The University of Newcastle, Australia

Inherent requirements for Law Programs

This document is based on the Inherent Requirements for the Bachelor of Laws (Graduate Entry) at the University of Western Sydney.

These inherent requirements apply to the following Law Programs at the University of Newcastle:

  • Bachelor of Laws (Hons) Combined
  • Bachelor of Laws (Hons)/DipLegPrac
  • Juris Doctor

Newcastle Law School supports the University of Newcastle’s commitment to equity and access for all students, including students with disabilities. The Newcastle Law School strongly supports the right for all students to seek an education in Law Programs and is therefore committed to making reasonable adjustments to teaching and learning, assessment, placements and other activities to accommodate the disabilities of law students so that they are able to participate in their program in an inclusive fashion.

The study of law in New South Wales is governed by the requirements of the Legal Profession Uniform Admission Rules 2015 (NSW). Further, the courses within the Law Programs have learning outcomes which state the academic content and knowledge requirements that a student must demonstrate in order to pass the course. The learning outcomes for each LLB(Hons) and JD course are described in the course outline for that course.

The inherent requirement statement for the Law Program applies both to admissions to the law programs and to progression as a student within each program. The statement provided below has been developed to support aspiring law students and current students in the Law Programs to make informed decisions about the suitability of a Law Program to their circumstances.

How to read the inherent requirements statements:

If you are intending to enrol in a Law Program at the Newcastle Law School, you should look at the Inherent Requirement statement and think about whether you may experience challenges in meeting these requirements. If you think you may experience challenges related to your disability, chronic health condition for any other reason, you should discuss your concerns with the staff at the Disability Support unit, the Program Convenor of your Law Program or the School’s Director of Teaching and Learning. These staff can work collaboratively with you to determine how reasonable adjustments might be made to assist you in meeting the Inherent Requirements of the Law Program. In a case where reasonable adjustments would not permit you to meet the Inherent Requirements of the Law Program, referrals can be provided to campus support services for discussions about other study options.

Each inherent requirement is made up of the following five levels:

  • Level 1 - introduction to the inherent requirement.
  • Level 2 - description of what the inherent requirement is.
  • Level 3 - explanation of why this is an inherent requirement of the program.
  • Level 4 - the nature of any adjustments that may be made to allow you to meet the inherent requirement.
  • Level 5 - examples of things you must be able to do to show you've met the inherent requirement.

The domains applicable to all courses in the Law Programs are:

  1. Demonstration of minimum knowledge levels
  2. Ethical Behaviour
  3. Behavioural Stability
  4. Legal
  5. Communication (verbal; non-verbal; written)
  6. Cognition (knowledge and cognitive skills; listening and comprehension skills; numeracy)
  7. Sustainable Performance

Inherent Requirement statements:


1. Demonstration of minimum knowledge levels

Introduction

Each Law course has learning outcomes which state the academic content and knowledge requirements that a student must acquire in order to pass the unit.

Description

The study of law in New South Wales is governed by the requirements of the Legal Profession Uniform Admission Rules 2015 (NSW). These rules require a minimum of the equivalent three years full time academic study which includes, but is not limited to, specified knowledge areas that must be taught as part of the curriculum.

Justification

The Law Programs offered by the School of Law are accredited law degrees that enable a student to apply to be admitted to legal practice. Accreditation is dependent upon annual certification by the Dean that there is compliance with the requirements of the Legal Profession Uniform Admission Rules 2015 (NSW).

Adjustments

Must not compromise the knowledge requirements of the unit so that a student must be able to demonstrate that they possess the requisite knowledge and have achieved the required learning outcomes that demonstrate the student's own knowledge.

Exemplars

Undertaking a range of assessment tasks such as exams, written assignments, presentations and practical applications that demonstrate his or her own knowledge of the required content. The student must demonstrate his or her knowledge by way of assessment tasks that make reasonable allowance for any disability, provided such allowance does not compromise knowledge requirements and learning outcomes for the unit.

Completion of a written examination of 2 or 3 hours duration under exam conditions, with appropriate adjustments where needed, that do not compromise the integrity of the examination as a demonstration of the student's own knowledge.

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2. Ethical Behaviour

Introduction

Law is a profession governed by competency standards, rules and codes of ethics, professional conduct and professional boundaries where Lawyers are both accountable and responsible for ensuring professional behaviour in all contexts.

Description

Student demonstrates knowledge of, engages in and understands the requirements of ethical behaviour in practice.

Justification

Compliance with the codes, guidelines and policies facilitates safe, competent interactions and relationships for students and/or the people they engage with. This ensures the physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual wellbeing of the individual is not placed at risk.

Adjustments

Must not compromise codes of conduct or result in unethical behaviour.

Exemplars

Complying with academic and non-academic misconduct policies.

Demonstrating appropriate behaviour with confidential information in classroom, clinical and placement settings.

Demonstrating compliance with professional conduct rules, rules of natural justice, honesty, courtroom and professional etiquette.

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3. Behavioural Stability

Introduction

Behavioural stability is required to function and adapt effectively and sensitively in a demanding professional role.

Description

Student demonstrates the behavioural stability required to work constructively in a diverse and changing academic, clinical and professional environment.

Justification

Behavioural stability is required to work individually and in teams in changing, challenging and unpredictable environments. Law students will be exposed to emotionally challenging and intellectually demanding situations and human suffering and will be required to have the necessary behavioural and intellectual stability to manage these events objectively and professionally.

Adjustments

Must support stable, effective and professional behaviour in academic, clinical and professional settings.

Exemplars

Being perceptive, receptive and professional in responding appropriately to constructive feedback.

Coping with own emotions and behaviour effectively in the classroom and when dealing with individuals in the clinical and placement setting.

Behaviour and social attributes that enable a student to participate in a complex learning environment.

Working effectively both as individuals and as members of teams.

Operating ethically and responsibly within any contextual framework.

Recognising personal limitations, as well as when and where to seek assistance or professional advice and support.

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4. Legal

Introduction

Legal practice is mandated by specific legislation, rules, and codes of conduct to enable the professional delivery of legal service.

Description

Student demonstrates knowledge and compliance with Australian Law, professional rules, codes of conduct and regulations and scope of practice.

Justification

Knowledge, understanding, and compliance with legislative and regulatory requirements are necessary prerequisites to clinical placements, courtroom settings, mediations and other negotiations in order to manage the risk of harm to self and others, as well as achieving learning outcomes.

Compliance with these professional regulations and the Australian Law ensures that students are professional, responsible and accountable for their practice.

Adjustments

Must be consistent with legislation, rules, codes of practice and regulatory requirements.

Exemplars

Complying with relevant child protection and safety legislation.

Complying with rules of evidence.

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5a. Communication (Verbal)

Introduction

Effective and efficient verbal communication, in English, is an essential requirement to provide safe, effective, professional advice and practice in Australia.

Description

Student demonstrates:

  • The ability to understand and respond to verbal communication accurately, appropriately and in a timely manner.
  • The ability to provide clear instructions in the context of the situation.
  • The ability to provide timely and clear feedback and reporting.

Justification

Communication may be restricted to verbal because of physical limitations of the individual (e.g. injury, disease or congenital conditions).

Speed and interactivity of communication may be critical for effectiveness of advice.

Timely, accurate and effective delivery of instructions is critical to ind