• Class Number 1485
  • Term Code 3020
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Prof Kent Anderson
    • Prof Kent Anderson
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 13/01/2020
  • Class End Date 21/02/2020
  • Census Date 24/01/2020
  • Last Date to Enrol 13/01/2020
SELT Survey Results

This unit aims to develop the general skills of comparative lawyers, to effectively and critically assess contemporary developments in the legal system of one of the world's largest economies. 'Law' comprises the rules and norms that any society creates to govern how its members should interact with one another. Societal factors provide context to the legal system, and vice versa. To properly examine any country's laws and legal system one needs to have at least some degree of understanding of the dynamics and values of that society. The purpose of this course is to provide a foundation for understanding the history, place and use of law in modern Japan. The course covers the history, structure, and fundamental substantive areas of Japanese law. It investigates and challenges some common assumptions about the place of law in Japanese society, including Japan's legal history, judicial system, legal education, and legal profession. The course explores topics including the place of litigation in Japan, and the treatment of non-Japanese, women, and minorities. The course then focuses on Japanese substantive law include the foundations of and current topics in Japanese constitutional, criminal, contract, tort, and commercial law. The overarching theme of the course is the globalisation of Japanese law in a wide range of subject areas, including civil and criminal justice, gender and the law, public law and some aspects of business regulation.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Critically analyse key principles, doctrines, structures and legal regimes relevant to Japanese law and society, and communicate this knowledge to various audiences in a clear and coherent manner;
  2. Synthesise research from primary and secondary materials on selected Japanese law and society topics and present findings;
  3. Differentiate between an Australian and a Japanese understanding of the law and the relationship of citizens to the law on a variety of issues;
  4. Investigate the historical foundations of Japanese law, and contribute to debates on the relationship of law and society;
  5. Examine case law and other sources covering selected topics and current issues relating to Japanese law and society and present findings relating to these sources.

Research-Led Teaching

This course is taught by very research active lecturers, and practitioners, speaking to the specific areas of their research or practical work. A core component is the research essay portion of the assessment.

Required Resources

An e-brick will be available on the course Wattle site.

Kent Anderson and Trevor Ryan, Japan, in LAW AND LEGAL INSTITUTIONS IN ASIA (Ann Black and Gary Bell, eds, 2010). For more detailed information see, Daniel Foote (ed.), LAW IN JAPAN: A TURNING POINT (2007).

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.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Introduction to Course; Introduction to Japanese Law; Japanese Legal History
2 Basic Structure of Japanese Legal System: Courts, Legal Education and Legal Profession
3 Japanese Legal Consciousness; Foreigners and the Law
4 Women and the Law; “Others” and the Law
5 Constitutional Law and Issues
6 Criminal Law and Issues
7 Commercial Law and Issues
8 Civil Law and Issues I
9 Civil Law and Issues II
10 Conclusions

Tutorial Registration

No Tutorials.

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Attendance and Participation 10 % 24/01/2020 03/02/2020 1,2,3,4
Short Examination 30 % 24/01/2020 03/02/2020 1,2,3,4
Final Paper 60 % 03/02/2020 02/03/2020 1,2,3,4

* 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 Task 1

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 24/01/2020
Return of Assessment: 03/02/2020
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Attendance and Participation

Attendance and class participation in the course is a crucial aspect as the material is taught in a seminar format. This portion of the course will generally be marked as follows:

(1) non-attendance—a student who did not attend or rarely attended or prepared [0-49%];

(2) attendance with little participation—a student who generally attended but contributed little [50-55%];

(3) satisfactory participation—this is the standard expected of students and involves regular attendance, being prepared, and participation when called upon. [56%-79%]; and

(4)  superlative participation—this mark is reserved for those students that contribute significantly to the discussion and level of dialog in class, it requires nearly perfect attendance, thorough familiarity with the assigned material, evidence of reflection on the material, and proactive involvement in discussion [80%-100%].

Assessment Task 2

Value: 30 %
Due Date: 24/01/2020
Return of Assessment: 03/02/2020
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Short Examination

Brief Description: To ensure the core-objective of this course, namely broad-based familiarity with comparative Japanese law, a Short Examination of up to 60 minutes for reading and writing will be given in class. The exam is cumulative of all material covered in the course. The exam will be closed-book, ten (10) short answer questions.

Nature of Task: This is compulsory and non-redeemable. Failure to complete this task will result in a 0 for this assessment task. Late submissions are not permitted for this assessment.

Weighting: 30%

Duration: 60 minutes

Release: 24 January 2020

Due date: 24 January 2020

Estimated return date: 3 February 2019

Assessment Criteria: This is a core knowledge based examination. Therefore, assessment is based on student’s ability to accurately identify and explain the core facts and concepts introduced in class.

  • Identify and explain key aspects of Japanese Law and Society;
  • Grammar and written expressions

Assessment Task 3

Value: 60 %
Due Date: 03/02/2020
Return of Assessment: 02/03/2020
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Final Paper

Brief Description: Students will write a paper on a subject they select in consultation with the lecturer. The paper will be marked on clarity of expression, research, and quality of content and arguments.

Nature of Task: This is compulsory and non-redeemable. Failure to complete this task will result in a 0 for this assessment task. Late submissions are accepted, however late penalties will apply.

Weighting: 60%

Word Limit: 2500-4000

Release: Topics must be confirmed anytime before 23 January 2020.

Due date: 5pm 3 February 2020

Estimated return date: 2 March 2020

Assessment Criteria:The paper will be marked on:

  • clarity of expression,
  • research,
  • quality of content , and
  • persuasiveness of argument

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. Extensions may be granted 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 Kent Anderson

Research Interests

Comparative Law (particularly with Japan), Commercial Law (particularly insolvency), Private International Law, and Law & Film

Prof Kent Anderson

By Appointment
By Appointment
Prof Kent Anderson
6125 3483

Research Interests

Prof Kent Anderson

By Appointment
By Appointment

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