Economics and Business Communications

Economics and Business Communications


Economics and Business CommunicationsThis Arts specialisation course is tailored to the needs of the contemporary business environment, with a focus on business studies, economics and communication, whilst providing you with the knowledge and skills in your choice of humanities, liberal arts and social science based disciplines.

To complete the Bachelor of Arts (Business and Communication Studies) you can either do a:

  • Major in Business Studies
  • Minor in Communication
  • Minor in either Computing, Economics, Mathematics or Psychology.or a
  • Major in Economics
  • Minor in Communication
  • Minor in Business Studies.

Employers value our graduates due to their ability to:

  • think systematically and critically
  • gather and evaluate evidence from many sources
  • communicate clearly
  • apply ethical principles to decision making.

You can also use this Arts course as the foundation for further specialised study.


An applicant must also comply with the Admission to Coursework Programs Policy.

To be eligible for admission to the course, an applicant must have completed the following prerequisites at year 12, or equivalent:

New South Wales

  • Assumed knowledge: Mathematics (other than General Mathematics) for study in Mathematics.
  • Recommended studies: Visual Arts for study in Visual Arts.

1 Learning in the Community is normally to be completed by the end of Year 2.
2 A Program Core Unit may contribute to a major, minor or be an elective.
3 A student may undertake units, other than those required for the selected Major, listed in the Schedule of Unit Offerings or from other disciplines within the Faculty (subject to campus availability, unit limitations and provided that prerequisite and co-requisite requirements are met).

Bachelor of Arts – Specialisations by campus

“Specialisation”: An area of special or focused study or sub-discipline within a course, which is recognised on the student’s testamur and transcript. Normally a specialisation consists of not less than one half of the total credit points for the award.

Specialisation Brisbane Melbourne Strathfield Offshore
Business and Communication Studies n/a n/a Yes1 n/a
Psychology Yes Yes Yes n/a

n/a = Not applicable

Major and Minor sequences by campus

“Major”: 80 cp in prescribed units in one discipline or approved interdisciplinary area, normally including at least 10 cp at introductory level, at least 40 cp at 200 level and at least 20 cp from 300 level.

“Minor”: 40 cp in prescribed units in one discipline or approved interdisciplinary area, normally including at least 10 cp at introductory level and at least 20 cp at advanced level.

Sequence Brisbane Melbourne Strathfield Offshore
Business Studies major major major n/a
Communication minor n/a minor n/a
Computing n/a n/a minor n/a
Digital Journalism major minor n/a n/a
Drama major major major n/a
Economics n/a major major n/a
Education Studies major major major n/a
Geography n/a minor major n/a
Graphic Design n/a minor minor n/a
Healthy Development n/a minor n/a n/a
History major major major n/a
Literature major major major n/a
Mathematics n/a major major n/a
Media n/a major n/a n/a
Music major major n/a n/a
Philosophy major major major n/a
Politics and International Relations n/a major major n/a
Psychology2 major major major n/a
Sociology major major minor n/a
Study of Religions major major major n/a
Theological Studies major major major n/a
Visual Arts major major major n/a
Youth Work n/a minor n/a n/a

n/a = Not applicable

The majors and minors offered at each location are subject to staff availability.

Recognition of other Majors/Minors

Community Services Minor – 40 cp granted for successful completion of a National Training Information Service (NTIS) Community Services Package from an accredited RTO or equivalent as formally recognised through an articulation agreement with Australian Catholic University.

Education Minor – available only to students who transfer from an Undergraduate Education program and who have completed designated units as approved by Course Coordinator.

Languages Major/Minor (Italian, Japanese, Mandarin or other languages) – available as cross-institutional study as approved by Course Coordinator.

Legal Studies Major/Minor – available only to students who transfer from the Bachelor of Laws or equivalent and who have completed designated units as approved by Course Coordinator.

Technology Major/Minor – available only to students enrolled in the Bachelor of Teaching/Bachelor of Arts (Technology) who study a sequence of twelve units in Design and Technology which is recognised as equivalent to a major and minor in Technology in the Bachelor of Arts.

HUMA247 Community Engagement and the Civic Professional

Students in the Bachelor of Arts course are required to complete a Community Engagement unit to meet graduation requirements. The internship component of the HUMA247 Community Engagement and the Civic Professional unit requires the completion of a total of 70 hours of work integrated learning within community organisation usually by the end of year 2.


Business and Communication Studies (NSW only)

Completion of:

160 cp from:

  1. a Major in Business Studies;
  2. a Minor in Communication; and
  3. a Minor in one of Computing, Economics, Mathematics or Psychology;


  1. a Major in Economics;
  2. a Minor in Communication; and
  3. a Minor in Business Studies.

Psychology (Queensland, NSW and Victoria)

Completion of

  1. 140 cp from Specified Psychology units;
  2. 60 cp from an Arts minor plus electives;
  3. 20 cp from University Core units;
  4. 10 cp from COUN106 Introduction to Counselling; and
  5. 10 cp from HUMA247 Community Engagement and the Civic Professional.


Study Areas in the Bachelor of Arts

Business Studies

The Business Studies sequence offers students the opportunity to gain a broad understanding of two areas from: Human Resource Management; Marketing and Accounting. Students in the Bachelor of Arts can make strategic choices to combine their Business Studies major with a range of related areas such as Economics, Politics and International Relations or Digital Media among other areas. A Business Studies major can also lead to the Master of Teaching when students wish to pursue a career as a Business Studies teacher.


The Communication minor equips students with the ability to communicate effectively both at university and in today’s globalised workforce. The sequence develops skills in interpersonal, intercultural and workplace communication, and provides a systematic training in the oral and written communication skills. Students work with different modes of writing including report writing, advertising copy, creative writing, feature writing and blogs, and are taught to speak in public, lead meetings, conduct interviews and negotiations and undertake mediation and conflict management. The Communication minor builds skills that underpin successful university study and also develops abilities that are immediately transferrable to any workplace and are highly sought after by employers.


Computing drives innovation in every aspect of contemporary life and is an essential and component of many disciplines. The computing sequence develops knowledge and skills in information technology, explores data communications and database systems, and introduces students to problem solving and programming. The knowledge and skills gained in the minor expands opportunities for students seeking careers in the growing number of fields that require a strong foundation in computing.

Digital Journalism

The Digital Journalism sequence prepares students for a career in a converged media environment. This rapidly changing media landscape requires practitioners to be skilled in the traditional platforms of print and broadcast journalism, and to be adaptive in applying those skills to online and social media platforms. The major develops skills in broadcast, print and online publication, in interviewing and reporting, and in crowdsourcing news via social networks. The sequence contributes to developing students who are equipped to work both within industry, and as independent operators.


The major sequence in Drama provides students with a comprehensive overview of theatrical literature and history and a grounding in production work. Through performances, workshops and practical classes, ACU’s Drama sequence develops skills in many areas including theatre production, stage management, direction, and acting, as well as knowledge of theatre history and repertoire. Students who complete a major in drama possess transferrable skills in communication and public speaking and can seek employment in the performing arts industry or use the skills developed in other professional contexts. When combined with an appropriate tertiary teaching qualification, the drama major is a pathway to becoming a secondary-school drama teacher.


Economics at ACU promotes the knowledge, and understanding of local business operation, consumer behaviour, economic policy, and national and global economic issues. The sequence encourages student interest in contemporary economic events and helps them to understand important issues such as unemployment, foreign debt, changes in the value of the dollar and the implication of these issues for consumers, businesses and the nation. Students also consider the policy options that are available to deal with these important issues in Australia and globally. The study of Economics provides the knowledge and skills for a variety of careers in both the private and public sectors, as well as providing a pathway for further study. Economics can lead to jobs in banking; share, finance or futures markets; business; insurance and superannuation; tourism; resource and environmental management; foreign affairs; the public service; journalism; statistical analysis and economic forecasting; economic policy analysis and development; and teaching in secondary and tertiary institutions, along with many other occupations.


The Geography sequence exposes students to the major environmental issues and challenges our world faces today. It provides a methodology for analysis and interpretation and allows students to critically evaluate management strategies. There is an emphasis on project-based research and learning as the sequence progresses, with associated development of skills in data collection (in the field and from secondary sources), collation and analysis using industry-standard equipment and methods, including GIS and Remote Sensing. Students in the major undertake a capstone unit focused on a research project of their choice. Field-based learning is a crucial aspect of studying Geography at ACU, with opportunities for exciting field trips within Australia and overseas. These skills may then be applied to a range of applied professional situations.

Graphic Design

Graphic design is an innovative and an essential component of contemporary visual culture and the built environment.  Understanding the principles of effective visual communication adds competitive value to projects from all disciplines and develops a broad range of skills transferrable to any workplace. Graphic Design units prepare students with authentic assessment projects designed to build experience and understanding of the design processes methodology and equip students to confidently create and assess effective visual communication and develop their own design solution strategies.  Graphic Design units focus on the following media; design for publication, information design, interactive and web design, typography, illustration, and the digital image.  Students from all technical backgrounds acquire broad technical skills in current design software programs in a workshop based computer lab class.

Healthy Development

The Healthy Development minor gives students the opportunity to study contemporary topics in health and human development. This sequence explores issues related to nutrition and exercise; the human life cycle from birth to death, families, sex, adolescence and international perspectives on health issues. Students wishing to do a Master of Teaching can take this sequence in the Bachelor of Arts as a pathway to teaching Health and Human Development in schools. Alternately, the minor can be taken alongside sequences such as sociology and youth work to provide a broader perspective on health and development.


The History sequence brings the past to life by introducing students to a diverse range of societies and cultures that have shaped the modern world. History at ACU has an exciting and innovative global focus. Students will have opportunities to study European, American, Australian, Indigenous, Asian and Ancient history, and to engage with key themes such as war and peace, race and class, gender and sexuality, violence and terrorism, and film and popular culture. In exploring the people, ideas and events that have defined the past and given meaning to the present, students will develop critical skills that will equip them for rich and rewarding professional careers. With world-class analytical, written and communication skills, History graduates have gone on to exciting employment in a number of areas, including politics and policy-making, foreign affairs and diplomacy, journalism and public relations, heritage and museums, and schools and universities.


Through the study of a broad range of literary texts and approaches to reading them, the Literature major familiarises students with literary traditions and contemporary literary cultures. This major will reveal the varied ways in which people have lived, thought, felt and imagined, opening up new worlds of understanding. Students will develop vital transferrable skills in effective reading, writing, analysis and interpretation that will equip them for rewarding careers in teaching, journalism, the media, and other professions that require articulate and culturally literate graduates.


The major sequence in Mathematics is designed to provide a broad introduction to the study of traditional and contemporary Mathematics. Highlights include introductions to cryptography, project management, networks, mathematical modelling, and finance. The major also covers the traditional areas required by those intending to become primary or secondary teachers, as teaching of Mathematics from K-12 is a high demand field and the demand will grow in the future. A major in Mathematics can also lead to interesting careers in areas such as operations research, cryptography, finance and computing.


The Media major offers students training in media production informed by both current media theory and contemporary industry practices. The sequence is practically-oriented with multiple studio-based units that see students producing folios of work which align with the activities of the profession. Students in the sequence are equipped with the practical skills required for employment in a range of media industry roles including digital video production, television production, broadcast radio and online content production in new, social and emerging media. The major is also a pathway to becoming a secondary-school media teacher when combined with a tertiary teaching qualification.


The Music sequence develops skills in composition, music technology, musicology, music criticism and analysis. Students engage with the fundamentals of music language as it operates in a diverse range of styles and genres, and are taught to observe, understand and apply complex music processes drawn from the music of the past and the present. Students also engage with the cultural, social, aesthetic, historical and ethical functions of music through studies in musicology. Career outcomes that can arise from this sequence include teaching (when the major is combined with year 12 music performance or AMEB grade five and a tertiary teaching qualification), freelance composition (for film, television, video games, and commercials), music journalism and blogging, publishing, music administration, music retail, music research and work as ’embedded’ creative practitioners using the skills developed through the sequence in the corporate and public sector.


The Philosophy sequence introduces students to serious and detailed thinking about the really big questions concerning reality as a whole, human nature, ethics, language, religion, truth and knowledge, logic, beauty and justice. The study of Philosophy, in both its historical and contemporary dimensions, assists students to develop critical thinking skills and clarity of thought, through which they learn to assess the strengths and weaknesses of complex arguments while also honing verbal and written communication skills. Employers across a very broad range of industries (including education, business, public administration, law, media and technology) report that they highly value the kinds of adaptable skills and attributes possessed by Philosophy graduates.


Politics is the study of power, violence and justice in our world. The questions of who gets what, why and how much, are persistent concerns plaguing all societies. In a world increasingly short of resources, individuals and nations now frequently do battle with each other to secure their own prosperity and peace. By looking at how these battles are won and lost, the discipline of Politics gives students insight into the workings of diplomacy, warfare, elections, the global economy, the nature of political parties, and the rise and fall of great powers. From everyday politics at the local level to the politics among nations, the Politics major at ACU will offer students interested in world affairs the conceptual tools to think critically and act decisively in a world that is ever changing. Graduates find employment within the public service, NGOs, international organisations such as the UN, as well as in the private sector.


The Psychology sequence provides students with a comprehensive and systematic study of human behaviour. The emphasis is on the dynamic nature of human behaviour and the interaction of biological, social and cultural factors that influence behaviour at all levels and at all stages of the life span. The major establishes a fundamental conceptual foundation dealing with general theoretical approaches to the study of human behaviour and reflect major themes in Psychology. Having a major in psychology is considered desirable in a diverse range of professions, such as Business Management, Marketing, Human Relations, Sales, Advertising, Community Services, Counselling, Health Services, Protective Services, Education, and Graduate Programs. (Please note that this major is not an APAC accredited major in psychology; so this major does not offer a career pathway to become a Psychologist).


Sociology is one of the most relevant disciplines for understanding complex social, cultural, and political phenomena today. Often cited as the “Queen of Disciplines” due to it producing a number of key ideas used by many subjects that study society and culture, sociology offers students a range of exciting theoretical, methodological, and conceptual tools for an understanding of human action, social and systemic change, institutions, and the deeper meanings of life. With subject matter such as globalisation, religion, health, work and economy, social movements, gender, and culture, sociologists are often crucially involved in a number of key debates around the ideas and events that impact on real people and their communities. All of these areas are a part of the sociology sequence at the ACU. Operating in both government and private industry, sociologists are employed in a variety of roles that centre on people and their environments including community project officers, policy planners and researchers, marketers and social media publicists. Sociology at the ACU helps students acquire high-order transferrable skills in reasoning, theorising, communicating, and research to do with a broader and deeper perspective of events, all of which are highly sought after by employers.

Study of Religions

Our multicultural societies are home to a vibrant mix of religious beliefs and experiences. Undertaking a major/minor sequence in Study of Religions is an exploration of this diversity and its implications for contemporary society. Students will study the three major world religions —C hristianity, Judaism and Islam — as well as having the opportunity to study religions practised in contemporary South and East Asia. We also look at Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander spiritualities, and their connectedness to Country, as well as exploring the spiritual & religious traditions of other Indigenous peoples from around the world. In all units of study, Study of Religions goes beyond merely understanding the practice of religion. Students will graduate with a critical awareness of the historical and contemporary aspects of each religion, as well as the need for interfaith relations and dialogue.

Theological Studies

A major/minor in Theological Studies helps to cultivate an adult faith and deeper spirituality. Theology gives new enthusiasm, fresh insight and deeper understanding to the gift of faith, and greater depth to spiritual experience.
Key themes in Theological Studies include: the person and work of Jesus Christ; the Word of God in the Scriptures; the sacraments and the Church’s liturgy; and the values, practices, responsibilities and traditions of a Christian way of life. It relates faith, spirituality and scholarship to a concern for human flourishing, the common good, the dignity of the human person, and stewardship of the environment and all creation.

Various theological approaches will be considered in the light of contemporary worldviews and interfaith dialogue. Students can examine the theme of social justice and its importance in the mission and teaching of Jesus, a study which assists students in thinking critically about the world around them.

Visual Arts

The BA Visual Arts major provides a mix of studio-based fine art and art and design history and theory electives. Emphasis is placed on students experiencing a range of professional practice opportunities such as entering their work in art competitions, writing publish ready interviews, articles and art reviews and presenting their artwork in group exhibitions in the ACU gallery. Students are trained by staff who are active practitioners in their field and benefit from small class sizes in an intimate studio environment. Students on an education pathway chose units in the visual arts major that will prepare them for primary and secondary level teaching. The art history and theory units have resulted in career outcomes as freelance art reviewers, educational officers in galleries and research assistant positions in academia. The practical art units have resulted in students working toward solo exhibitions and curating group shows of their peers work in artist-run spaces.

Youth Work

Youth work is an exciting and challenging sequence that introduces students to the theoretical insights and practical competencies required for dealing with the needs, problems and aspirations of young people. The youth work sequence acknowledges the social and cultural environments within which young people live and helps foster young people’s emotional and social development.Subjects in the sequence include youth sociology, adolescent development, youth work practice and building relationships and supporting young people and youth work in community and family settings.

Course Syllabus

Business Studies