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Study arts and social sciences with us

Why study with us?

  • #23 in the world

    Ranked 23rd in the world for arts and humanities in the 2021 QS World University Rankings by Subject.

  • #1 in Australia

    Our graduates are ranked 1st in Australia and 4th in the world for employability by the QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2022.


In response to COVID-19, the University of Sydney has reviewed the availability of courses to be delivered remotely. 

This course will be available for students to study remotely whilst the Australian border remains closed due to the COVID-19 global pandemic. Please note that some units of study that are not essential to completing the degree may not be available to be studied remotely.

About this course

Hone your analytical skills. Become an independent thinker. Form and articulate judgements based on argument and evidence. Lead the way.

With arts and humanities at the University of Sydney consistently recognised as among the top 30 faculties globally in university rankings, our Bachelor of Arts degree is both highly regarded by academic leaders and highly sought after by industry employers.

Offering access to more than 45 subject areas in the humanities and social sciences, no two arts degrees are the same at Sydney, which means you’ll graduate with a unique skillset and career options as varied as the degree itself.

Whether you want to learn a new language or study a new culture, explore great books, ideas or minds, discover the past, analyse the present or consider the shape of the world's future, the Bachelor of Arts will expand your horizons and challenge you to think outside the box.

Our majors

You will study a major and a minor choosing both from the humanities and social sciences, or selecting your minor from the University's shared pool.

Unsure about what the difference is between a major and a minor? Or how HSC subjects align with Arts and Social Sciences subjects? Check out this handy major/minors page as a guide in deciding what to study.

Agricultural and Resource Economics History
American Studies Indigenous Studies
Ancient Greek Indonesian Studies
Ancient History International Relations
Anthropology International and Comparative Literary Studies
Arabic Language and Cultures Italian Studies
Archaeology Italian Studies (Advanced)
Art History Italian Studies (Intermediate)
Asian Studies Italian Studies (Introductory)
Biblical Studies and Classical Hebrew Japanese Studies
Chinese Studies Jewish Civilisation, Thought and Culture
Criminology Korean Studies
Cultural Studies Latin
Digital Cultures Linguistics
Econometrics Modern Greek Studies
Economic Policy Music
Economics Philosophy
English Political Economy
European Studies Politics
Film Studies Socio-Legal Studies
Financial Economics Sociology
French and Francophone Studies Spanish and Latin American Studies
Gender Studies Studies in Religion 
Germanic Studies (German) Theatre and Performance Studies
Hebrew (Modern)   

Bachelor of Advanced Studies

You can also choose to combine your Bachelor of Arts degree with the Bachelor of Advanced Studies . In the Bachelor of Advanced Studies, you can complete a second major, combine studies from a range of disciplines, undertake advanced coursework, and get involved in cross-disciplinary community, professional, research or entrepreneurial project work.

The Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Advanced Studies can also be taken with streams in:

Subject areas

Minors can be completed in any of the Majors listed below, as well as standalone minors in Diversity Studies, Sanskrit, Social Policy or Writing Studies.

Please note: Media Studies and Global Studies majors are only available to those enrolled in the relevant programs i.e. Media and Communications and International and Global Studies respectively. These majors are also available in the combined Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Laws.

A program in Psychology, taught by the Faculty of Science, is also available in this degree.

Shared pool

Admission, fees and 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.

English language proficiency

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

Your fee

Your funding & scholarships

How to apply

Prospective domestic students apply through the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC) for a Commonwealth supported place . Refer to the UAC website for key dates. Separate scholarship deadlines apply, visit the scholarships website for details.

For other useful information, visit our How to apply page.

Current University of Sydney students applying to transfer from one bachelor's degree to another apply directly to the University. The exact process will depend on the course you are currently in and the course to which you wish to transfer. For more information visit the Change your course page.

Current students applying to transfer from a diploma to a bachelor's degree must apply through UAC.

Refer to the UAC website . Separate scholarship deadlines apply visit the scholarships webpage for details.

Starting date

Semester 1 (February) and Semester 2 (August)

Visit the How to apply page for detailed information on if you need to apply directly to the University or through the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC). If you are a direct applicant, when you are ready to apply select the `Apply’ button on this course page.

Current University of Sydney students applying to transfer from one bachelor's degree to another apply directly to the University. The exact process will depend on the course you are currently in and the course to which you wish to transfer. For more information visit the Change your course page.

Standard closing dates: 

Semester 1 - 15 January of the commencing year.
Semester 2 - 25 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 apply - visit the scholarships webpage for details.

UAC Applicants: Refer to the UAC website

Starting date

Semester 1 (February) and Semester 2 (August)

What you'll study

For full course details see our Handbook.

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.

Sample study plan

Bachelor of Arts (major in Linguistics, minor in Latin)

Year Sem  Unit of study 
1 1 Linguistics major FASS1000 Studying Arts and Social Sciences Archaeology elective Latin minor
  2 Linguistics major Mathematics elective Archaeology elective Latin minor
2 1 Linguistics major Open Learning Environment units Archaeology elective Latin minor
  2 Linguistics major Mathematics elective Open Learning Environment units Latin minor
3 1 Linguistics major Linguistics major Archaeology elective Latin minor
  2 Linguistics major Linguistics major Linguistics elective Latin minor


This is an indicative study plan only, students may choose other majors and minors.

Assumed knowledge

Depends on the areas or units of study. For language studies: pathways are available for applicants with no prior language experience, as well as for those with prior experience in the respective language of study.

Admission criteria

Admission to this course is on the basis of the following criteria:

Admission pathways are open to domestic applicants on the basis of equity or other adjustment factors, including for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander applicants. For details, visit admission pathways.

Credit for previous study

If you’ve already completed university-level or equivalent subjects, you may be able to apply for credit for previous study.

Course opportunities

Most subject areas within the Bachelor of Arts allow for students to take part in an international exchange program. The program enables students to enhance their skills in a language other than English and their knowledge of other societies and cultures.

Career Pathways

Our graduates can be found across a broad range of careers and roles, including:

  • Anthropologist
  • Analyst
  • Archaeologist
  • Archivist
  • Art historian
  • Business administrator or manager
  • Creative lead
  • Editor or publisher
  • Foreign affairs and trade officer
  • Government policy officer
  • Historian
  • Heritage specialist
  • Information specialist
  • Journalist
  • Language specialist
  • Marketing and communications specialist 
  • Media producer 
  • Museum or gallery curator
  • Researcher
  • Sociologist
Future study

Eligible candidates may proceed to the Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Honours), or apply for admission to a rich postgraduate program in the humanities and social sciences, comprising advanced learning and professional courses. Master's degrees include capstone projects ranging from internships with government and non-government organisations in Australia and overseas, the gallery and museum sector, and leading media organisations, to opportunities for independent research projects which prepare students for higher degrees by research. Masters degrees can be taken in a variety of subjects by coursework, as well as research degree options below.

Domestic students

International students

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