“We prepare and educate the next generation of strategic leaders — military, civilian and academic — in Australia and the Asia–Pacific region by providing internationally-recognised graduate and undergraduate programs in strategic and defence studies.”
- Professor Stephan Fruehling, Head, Strategic and Defence Studies Centre
The Asia-Pacific is being transformed by great power contestation and a spectrum of national and international security challenges. Studying a Master of Strategic Studies or a Master of Strategic Studies (Advanced) with the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre (SDSC) at ANU will equip you with the intellectual tools needed to evaluate strategic choices, navigate the strategic environment and understand the challenges of an evolving global order.
If you're interested in issues of strategic importance to Australia, addressing how political ends and military means interact, understanding the origins, applications and implications of war and other forms of organised violence, our strategic studies program is for you.
The program is designed for graduates and professionals seeking to launch or advance their careers in national or international security, counterterrorism, strategic policy, intelligence, foreign affairs, think tanks and academia.
The SDSC offers two Masters programs:
The Strategic and Defence Studies Centre has a unique multidisciplinary blend of teaching staff that includes not just academics who are leaders in their fields of Asia-Pacific security, defence studies and Australian defence, but former high ranking Department of Defence officials, former intelligence offers, and staff with extensive military and naval experience. This blend of academics and experienced practitioners has made SDSC a leader in the field of strategic studies for more than 50 years. Among the academics are:
Our courses are designed to accommodate full-time professionals looking to advance their careers and are therefore usually held after work hours. The Strategic and Defence Studies Centre (SDSC) also hosts several events each year with high profile speakers - students are encouraged to attend these as they are relevant to their studies. Speakers from recent events include former Secretary of Defence, Dennis Richardson AO; Minister for Defence, the Hon Marise Payne; Director-General of the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation, Duncan Lewis; and US Assistant Secretary of State, David Stilwell and more.
You will graduate from ANU, a world-class university, positioning you firmly in the centre of a global network of leading diplomatic and international legal scholars and policy-makers.
ANU is ranked #1 in Australia and #11 in the world for Politics.
Our Master of Strategic Studies students have gone on to join the Australian Public Service (APS jobs) in: the Department of Defence, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), the Department of Home Affairs, Attorney General's Department, and the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.
Other career paths include:
You can get both practical experience and credit towards your Masters degree with an internship. Our students have had the opportunity to intern with organisations such as:
The Australian National University (ANU) offers a wide range of scholarships to students to assist with the cost of their studies.
Eligibility to apply for ANU scholarships varies depending on the specifics of the scholarship and can be categorised by the type of student you are. Specific scholarship application process information is included in the relevant scholarship listing. Scholarships available to students commencing or currently enrolled in the Master of Strategic Studies include:
T.B. Millar Grant: the grant pays the tuition fee for the two core courses (or their equivalents) for a total of 24 units of coursework. Available to domestic and international students.
Robert O’Neill Scholarship: $8,000 stipend to assist with accommodation, living expenses and a Canberra-Singapore return economy-class flight. The objective of the award is to provide the means for a high achieving domestic or international student to undertake an internship with the International Institute of Strategic Studies (IISS) - Asia office in Singapore.
The Freyberg Scholarship (New Zealand Defence Scholarship) is available for New Zealand citizens wishing to undertake the Master of Strategic Studies offered by The Australian National University.
For further information see the Scholarships website.
Upcoming events can be viewed here