• Class Number 9617
  • Term Code 2960
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Dr Anthony Hopkins
    • Dr Anthony Hopkins
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 22/07/2019
  • Class End Date 25/10/2019
  • Census Date 31/08/2019
  • Last Date to Enrol 29/07/2019
SELT Survey Results

The Prison Legal Literacy Clinic offers students a unique opportunity to work with detainees in a prison setting at the Alexander Maconochie Centre (AMC). The AMC is the Australian Capital Territory's only adult prison, accommodating all persons who have been sentenced to full-time imprisonment or remanded in custody by ACT Courts.

The Prison Legal Literacy Clinic was developed from the highly successful ANU College of Law, Law Reform and Social Justice Prison Legal Literacy Program which commenced in 2010.  

Students in the Prison Legal Literacy Clinic will attend the AMC to deliver six legal literacy sessions for a cohort of detainees chosen by AMC management. These sessions provide legal information only, rather than legal advice. The first session focuses on establishing mutually agreed rules and boundaries, developing respectful relationships and identifying areas of legal interest to detainees that will become the topics for the remaining five sessions. These topics are as diverse as detainees interests but may involve laws and legal process relating to criminal law, evidence, sentencing, appeals, parole, administrative law, human rights law and tort law. Many topics require students to convey an understanding of the democratic process of law making, the federal system of law as well as the hierarchy and jurisdiction of courts and tribunals.  The emphasis is on students working as a team to develop informative, engaging and interactive sessions. Student are required to undertake significant research in each week of the session delivery phase of the course, often in areas of law that are unfamiliar to them. Detainees who complete the program are presented with a certificate in the final session acknowledge their efforts.

Students will be provided with Security Awareness Training by the AMC and supported before and during the delivery stage of the program by the course convenor who will be present at, and guide the delivery of, each of the Legal Literacy Sessions at the AMC.

Following the delivery of six sessions (in the first 6 weeks of the semester) students are required to submit a reflective assessment. Students will then use the remaining six weeks of the semester to write a research paper on a legal topic they have identified from their experience with detainees within the AMC. Students will be supported to develop and hone their research papers in research workshops that will be held in the second half of the semester.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Review how legal knowledge can be used to empower detainees, improve detainee experiences and promote social justice
  2. Reflect on their personal motivation for studying law, their goals and career aspirations.
  3. Develop and apply a coherent body of substantive legal knowledge in the preparation delivery and evaluation of legal education workshops delivered to detainees.
  4. Evaluate a variety of social issues of justice, power and disadvantage, and to critically analyse entrenched issues of injustice in the legal system.
  5. Research and evaluate range of legal practice approaches having regard to the legal needs of detainees
  6. Investigate and evaluate the predicament of detainees having regard to the operation of the law and the legal system.
  7. Select and review concrete and achievable ways in which they can promote access to justice and equality before the law.
  8. Identify, plan, manage and execute a written research project addressing a problem relating to detainee experiences and/or the prison setting, and present findings using a variety of media

Research-Led Teaching

Legal, human rights, and evidence-based research on correctional management and the dynamics of correctional environments, including monitoring of prisons will be used to stimulate students to write a research essay of their own choosing.

Field Trips

1 x 3 hour Security Awareness Training at the Alexander Maconochie Centre (AMC, the Canberra prison); 6 x 1.5 hours teaching visits to the Alexander Maconochie Centre; all travelling by the ANU Carshare bus.

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • written comments
  • verbal comments
  • feedback via rubric
  • feedback to the whole class, to groups, to individuals, focus groups

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Other Information

Extensions late submission and penalties - https://law.anu.edu.au/current-students/policies-procedures/extensions-late-submission-and-penalties

Deferred examination: http://www.anu.edu.au/students/program-administration/assessments-exams/deferred-examinations

Special consideration: http://www.anu.edu.au/students/program-administration/assessments-exams/special-assessment-consideration

Penalties for excess word length: https://law.anu.edu.au/current-students/policies-procedures/word-length-and-excess-word-penalties

Distribution of Grades Policy: Effective from Winter Session and Second Semester 2018 (and until further notice), the interim scaling guideline applies to all courses in the LLB (Hons) and JD programs. Please see: https://law.anu.edu.au/current-students/policies-procedures/grading

Further Information about the Course: is available from the course WATTLE page. Students are required to access the WATTLE site regularly throughout the course for details on weekly classes and any announcements and updates relating to the course.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Prison Visit Participation Mark
2 Prison Visit Participation Mark
3 Prison Visit Participation Mark
4 Prison Visit Participation Mark
5 Prison Visit Participation Mark
6 Prison Visit Participation Mark
7 Own study / Preparation of Essay / Research Workshop Reflective Journal Due
8 Own study / Preparation of Essay
9 Own study / Preparation of Essay
10 Own study / Preparation of Essay / Research Workshop Oral Presentation
11 Own study / Preparation of Essay/Individual Consultations
12 Own study / Preparation of Essay Final Essay Due

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Participation in planning and delivery of 6 legal literacy sessions at the AMC 10 % 30/08/2019 16/09/2019 3
Reflective Journal 20 % 09/09/2019 16/09/2009 2
Works in Progress Research Project Oral Presentation 10 % 11/10/2019 14/10/2019 8
Research Project 60 % 25/10/2019 18/11/2019 1,4,5,6,7,8

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using 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. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website. In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


There are no tutorials but there are preparation sessions required after each of the 6 weekly prison visits and ad hoc meetings may be arranged to support your project research and writing.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 30/08/2019
Return of Assessment: 16/09/2019
Learning Outcomes: 3

Participation in planning and delivery of 6 legal literacy sessions at the AMC

Details of task: Students' participation in preparation and delivery of all 6 legal literacy sessions at the AMC will be assessed each week.

Nature of Task: Failure to participate in all sessions will result in a 0 for this task unless there are documented extenuating circumstances.

Weighting: 10%

Release: N/A

Due date: Ongoing. 6 weekly visits on Fridays from 26 July to 30 August 2019

Estimated return date: 16 September 2019, via an email or Wattle discussing performance against criteria. There will also be a debriefing and feedback session with the convenor at the end of the visits. Feedback on each visit will be given in our weekly collective debrief and any individual feedback (though not a weekly mark) to an individual student that the convenor deems necessary. This will be given to the individual via email, phone call or face-to-face meeting, and, any student can seek individual feedback from the convenor at anytime.

Assessment Criteria:

  • collaborative teamwork
  • organisational skills
  • creativity in designing educational activities
  • accessibility of communication
  • professionalism and manner

Assessment Task 2

Value: 20 %
Due Date: 09/09/2019
Return of Assessment: 16/09/2009
Learning Outcomes: 2

Reflective Journal

Details of Task: Students are to keep a reflective journal detailing their thoughts and feelings about preparing for and delivering the legal literacy sessions in the prison. Around 220 words relating to each of the 6 weekly visits is expected, having regard to the assessment criteria listed below. The overall word count of all reflections should not exceed 1300 words.

Nature of Task: Compulsory. Failure to complete the task will result in a 0 for this task.

Weighting: 20%

Word limit: 1300 words

Due date: 5 pm 9 September 2019 via Wattle dropbox. Late submissions (without an extension) are permitted, although late penalties will apply.

Estimated return date: Feedback by 16 September 2019 via WATTLE.

Assessment Criteria:

Quality and clarity of reflections in relation to:

  • insight into the challenges of making legal information accessible;
  • thoughts about which activities and tasks worked out the best and why;
  • personal observations and reactions to the experience of engaging with prisoners;
  • personal reactions about prisoners' knowledge and opinions;
  • personal observations and reactions to prison processes;
  • interpersonal dynamics and professionalism;
  • personal and professional growth

Assessment Task 3

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 11/10/2019
Return of Assessment: 14/10/2019
Learning Outcomes: 8

Works in Progress Research Project Oral Presentation

Details of Task: Students will present an oral presentation on their self-chosen topic for their research essay.

Nature of Task: Compulsory. Failure to give an oral presentation will result in a 0 for this task.

Weighting: 10%

Timing: 10 minutes, followed by 5 minutes of questions.

Due date: During the Week 10 Research Workshop , 11 October 2019. Late presentations (without an extension) will not be permitted.

Estimated return date: Feedback on a rubric with other qualitative comments will be provided via email by 14 October 2019.

Assessment Criteria: 

  • Articulation of research question/problem being addressed
  • Articulation of a research methodology;
  • Clarity of argument in response to question or problem;;
  • Presentation quality: clarity; structure; use of visual aids (if any);
  • Linking project to visits experiences or impressions;
  • Linking project to policy debates in corrections

Assessment Task 4

Value: 60 %
Due Date: 25/10/2019
Return of Assessment: 18/11/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,4,5,6,7,8

Research Project

Details of task: Students to design their own research topic, research question and methodological approach and write an essay on some aspect of correctional policy, controversy or dynamic.

Nature of Task: Compulsory. Failure to submit the essay will result in a 0 for this task.

Weighting: 60%

Word limit: 3, 900 words

Due date: 4pm on Friday 25 October 2019 via Turnitin. Late submission (without an extension) is permitted, although late penalties will apply.

Estimated return date: 18 November 2019 via Turnitin.

Assessment Criteria:

  • Articulation of research question/problem being addressed;
  • Persuasiveness of argument in response to question or problem;
  • Structure and logical development;
  • Quality of critical analysis;
  • Breadth and depth of relevant research;
  • Quality of written expression;
  • Referencing and compliance with AGLC

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically, committing to honest and responsible scholarly practice and upholding these values with respect and fairness.

The ANU commits to assisting all members of our community to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle and Academic Misconduct Rule, uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with.

The Academic Misconduct Rule is in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Very minor breaches of the academic integrity principle may result in a reduction of marks of up to 10% of the total marks available for the assessment. The ANU offers a number of online and in person services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. Visit the Academic Skills website for more information about academic integrity, your responsibilities and for assistance with your assignments, writing skills and study.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Individual assessment tasks may or may not allow for late submission. Policy regarding late submission is detailed below:

  • Late submission not permitted. If submission of assessment tasks without an extension after the due date is not permitted, a mark of 0 will be awarded.
  • Late submission permitted. Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. The Course Convener may grant extensions for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

Dr Anthony Hopkins

Research Interests

Criminal Justice, Indigenous Peoples and the Law, Therapeutic Jurisprudence, Decarceration, Emotion in Law, Mindfulness and Compassion

Dr Anthony Hopkins

Thursday 14:00 16:00
Thursday 14:00 16:00
Dr Anthony Hopkins
+61 6125 3483

Research Interests

Dr Anthony Hopkins

Thursday 14:00 16:00
Thursday 14:00 16:00

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