• Offered by ANU Legal Workshop
  • ANU College ANU College of Law
  • Course subject Laws
  • Areas of interest Law, Legal Practice

Family Law (Children) is designed to prepare students (including current practitioners) for running children’s cases at a best-practice level. This course will focus on specified issues in children’s matters at a high level, yet with significant practical application.

The topics covered at this level introduce new material at a significantly more advanced and in-depth level. This will include theoretical, legislative, case-law, procedural (including inter-disciplinary) and practice ready components.

Learning Outcomes

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

Upon successful completion, students will have the skills and knowledge to:
1. Demonstrate mastery of theoretical knowledge to reflect critically on the legal and
social science principles to determine what is in a child’s best interests.
2. Synthesise complex information regarding theories of attachment, impact of violence
and other issues affecting children in the context of their practical application to a
particular family unit.
3. Apply theoretical knowledge and analytical and forensic skills to identify issues and to
gather and analyse evidence, including expert evidence to effectively advise the
client or a court how to determine the matter.
4. Understand principles of engaging an expert witness sufficiently to prepare
appropriate briefing material and apply those principles to formulate appropriate
questions for the expert to consider.
5. Reflect critically on the implications of the theoretical knowledge for application in
other areas of family law practice such as dealing with welfare authorities.
6. Plan and execute a substantial research based project – whether by written or oral
submission or advice to a client.
7. Design a comprehensive strategy to critically review by cross examination, an expert
report that has raised issues relevant to a child’s best interests.

Indicative Assessment

These assessment options are interchangeable.  For each course offering assessment options will be chosen totaling 100%, with at least 50%  comprised of research based assessment.
Examples of assessment items include:
1. 3500 word essay on issues relating to social science with application within a legal
context (50%).
2. Prepare a cross examination as the Independent Children’s Lawyer of a mock expert
report in relation to a relocation that raises issues relevant for assessing what living arrangements are in the child’s best interests. Possible topics will include violence, attachment and allegations of sexual abuse. The examination preparation must include questions and sequencing of questions. (30%) Alternatively, prepare a written submission to the court addressing similar issues.
3. Discussion postings (20%). Two 300 postings (5% each) and 3 other postings (10% for contributions).
4. Prepare in group of 2-4 a retainer letter to an expert setting out relevant questions and listing material that would be briefed (10%).
5. Complete a multi-component assignment for either the applicant or respondent parent (including preparing court documents, drafting affidavits and briefing documents for a court hearing) to apply for relocation. Underlying factual material would raise a range of issues drawn from topic 2 above. (up to 65%). Students also complete a 2000 word essay on a relevant topic (25%) and contribute to discussion postings

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.


10-12 hours per week during the semester online via Wattle.

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must be studying a: Master of Laws (7300XLLM, MLLM), Master of Laws specialising in International Law (7300XSINTL), Master of Laws specialising in Law, Governance and Development (7300SLGD), Master of Laws specialising in Environmental Law (7300SENVL), Master of Laws specialising in Government and Commercial Law (7300SGCL), Master of Laws specialising in International Security Law (7300SISL), Master of Laws in Migration (NLLML), Master of Laws in International Law (NLLIL), Master of Laws in Environmental Law (NLLEN), Master of Laws in Law, Governance & Development (NLLGD), Master of Laws in International Security Law (NLLSL), Master of Laws in Government and Regulation (NLLGR), Master of Laws (Legal Practice) (7312XLLMLP), Master of Diplomacy/Master of Laws (7883SINTL, 7883XLLM), Master of Legal Practice (MLEGP). OR Must be studying a: Master of Diplomacy/Master of International Law (7893MDIPL, 7893XMINTL), Master of International Law (7310XMINTL), Master of Environmental Law (7309XMENVL), Master of Law, Governance & Development (7317XMLGD), Master of International Security Law (7318XMISL), Master of Government and Commercial Law (7313XMGCL), Master of Legal Studies (7305XMLEGS), and completed LAWS8015 Fundamentals of Government and Commercial Law or LAWS8587 Legal Framework of Regulation. OR Must be studying a Juris Doctor (7330XJD, 7330HJD or MJD) and have completed or be completing five LAWS1000 level courses or five LAWS6100 level courses. OR Must be studying a Graduate Certificate of Law (CLAW) and have completed or are completing LAWS8586 Law and Legal Institutions and LAWS8587 Legal Framework of Regulation. OR Must be studying a Master of Military Law (MMILL) OR Must be studying a Juris Doctor (MJDOL) and have completed the course LAWS8712 Australian Public Law & International Law B

Prescribed Texts

Materials will be provided online and will include the materials identified within the topic areas above.

Preliminary Reading

Family Law Act 1975

A Course Outline will be available prior to the commencement of the course.

Assumed Knowledge

It is expected that a student will have completed either an undergraduate or JD course in Family Law, or LAWS8581 Foundations of Family Law.  This course is only open to students who have completed a law degree (LLB or JD).


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. Tuition fees are indexed annually. 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
2016 $3252
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2016 $4638
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

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.

Second Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
9123 18 Jul 2016 29 Jul 2016 31 Aug 2016 28 Oct 2016 Online N/A

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions