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2013 LAW253 Foundations of Public Law

Unit Level:

Available as a Student Elective: Yes

View timetable of lectures only for this unit.  View ALL timetable events for this unit.


Compulsory core unit for students in new Law degrees, commencing in 2013, with course codes: 63I, 63J, 63K, 63L, 63M, 63N, 63O and 63P.

From 2013, students in courses 63A, 63C, 63D, 63E, 63F, 63G, 63H, and all L3-coded degrees, who have not passed LAW205 must substitute LAW253.


Unit Sem 1 Sem 2 Full Yr Spring Summer Winter
LAW253 H

Key Semester Dates
Semester Campus Attendance Note Start Date Census Date Final WW Date* End Date
Sem 1 H On Campus 25-FEB-2013 23-MAR-2013 15-APR-2013 31-MAY-2013

* The Final WW Date is the final date from which you can withdraw from the unit without academic penalty, however you will still incur a financial liability (see Withdrawal dates explained for more information).

About Census Dates


The unit aims to introduce students to the study of Public Law and to introduce major themes and ideas which are relevant to both Constitutional Law and Administrative Law. Major themes running through the course will be the use of the law to control the exercise of government power and methods, legal and other, used to ensure governments are accountable for the exercise of power. The course will be divided into 4 related modules:

Module 1. Introduction to the "Ausminster system"

- History

- Sources - Political and legal theory; Constitutional documents, legislation; International Law

- Conventions

- Separation of powers / rule of law etc

- Responsible Government

- Sovereignty- popular and indigenous

- The federal system (flows into module 2)

Module 2. The Parliament and the people

- State Parliaments

- Commonwealth Parliament - interpretation and characterisation

- Delegation of legislative power (flowing into module 3)

Module 3. Executive Power

- Role / functions

- Prerogatives

- Control over legislative branch? (parties/whips / cabinet)

- Limitations on executive power (flows into module 4)

- The Administrative State - Administrative Law and Administrative Systems

Module 4 Scrutiny of public institutions

- Executive review systems (ICACs / Integrity commissions / FOI)

- Parliamentary review (scrutiny committees / legislative committees)

- Judicial review

- Protecting the judicial branch from interference

- How the judicial branch interprets public law (flows into Constitutional Law and Administrative Law.)

WEIGHT: 12.5%

ASSESSMENT: Exam 60%; assignment 25%, tutorial participation 15%

TEACHING PATTERN: 3 lectures and one tutorial per week.

Note: Class attendance may still be required

   Web supported - H
Online access to some part of this unit online is optional
About Flexible Study Options

Prereq LAW121 and LAW122 and completion of first year in another degree, or a bachelor degree

Hobart Co-op Bookshop Website - Semester (Sem 1)

STAFF: Brendan Gogarty

View fees for this unit


Units are offered in attending mode unless otherwise indicated (that is attendance is required at the campus identified). A unit identified as offered by distance, that is there is no requirement for attendance, is identified with a nominal enrolment campus. A unit offered to both attending students and by distance from the same campus is identified as having both modes of study.

Campus - H Hobart, L Launceston, W Burnie. Study Centre - V Sydney, R Rozelle, P Beauty Point. Distance units may also have a campus identifier of I Isolated, N Interstate, O Overseas. Units delivered in Transnational Education (TNE) Programs have a campus identifier of A Hangzhou, F Fuzhou, G Shanghai, K KDU Malaysia, Q Kuwait or Y Hong Kong.

Special approval is required for enrolment into TNE Program units - campuses A, F, G, K, Q and Y click here for more information.

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