• Class Number 9904
  • Term Code 2960
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Prof Kim Rubenstein
    • Prof Kim Rubenstein
  • 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

This course looks at the way citizenship in law sits with broader notions of citizenship; it compares the legal notion of citizenship with the normative notion.  The course also uses Australia as a case study to look at citizenship law and policy.  There will also be a strong comparative country aspect to the course.

It is expected that the following topics will be covered:

  • Introduction: the concept of citizenship
  • Citizenship and constitutions
  • Birthright citizenship
  • Citizenship by grant
  • Citizenship by descent
  • Citizenship and administrative law/merits review
  • The difference that citizenship makes
  • Loss of citizenship
  • Dual citizenship
  • Post-national citizenship
  • International law and citizenship/nationality
  • Summary/overview.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Identify, investigate and explain, to demonstrate a deep understanding and knowledge of the principles underlying the theoretical debates about citizenship;
  2. Identify, interpret and critically examine the relationship between the theoretical debates and citizenship law;
  3. Identify and explain the complex principles, concepts and elements of citizenship law
  4. Investigate, synthesise, evaluate and discuss the policy issues arising from the principles, policies and law considered in the course; and
  5. Plan, design and individually execute a substantial research based project that identifies and critically examines aspects of citizenship law and policy, using relevant research principles and techniques to provide practical solutions to complex problems.

Research-Led Teaching

This course is heavily influenced by Professor Rubenstein's research in this area. As set out above, she has developed this expertise, including her academic writings, through her own scholarly research together with her work consulting to the Australian government and the running of many citizenship law cases in the AAT, the Federal Court and in the High Court of Australia. 

Field Trips


Additional Course Costs


Examination Material or equipment


Required Resources

The electronic materials for this course are available through the ANU Library.

As above

Staff Feedback

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

  • written comments
  • verbal comments
  • feedback to whole class, groups, individuals, focus group etc

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 relating to the course.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Week 1-Wed 24th July 1. Introduction: The Concept of Citizenship This session looks at the varied theoretical contexts in which citizenship is discussed and debated. It has a strong interdisciplinary focus.
2 Week 2-Wed 31 July 2. Citizenship and Constitutions: This session looks at the role of Constitutions in understanding citizenship in law. Does it matter whether a Constitution refers to citizenship? The International law documents on rights of citizenship will also be canvassed.
3 Week 3-Wed 7th August 3. Birthright citizenship: This session looks at the value and meaning of birthright citizenship. It will draw upon a study comparing 25 nationality laws. It will look at gender issues in respect of birthright entitlement, and the role of immigration policy in Australia in developing birthright citizenship law.
4 Week 4-Wed 14th August 4. Citizenship by Descent: This session looks at the value and meaning of citizenship by descent. It will also draw upon a country comparative analysis, and then look specifically at Australia. In looking at Australia it will highlight gender issues in this area, and also the value of timing in the determination of eligibility.
5 Week 5-Wed 21st August 5. Citizenship by Conferral: This session looks at citizenship by conferral (naturalisation) in a range of countries. It will also look specifically at the way the criteria in Australia reflect upon the meaning of membership in Australia
6 Week 6-Wed 28th August 6. Citizenship and Administrative law/Merits Review: This session looks specifically at the Australian Citizenship Act and the merits review provisions available. It also considers Judicial Review and the Act.
7 Week 7-Wed 18th September 7. The Difference that Citizenship Makes: This session looks at the consequences of being a citizen. This will involve both a theoretical consideration and the black letter law consequences. It examines the myriad pieces of legislation that discriminates upon the basis of membership status in Australia.
8 Week 8-Wed 25th September 8. Loss of citizenship: This session looks at the power of the state to strip a person of their citizenship. It also considers the international ramifications and the law on statelessness. It also raises policy issues about the distinction between birthright citizens and citizens by grant.
9 Week 9-Wed 2nd October 9. Dual citizenship: This session looks at what dual citizenship means about the value of citizenship. It examines the meaning of allegiance and the impact of globalization on citizenship. It also looks at the Australian case scenario with the 2002 change in the legislation and the impact, if any, on the Constitution and dual citizenship and the impact of loss of citizenship now on dual citizens.
10 Week 10-Wed 9th October **** 10: No In Class activity as this day is the Jewish Day of Atonement and your Professor will be on leave on this day. If you are not observing this day yourself, then during this time you will be expected to be working on your final essay proposals to submit to me.
11 Week 11-Wed 16th October 11. International law and citizenship and nationality: This session looks in more detail about the meaning of citizenship for international law. It examines the foundational international law case of Nottebohm and the sovereignty of states over citizenship. It also examines the effects of citizenship on other aspects of international law
12 Week 12 - Wed 23rd October 12. Post national citizenship: This session examines in greater detail the meaning of citizenship in light of globalisation. Is there a post-national, cosmopolitan citizenship? Would this be a good thing?

Tutorial Registration


Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Class Participation 10 % 31/10/2019 14/11/2019 1,2,3,4,5
Oral presentation with a written summary of presentation. 20 % 24/10/2019 28/11/2019 1,2,3,4,5
Final Essay 70 % 31/10/2019 28/11/2019 1,2,3,4,5

* 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.


Assessment as per above.


There is no examination in this class.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 31/10/2019
Return of Assessment: 14/11/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5

Class Participation

Nature of Task: Attendance and participation in the Wednesday afternoon classes.

Weighting: 10%

Expectation: A class 'roll call' will be taken each class and you are encouraged to attend and participate in all the classes. You will be expected to have read the reading material in advance of class and participate in discussions around those readings.

Assessment: Your mark will be determined through a mix of your attendance, and your own verbal responses in class to the material and class discussions (including your responses to your colleagues' formal class presentations).

If you are not able to attend at least 9 of the 11 in class, classes you will need to discuss your participation with Professor Rubenstein.

Assessment Task 2

Value: 20 %
Due Date: 24/10/2019
Return of Assessment: 28/11/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5

Oral presentation with a written summary of presentation.

Nature of Task: Students will be given the opportunity to choose from one of the identified articles in the reading guide (or an aspect of the class of particular interest to them) to concentrate upon for the purpose of an individual presentation (which will be filmed for the purpose of review for assessment) in one of the classes between sessions 2-11.

Weighting: 20%

Length and Word Limit: This oral presentation is to be no more than 20 minutes in delivery and a written document summarising the presentation of no more than 2 pages single sided is to be handed in.

Release: First class and students need to nominate their identified presentation before Monday 29th July 2019.

Due date: In addition to the oral presentation each student will need to hand in a summary of no more than two pages (single sided) of their presentation by 9am on the Monday following their presentation.

Estimated return date: Provisional results will be available on Wattle approximately 2 weeks after the summary is handed in to the Convenor.

Assessment Criteria: The presentation will be marked out of 20 and will be based on the following criteria:

a. Thought and content

  • analysis of issues in light of subject objectives;
  • selective and probing rather than wide-ranging and superficial.

b. Structure and organisation

  • argument/discussion clear and logical; ideas linked together coherently.

c Expression and style

  • accurate use of grammar, with effective vocabulary;
  • engaging and persuasive use of language and tone.

d. Oral skills

  • stimulates the interest of the class;
  • sets up a firm basis for the class discussion;
  • spoken delivery is clear and engaging.

Assessment Task 3

Value: 70 %
Due Date: 31/10/2019
Return of Assessment: 28/11/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5

Final Essay

Nature of Task: An argumentative essay around a topic of the student's choice, or from a topic identified with Professor Rubenstein

Weighting: 70%

Word limit: Word limit is 5,600 words (LLM requirements specify for written work the tariffs are 600-800 words per 10% of the total marks for the course.)

Release: Students are to either develop their own topic in consultation with Professor Rubenstein during class time and the topic must be finalised by Wednesday 18th September 2019, or they are to choose a topic provided in the first week of classes.

Due date: Thursday 31st October 2019 4pm.

Estimated return date: 28 November 2019

Assessment Criteria: The paper will be marked out of 70 according to the following criteria:

a) Legal content (/10)

  • Thorough analysis of primary materials, i.e., case law, statutes, Parliamentary material, government reports, etc.;
  • Appropriate coverage of secondary materials, i.e., articles, journals;
  • Comparative country material where appropriate;
  • Use of theoretical material.

b) Analysis (/20)

  • well-defined approach to topic;
  • important points covered, in light of the subject objectives such as the theoretical context, the comparative issues, and the policy issues;
  • material chosen appropriately and analysed rather than reproduced;
  • arguments logical and well organised; ideas linked together coherently;
  • each point clearly related to the thrust of the essay;
  • no plagiarism.

c) Synthesis/Innovation(/10)

  • originality of ideas;
  • complexity and insight in dealing with theory/ideas;
  • interdisciplinary perspective where appropriate;
  • suggestions for change where appropriate.

d) Structure/Arguments (/20)

  • good use of structure; section headings and paragraphs;
  • strong development of argument
  • well reasoned conclusions;
  • sources well organised.

e. Expression/Style (/10)

  • well presented;
  • clarity and conciseness of expression;
  • direct and assertive;
  • consistent theme;
  • interesting and engaging of the reader;
  • use of correct terminology;
  • grammar, syntax, spelling correct with effective vocabulary

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of our culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically. This means that all members of the community commit to honest and responsible scholarly practice and to upholding these values with respect and fairness. The Australian National University commits to embedding the values of academic integrity in our teaching and learning. We ensure that all members of our community 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 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 University has policies and procedures in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Visit the following Academic honesty & plagiarism website for more information about academic integrity and what the ANU considers academic misconduct. The ANU offers a number of services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. The Academic Skills and Learning Centre offers a number of workshops and seminars that you may find useful for your studies.

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 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).

Prof Kim Rubenstein

Research Interests

Professor Kim Rubenstein is Australia’s leading citizenship law expert in the country. 


She will explain during the course the various ways in which she has developed this expertise, including her academic writings, her consulting to the Australian government and the running of many citizenship law cases in the AAT, the Federal Court and in the High Court of Australia. 


You can read more about Professor Rubenstein at - http://www.womenaustralia.info/leaders/biogs/WLE0613b.htm

Prof Kim Rubenstein

Prof Kim Rubenstein

Research Interests

Prof Kim Rubenstein


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