Analyse and critically evaluate how public policy issues come onto the agenda, how they are framed, defined and managed;
  3. Understand and critically engage in core debates in the field of policy studies including on policy decision-making, implementation, evaluation, governance, power and inequalities in policy, policy transfer and the globalisation of public policy;
  4. Demonstrate the ability to think independently, reflectively and persuasively on the politics and practices of implementing and evaluating public policy.

Required Resources

All required resources are available in Wattle

Cairney P (2019) Understanding public policy: theories and issues, 2nd ed, Bloomsbury.

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:
  • Written comments
  • Verbal comments
  • Feedback to the whole class, to groups, to individuals, focus groups

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Other Information


The Crawford School of Public Policy has its own Academic Skills team dedicated to helping students to understand the academic expectations of studying at Crawford and succeed in their chosen program of study. Through individual appointments, course-embedded workshops and online resources, Crawford Academic Skills provides tailored advice to students keen to develop their academic reading, thinking, planning, writing, and presentation skills.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Introduction to policy studies
2 The policy context, power and governance  
3 Agenda setting and framing 
4 The tools and instruments of public policy
5 Policy analysis and knowledge in public policy 
6 Making things happen: policy implementation
7 Making sense of public policy (pt 1)
8 Making sense of public policy (pt 2)
9 Policy learning, diffusion and transfer in a global age
10 Centralising and decentralising public policy
11 How do we know if policies work? Policy success and policy evaluation
12 Policy theory and the practitioner

Tutorial Registration

You will be asked to sign up for a weekly tutorial (both online and face to face options will be available to choose from).

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Quiz 10 % 20/03/2024 02/04/2024 1, 2, 4, 5
Framing Analysis 35 % 15/04/2024 09/05/2024 1, 3, 4, 5
Policy Essay 55 % 30/05/2024 28/06/2024 1, 4, 5

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using 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. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website Students may choose not to submit assessment items through Turnitin. In this instance you will be required to submit, alongside the assessment item itself, hard copies of all references included in the assessment item.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 20/03/2024
Return of Assessment: 02/04/2024
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 4, 5


Approximately 500 words

The quiz is designed to provide formative feedback to students on their comprehension and understanding of key concepts covered in the lecture and reading materials.

Instructions for the Quiz will be available on Wattle.

Assessment Task 2

Value: 35 %
Due Date: 15/04/2024
Return of Assessment: 09/05/2024
Learning Outcomes: 1, 3, 4, 5

Framing Analysis

1500 words

This assessment builds student's skills in analysing policy problems, critical reading and reflection, connecting policy theory with practice, applying the language of policy studies and writing effectively.

Instructions for the Framing Analysis will be available on Wattle.

Assessment Task 3

Value: 55 %
Due Date: 30/05/2024
Return of Assessment: 28/06/2024
Learning Outcomes: 1, 4, 5

Policy Essay

2500 words

This assessment builds on student's skills in analysing policy programs, critical reading and reflection, connecting policy theory and concepts with practice, applying the language of policy studies and writing effectively.

Instructions for the Essay will be available on Wattle.

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of our culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically. This means that all members of the community commit to honest and responsible scholarly practice and to upholding these values with respect and fairness. The Australian National University commits to embedding the values of academic integrity in our teaching and learning. We ensure that all members of our community understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with. The University has policies and procedures in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Visit the following Academic honesty & plagiarism website for more information about academic integrity and what the ANU considers academic misconduct. The ANU offers a number of services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. The Academic Skills and Learning Centre offers a number of workshops and seminars that you may find useful for your studies.

Online Submission

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.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure The Course Convener may grant extensions for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information. In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service — including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy. If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes. Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

AsPr Andrew Kennedy

Research Interests

AsPr Andrew Kennedy

By Appointment
Dr Sue Regan

Research Interests

Dr Sue Regan


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