Postgraduate Study and Research
The Faculty of Law offers Masters of Law (LLM) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) as research higher degrees. Masters study usually takes between one and two years to complete; PhD study usually takes between two and four years to complete.
There is now a postgraduate course offered which is partially coursework based: Master of Environmental Governance (Oceans, Polar and Climate) as well an entirely coursework based course: Graduate Certificate of Workplace Conflict Management.
The Faculty of Law encourages postgraduate students to consider themselves full members of the Faculty, while receiving excellent guidance from the Faculty’s academic staff, a pleasant and flexible working space, and outstanding IT support.
Applicants should apply after finding a potential supervisor and discussing and agreeing on their proposed topic.
Applicants will be considered for the Masters by research who have:
- an honour's degree with at least second class lower standard; or
- a masters degree with a minimum research component (e.g., a thesis); or
- substantial demonstrated sector experience, previous higher education studies and professional experience and/or published research work.
Applicants will be considered for the PhD by research who have:
- A Bachelor's degree with upper second class Honours or better from a recognised tertiary institution.
- A research Masters degree with at least two-thirds of the degree comprising a thesis; or
- A coursework Masters degree or graduate diploma which includes a research project or thesis of 10,000 to 20,000 words (must equate to a minimum 25% research component of the entire degree); or
- A qualification at a level from another tertiary institution considered equivalent by the Dean.
To apply, see the Graduate Research site: http://www.utas.edu.au/research/graduate-research/future-candidates/how-to-apply for application information.
PhD by Research
Research is usually conducted over 3-4 years of full time equivalent study and results in a thesis of 80,000 – 100,000 words, written in English and independently examined by a minimum of two examiners external to and independent of the University.
Masters by Research
Research is usually conducted over 1-2 years of full time equivalent study and results in a thesis of 50,000 – 60,000 words, written in English and independently examined by a minimum of two examiners external to and independent of the University.
Fees for domestic students are based on individual unit selections. Please refer to the fees section of each unit description to work out an indicative annual cost.
International students should refer to the International Students course fees page to get an indicative course cost.
Currently, there are no fees for domestic candidates as they are provided with a place in the Commonwealth Research Training Scheme. Fees will be applicable if a candidate extends over the maximum degree period.
Fees for international candidates are here
For information on scholarships available to Law Postgradute students, visit the Law Scholarships page. For information on other scholarships available at the University of Tasmania, please visit the scholarships website.
Please click on names to link to individual staff profiles for details of specific areas of research expertise and capacity for postgraduate supervision and supervision for LAW679 Supervised Research Paper within each of these broad research topics.
The Faculty offers the following postgraduate research courses (by thesis):
Master of Laws (LLM)
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
At present it does not offer postgraduate coursework degrees.
- Administrative Law: Associate Professor Rick Snell
- Anti-corruption Law: Associate Professor Rick Snell
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Law: Professor Benjamin J. Richardson
- Biotechnology and the Law: Professor Don Chalmers, Professor Dianne Nicol, Dr Lisa Eckstein
- Civil Procedure: Dr Olivia Rundle
- Climate Change Law: Professor Jan McDonald, Professor Benjamin J. Richardson, Dr Peter Lawrence and Dr Jeff McGee
- Comparative Administrative Law: Rick Snell
- Competition Law: Lynden Griggs and Dr Jane Nielsen
- Constitutional Law: Dr Brendan Gogarty and Ms Anja Hilkemeijer
- Consumer Law: Lynden Griggs
- Contract Law: Professor Don Chalmers
- Corporate and Social Responsibility: Professor Benjamin J. Richardson
- Corporations Law: Lynden Griggs
- Criminal Law: Dr Jeremy Prichard and Dr Helen Cockburn
- Criminology and Criminal Justice: Dr Terese Henning, Dr Jeremy Prichard, Dr Helen Cockburn and Dr Caroline Spiranovic
- Dispute Resolution: Dr Olivia Rundle
- Fisheries Law: Dr Gail Lugten
- Environmental & Planning Law: Professor Jan McDonald, Professor Benjamin J. Richardson, Dr Peter Lawrence and Dr Jeff McGee
- Ethical Legal and Social Implications of Human Genetics: Professor Don Chalmers, Professor Dianne Nicol, Professor Margaret Otlowski, Dr Lisa Eckstein
- Equity and Trusts: Professor Gino Dal Pont
- Evidence and Criminal Procedure: Ms Terese Henning
- Family Law: Professor Margaret Otlowski and Dr Olivia Rundle
- Freedom of Information Law: Rick Snell
- Global Health Law: Dr Lisa Eckstein
- Human Rights Law: Ms Terese Henning and Dr Anja Hilkemeijer
- Industrial Relations Law: Dr Peter Patmore
- Technology and the Law: Dr Brendan Gogarty
- Intellectual Property Law: Professor Dianne Nicol and Dr Jane Nielsen
- International Humanitarian Law: Tim McCormack
- International Law:Dr Peter Lawrence and Dr Gail Lugten
- International Trade Law: Dr Peter Lawrence, Jan McDonald and Ms Anja Hilkemeijer
- Law and Ethics of Health Care/Medical Law: Professor Don Chalmers, Professor Margaret Otlowski and Dr Lisa Eckstein
- Land Law: Lynden Griggs
- Law of Charities: Professor Gino dal Pont
- Law of the Sea: Dr Gail Lugten
- Legal Philosophy: Dr Peter Lawrence
- Media Law: Professor Dianne Nicol, Associate Professor Rick Snell and Dr Brendan Gogarty
- Ombudsman: Associate Professor Rick Snell
- Professional Responsibility: Professor Gino dal Pont
- Public Interest Disclosure (Whistleblowing): Associate Professor Rick Snell
- Regulatory Theory and Practice: Professor Di Nicol and Dr Brendan Gogarty
- Succession Law: Professor Dino Dal Pont
- Sports Law: Mr Lynden Griggs
- Young People and the Law: Dr Jeremy Prichard
The Faculty often recruits postgraduate students as tutors to assist with the undergraduate teaching program. Students interested in participating should make an appointment with, or write to, the Dean, Professor Margaret Otlowski: Margaret.Otlowski@utas.edu.au.
Postgraduate students are also sometimes recruited as research assistants on staff research projects or other research activities within the Law Faculty. Students wishing to register their interest for such research assistance should contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Postgraduate students are encouraged to publish their material under the guidance of their supervisors. Currently DEETYA distributes a proportion of funding to the University based on research publications (and the University distributes these funds to departments based on the same criteria).
Funds are distributed based on the production of:
- Scholarly Books;
- Chapters in Scholarly Books;
- Refereed Journal Articles; and
- Published Refereed Conference Proceedings.
Although these funds will not flow directly to the postgraduate they will offset some of the costs of the Faculty of Law's Postgraduate Program and the publications will contribute to the Law Faculty's overall research performance.
Board of Graduate Research
The Board of Graduate Research is responsible for the programs of study and research leading to a research higher degree. The functions of the Board are to advise the Academic Senate on matters relating to graduate research, and to manage graduate research candidature. For example, the Board approves admission to candidature, appoints supervisors, monitors the progress of all candidates, appoints examiners, and determines whether or not candidates should be awarded degrees.
Graduate Research Office
The University’s Graduate Research Office coordinates and manages the administration of graduate research candidature and scholarships, including general enquiries, applications, admission, enrolment, ongoing candidature and examinations. Candidates should contact the Office for help and advice on any matters relating to their candidature or scholarship. Each year members of the Office coordinate the annual review of progress of candidates and the bi-annual survey. More information
International Students' Office
The International Students' Office is the channel for admission arrangements for international students and provides various services to students during their candidature.
Postgraduate Course and Unit Handbook
The Postgraduate Course and Unit Handbook published annually by the University provides useful information about the University and contains contact details for people who can assist on most matters.
- The University's Policies and Procedures in relation to Graduate Research
- The University's Code of Conduct in Research
Pursuant to the National Health and Medical Council National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Research Involving Humans, the University requires strict guidelines be followed for research involving humans (including surveys). Ethical guidelines and forms can be accessed on the Human Research Ethics web page.
Further information about postgraduate study at the University of Tasmania can be accessed at the Graduate Reseach website including details about postgraduate services. Prospective postgraduate students might also like to read more information in the postgraduate handbook.
Prospective students can contact the Graduate Research Office or phone + 61 3 6226 8559; fax + 61 3 6226 7497.
Please contact Graduate Research Coordinator Dr Olivia Rundle should you require any further information:
- Phone: + 61 3 6226 2846
- Email: Olivia.Rundle@utas.edu.au
- Unit Description
- Intended Learning Outcomes
- Entrance Requirements
- Submission Date
- The Form of the Paper
- UTLR and other Law Reviews
- Hints for Students
Allows students to undertake a sustained piece of research under the supervision of a member of staff. There are no classes as such; teaching takes place through the interaction between the student and staff member. Students select their own research topics in consultation with, and subject to the approval of, a staff member. The research may be on any topic subject to approval and the availability of staff supervision. The word limit is 10,000. Under the new degree rules students must complete LAW679 Supervised Research Paper in order to be eligible to graduate with first class honours (This rule applies to students who first enrolled in Contracts/Torts from 2007 onwards). For more information, see the Unit Outline.
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Students wishing to enrol in this unit must first consult the Unit Coordinator,Dr Peter Lawrence. Students must have a distinction grade average in their law units (GPA of 6) to be eligible for enrolment in this unit. Details of potential research areas and staff supervisors can be found here. Any member of academic staff may agree to supervise a student's paper. The Supervisor is to be determined in consultation with the relevant staff member and Unit Coordinator.
- Offered: Hobart. May be taken in Semester 1 OR Semester 2
- Unit weight: 12.5%
- Learn how to define a research topic suitable in breadth, depth and novelty for a major semester long research project comprising one quarter of a full time student load;
- Deepen their research skills by learning how to use a range of research techniques and resources;
- Improve their writing skills by structuring and contrasting their arguments and presenting their work in a substantial scholarly paper of around 10,000 words; and
- Work towards a quality of research and presentation that is suitable for publication in a peer reviewed academic journal, report or submission.
- Topic development Back to Top
- Applicants must be in the final two years of the LLB degree.
- Applicants (other than Master of Laws preliminary candidates - see below) must have a Distinction grade average in their law units to be eligible for enrolment in this unit.
- Applicants must have the consent of the Faculty of Law Sub-Dean/Honours Co-Ordinator and of the supervisor before enrolling.
- Applicants must have a project which has been certified by the supervisor as a suitable topic for a research project before enrolling.
- Before being allowed to commence a project, applicants will complete a tutorial on the use of paper and electronic aids to research to the satisfaction of the Law Librarians.
- Completion of LAW679 Supervised Research Paper is required to be eligible to graduate with first class honours.
- LLB pass graduates may also undertake LAW679Supervised Research Paper as a Master of Laws preliminary if required before enrolment as a Master of Laws candidate.
The paper must ordinarily be submitted for assessment no later than the final teaching day in the Faculty of Law (see University Academic Dates) in the relevant semester in which the candidate is enrolled for LAW679 Supervised Research Paper. Variations to this submission date must be approved in writing by both the supervisor and the Faculty of Law Sub-Dean/Honours Coordinator.
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The project will be assessed by an examiner other than the supervisor and chosen by the Faculty of Law Sub-Dean/Honours Coordinator in consultation with and upon the advice of the supervisor.
If the subject is being undertaken to comply with the requirements for first class honours or as a Master of laws preliminary enrolment, the paper must be assessed by an examiner from outside the Faculty of Law, University of Tasmania.
In all other cases, the examiner may be a member of the Faculty of Law, University of Tasmania, or from outside, at the discretion of the Faculty of Law Sub Dean/Honours Coordinator.
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The following criteria will be taken into account in assessing Supervised Research Papers:
- The originality and importance of the topic
- The thoroughness of the research - is the student aware of the available literature?
- Does the student understand the literature and the issues raised by the topic?
- The argument - Is it original? Is it comprehensive or are there issues which should have been dealt with but which are not? Are irrelevant issues raised?
- Is it well written with accurate spelling, grammar and proof reading?
- Acknowledgements: are all references footnoted and all quotes and borrowings from the work of others properly acknowledged?
The Form of the Paper
The candidate shall submit two copies of the paper which must be word processed (with a minimum test size of 11pt and minimum footnote size of 8pt) and double spaced and single sided, paginated pages. All references shall be properly footnoted in accordance with the requirements of Australian Guide to Legal Citation, 2nd Edition, Melbourne: Melbourne University Law Review Association Inc, 2002. The paper must also contain a contents page (with pagination of contents), bibliography and table of cases.
The paper is to include a cover page containing the full name and student number of the candidate, the topic of the paper, the semester and year of submission and the words "Submitted for assessment in the unit LAW 679 Supervised Research Paper in the Faculty of Law, University of Tasmania.
The first page after the cover page should comprise a certificate with the candidate's full name, signed and dated by the candidate certifying that the paper is all the candidate's own work and that no work in the paper has been submitted for assessment in another subject.
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Final-year students expecting to obtain First Class honours, and LLB pass graduates enrolled in LAW679 Supervised Research Paper as a Master of Laws preliminary, will have their paper examined externally ie by an examiner outside of the Faculty of Law, University of Tasmania.
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University of Tasmania Law Review and other Law Reviews
Candidates who successfully complete LAW679 Supervised Research Paper should discuss with their supervisor the possibility of submitting a revised version of the paper to the University of Tasmania Law Review or other suitable refereed academic journal to be considered for publication.
Submission of a revised version of the paper for publication is strongly encouraged and if accepted for publication by a journal, will add to a candidate's curriculum vitae. Such publication is also of assistance if a candidate later decides to apply for higher degree study and scholarships.
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- Define the scope of the project in writing as early as possible and gain the approval of your supervisor for that proposal. The outline should contain the thesis to be defended, the arguments to be considered and the research to be undertaken. It may be necessary to amend the outline later in the light of work done, but it is necessary to do this in the beginning to give direction to the work. Define the topic narrowly as it is better to do a thorough job on a narrow topic than a poor job on a broad topic. It is also easier to organise a narrow topic so as to work out exactly what work needs to be done.
- Conduct a thorough literature search through electronic and paper sources so that you know the amount of work which has been done in the area. Depending on the amount of literature there is, you may have to expand or contract your topic.
- Agree on a timetable with your supervisor. This ought to set goals for the completion of parts of the project. Stick to it.
- Have regular meetings with your supervisor. Arrange a time for these meetings at the beginning of the semester, e.g. a set time once per fortnight.
The Master of Environmental Governance (Oceans, Polar and Climate) is a new degree that offers a sophisticated, interdisciplinary and practical approach to understanding how global spaces and areas of common environmental concern are managed through law, public policy and other governance approaches. A unique feature of the program of study is the combination of individually supervised, in-depth research, a work experience internship, and classroom-based learning. Each student completes a major supervised research paper (25% of the program), a one month work experience placement with a government or non-government organisation (25% of the program) and four traditional units that are offered through online or face-to-face learning. The core unit, Global Environmental Governance, is taught in an intensive format over one week.
Some background information
We've all experienced a workplace conflict. But how many of us can honestly say we can confidently resolve one? Workplace conflict related stress is estimated to cost the Australian economy $14.81 billion a year (Medibank Private 2008). Most employees deal with conflict in the workplace regularly. Managers typically spend around 5 hours per week managing conflict between staff but typically don't feel highly skilled to do so. The good news is, with the right management, workplace conflict can often be resolved before serious damage is done to morale and productivity. Effective workplace conflict management can also lead to improvements in these areas, and greater organisational profits and success.
Dr Samantha Hardy and Dr Olivia Rundle have developed a new Graduate Certificate in Workplace Conflict Management, the only course of its kind in Australia. These two "pracademics" (academics who actively practice in the field) know only too well how high the costs of workplace conflict can be. "As dispute resolution specialists and active mediators, coaches and facilitators, Olivia and I saw the need for a serious up-skilling of those in management roles in particular," said Samantha. "A common theme is that conflict is left to go on far too long, when it could have been dealt with much earlier. By avoiding the problem, or hoping it will go away on its own, it becomes expensive and sometimes almost impossible to fix."
Olivia and Samantha both have PhDs in conflict resolution and years of practical experience supporting people to manage and resolve conflict. They have also recruited other expert practitioners in the field to contribute to the course content. The course is highly engaging, with video interviews, online discussions and activities, real life simulations and practical assessment tasks. "We wanted to give people knowledge and skills that they could take back to their workplaces and apply immediately with confidence," said Samantha.
The Graduate Certificate in Workplace Conflict Management has been designed for people working full time. The course can be taken one subject at a time and completed in one year. Most of the study is online, with two four-day skills workshops towards the end of the course.
"It is an ideal qualification for anyone who manages staff or operates as a consultant. In reality, almost all job descriptions ask for conflict management skills these days, so this qualification will be a valuable string to anyone's bow."
This Graduate Certificate is designed to provide a practical training program for people who manage people, in managing the conflict that inevitably arises between individuals in the workplace. It is open to graduates from a range of disciplines including law, management, human resources, marketing, and administration. It will also provide valuable training for a range of professional roles including staff within the public service, social workers, police, health professionals, teachers and engineers. This course is suitable for those in management roles, operating small or large businesses or in any collaborative / team environment.