• Offered by Law School
  • ANU College ANU College of Law
  • Course subject Laws
  • Areas of interest Law
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Mode of delivery Online
This is the tenth compulsory course in the Juris Doctor online (JDO), and the second course in the penultimate compulsory ‘cluster’ of the JDO. In this cluster students will continue to integrate their learning across the JDO program, demonstrating advanced skills competency and respond to issues in a manner that appropriately reflects professional practice values. 
Due to the nature of administrative law and commonwealth constitutional law, this cluster will enable students to refine their technical legal skills of textual interpretation and how to read, analyse and apply cases to an advanced level. Interpretation is at the core of both administrative and constitutional law; administrative law focuses on interpretation of statutes, constitutional law on the interpretation of the Commonwealth Constitution. The similarities and differences between these two approaches to interpretation will be used to assist students to identify the role interpretation plays in this context. The complexity and fundamental nature of the jurisprudence in these areas requires advanced skills of case analysis in order to understand the implications of multiple, including dissenting, judgements and the uncertainty in the law that may result. This cluster has a focus on the important role that policy, politics and discretion play in the law.
The overarching theme of this cluster is on the governance structures of the Commonwealth Government. It examines the role and relationship between the different arms of government provided for in the Commonwealth Constitution: the Executive, the Judiciary, and the Legislature – and the implications of this separation of powers for our system of government. Students will have the opportunity to examine and revisit this theme by considering how concepts including accountability, legitimacy and fairness are reflected in approaches to interpretation and imposing limits on the activities of government.
Students will explore the impact that responsible government, the rule of law, and representative democracy have on our system of government, considering questions such as: what is public law? How has the High Court shaped our institutions of government? How have other institutions shaped our laws?
Within this overarching theme, students will consider the way in which our administrative and constitutional structures affect how government might achieve public policy objectives. Students will work through different regulatory schemes, examining the role of various government and non-government actors in implementing those schemes, the limitations placed on those actors through the administrative law system, and the overriding constitutional imperatives governing the framework of regulation.
In this cluster, students will also participate in a capstone experience with either a professional practice, research or a policy focus. Such an experience in this cluster may include any of the following: run a matter from tribunal hearing through to an appeal to a federal or state court, designing and drafting legislation to achieve a public policy objective, drafting to a constitutional referendum proposal or a bill of rights, or examining the impact of constitutional and administrative law in relation to an area of law of particular interest to a student.
The study of Administrative Law and Commonwealth Constitutional Law will give students the opportunity to critically evaluate concepts of justice in law.
This cluster is designed to equip students with an appropriate understanding of, and competence in, administrative law, Commonwealth constitutional law, ethics and professional responsibility.

Learning Outcomes

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

By the conclusion of this course, students who have successfully completed all of the requirements will have the knowledge, skills and professional values to:
• Apply a sophisticated knowledge of relevant legal principles and concepts in the areas of administrative law and commonwealth constitutional law in the context of the Australian legal system; the broader contexts within which legal issues arise; the principles and values of justice and of ethical practice in lawyer's roles; and contemporary developments in law and its professional practice.
• Critically evaluate the historical and theoretical principles, concepts and debates informing the continuing development of the Australian Constitutional structure and how they have influenced and continue to influence the Commonwealth Constitution and the arms of governance.
• Integrate previous knowledge gained in the program in the context of the context of constitutional law and administrative law with either a professional practice, policy or research focus.
• Exercise professional ethical judgement in complex contexts having regard to issues of human rights, law reform and access to justice.
• Apply sophisticated research skills, principles and methods to locate, interpret, evaluate, synthesise and communicate relevant and reliable information relevant and reliable information in law and other disciplines, citing that information using appropriate conventions.
• Independently, and in effective collaboration with others, apply research skills, legal reasoning, legal technical skills, critical analysis and the principles of credible law to solve legal problems and justify responses.
• Independently and effectively select and apply a diverse range of approaches and styles in written and oral communication to achieve appropriate and persuasive communications to suit different formats, audiences and requirements.
• Reflect on and reappraise their personal strengths, values and aspirations regarding study of law and career plans.

Indicative Assessment

Assessment in this course may include: assessing online participation; assessing collaboration; case presentation; case notes; short essays; research essays; assignments; problem style essays; examination;  oral assessment.  A capstone assessment will be included.  Details will be made available in Wattle, the ANU online learning management system.

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.


The JD Online is an online law degree, offered in trimesters.  Each compulsory course has been designed as an 8-unit course, allowing part-time students to complete 24 units each year. Because trimesters are shorter than semesters, online students in the JD Online are expected to dedicate more active learning time (including private study) per week than on-campus students.  The ANU workload expectation of a student in a standard 6-unit course is 130 hours over a semester (10 hours per week).  By contrast the ANU workload expectation of a JD Online student in an 8-unit course is 176 hours over 11 weeks (16 hours per week).

This includes active online engagement and collaboration as well as personal study.

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must have completed LAWS8709.


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:
8 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.

8.00 0.16667
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2017 $4560
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2017 $6504
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.

There are no current offerings for this course.

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