• Offered by ANU Law School
  • ANU College ANU College of Law
  • Course subject Laws
  • Areas of interest Law
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Damian Clifford
  • Mode of delivery Online or In Person
  • Offered in Spring Session 2022
    See Future Offerings

Advances in Artificial Intelligence (AI) is a catalyst for social, economic, scientific, political and legal change in our time. AI powers machine learning, natural language processing, sentiment analysis and complex autonomous systems operating in different domains. Each of these has ramifications for the law and society. The use of algorithmic decision-making and predictive coding by government and in the courts are cause for concern. Future lawyers and other professionals will need to understand the benefits and risks associated with the use of different types of AI in all aspects of social interaction, governance, compliance, risk analysis and business opportunities. The role of AI in social relationships of trust has been explored in science fiction and popular media. Its impact on the markets, elections, global health trends and human relationships is not to be underestimated. Artificial Intelligence, Law, & Society (AILS) is an interdisciplinary module that explores these questions and helps students understand the societal impact of ubiquitous AI, robotics, and automation.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Articulate and distinguish the theoretical and philosophical underpinnings of artificial intelligence and its role as a primary catalyst of social, economic, scientific, political and legal change in the 21st century.
  2. Construct and defend rationales for the use of ‘Legal Technology’ in legal practice, administration, and adjudication, including software applications leveraging Big Data and related techniques to assess litigation risk, recidivism, and 'predict' the outcome of legal cases.
  3. Evaluate the use of proprietary algorithmic systems to automate legal processes and decision-making in private and public sector contexts.
  4. Critically analyse the ways that AI is shaping and changing life, work and leisure in the 21st century.
  5. Plan and conduct a project to research and critically analyse the societal impact of AI and the role of law in mediating its potential harms, and actualising its benefits.

Indicative Assessment

  1. In-class participation (10) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  2. Reflective journal - 1,800 words (30) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]
  3. Research essay - 3,600 words (60) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]

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.


Classes offered in non-standard sessions will be taught on an intensive base with compulsory contact hours (approximately 26 hours of face to face teaching). The course will also require advanced preparation through assigned readings. In total, it is anticipated that the hours required for completion of this course (class preparation, teaching and completion of assessment) will not exceed 120 hours. Classes offered during semester periods are expected to have 3 contact hours per week.

Click here for the LLM Masters Program timetable.

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must be studying a; Master of Laws (MLLM) and have completed or be completing LAWS8586 Law and Legal Institutions; or Graduate Certificate of Law (CLAW) and have completed or be completing LAWS8586 Law and Legal Institutions; or Graduate Certificate of New Technologies Law (CNTL); or Juris Doctor (MJD) and have completed or be completing five 1000 or 6100 level LAWS courses; or Master of Financial Management and Law (MFIML) and have completed or be completing LAWS8586 Law and Legal Institutions. Students undertaking any ANU graduate program may apply for this course. Enrolments are accepted on a case-by-case basis. Please contact the ANU College of Law for appropriate permission.

Prescribed Texts

Students must rely on the approved Class Summary which will be posted to the Programs and Courses site approximately 2 weeks prior to the commencement of the course.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you 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). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2022 $4740
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2022 $6000
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.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Spring Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
6504 03 Oct 2022 04 Oct 2022 14 Oct 2022 02 Dec 2022 Online View

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