Public Interest Advocacy

Course code LAWS5037
Available in 2017
2017 Course Timetables


This course draws upon academic and clinical knowledge, skills, experience and application to render a practical and effective contribution to public interest advocacy and justice. Students are engaged in the supervised preparation and carriage of particular public interest cases or projects such as cases involving possible miscarriages of justice, human rights and assisting persons seeking asylum protection. Students may also be engaged in `street law' projects undertaken to inform the community as to the means by which they can access and seek justice. From engagement in public interest advocacy students will learn about the law's techniques, methods and limits in doing justice.



  • Semester 1 - 2017

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of legal and public interest advocacy processes and methods;

2. Critically review legal processes arrived at through the study, experience of and reflection upon public interest cases and projects.

3. Critically evaluate the uses and limitations of legal process available to individuals and groups seeking to achieve individual and social justice.

4. Demonstrate the development of lawyering skills through participation in public interest cases, law reform submissions and projects. Development of skills in analysis and synthesis problem solving, fact investigation, communication, negotiation, media strategies, litigation and alternative dispute resolution, case management and the resolution of ethical dilemmas.

5. Demonstrate the development of specific legal research and writing skills in the context of public interest advocacy.

6. Identify and critically analyse the wider issues in legal practice including the importance of pro bono contributions by the legal profession, acting as an advocate for the just rule of law, explore the barriers that some people face in accessing justice and the legal system and respond to demands for reform in an analytical and public spirited fashion.


This course is only available to students enrolled in the Bachelor of Laws and associated combined degree programs or Bachelor of Laws (Honours) and associated combined degree programs.

Assumed Knowledge

LAWS1001A, LAWS1001B, LAWS1003A, LAWS1003B, LAWS2004A, LAWS2004B, LAWS3004A, LAWS3004B.

Assessment Items

Participation: Seminar participation

Online Learning Activity: Blog

Presentation: Seminar presentation

Written Assignment: Research assignment/ case submission