University of Technology Sydney

Information for students

International Studies plays a key role in the internationalisation of the UTS teaching and learning experience both in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) and across the University.

In the Bachelor of International Studies students develop:

  • intercultural communication skills
  • professional workplace skills through work integrated learning experiences
  • research skills in international contexts.

These skills are embedded in core learning experiences that teach students about:

  • cultural diversity and social change in Asia and Europe
  • processes of regionalisation, internationalisation, transnationalism and globalisation as well as their local receptions
  • a suite of Asian and European language and culture subjects.

Staff in International Studies also conduct research in the above areas.

Staff also supervise research students completing higher degrees by research in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences.

International Studies is responsible for the coordination and implementation of the following teaching programs:

  • the Bachelor of International Studies, which can be combined with most other bachelor's-level degrees at UTS
  • the Bachelor of Sustainability and Environment, which is a combined course with the following bachelor's-level degrees at UTS:

    - C10399 Bachelor of Science Bachelor of Sustainability and Environment

    - C10410 Bachelor of Public Health Bachelor of Sustainability and Environment

    - C10411 Bachelor of Business, Bachelor of Sustainability and Environment

    - C10412 Bachelor of Management Bachelor of Sustainability and Environment

    - C10445 Bachelor of Economics Bachelor of Sustainability

  • the Bachelor of Criminology (C10446), which is also available as a combined course with the following bachelor's-level degrees at UTS:

    - C10448 Bachelor of Criminology Bachelor of Forensic Science

    - C10447 Bachelor of Criminology Bachelor of International Studies

  • the Diploma in Languages (C20059)
  • the Australian Language and Culture Studies.

Location, contacts and inquiries

fax +61 2 9514 1500
International Studies

Language and culture subjects

International Studies offers the teaching of Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese and Spanish for all UTS students.

UTS students can access language and culture subjects in one of the following ways:

  • as part of an undergraduate combined degree program in international studies
  • as part of the Diploma in Languages (C20059)
  • as a sub-major within a degree where this option is available
  • as elective subjects in any other UTS degree, with faculty approval, or
  • as non-award subjects.

Students are encouraged to study a language other than English, not only to gain a communication tool, but also to gain an understanding of another culture and society, which is a valuable skill in a globalising world. UTS: International Studies does not usually give recognition of prior learning for any previous study of languages. The language and culture subjects admit students at different levels and cater to various levels of linguistic competence in order to enhance each student's communicative ability. Students in a combined degree in international studies are asked to contact UTS: International Studies regarding any issues with their language and culture subjects.

UTS students who want to study languages not offered at UTS are asked to apply via concurrent/cross-institutional enrolment to the university that offers the language they wish to study. Students need to plan ahead and check the deadline for when cross-institutional applications close at the other university. International Studies is unable to assist with cross-institutional enrolments.

UTS students who wish to engage in language and culture studies at UTS, but not for credit towards a degree, are admitted as fee-paying, non-award students. Allocation depends on the availability of class spaces after UTS award students have enrolled. Students from other institutions can enrol in language and culture subjects as cross-institutional students. Application forms for non-award or cross-institutional enrolment may be downloaded from the UTS website.

In all cases, classes are only taught at UTS if student numbers permit.

Enrolment procedures for language and culture subjects

Students enrolled in the Bachelor of International Studies and the Diploma in Languages (C20059) are required to enrol in language and culture subjects as denoted by their study plan.

Other UTS students who wish to study a language and culture subject as part of a sub-major or as an elective in their degree need to obtain approval from their faculty before they enrol in the subject.

All students undertaking a language and culture subject at UTS for the first time need to complete a level assessment to ensure that they are placed at an appropriate class level.

International Studies reserves the right to place students in a class that is appropriate for their level of language proficiency. Please note that places in subjects are limited, and priority is given to students who have language studies as core subjects in their programs.

The procedure for students who wish to take UTS: International Studies subjects as electives or sub-majors is as follows:

  • Students must, at the earliest opportunity during the enrolment period, request permission from their faculty to study the subject by submitting an e-request. When submitting an e-request for a language subject, students must complete the additional fields under the Language Subject Details section. More information is available at language assessment.
  • Once the subject is approved, there is an initial assessment of the e-request by analysing the responses in the Language Subject Details section, in conjunction with the submitted supporting statement.
  • If a student has little or no experience in the language, they are given access to enrol into level 1 of the requested subject, and the student is advised via a response to their e-request that they have been approved.
  • For students with prior knowledge or experience in the language, they must complete a language level assessment prior to submitting and e-request. The result of their language assessment will be provided directly to the e-request team.

Credit points and workload

All language and culture subjects are taught over one session and have a value of 8 credit points. Most language and culture subjects taught on UTS campuses consist of four contact hours per week, spread over two days.

To cater for the different needs of students, each language and culture program has different points of entry depending on a student's language skill. Beginner levels concentrate more on basic communication skills; the higher levels introduce students to literature and culture in the language of study. Through the process of language acquisition, students are encouraged to obtain an insight into the relevant cultures.

Students with some level of background and/or competence in a language they intend to study are admitted to the language and culture subjects at a higher level to reflect their ability in that language. The level is determined after an assessment with an experienced language and culture academic staff member. These students are expected to improve their existing skills in speaking, comprehension, reading and writing.

Recognition of Prior Learning for Language and Culture Subjects

Students in the Bachelor of International Studies who have completed relevant prior study at a university (or equivalent tertiary institution) may be eligible for up to two (2) subjects (16 credit points) of recognition of prior learning. Students must submit their application on the UTS application form and attach all requested documentation. In addition to meeting the academic requirements, students must also complete a language level assessment. Students considering applying for recognition of prior learning should note that their pattern of enrolment for the degree may be affected. Please also note that the International Honours year overseas will only be available from 2025 onwards.

Students in the Diploma in Languages who have completed relevant University level language studies may be eligible for up to 32 credit points of recognition of prior learning. Applicants must indicate their intention to apply for recognition of prior learning at the time of application and need to demonstrate linguistic proficiency equivalent to the learning being credited.

UTS students who have completed Language and Culture subjects as a sub-major or electives in their professional degrees can cross-credit up to 24 credit points to the Diploma in Languages.

Diploma in Languages

The Diploma in Languages (C20059) is designed to be taken concurrently with an undergraduate or postgraduate coursework degree program. It facilitates university students' learning about language and culture and thereby broadens the opportunities associated with their professional degree.

This course allows students to gain exposure to international perspectives and consolidate their linguistic capabilities in a language other than English. Language options include: Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese and Spanish. Language and culture subjects taken throughout the diploma draw on the UTS Model of Learning, which combines international and intercultural engagement with blended and research-inspired learning.

Sub-majors, electives and non-award studies

Students at UTS can increase their intercultural skills by enrolling in a language and culture program and contemporary society subject. Students in any degree offered at UTS may be able to take these subjects as electives or as a sub-major, provided this is approved by their faculty.

Students can study Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese and Spanish.

Sub-majors are available by combining three international studies subjects; three contemporary society subjects from an international studies sub-major (SMJ09034); a contemporary society subject and two relevant consecutive language and culture subjects from a specialist country studies sub-major (SMJ09036); or three consecutive language and culture subjects from a language other than English (LOTE) studies sub-major (SMJ09035).

Language and culture subjects and contemporary society subjects may also be taken as non-award studies.

Further information on these subjects can be found in the study package directory.

Intensive international study

A suite of elective subjects provide students the opportunity to complete a 3–4 week intensive, in-country study program in either the July session or in the Summer sessions at one of UTS' partners internationally.

  • International Internship (97900: 8cp, or 97901: 6cp): This subject provides students with opportunities to complete internships, social entrepreneurships or practicum programs in international locations. Placement locations can include Asia, Central America and Europe.
  • In-country Contemporary Society Study (977912: 8cp, or 977917: 6cp): This subject develops students' understanding of specific aspects of a society or culture through a 3–4 week program delivered in-country and taught in English. Courses can include locations within Asia, Central America and Europe.
  • In-country Language and Culture Study (977913: 8cp, or 977918: 6cp): Students undertake an intensive 3–4 week language program in-country. The focus is on developing students' skills in Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese or Spanish. Students who complete one of these subjects may be eligible to complete 977000 In-country Language and Culture Study 2.

In addition to completing the program abroad, students attend pre- and post-experience workshops held at UTS and complete a series of assessment tasks supervised and marked by academics from UTS: International Studies.

Grants are available for eligible students to assist with travel costs. There is also funding to assist students to cover the costs of an international experience subject through the Australian government's OS-HELP loans.

Academic English Program

Academic English – the language students are required to understand (when listening and reading) and produce (in writing and speaking) at university – has special features, which makes it different from the language people use in other contexts.

Postgraduate or undergraduate coursework students who have been identified as benefiting from developing their academic language skills are strongly encouraged to undertake Academic English: Communication Fundamentals (8cp or 6cp) as an elective.

Australian Language and Culture Studies

The Australian Language and Culture Studies program provides English language development through the study of Australian society and culture. Subjects may be undertaken only by study abroad or exchange students who have an English language test score lower than the UTS entry requirement.

The English proficiency requirement for international students or local applicants with international qualifications is IELTS: 5.0–6.0 overall with a writing score of 5.0; TOEFL: paper based: 417–549 overall with TWE of 3.0, internet based: 35–78 overall with a writing score of 17.

Students may study subjects in the program for one session then take an IELTS or TOEFL test. Students who then meet the UTS entry requirements can apply to enrol in UTS faculty subjects for the second session via UTS Exchange. The subjects available in the program are:

  • 59709 Australian Conversations
  • 59722 Neighbourhoods and Stories
  • 59711 Natural Australia
  • 59712 Australian Language Studies
  • 59713 Australian Media
  • 59714 Australians at Work

Further information is available from UTS International:

telephone + 61 2 9514 1798
fax + 61 2 9514 7843