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This program is for students commencing from 2017.

Students commencing prior to 2017 should refer to the handbook for the year they commenced their program.

The Bachelor of International Studies (UNSW BInSt) is an innovative and practical program in which you will develop a comprehensive understanding of the contemporary world, pick up a useful second language, and experience one-year of study overseas. The program satisfies a growing demand in Australia and globally for graduates who are highly skilled, internationally informed and professionally equipped to meet the challenges of work in a rapidly changing global environment.

The program examines the interactions of nations, economies, institutions, peoples, cultures, technologies and ideas against a background of increasing international integration and changing modernity. The program challenges you to: examine the dynamics of global and regional change; explore key issues and challenges in global change, evaluate the importance of globalisation, and debate key questions centred on nationalism, sovereignty, social change, development, and transnational interaction. You specialize in an area of study, complete language study and a one-year Overseas Study Program (OSP) at one of the more than 200 approved partner universities around the world.

The UNSW BInSt can be completed full-time in Single Mode (normally 4 years), in Dual Mode (the equivalent of 3 years full-time) or part-time. The basic requirements of the program are simple. The BInSt has a depth component and a breadth component. If you study in either the Single or Dual Mode, you will complete the depth component. If you study in the Single Mode, you will also complete the breadth component.

The Depth component is:

  1. The completion of an International Studies Core (24 UOC) (4 courses)
  2. The completion of Regional Electives (12 UOC ) (2 courses)
  3. The completion of Specialist Electives (12 UOC) (2 courses)
  4. The completion of a Language Study Core (24 UOC) (4 courses)
  5. The completion of a minor stream (24 UOC) (4 courses) selected from the list of UNSW BInSt approved minor streams
  6. The completion of an overseas exchange (48 UOC) (2 semesters)

The Breadth component (if you are completing the program in Single Mode) is:

  1. The completion of Arts & Social Sciences Prescribed Electives (12 UOC) (2 courses)
  2. The completion of Free Electives (24 UOC) (4 courses)
  3. General Education (12 UOC) (2 courses)

The aims of UNSW BInSt are:

  • To satisfy a growing demand, in Australia and abroad, for graduates who are highly skilled, well informed and professionally equipped to meet the challenges of work in a rapidly changing global environment.
  • To give you a thorough preparation for further study and employment in areas vital to Australia's increasing participation in the international arena.
  • To examine and develop a better understanding of the interactions of nations, economies, institutions, peoples, cultures, technologies and ideas against a background of increasing international integration and changing modernity.
  • To promote competence in a major language or languages relevant and useful for the global economy in which we live (viz. French, German, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Italian, Greek and Indonesian).
  • To provide you with the invaluable experience of other cultures, languages and peoples - experience greatly valued by employers internationally, through the completion of a one-year Overseas Study Program.

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences



Study Level


Typical duration

4 Years

Delivery Mode


Intake Period

Term 1

Academic Calendar

3+ Calendar

Minimum Units of Credit


Award type

Bachelors Pass


Bachelor of International Studies - BlnSt

UAC Code




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Program Structure

Students must complete 192 UOC as a standalone program.

  1. International Studies core (24 UOC)
  2. Regional Electives (12 UOC)
  3. Specialist Electives (12 UOC)
  4. Language Study core (24 UOC)
  5. A Minor (24 UOC)
  6. Overseas Study Program (48 UOC)
  7. Arts and Social Sciences Prescribed Electives (12 UOC)
  8. Free Electives (24 UOC)
  9. General Education (12 UOC)

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Specialisation Requirement

Specialisation Requirement description.

You must complete a 24 UOC minor.

NOTE 1: If you study in single mode you may use your free electives to convert an International Business minor to a major.

NOTE 2: If you are undertaking the Asian Studies minor you must complete a sequence of 24 UOC in an Asian language. If you are undertaking the European Studies minor you must complete a sequence of 24 UOC in a European language.

NOTE 3: If you study in single mode and undertake a minor in International Business you will complete 12 UOC in Regional and 6 UOC Specialist rather than 24 UOC.

NOTE 4: Courses that form part of your minor may not be double counted towards the Regional and Specialist components of the program.

NOTE 5: If you complete a minor in a language you must complete that study in a Language other than that which you choose for the Language Study Core requirement.

Language Study Core Courses

In order to gain essential skills to equip you to work in a global environment, and to be eligible to study in a second language on your Overseas Study Program (OSP), you must complete 24 UOC from the same language and attain a minimum of Intermediate B level of proficiency in one of the following: Chinese, French, German, Greek, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Spanish. You may complete the balance of your language study courses by undertaking Advanced or Professional language, Contextual Studies, or Professional Studies courses.

Language at UNSW may be studied at Beginner, Intermediate or Advanced levels. If you have had experience learning a language previously or are a native speaker of a particular language, you are required to complete a language placement in order to be placed at an appropriate starting point. The online language placement is for students who are enrolling into a language at UNSW for the first time.

Specialist Electives

Specialist Electives description.

You must complete 12 UOC of the following courses:

Maturity Requirements

You must have completed 24 UOC of Level 1 courses before taking any Level 2 courses.

You must have completed 48 UOC (including 6 UOC at Level 1 and 6 UOC at Level 2 in their minor) before taking any Level 3 courses.

Specialisation Declaration

You must specify your minor (or major) at the time of enrolment into the program.

Sample Programs

To access sample program(s), please visit:

Progression Requirements

University Medal

Award of Pass with Distinction

Additional Information

Language Minor

Completion of 24 UOC in Language Study courses will automatically confer a minor at the time of graduation.

Further Information

Contact the UNSW Arts and Social Sciences Student Services for advice.

Program Fees

At UNSW fees are generally charged at course level and therefore dependent upon individual enrolment and other factors such as student's residency status. For generic information on fees and additional expenses of UNSW programs, click on one of the following:

Pre-2019 Handbook Editions

Access past handbook editions (2018 and prior)

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