Public Interest Advocacy

Course code LAWS5037Units 10Level 5000Faculty of Business and LawNewcastle Law School

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. 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.

Available in 2015

Callaghan CampusSemester 2
Previously offered in 2014
ObjectivesOn successful completion of this 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, analysis and synthesis and 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, 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.
ContentThe course will consist of supervised participation in the preparation and carriage of public interest cases or projects, the presentation of a seminar and the submission of a research essay or law reform submission.
Replacing Course(s)N/A
Industrial Experience0
Assumed KnowledgeLAWS1001A, LAWS1001B, LAWS1003A, LAWS1003B, LAWS2004A, LAWS2004B, LAWS3004A, LAWS3004B.
Modes of DeliveryInternal Mode
Teaching MethodsExperience Based Learning
Assessment Items
Essays / Written AssignmentsStudents will submit an essay or Law Reform submission directly related to the case or project to which the student has been assigned.
Group/tutorial participation and contributionStudents will receive a participation mark which will be assessed on the basis of the following:
a. Active engagement and willingness to participate in seminar discussion and activities, responses, questions
or other contributions that indicate a comprehension of the relevant material and thoughtful and intelligent consideration of the issues it raises;
b. Responses, questions or other considerations that indicate an awareness of the broader legal and policy issues.
JournalReflective journal
Presentations - Class
Contact HoursSeminar: for 7 hour(s) per Week for 13 weeks
Compulsory Components
Requisite by EnrolmentThis course is only available to students enrolled in the Bachelor of Laws and associated combined degree programs or the Bachelor of Laws (Honours) and associated combined degree programs.
The course is NOT available to students enrolled in the Bachelor of Laws/Diploma of Legal Practice or the Bachelor of Laws (Honours)/Diploma of Legal Practice.
Timetables2015 Course Timetables for LAWS5037