Details for Australia in the Asia-Pacific

The unit is designed to provide students with some of the essential conceptual and analytical tools for understanding Australia's regional context. It also serves as an introduction to Australia's relations with Asia and the Pacific which will be of interest to a wide range of students, especially those who will teach about this in schools, or whose future jobs might be related to a particular Asian country or to the Asia-Pacific region.

Quick Info

  • Currently offered by Alphacrucis: Yes
  • Course code: HUM240
  • Credit points: 10
  • Subject coordinator: Daniel Carrigy


The following courses are prerequisites:

Awards offering Australia in the Asia-Pacific

This unit is offered as a part of the following awards:

Unit Content


  1. Analyse and effectively communicate understandings about key themes in the interaction between Australia and its region.
  2. Analyse the context and effectively examine the role of Australia in selected key events and trends (such as the missions movement, Maori Wars, Kanaka trade, PNG mandate, Korean War, Malayan Emergency, Vietnam War, etc)
  3. Research, analyse and apply knowledge about the key historiographical trends in the literature regarding Australia amidst conflict and change.
  4. Construct a critical bibliography of the key writers and the secondary reflective literature in a bibliography which contrasts and differentiates national, transnational and global approaches to Australian history.

Subject Content

  • Studying global history; regional pre-History - Australia and pre-European settlement Trade, population and Exploration routes. Pedro Fernandes de Queirós and the Hispanic dream; ‘The new Columbus’: Captain Cook in historical context.
  • European Settlement: European imperialism in the region, Australia as an extension of India, Batavia and South Africa. British imperial expectations of Australia’s future role.
  • Free settlement, trade with America, early ‘Australian’ imperialism up to the Maori Wars, indigenous peoples and developments in the region.
  • ‘Our own little empire’: the Kanaka trade, rise of Asia Pacific corporations (such as Burns Philp, Griffiths Brothers), Chinese diaspora in Australia and in China, Australians in the New Hebrides and Papua, World War I and German colonies, missions, the PNG mandate.
  • The ANZUS framework, Australia and the long regional War: Australians abroad in the Asia Pacific in World War II, to the end of the Korean War; .
  • The Malayan Emergency, the Colombo plan, to the end of the Vietnam War; Malcolm Fraser and the Boat People crisis in the context of multiculturalism, long term patterns of Asian and Pacific migration and settlement in Australia..
  • Paul Keating and the “Knowing Who We Are” speech; Australia opening to the region; ASEAN; Foreign Policy and Aid, 1990 to the present. Case studies of relationships with Pacific Countries, Case studies of relationships with South East Asian Countries.
  • Operation Sovereign Borders and the crisis of public confidence; the spectre of China, the Pacific and Australian national identity; Obama’s ‘Pivot’ and Rudd’s common framework; global crises and Australia’s role.

This course may be offered in the following formats

  • Face to Face (onsite)
  • Distance/E-learning (online)
  • Intensive (5 days of classes/7 hours per day followed by 85 hours reading, writing and assignments)
  • Extensive (5 days spread over the semester. This allows for students to complete readings, reflection and assessment and prepare for in-class activities between classes. The hours are the same as for an intensive: 7 hours per day for 5 days = 35 class hours + approx 85 hours out of class time for research, writing, exam preparation and execution, ancillary activities associated with completion of assigned tasks)

Please consult your course prospectus or enquire about how and when this course will be offered next at Alphacrucis University College.

Assessment Methods

  • Presentation (25%)
  • Major Essay (50%)
  • Reading Reflections (10%)
  • Annotated Bibliography (15%)

Prescribed Text

  • Primary readings provided