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Study a Master of Political Economy with us

Acquire unparalleled knowledge of the important trends underlying the global economy through the Master of Political Economy.

Why study with us?

  • No. 22 in the world

    We're ranked 22nd in the world for Arts and Humanities in the 2020 QS World University Rankings by Subject.

  • No. 1 in Australia

    Our graduates are ranked 1st in Australia and 5th in the world for employability by the QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2019.

Overview

Gain extensive knowledge of key trends underlying the global economy and its transformation. Analyse economic issues in their social and political contexts and from a variety of perspectives. Develop an understanding of issues such as power and inequality, globalisation and its impact on national economic policy settings, and the trade-offs between the free market and broader social concerns.

The Department of Political Economy is a leading centre for economic analysis and research. The Master of Political Economy will provide you with a deeper knowledge of current economic challenges and trends.

Taught from a range of heterodox economics traditions, our approach promotes dialogue and synthesis with other social science disciplines. Subjects include country risk, wealth and income inequality, labour migration, environmental sustainability, finance and fragility, trade and development.

Commonwealth Supported Places

Commonwealth Supported Places (CSP) are available for postgraduate study for eligible domestic students. This means that your course fees are subsidised by the Australian Government and you pay a student contribution amount (SCA). CSPs are limited in number and are allocated based on academic merit.

Subject areas
Shared pool

Entry, fees, funding & how to apply

Depends on your qualification, citizenship status
The details on this page based on your selections are a guide only, and are subject to change.

Your entry requirements

English language proficiency

Find out if you need to prove English language proficiency (depends on your country of origin and educational background).

For academic requirements check the ‘Admission requirements’ section on this page.

Your fee

How to apply

You can apply online via the application portal. When you are ready to apply, select the ‘Apply’ button on this course page. Visit the How to apply page for other important information. 

Standard closing dates:

Semester 1 - 11 February of the commencing year (to be considered for CSP, you must apply by 15 January)

Semester 2 - 15 July of the commencing year (to be considered for CSP, you must apply by 30 June)

We strongly encourage applicants to apply as early as possible, offers are made on a rolling basis and places are limited. Separate scholarship deadlines apply - check the scholarships website for details.

Starting date

Semester 1 (February) and Semester 2 (August)

You can apply online via the application portal. When you are ready to apply, select the ‘Apply’ button on this course page. Visit the How to apply page for other important information. 

Standard closing dates:

Semester 1 - 31 January of the commencing year
Semester 2
- 30 June of the commencing year

We strongly encourage international applicants to apply as early as possible to allow time for visa and travel arrangements. Separate scholarship deadlines may apply - check the scholarships website for details.

Starting date

Semester 1 (February) and Semester 2 (August)

What you'll study

Candidates for the Master of Political Economy are required to complete 72 credit points, including:

  • a minimum of 18 credit points of core units of study;
  • a minimum of 18 credit points from selective units of study;
  • a maximum of 24 credit points from elective units of study. With the permission of the Degree Coordinator a maximum of 12 credit points can be taken as elective units from units of study outside those listed in the Political Economy subject area of the Postgraduate Unit of Study Table, including units of study offered by other faculties;
  • a minimum of 6 credit points of capstone units of study; and
  • an optional specialisation as listed in the unit of study table.

Recognition of Prior Learning / credit for previous studies is available for this course, refer to Admission requirement below.

Completion requirement

Under normal progression, a full-time student completes prescribed units of study to the value of 24 credit points per semester. Part-time students may undertake prescribed units of study up to the value of 12 credit points per semester. You are required to attend all lectures, tutorials and other activities prescribed for your units of study.

Capstone (compulsory project)

You can choose from a year-long supervised writing of a 10,000 word Dissertation on a topic of your choosing, or a semester-long Research Project which will provides you with the opportunity to conduct a supervised research project of your own design, drawing on the theoretical perspectives in Political Economy introduced earlier in the course and exploring issues previously encountered in greater depth.

Admission requirement

Entry in the 1 year or 1.5 year degree program is determined by the Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) criteria below:

Admission to candidature for the Master of Political Economy (1.5 years full-time) requires:

  • a bachelor's degree with a minimum credit (65%) average calculated over the whole degree, from the University of Sydney, including a major in the Social Sciences, or an equivalent qualification

Admission to candidature for the Master of Political Economy (1 year full-time) requires:

  • completion of the embedded Graduate Certificate or Graduate Diploma in Political Economy with a minimum credit (65%) average, or an equivalent qualification; or
  • an Honours degree in a relevant discipline; or
  • relevant professional work experience and a bachelor's degree with a minimum credit (65%) average or an equivalent qualification.

If you do not meet the requirements listed above for direct entry to the Master’s degree, you may be able to enter via a Graduate Certificate or Graduate Diploma in the same subject area and upgrade to the Master’s after successful completion of the shorter course.

Career Pathways

Graduates enjoy careers in government and international agencies, business, leading research institutions, the community sector and the media.

Our graduates can be found in:

  • Federal Treasury
  • Office of the President, Chile
  • Department of Economic Development, Isle of Man
  • Leading commercial banks
  • SBS News
  • ABC Radio
  • Unreasonable Institute (entrepreneurship development collective)
  • UMR Research (issues management specialist)
  • Non-government organisations
  • Labour unions
  • Research degrees at Sydney and elsewhere
Future study options

Progress to Postgraduate Research. The Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences supports and pursues the University's goal of excellence in research, encouraging research of national and international standing, and identifying and enhancing fields of basic, strategic and applied research. Many of the Faculty's distinguished academic staff have recognised international standing and include Federation Fellows and Fellows of Learned Academies and Societies.

Domestic students

International students

To help you understand common terms that we use at the University, we offer an online glossary.