The University of Newcastle, Australia
Available in 2018
Course code



10 units


1000 level

Course handbook


Legal system stream examines the nature of the Australian legal system, the constitutional framework and the development of sources of law, including the common law and legislation. The course introduces ethical considerations for the legal profession and develops analytical and interpretative skills. Students develop skills in legal research and in written and oral communication as relevant to the study and practice of law.

Availability2018 Course Timetables

Newcastle City Precinct

  • Semester 1 - 2018

Multi-term sequence

This course is part of a multi-term sequence. Both Part A and Part B must be completed to meet the requirements of the sequence. Part A and Part B must be completed in consecutive terms. Students must complete Part A before completing Part B. Students must complete the sequence within a twelve month period. If students complete Part A but are unable to complete Part B within the timeframe, they must re-enrol in Part A.

Learning outcomes

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

1. Use legal language and terminology, including citations accurately

2. Read and analyse case law effectively

3. Identify legal principles and apply these to diverse scenarios

4. Structure and present a coherent and persuasive argument with confidence using legal data (orally and in writing)

5. Write coherently using legal data for different audiences (academic and non academic)

6. Read and analyse statutes and regulations effectively

7. Reflect critically on one's own learning and the role of legal institutions and actors the legal system

8. Identify ethical issues which arise in practice

9. Understand and observe court etiquette

10. Understand and employ a range of self-management and well-being techniques

11. Orally present and defend arguments in interactive dialogue with the teacher and peers in a style consistent with professional client consultations, mediation, negotiation and court appearances.


Legal System and Method Parts A and B are introductory first year courses which are designed to, and have the objective of, establish a basis and foundation for all other law subjects.The courses have a number of substantive law components which should not be viewed in isolation. Instruction in the methods and skills employed by lawyers are integrated with the substantive law components to provide an introduction to the Australian legal system.The eight parts of the subject are:A. Legal System components

  1. Overview of the Australian Legal System
  2. Common law
  3. Statutory Interpretation
  4. The Australian Constitutional Framework
  5. Legal Institutions and their Regulation

B. Legal Method components

  1. Written communication
  2. Oral communication
  3. Self-management and ethics


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.

Assessment items

Written Assignment: Communication - Reflective Practice

Formal Examination: Open Book Examination: Legal System - Problem Solving and Legal Institutions

Written Assignment: Legal Communication - Client file

Written Assignment: Writing, Referencing and Research Assignment

Participation: Attendance at seminars and workshops *

* This assessment has a compulsory requirement.

Compulsory Requirements

In order to pass this course, each student must complete ALL of the following compulsory requirements:

Course Assessment Requirements:

  • Participation: Attempt / Submission Requirement - Students must attempt/submit this assessment item to pass the course. - Attendance at all classes (seminars and workshops) will be monitored and records maintained by the Course Coordinator; In order to satisfy the “Attendance” requirement, students must be present at a minimum of 80% of scheduled classes as spelled out in the course outline, unless they are able to demonstrate that their absence falls within the Adverse Circumstances policy; Unless this requirement is met, despite marks awarded in other assessment items, the student will receive a zero mark and an FF grade for the course.

Contact hours

Newcastle City Precinct

Computer Lab

Face to Face On Campus 4 hour(s) per Term Full Term starting in week 2


Face to Face On Campus 2 hour(s) per Week for Full Term


Face to Face On Campus 1 hour(s) per Term Full Term