University of Sydney Handbooks - 2012 Archive

Download full 2012 archive Page archived at: Wed, 02 May 2012 14:20:21 +1000


Message from the Dean

Dean of Arts and Social Sciences

I extend a warm welcome to commencing and continuing students in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at the University of Sydney.

Our mission is to conduct research and teaching across the breadth of the humanities and social sciences that makes a difference in the lives of our students, staff and the broader community, both in Australia and across the globe.

There isn't a major challenge in the world today that doesn't require the skills and insights honed in our disciplines, whether it is global poverty, war, climate change, the ethical responsibilities of corporations, or fundamental questions about human happiness and wellbeing. Understanding the deep philosophical, historical, social-scientific and cultural dimensions of these challenges is essential if we are going to address them in a constructive and effective way.

Our fundamental objective is to help you think more clearly, rigorously and expansively than you ever have before. Whatever particular discipline or program of study you eventually pursue - and we offer more choices than just about any other faculty of its kind in Australia - we want you to leave us with the intellectual skills to not only succeed in life, but gain meaning and value from it as well.

You are joining a wonderfully diverse academic community of almost 10,000 students and over 500 staff. Our students come from around the world and bring with them a vast array of life experiences. You will also be able to participate in the lively intellectual and social life outside of the classroom that centers around our many departments and programs, as well as the University's clubs and societies.

We also have a wide range of exchange agreements with overseas institutions which allow you to study abroad while enrolled here. This is an opportunity to broaden your horizons even further.

Studying in our faculty, whether as your main degree or as a foundation for other degrees, offers you the chance to participate in and contribute to one of the most dynamic faculties of its kind in Australia and the world. In doing so, you will be contributing to the generation of knowledge in the humanities and social sciences and helping to shape Australia's future by taking hold of your own.

Faculty staff are here to help you make the choices about our degrees and programs that will best suit your intellectual passions and ambitions. Best wishes for an exciting and I hope life-changing experience at the University of Sydney.

Professor Duncan Ivison
Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences