A Bachelor of Social Science (single and dual program) teaches students how to develop strategies to help find solutions to a range of social issues at the local, national and international level. Graduates are equipped with key skills valuable to employers such as problem solving, effective written and oral communication, information processing, creative and critical thinking, cross-cultural awareness, social research skills and computer literacy. 

The degree is a unique and innovative program that gives students expertise in social science research design and implementation. Students gain knowledge and skills for employment in areas such as public policy design and evaluation; social impact assessment; social planning and the analysis of socio-economic issues in a wide range of contexts.

First year plans

In order to complete the Bachelor of Social Science program you must successfully complete 24 courses, which equates to 48 units. To meet the requirements you must complete:

Part A 20 units 
Major (Part B) 10-12 units  (depending on major)
The balance from any combination of courses from Part B # units remaining
Total 48 units

Of the 48 units required for the program, a student must complete 28 units of advanced courses (level 2 courses or higher) See further information on the Bachelor of Social Science program.

The following course selection guide is relevant for students enrolled in the Bachelor of Social Science program:

Semester 1 Semester 2
POLS1102 Introduction to Politics & Public Policy Elective                                              
SOSC1000 Society, Challenges and Solutions: Introduction to the Social Sciences Elective  
Elective   Elective  
**For Development major: POLS1701 (semester 1)
**For Social & Public Policy major: POLY1000 (semester 2)
**For Health & Society major: SOCY1030 (semester 2)
**For Environment & Society major: GEOS1100 (Semester 1 or 2)

You are strongly advised to begin your major in your first year.

Please note that the program planner is a guide only and does not enrol you in your courses, you must enrol in courses through mySI-net.

Visit HASS courses and programs for Information regarding dual degree programs and the relevant dual degree planner.

What courses do I need to do?

To ensure that students are familiar with their program rules and requirements we ask that all students complete a self-progression check in the first instance. Then if you still have questions or concerns about your outstanding program requirements the Faculty would be happy to review your progression check and provide advice. To complete a progression check please use the following steps:

Step 1 – Print out your studies report from mySI-net using the following steps:

  • Log into mySI-net
  • From the top left-hand side menu select the option for ‘Studies Report’
  • Follow the prompts

Step 2 – Select your program from the list: http://www.uq.edu.au/study/faculty.html?faculty=hss

Step 3 – Select your year of commencement from the top right hand side and click ‘Change’.

Step 4 – Go to ‘Program Rules and Requirements’ and ensure that you have understanding of your program requirements, for example, do you need to select a major; is there an advanced level requirement etc. Once you understand your program requirements you can move to the next step.  

Step 5 - Select the green course list button on the left hand menu.

Step 6 – Compare your studies report to the course list and tick off the courses you have completed, and note the courses you are planning to complete in the future. Ensuring that you have completed all of your compulsory courses, and courses towards your major(s).

Step 7 – Once you have gone through and ticked off all of your completed courses, view your program rules and requirements again to ensure that you are meeting all requirements (e.g. overall structural requirements, advanced level requirements etc). Ensure you can tick off that you have completed (or are planning to complete) all of the requirements.

Please Note
•    To have your progression check verified by a Student Administration Officer, or if you have questions or concerns, please upload your completed check by signing in here using your UQ username and password.  Please ensure that you upload your studies report, course list(s) (ensuring you have indicated all completed courses and future enrolments), and program rules with your notes.
•    A course may only count once toward the program (including dual programs).
•    Dual degree students must consult with the relevant faculty regarding outstanding requirements for the other component of the dual.

Plan your exchange experience

Are you in a Dual Degree?  Please click here for the Exchange Fact Sheet for the Bachelor of Social Science component of your dual prorgam.

What do I need to do?          

1.      Start planning early!

You need to start preparing for exchange at least 12 months prior:

  • Visit the UQ Global Experiences website for information on eligibility, the application process, links to seminars and to read about others’ experiences.
  • Attend an information session conducted by UQ Global Experiences.
  • Refer to the BSocSc Exchange planner* that demonstrates how an exchange semester can be incorporated into your program. As this is a structured program you must undertake exchange in Year 2 Semester 2.
  • Remember to save 6 to 8 units of electives for your exchange semester.
  • If you need help with planning your program, contact the Faculty of HaSS. 

*to open as an editable form, please right click on the link and save as PDF or open in Internet Explorer/ Microsoft Edge

2.      Consider Course Constraints

  • Students in the BSocSc must go on exchange in Year 2, Semester 2, and for the duration of one semester only, as this is a structured program where course prerequisites must be met before progression to more advanced courses, and SOSC3201 and SOSC3202 must be taken in consecutive semesters in your final year.
  • No student will be permitted to undertake courses towards Part A of the course list, as these courses have been specifically designed for the program and must be undertaken at UQ.
  • It is strongly recommended that you save your electives and undertake these while on exchange to give yourself the most choice and flexibility when choosing universities and should your pre-approved courses at your host university not be available on arrival.
  • For this reason you should not undertake any core compulsory courses towards your major as these courses are very difficult to match overseas and other courses often cannot be substituted for those that are pre-approved.
  • Where a core course or course towards your major needs to be included, sufficiently detailed course profiles must be provided to demonstrate that the content covered within the course is sufficiently equivalent to content studied in the course at UQ. Course profiles should include information about the extended syllabus, aims and objectives, contact hours, texts and references and assessment.

3.      Decide on a Host University

  • It is recommended that students attend one of the following host universities, however, other universities will be considered. You should refer to the List of Host Institutions provided on the UQ Global Experiences website, take heed of additional advice specific to host and choose those that offer courses in your desired elective areas.
  • Only universities that offer the study areas you require, whose semesters align with UQ and who can provide detailed course profiles will be considered.


Host institution



Uni of Graz



Most Canadian institutions that include Sociology are suitable, such as Queens Uni, Uni of Alberta, UBC and Uni of Calgary.


E.K. Tübingen

Short list of course choices in English for electives including sociology.


Univ. College Dublin

Range of suitable courses including an introductory statistics course.


Uni Amsterdam

Short list of course choices in English for sociology related electives.

Uni Utrecht


New Zealand




Uni Bergen


Uni Oslo



Nanyang Technological Uni


National Uni of Singapore


South Africa

Uni Cape Town

Only 3 UQ students can attend Uni Cape Town each year. Entry to courses in the humanities & social sciences disciplines is highly competitive.


Uni Lund

Short list of course choices in English for electives including sociology


Most UK institutions that include Sociology are suitable. Read the advice specific on the UQ Global Experiences website. Note in particular that Univ. College London and Loughborough have a restricted range of disciplines available.


Most US institutions that include Sociology are suitable. Read the advice specific on the UQ Global Experiences website. In many cases, institutions are best for, or in some cases must be for, non-specific electives. Only very few UQ students can be accepted at Boston College, the State Uni of New York Stony Brook, Rutgers University, Uni of Illinois, Uni of Texas at Austin and Uni of Washington. As the Uni of Connecticut does not provide course profiles, applications for exchange to this institution can only be for unspecified electives. Institutions popular with other social science students have included Kansas State Uni, Uni of Massachusetts, Uni of Washington and Uni of Wyoming.

4.      Applying for Exchange

Please refer to the UQ Global Experiences website for application details and deadlines. Documentation to be submitted must include the following:

  • Completed UQ Global Experiences exchange Study Plan form.
  • Relevant Host course profiles detailing the extended syllabus, aims and objectives, contact hours, texts and references and assessment for each of the courses listed on the study plan so that they can be assessed.
  • The completed BSocSc exchange study planner*.

*to open as an editable form, please right click on the link and save as PDF or open in Internet Explorer/ Microsoft Edge

Remember while an exchange semester is a great opportunity, you should be prepared for experiences outside your comfort zone. You may have setbacks such as approved courses not being available when you arrive, so a flexible attitude is important, and while UQ Global Experiences and the Faculty will try to assist, be ready to take responsibility for resolving challenges that arise as well as taking advantage of the exciting experiences in front of you.

Important Things to Consider

An exchange semester may add time to complete your program
  • You should understand that undertaking a semester on exchange may add up to one year onto your program subject to the prerequisite requirements of your UQ courses and the sequence of study required. Requests for program or major variations will not be approved due the completion of exchange and the scheduling of courses. It is up to you to ensure you plan your program requirements around your exchange semester.
  • If you are a student who is on a scholarship, requires Centrelink funding, or any other funding where continuous full time enrolment is required we ask that you carefully consider taking an exchange semester and be aware that subject to circumstances that may arise, when you return you may not be able to enrol full-time due to the prerequisite requirements of your courses.
International students only

As complications during an exchange semester may add time onto the completion of your program, due to stringent visa requirements international students should think very carefully before undertaking an exchange semester and if you choose to do so, plan your program and select host institutions very carefully.

Applying for credit for previous studies

If you are eligible, think carefully before applying for credit for previous studies towards the elective component of your degree. Elective courses provide the most flexibility while on exchange, so it is recommended that you keep 6 to 8 units of electives for your exchange semester.

Short Term Global Experiences

If you are unable to undertake a semester long exchange, an alternative is to participate in a short-term global experience (e.g. 4-6 weeks over winter or summer semester). Some global experiences may be for credit such as towards unspecified electives. More information is available from the Student Employability Centre website – Global Experiences.

For a print friendly version of the Exchange Fact Sheet, please click here*.

*to open as an editable form, please right click on the link and save as PDF or open in Internet Explorer/ Microsoft Edge

2018 Program Restructure (Pre 2018 Students)

The Bachelor of Social Science Is Changing from 2018

Following consultation with academics, industry professionals, graduates and your feedback as current students, the Bachelor of Social Science is being restructured. These changes will come into place from Semester 1 2018 for new students. The changes include:

  • Introduction of a new Environment and Society major
  • Revision of the core, including a new dedicated first year course and an additional policy course
  • Up to 16 units of Electives courses (for single BSocSc students only)

What does this mean for current students (or those who intend to return to their BSocSc studies)?

Students who commenced the BSocSc before 2018 have a choice:

  1. You will be able to complete with the program structure/rules that were in place when you commenced You will not need to change to the new structure. You will be able to complete the core Part A  and Part B (Majors) as in your current program and complete with the majors that were included in the program prior to 2018 (ie, Development, Social and Public Policy, Health and Society)
  2. You may be able to transition to the restructured program to take the new Environment and Society major or the new 20 unit Core. We strongly recommend this option only for those students who have completed 16 units or less towards the BSocSc.

What do I need to do?

  1. If you are completing the program in accordance with the program rules of the year you commenced (ie. pre-2018), then no further action is required from you. You can complete the program by following the 2017 BSocSc course list.
  2. If you would like to transition to the new 2018 program structure to complete the new 20 unit core and/or the new major in Environment and Society, it is recommended that you:
    1. Review the new 2018 course list and make a plan for your future enrolment.
    2. Complete a checklist - to develop a transition plan to the new BSocSci (or dual) program.
    3. Send your checklist to the Faculty for review by 5th of January 2018

Where can I get help?

Once you have completed a checklist and made a plan, staff in the Faculty are available to check your enrolment plan. You can send your completed checklist to Faculty Office via UQ Answers – please log in with your student details and click on “send us your question”, or call on 3365 1333 to make a one-to-one appointment with an advisor.

It is strongly recommended that you complete a checklist and forward to the Faculty no later than 5 January 2018, in order to ensure that there is time to check your plan, and for you to enrol. Checklists received after 5 January may not be checked in time for the commencement of semester.