University of Sydney Handbooks - 2020 Archive

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Executive Master of Arts and Social Sciences


The Executive Master of Arts and Social Sciences (EMASS) is a unique program designed for those aspiring to leadership roles in the private, public or not-for-profit sectors. This program is designed to appeal to a range of professions and industry sectors, including media, education, public policy, international commerce and project management.

Under the supervision of the degree director, you will be able to tailor your study program to satisfy your intellectual interests while meeting the distinct needs of your professional circumstances and leadership aspirations. For example, you can focus on literature and public policy analysis; or history and cultural policy analysis; or language and communication strategy; or education and legal strategy.

During your study, you will not only deepen your knowledge of the humanities and social sciences but also have the opportunity to acquire skills in ethical reasoning and critical analysis, cultural awareness and sensitivity, as well as in resource planning and strategic and project management more generally. The course comprises Professional and Applied modules that include units in areas such as project management, innovation, ethics, professional communication, law, governance, management and leadership.

This course draws on the strengths of several disciplines at the University of Sydney, including those within the faculties of Arts and Social Sciences, Science, Engineering, and the Sydney Law School.

The course allows for maximum flexibility, to appeal to both personal interest and professional development needs. As part of their program of study, students are required to complete either an industry placement, or a practical group project or research dissertation on a topic of their choosing.

The EMASS vision is to produce sensitive, broad-minded, empathetic and creative leaders whose effective decision-making is based on a thorough appreciation of:

  • Public policy
  • Historical content
  • Cultural nuances
  • Human diversity in all its forms
  • Complexities in social interaction
  • The physical and ethical constraints imposed by nature and society.

The course offers three entry points – 12 months, 18 months and 24 months full time (or equivalent part time) depending upon your background and educational qualifications.

Awards and Requirements

Executive Master of Arts and Social Sciences
Candidates for the Executive Master of Arts and Social Sciences are required to complete 96 credit points including:

  • a minimum of 18 credit points from Applied Module units of study
  • a minimum of 6 credit points from Capstone units of study
  • a maximum of 72 credit points from Elective module units of study

Candidates who have completed previous study in a relevant discipline may be eligible for a reduction in the requirements in accordance with the table below.

Level of prior learning Full-time duration Credit points to complete
AQF Level 7 eg. a bachelor's degree in the Humanities, Social Sciences or Law 1.5 years 72
AQF Level 8 eg. Honours in the Humanities, Social Sciences or Law 1 year 48



Associate Professor Mark Melatos