• Offered by ANU 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 first course in the first paired compulsory cluster in the Juris Doctor online (JDO). 
This cluster introduces important concepts about the way institutions of the Australian legal system function through an historical overview of the origins and development of the common law and Australian law-making institutions. Throughout the cluster, students will begin to develop skills for the close and effective reading and interpretation of both case law and statutes, including studying the rules of statutory intepretation.
The study of tort law provides subject matter that lends itself to an exploration of common law legal reasoning including introducing theoretical and critical perspectives on judicial reasoning. Modern tort law, an area of law increasingly regulated by statute, also illustrates how the parliament can respond to political, social or economic forces to rapidly change an area of legal doctrine. Through problem based learning, students will begin to develop legal reasoning skills for the purpose of making arguments concerning tort law issues such as trespass and negligence (involving personal injury).
Litigation and dispute resolution will be brought to life through the study of Torts. The torts selected for closer examination generally are concerned with human relationships and this is reflected in the interesting fact situations played out in case law. Students will explore how a case reaches court, why certain facts are crucial and the difficulties of fact finding, the role of appellate courts, the rules of litigation, and the role of litigation and alternatives (such as mediation) for the resolution of disputes. The concept of remedies for parties, as they relate to personal injuries (including injuries compensation and vicarious/concurrent liability), will also be introduced.
The subject matter of this course, and this cluster, will also give students the opportunity to learn and apply principles of ethical legal practice, and to critically examine the role of law and lawyers in society.
Foundational concepts, theoretical and critical perspectives and legal skills introduced in this course/ cluster will be explored and further developed in subsequent JDO courses and clusters. 
This cluster is designed to equip students with an appropriate understanding of, and competence in, the law of torts and civil procedure, 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 an advanced knowledge of relevant legal principles and concepts in tort law and civil litigation in the context of: the Australian legal system, its institutions and the process of law-making; the broader concepts 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.
• Identify and explain the history concerning tort law, reflecting theoretically on how the common law doctrine of precedent and legal reasoning both preserves tradition and yet permits change.
• Examine the roles and identities of lawyers in society and the legal system in the context of the legal system redressing private harms to the person, and the issue of access to justice in an adversarial system with costs.
• Apply a wide range of research skills, principles and methods to locate and analyse relevant and credible information in law, fact and policy, evaluating and 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 tort law and civil litigation to solve legal problems.
• Select and apply appropriate approaches to communicate clearly and persuasively with legal and non-legal audiences.
• Reflect on and articulate assumptions and expectations about studying law and the process of personal and professional development, and the personal strengths, values and aspirations brought to the study of law.

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; capstone report; examination; portfolio submission; oral assessment.  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.


This compulsory course in the JD Online 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 be studying the Juris Doctor - online (MJDOL).


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
2019 $5760
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2019 $7600
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

There are no current offerings for this course.

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