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AL381 History and Politics Study Tour
28 June – 20 July 2011

Academic Staff

Your program coordinator, tour leader and lecturer will be Dr Daniel Baldino, head of the Politics and International Relations program at the School of Arts and Sciences in Fremantle.   Specialising in American politics and foreign policy, and having done much of his PhD research in Washington DC, this is one of his favourite cities.  Daniel will steer you safely through the trip with his dangerous working knowledge of the DC subway system (and his love of 10th Street’s Waffle Cafe) and his passion for this vibrant leading city of the world.

Dr Leslie Tentler from the Catholic University of America will also be joining the teaching staff of this program.  Leslie teaches and researches in American History and is a regular coordinator of the highly popular CUA unit, Washington: Symbol and City.

Unit Overview

The School of Arts and Sciences welcomes its students to join us for an intensive study unit in Washington DC which would be of particular interest to students of History, Politics, International Relations and Social Justice. 

Led by Dr Daniel Baldino from Notre Dame’s Fremantle campus, this program will include in-class tuition at one of America’s leading universities and will be combined with extensive field trips to such places as the Pentagon, the Capital buildings, the Smithsonian museums and—Daniel’s favourite—Waffle Shop on 10th Street.  Join us as we share in the nation’s celebration of 4th July in the heart of its capital.

Students of the Washington History and Politics Study Tour will review the complex and richly symbolic history of Washington within the context of the larger story of American history, including the city’s place at the heart of American politics, power, justice and the civil rights movement.  This unit will also examine major developments in American foreign policy since 1945, with an emphasis on grand strategy, military power and the role which Washington itself has played within that.  Including tuition from Notre Dame staff and Faculty of the Catholic University of America, this unit will provide students with a world class educational opportunity that integrates both class room tuition, extensive field work, oral presentations and meaningful research projects.

This 50 credit point unit may be counted to a History, Politics or Social Justice Major.  It is also available as a general elective, and is open by application to students of all Notre Dame campuses. 


This is a 50 credit point unit and its assessment reflects that.  Students will be required to successfully complete the following assessment pieces.  Dates given are approximate and will be confirmed by 1 January 2011.

  • 5000 word major research paper, 27 May 2011
  • Oral presentation, in Washington
  • 4th July practical assessment, 6 July 2011
  • Final exam or learning journal (TBC), 1 August 2011


Please note that this program is indicative and subject to change.




Orientation, CUA


Morning lectures and tutorials, CUA
Fieldtrip: Secret sights of the Capital


Morning lectures and tutorials, CUA
Fieldtrip: Historic Georgetown




Morning tuition, CUA
Fieltrip: Secret sights of the Capital II


Fieldtrip: Mount Vernon: Slaves and Sacrifice at the home of George Washington


Free Day
Suggested itinerary: soak up the atmosphere of Georgetown, take a walking tour of Old Town, Alexandria, hike the Great Falls Park, visit the world famous Washington Zoo, or explore the C&O trail on a bike


4th of July field work


Practical assignment, CUA


Full day tuition, CUA


Morning lectures and tutorials, CUA
Afternoon field work, Washington


Morning lectures and tutorials, CUA
Afternoon rest day


Free Days
Suggested itinerary: weekend way in New York, Boston, West Virginia or historic Chesapeake Bay


Morning tuition, CUA
Fieldtrip: Supreme Court Justice


Morning tuition, CUA
Fieldtrip: Cold War Space Race: Smithsonian Space Museum


Morning tuition, CUA
Fieldtrip: Power and Politics at the Pentagon




Civil War Battlefields tour, Virginia


Full day tuition, CUA


Morning tuition, CUA
Fieldtrip: Anzus at the Australian Embassy


Course review and completion
1pm finish


AL381 unit fees

Students pay normal tuition fees for a 50 credit point unit.  This is eligible to be put towards your Fee Help loan.


Each student must supply their own airfare.  This gives you the flexibility to travel before or after the study trip as you wish, use frequent flyer points or find the best bargain on any airline.

Travel Costs

The total travel cost is to be confirmed, but will be approximately $3,200 AUD.

This fee includes:

  • All accommodation from 28 June to the morning of 20 July;
  • Tuition at the Catholic University of America;
  • Full access to student services at CUA;
  • Private tours and guided field work;
  • Transport passes in Washington DC;
  • Transport for tours and field trips;
  • Weekend field trip to Virginia, including accommodation and transport;
  • Weekly meals allowance (TBA);
  • Welcome to Washington dinner, Waffle Shop;
  • Group dinner, Virginia;
  • Farewell group dinner, venue TBA;
  • Entrance fees to all sites covered within the program;
  • And more.

What to pay, when

  • $500 non-refundable deposit by 4 December;
  • Half of remaining fees by 14 January 2011;
  • Remainder of fees by 14 March 2011.

Application and Enrolment

Places in this unit are strictly limited and will be offered on a competitive basis.  Such issues as academic performance, course enrolment, university engagement and year of enrolment will be considered when issuing first and second round offers of a place in this unit.

Students should ideally (but are not required to) have completed at least one first year unit in History, Politics or Social Justice.

Applications must be received no later than Monday 18 October 2010 and should be emailed Sandi.Francis@nd.edu.au

Application forms can be downloaded from the top links of this webpage.

Minimum Enrolments

Please note that this unit requires a minimum number of enrolments to proceed.  Airfares or other expenditure for this trip should NOT be booked until the School has provided the go-ahead, which is likely to be after the second instalment of fees is paid in January 2011.

Code of Conduct

All students attending this program will be required to agree to and comply with a Code of Conduct which can be downloaded from the top links of this webpage.

Please note that a fundamental condition of participation in this program is your agreement to abide by all laws of Australia and the United States while travelling.  American law prohibits the possession and consumption of alcohol by all people under the age of 21.