Social Sciences Degree - Bachelor of Arts

Understanding how society works at an individual, family, community and government level is important if you want to participate in or influence the way decisions are made that impact on our society.

Develop a sound understanding of the interplay between social forces, economics and politics. You explore power dynamics, influences on decision making, demographic and behavioural trends, and the challenges caused by economic, political and social disadvantage.

You’ll also develop critical analysis and problem-solving skills, which are crucial for the public service, social sector and community organisations; all areas where many of our graduates start their successful careers.

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This is part of the Bachelor of Arts.

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Learn to explain and analyse the characteristics of human society, social change, and human development and behaviour. You analyse cultural diversity and economic systems, and examine concepts of ethnocentrism and the impact of colonisation

You also demonstrate skills in data retrieval, analysis (including a range of statistical techniques) and presentation in relation to sociological, economic, political and psychological research.

Apart from the courses below you also need to complete courses from your second major, your chosen minor(s) or electives.

Core courses

All Bachelor of Arts students need to complete core courses that help you develop transferable skills and support your work in all other courses in the degree.

Workplace experience is an important part of your degree, and the Work Integrated Learning course is the final part of your degree. This is a supervised work placement related to your major(s), for an organisation of your choice. It's a great way to get industry experience while still being able to get feedback from AUT lecturers, and for many of our students this workplace experience also leads to a job offer.

Recent placements included:

  • ASB Bank
  • CCS Disability Action
  • Goodman Fielder
  • Love to Live
  • NZ Council of Trade Unions

You could also take the Foundations in Research course if you’re considering continuing into postgraduate study.

Want more info about work integrated learning at AUT?

Read more about workplace experience in AUT programmes, how it works and why it’s so beneficial when you start your career.

Workplace experience in AUT programmes

Social sciences courses

If you're majoring in social sciences, this is the main subject area you specialise in. It makes up one third of your degree and consists of eight social sciences-related courses you study throughout your degree.

Year 1 courses

Complete the following courses:

Year 2 courses

Complete the following courses:

And one of:

Year 3 courses

Choose three of:

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  • Community work
  • Local government
  • Non-governmental organisations
  • Policy analysis
  • Research
  • Further study in social work and foreign affairs

Find out more about industry trends, job descriptions and what employers may be looking for.

Social Sciences Careers

Other majors in the Bachelor of Arts

*This major focuses on New Zealand Sign Language and developing the skills to become a Sign Language interpreter. It doesn’t include the option to include courses from different subjects.

The information on this page was correct at time of publication. For a comprehensive overview of AUT qualifications, please refer to the Academic Calendar.