• Offered by Law School
  • ANU College ANU College of Law
  • Classification Advanced
  • Course subject Laws
  • Areas of interest Law
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Daniel Stewart
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Offered in Autumn Session 2014
    See Future Offerings

Principal topics covered in the course include:

  • what is legislation?
  • the role of the legislative drafter
  • legislative drafting techniques
  • the role of parliamentary scrutiny committees
  • legislative interpretation in the context of legislative drafting
  • delegated legislation and Commonwealth legislative instruments.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

If you successfully complete this course, you should be able to:
  1. prepare a basic drafting plan and outline for a legislative proposal;
  2. appreciate the role of parliamentary scrutiny committees, and how the work of these committees influences legislative drafting;
  3. exercise fundamental legislative drafting skills;
  4. apply the criteria in the Legislative Instruments Act 2003 (Cth) and the common law to determine whether an instrument is of a legislative character; alternatively, discuss in an informed way the concept of legislative character in the law relating to legislative instruments;
  5. identify drafting techniques by which a drafter seeks to influence interpretation by the courts;
  6. appreciate the way in which the law of interpretation influences the preparation of legislation, and the way in which provisions are drafted to influence that law;
  7. diagnose sources of doubt as to the meaning of legislation;
  8. identify the interpretative factors which were considered by a court in a particular case;
  9. explain how different judicial opinions were arrived at as to the meaning of legislative provisions in doubt in a case;
  10. appreciate how interpretation Acts and other Acts of general application affect the work of the legislative drafter.

Other Information

This course offers students a rare opportunity to gain an insight into a specialised area of government law.  The course is taught by an experienced legislative drafter and an academic expert in statutory interpretation and delegated legislation.

The challenge of legislative drafting is to express complex concepts in clear language, and to embody them in effective legal rules.  Students will be introduced to foundation skills in drafting legislation, and will study statutory interpretation and subordinate legislation from the point of view of the legislative drafting process.

It is a practical course.  It will be taught intensively by a combination of lectures and tutorials.

Indicative Assessment

Students must rely on the approved Means of Assessment which will be posted to the Wattle course site approximately 4 weeks prior to the commencement of the course.

Assessment is likely to consist of:

  1. Minor drafting exercise  (1500 wds, 10%)
  2. Drafting problem(s) (3000 wds, 50%)
  3. Case analysis (2500 words, 30%)
  4. Essay or Advice  (1500 words, 10%)

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


26-28 Contact Hours (Intensive Delivery over 4 days) plus private study time

2014 Intensive course dates: 9-10 & 23-24 May

Click here for current LLM Masters Program timetable.

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must be studying in one of the following programs; Master of Laws (7300) Master of Laws (Legal Practice) (7312) Master of Diplomacy/Master of Laws (7883) Graduate Diploma in Law (6300) or you must be studying one of the following programs Master of Legal Studies (7305) Master of Environmental Law (7309) Master of Government and Commercial Law (7313) Master of International Law (7310) Master of Law, Governance and Development (7317) Master of International Security Law (7318) Master of Diplomacy/Master of International Law (7893) Graduate Diploma in Law, Governance and Development (6317) Graduate Diploma in Legal Studies (6305) Graduate Diploma in Environmental Law (6309) Graduate Diploma in Government and Commercial Law (6313) Graduate Diploma in International Law (6310) Graduate Diploma in International Security Law (6318) Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice (6303) Graduate Certificate in Environmental Law (6351) AND have completed LAWS8015.

Prescribed Texts

Cook C et al, Laying Down the Law 8th ed.
Seidman, Ann, et al Legislative Drafting for Democratic Social Change: A Manual for Drafters, Kluwer

Preliminary Reading

A reading brick will be available for purchase.

A Course Outline will be posted to the Wattle course site approximately 6 weeks prior to the commencement of the course.

Assumed Knowledge

 Students should have one or more of:

  • a legal qualification
  • knowledge of law or legislation acquired in the course of non-legal studies
  • professional experience working with legislation (whether as a lawyer or otherwise)
Non-lawyers must have completed LAWS8015 Fundamentals of Government and Commercial Law.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Students continuing in their current program of study will have their tuition fees indexed annually from the year in which you commenced your program. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee Description
1994-2003 $1626
2014 $2808
2013 $2808
2012 $2808
2011 $2778
2010 $2718
2009 $2670
2008 $2670
2007 $2670
2006 $2646
2005 $2298
2004 $1926
International fee paying students
Year Fee
1994-2003 $2916
2014 $3762
2013 $3756
2012 $3756
2011 $3756
2010 $3750
2009 $3426
2008 $3426
2007 $3426
2006 $3426
2005 $3234
2004 $2916
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Autumn Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
4680 09 May 2014 09 May 2014 23 May 2014 05 Jul 2014 In Person N/A

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