Courses & Units

Biotechnology and the Law LAW219


Biotechnology and the law develops an understanding of the legal and ethical regulation of biotechnology research, commercialisation and practice. In includes consideration of both medical and agricultural biotechnology. The unit will be of interest to law and science students, and anyone else with an interest in understanding more about how the regulation of this technology shapes our lives and our environment. The unit aims to: raise awareness of major areas of the substantive law and other forms of regulation that affect biotechnology for public and private sector researchers, industry, government and individuals; encourage critical thinking about the law relating to biotechnology; and develop the ability to solve legal problems involving biotechnology. The unit covers a range of topics, focusing on the major areas for regulatory intervention, including: cloning and stem cell technology; personalised medicine; genetic modification and non-humans; bio-prospecting, biodiversity and biopiracy; farmer’s rights and traditional knowledge; patenting of biotechnology inventions and transfer of technology. Both national and international perspectives are considered.


Unit name Biotechnology and the Law
Unit code LAW219
Credit points 12.5
College/School College of Arts, Law and Education
Faculty of Law
Discipline Law
Coordinator Doctor Lisa Eckstein
Available as an elective? Yes
Delivered By University of Tasmania


This unit is currently unavailable.


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Learning Outcomes

  • Describe and explain the core features of aspects of the legal and ethical environment relating to biotechnology
  • Identify and research biotechnology law issues and apply of knowledge of legal issues to factual scenarios relating to biotechnology
  • Communicate effectively, orally and in writing, communication skills (both written and oral)
  • Work collaboratively with colleagues

Fee Information

Field of Education Commencing Student Contribution 1,3 Grandfathered Student Contribution 1,3 Approved Pathway Course Student Contribution 2,3 Domestic Full Fee 4
not applicable

1 Please refer to more information on student contribution amounts.
2 Please refer to more information on eligibility and Approved Pathway courses.
3 Please refer to more information on eligibility for HECS-HELP.
4 Please refer to more information on eligibility for FEE-HELP.

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50 credit points of Introductory units or (LAW121 and LAW122) - to do this unit it is recommended that you have completed LAW107

Mutual Exclusions

You cannot enrol in this unit as well as the following:



AssessmentEssay (40%)|Assignment (60%)
TimetableView the lecture timetable | View the full unit timetable



Required readings will be listed in the unit outline prior to the start of classes.

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