Postgraduate Study

The Master of United States Studies

Developing a deep understanding of the United States and its role in the world is essential to pursuing any career on the international stage. Whether your background is in the humanities, business, education, or law, the Master of United States Studies will propel your career through international experience and education.



University of Sydney students can enrol through Sydney Student

If you would like to apply for cross-institutional study, you can do so through the cross-institutional study application process.

If you would like to apply for non-award study, i.e. undertake one or more units of study for interest that will not count towards a degree, you can do so through the non-degree application process.

Some of these units can be completed as part of a University of Sydney Master of Commerce, Master of Cultural Studies, Master of International Business, Master of International Security, Master of International Studies, Master of Media Practice, Master of Peace & Conflict Studies, Master of Public Policy and Master of Public Administration.


Have you considered postgrad study?

The Master of US Studies is more than just a degree. It gives you unprecedented access to the academic and professional networks that the United States Studies Centre fosters in Australia and the United States. The program also offers exclusive capstone opportunities, such as an internship on Capitol Hill, as an experiential pathway to global professionalism.

You will gain:

  • a deeper knowledge and understanding of US politics, culture, and society
  • an understanding of America’s influence on the world and the world’s reaction to America
  • high-level analytical research and writing skills
  • a specialist understanding of current events in the United States and the best sources for information and analysis. 

The degree is jointly offered by the United States Studies Centre and the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at the University of Sydney.

The Centre is a leading educational and think tank institution for the study of the United States in Australia. By joining the program, you will have access to the Centre’s high-calibre networks, which include distinguished scholars, policy makers, and business leaders.

The Centre also offers an array of capstone experiences: internship and study tour options, advanced research supervision, or international exchange programs.

Course structure

After completing core units, the program will allow you to choose from a wide range of electives. Starting in 2015, the degree can be completed in two years of full-time study, or three to four years of part-time study. It consists of 16 units of study (96 credit points), comprising:

  • one compulsory core unit 
  • at least three core units 
  • maximum of eight additional units from either core or elective
  • a capstone experience such as an internship or study tour, research thesis, or international exchange (this consists of four units of study)
Candidates who have completed previous study in a relevant discipline may be eligible for a reduction in the requirements in accordance with the table below.

Level of Prior Learning Duration Credit Points Requirements

AQF level 7 (65% or equivalent) eg. a bachelor's degree in Social Sciences, Law and/or Humanities


Professional experience equivalent to Graduate Certificate in US Studies

3 semesters full time 72 6 credit points of core unit of study (USSC6901)
18 credit points of core elective units of study
24 credit points of elective units of study
24 credit points of capstone units of study
AQF level 8 in Social Sciences, Law and/or Humanities, eg. Honours 2 semesters full time 48 6 credit points of core units of study (USSC6901)
18 credit points of elective units of study
24 credit points of capstone units of study

Learn more about the units offered

Apply now

Domestic and International applicants

Applications for Semester 2, 2017 close on 30 June 2017.

To apply please submit an application on Sydney Student.

Student profiles

My postgrad study put me on the campaign trail

Patrick Batchelor

Master of United States Studies graduate, Patrick Batchelor, became a key weapon in US President Barack Obama's bid for re-election. Heading up the US Democratic Party's volunteer efforts in the state of Texas, Patrick says it all felt like an episode of the West Wing. Patrick's postgraduate study at the University of Sydney equipped him with the expertise to propel his career on to the international stage.

My postgrad study put me to work on Capitol Hill

Rebecca Armitage

As part of her Master of United States Studies, Rebecca Armitage put study into practice working as an intern on Capitol Hill. From a US congressional briefing about foreign journalists in Russia, to the plight of Roma people, Rebecca experienced first-hand the inner workings of US politics. A producer with ABC Radio’s International Desk, Rebecca says her postgraduate study gave her career in journalism an international edge.

My postgrad study led me to my dream job

Justin Burke

Looking for a career change after 10 years in business, Justin Burke signed up for the Master of United States Studies. A self-confessed “American politics junkie”, Justin was able to use his study to pursue his passion for writing and blogging. Upon graduating, Justin secured a position as a journalist at The Australian, and says that his postgraduate study gave him the competitive edge to land his dream job.

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