Planning your BA

Work out the best way to complete your BA degree.

Explaining the BA Structure

Discover the exciting journey of a Bachelor of Arts at the University of Auckland.

First-year students

Your first year is an opportunity to discover your interests and strengths. The best strategy is to try out different subjects you think you may want to continue with in later years. At the end of your first year, you will be asked to confirm your two majors.

Choose the three BA subjects that interest you the most and take two courses in each. Take two additional courses: one General Education and one course from a module or another BA subject.

For your second year you will be able to choose two or three of these subjects to take at Stage II. Two subjects will eventually become your two majors.

How many courses to enrol in

To complete in three years you would enrol in (and pass) 120 points (eight 15-point courses) each year - 60 points (four courses) in Semester One and 60 points (four courses) in Semester Two.

Note that the University limits how many courses you can enrol in per year and per semester.

Choosing your double major

You should have made a decision about your majors by the end of your first year; after that it can be difficult to change your mind without having to take extra courses. Depending on the courses you’ve already passed, you may be able to change your majors.

Choosing courses for your majors

You must not only choose your courses from those listed in the BA schedule for the subject, but you also need to be aware of any special requirements for your majors, such as required courses or courses you cannot count.

Stage I courses

There is a limited number of Stage I courses you can count towards your BA. Your BA can only include up to 180 points at Stage I (12 15-point courses), including General Education courses.

You can also take Stage I courses in your second or third year, provided they fit into the degree requirements.

Stage II and III courses

At least half the courses in your BA (180 points or 12 courses) must be above Stage I, including at least 90 points (six courses) at Stage III (including courses for your majors).

Stage II and III courses have prerequisites, which are courses or points you must have passed to be able to enrol. As a very general rule, you must have passed two courses in your chosen subject at Stage I to enrol in Stage II in that subject, and two courses at Stage II to enrol in Stage III.

The BA major and specialisation in Communication

You can either take Communication as one of your two majors or as a specialisation consisting of 240 points or 16 courses. You do not need to select a second major if you want your degree to predominantly focus on Communication.

Your first year

In your first year you will normally take eight courses: four in Semester One and four in Semester Two. For the specialisation, you will take three core (compulsory) courses in Communication. You will also choose an additional elective course for the specialisation.

After adding in your two General Education courses, you will be able to select two more courses from any subject in the BA to round out your first year of study.

The structure of the specialisation

During your study, you will take specific core courses in Communication. You will also choose elective courses to include in your specialisation on related topics from subjects such as Marketing, Politics and International Relations, and Media and Screen Studies. You will have the opportunity to apply for an internship in your third year.

As you advance through the degree, you will be able to supplement your Communication specialisation with courses from other BA subjects of your choice.