Arts, humanities and social sciences

Disciplines in the arts – spanning humanities, social sciences and creative arts – can generally be studied online. Arts students have the luxury of choice.

  • Bachelor degree students have many courses to choose from and normally don’t have to commit to a major until the 2nd or 3rd year.
  • Postgraduate (e.g. masters) students also have plenty of disciplines available for distance learning.

Arts is a broad field that covers writing, social research and creative arts. Subjects are often literary in nature and may make extensive use of information technologies. Distance education is a good way to study arts in literary and digital fields.

All Arts and specialist Arts degrees allow you to select elective subjects of interest as well as your majors as part of your studies. Within the Bachelor of Arts degree alone there are over 40 majors or specialisations available for you to choose.


Bachelor of Arts is one of the most versatile and popular degrees. Online courses allow students to pursue a general study program while building specialised knowledge in targeted areas.

  • Australia’s strongest online arts universities allow students to choose from dozens of possible majors and minors.
  • Almost every humanities and social science discipline can be learned through distance education.

An online BA is a 3-year degree that develops professional skills and enhances general thinking. BA graduates come away with improved written communication and greater capacity to understand people and culture... READ MORE

A Bachelor of Criminal Justice is a social science degree where you learn about:

  1. law enforcement (policing, security and crime prevention)
  2. legal justice (juvenile and criminal law processes)
  3. managing consequences of crime (detention, rehabilitation, victim and welfare services).

As well, you'll study criminology, which is concerned with how crime arises, victim impacts, and social policies to reduce crime. The best online courses develop your general research, analysis and writing skills while preparing you for many possible criminal justice careers... READ MORE

While few people work as criminologists, the study of criminology can lead to many different careers across criminal justice, welfare and public policy fields.

Career examples include law enforcement officer, victim and witness assistance worker, probation and parole officer, community welfare program manager, and criminology researcher.

Criminology is a widely available major within Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Social Science programs. Australian universities also offer Bachelor of Criminology degrees online.

Criminology students do a multi-disciplinary program that spans fields such as social sciences, psychology, law and forensic science... READ MORE

Studying international relations develops writing, analytical and thinking skills while building knowledge of how to operate in global markets. It encourages students to consider alternative perspectives and take a big-picture view.

International relations (or international studies) is especially helpful to people looking to work for companies or institutions with an international outlook. Fully online degree courses are available.

  • For a bachelor degree, students normally start by combining international relations units with units from other disciplines. These may be in Arts or other faculties. Students specialise mainly in the 3rd year.
  • Graduates working in international relations can boost their skills by doing an online masters degree... READ MORE

Journalism can be studied online as part of an arts, communications or media program. Even where it is not offered as a major, you can choose writing and media units to develop job-relevant competencies.

  • The best universities for studying journalism have a strong set of writing and social science units.
  • A deep program allows you to build journalism skills while learning interesting subjects that you could write about in the future.

By studying journalism online, you gain versatile skills in writing and communication that can be applied in a wide variety of jobs... READ MORE

Psychology is a popular study area for undergraduate students especially, who often combine it with other topics. You can major in Psychology within a Bachelor of Arts degree. Online courses look at human behaviour, personality, interpersonal relationships, learning and motivation.

A 3-year psychology degree is just the start of qualifying to be a psychology researcher, registered psychologist or clinical psychologist. But it can lead to careers in human resource management, marketing and community services.

An honours year and hands-on training are normally required for specialist positions. Postgraduate courses include a graduate diploma (equivalent to a bachelor degree) and advanced graduate diploma (equivalent to honours)... READ MORE

Public relations experts seem always in demand and you can launch your career by studying online with an Australian university.

Good online universities for PR offer a wide range of subjects in communications and related fields, allowing you to choose units to match your interests and goals.

Public relations experts communicate strategically, both within an organisation and externally. They are normally good writers and speakers, and know their way around digital and social media.

For many PR professionals, a career begins by majoring in public relations as part of an Arts or Communications bachelor degree... READ MORE

Religious studies scholars objectively look at world religions, examining religious history and how religion and culture intertwine.

You can study religion without being religious yourself. Students develops skills in language, research and critical thinking.

Religion has been fundamental in society’s development and is still relevant. For example, it's important for understanding foreign cultures.

Online religious studies courses may include short residential schools, but they are generally optional. Postgraduate courses are popular with students who wish to teach religion or enter the clergy... READ MORE