Advancing human understanding

The School of Humanities and Social Science offers a diverse range of teaching and research that contributes to our understanding of global peoples, societies, histories and cultures and helps us to imagine the future.

We take pride in our quality teaching and research to foster positive outcomes for our students and staff.

Our vision is for the University of Newcastle to establish a global reputation for its excellence in the humanities and social sciences.

The Human in Humanities

Professor Catherine Coleborne focuses on the human experience, its meaning and some of life’s bigger questions like ‘What does it mean to be Human?’ and how the Humanities offers informed ways of dealing with contemporary global issues at every level.

Close video
Top 150 ? in the world - Sociology
World Top 200 ? for English Language and Literature
Top 250 ? Top 250 in the world - Linguistics
Top 300 ? in the world - Arts and Humanities
ERA 4 ? above world standard for Historical Research studies

Multidisciplinary clusters

Our School-based clusters allow for staff with interrelated areas of expertise to collaborate and advance their research. This, in turn, makes for a richer student experience.

Learn more about our connected research and study options, as well as the people who work within the clusters.

Healthy Communities and Social Futures

Find out more

Historical, Cultural and Critical Inquiry

Find out more

Screens, Languages, English and Writing

Find out more

Societies, Cultures and Human Services

Find out more

Research

Our research is interdisciplinary, drawing on traditions from the humanities, social sciences and creative fields, along with collaborations with researchers in other Schools and Faculties.

Our Human Experience

The researchers of the School of Humanities and Social Science examine all facets of what it means to be human. This podcast series explores important questions about humanity, society and current events.

Join us for thought-provoking conversations with our humanities and social science scholars who are helping to improve the human experience through their research. Episodes are released on a monthly basis.

Latest episode


The history of madness with Professor Catharine Coleborne

Subscribe Listen to and subscribe to more episodes of Our Human Experience

Latest news

older man in cap standing close to woman with long hair smiling

News • 23 Mar 2021

Bringing unheard voices back into collective memory

Distinguished Professor Larissa Behrendt AO delivered the inaugural John Maynard Aboriginal History Lecture at University House to an on-line and face-to-face audience of over 180, on 17 March 2021 as part of the Purai Global Indigenous History Centre showcase.

Professor Maynard sitting holding a book in front of a cabinet of memorabilia collected as an historian

News • 8 Mar 2021

Reclaiming History: the unconventional legacies of a leading Aboriginal historian

Emeritus Professor John Maynard’s reputation as a trailblazer is well-deserved so it is only fitting that this historian, whose journey began with researching his own family’s history, is honoured in the InauguralJohn Maynard Aboriginal History Lecture.

man iand woman in togas with torso of roman soldier

News • 9 Feb 2021

Academy Excellence: nomination of Purai members to Humanities Academy highlights the importance of global indigenous history

With the election of Purai’s joint Directors, Emeritus Professor John Maynard and Professor Victoria Haskins, to the Australian Academy of the Humanities late last year, the University of Newcastle’s Purai Indigenous Global History Centre now boasts four historians championing the contribution that humanities, arts and culture can make to national life.

View more news

Upcoming events

JTDs pitching

Event • 29 Apr 2021 from 5:00pm - 7:00pm

Join the Dots - Pitching

Hear from founders and business leaders throughout the region as we explore the art of pitching.

Funding Roadmap

Event • 3 May 2021 from 8:00am - 9:00am

Funding Roadmap

Find out first-hand what opportunities are available to bring your new product, process or service through the phases of “explore – experiment – accelerate – scale” right here in the Hunter.

Jennifer Holland

Event • 5 May 2021 from 8:00am - 9:00am

Startup Stories - Jennifer Holland (Throat Scope)

Join us at Startup Stories for an engaging session with one of Australia’s brightest medtech CEO’s and local Newcastle entrepreneur as she shares her insight into building a world-class company and scaling it across the globe.

View more events

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.