Courses & Units

Legal Theory LAW453

This unit is being phased out, no new enrolments are being taken.



Introduces students to moral debates about what the content of the law ought to be and to some of the major theories of law, such as Natural Law, Positivism and Realism and some of the most influential modern theories, including those of Professor Hart and Austin.The aim is to encourage students to think about the possible justifications for law and for the powers judges exercise. The unit is divided into three modules: (i) the purpose and value of Legal Theory (ii) analysis of theories of law including Natural Law, Positivism and Realism, by examining the types of justification which they give for judicial decisions especially in hard cases (iii) an analysis of critical theories of law and the legal system.


Unit name Legal Theory
Unit code LAW453
Credit points 12.5
College/School College of Arts, Law and Education
Faculty of Law
Discipline Law
Coordinator Mr Martin Clark
Delivered By University of Tasmania
Level Advanced


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Learning Outcomes

  • describe, understand and critically reflect upon the key debates about the formation and operation of law
  • describe, understand and critically reflect upon major theories of law arising from the western tradition of jurisprudence
  • critically apply theories of law in analysing legal policy issues in the modern context
  • prepare and present cogent arguments regarding the theoretical basis of law in writing
Field of Education Commencing Student Contribution 1 Grandfathered Student Contribution 1 Approved Pathway Course Student Contribution 2 Domestic Full Fee
090900 $1,812.00 $1,419.00 not applicable $1,812.50

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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LAW305 - Corporations Law 1) AND ((LAW351 - Criminal Law A AND LAW352 - Criminal Law B and Criminal Procedure AND LAW353 - Equity and Trusts AND LAW354 - Property Law) OR (LAW324 - Property Law B AND LAW306 - Constitutional Law 2 AND LAW307 - Trusts AND LAW323 - Property Law A)


AssessmentExamination - invigilated (centrally) (30%)|Abstract (30%)|Examination - invigilated (centrally) (40%)
TimetableView the lecture timetable | View the full unit timetable



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