Credit points: 15

Subject outline

Constitutional Law is a compulsory subject in the Juris Doctor program offered by the La Trobe Law School. This subject introduces students to a number of important topics pertaining to federal and state constitutional law in Australia. This includes an examination of the basic concepts and doctrines relating to Australia's federal structure as well as the sources and limits of Commonwealth and state legislative power. A number of specific Commonwealth heads of power will be examined and relevant scope and characterisation issues explored. Students will subsequently consider how various restrictions on these heads of power, such as Chapter III judicial power and express and implied constitutional freedoms, operate in a situational context. Students will also canvass concepts relating to federal/state relations, including the rules governing inconsistency of laws. This subject seeks to develop student's constitutional problem-solving skills as well as aiming to impart a theoretical appreciation of the significance of Australian constitutionalism.

SchoolLa Trobe Law School

Credit points15

Subject Co-ordinatorMadelaine Chiam

Available to Study Abroad/Exchange StudentsYes

Subject year levelYear Level 5 - Masters

Available as ElectiveNo

Learning ActivitiesOnline Test, Written Assignment, End of semester exam

Capstone subjectNo

Subject particulars

Subject rules

PrerequisitesLAW5CNA AND LAW5PMI


Incompatible subjectsN/A

Equivalent subjectsN/A

Quota Management StrategyN/A

Quota-conditions or rulesN/A

Special conditionsN/A

Minimum credit point requirementN/A

Assumed knowledgeN/A

Learning resources

Constitution of the Commonwealth of Australia

Resource TypeBook

Resource RequirementPrescribed






Chapter/article titleN/A



Other descriptionN/A

Source locationN/A

Hanks Australian Constitutional Law: Materials and Commentary

Resource TypeBook

Resource RequirementRecommended






Chapter/article titleN/A



Other descriptionN/A

Source locationN/A

Career Ready


Work-based learningNo

Self sourced or Uni sourcedN/A

Entire subject or partial subjectN/A

Total hours/days requiredN/A

Location of WBL activity (region)N/A

WBL addtional requirementsN/A

Graduate capabilities & intended learning outcomes

Graduate Capabilities

Intended Learning Outcomes

01. Demonstrate knowledge of the fundamental principles and doctrines which underpin Australian constitutional law.
02. Demonstrate advanced problem- solving skills using constitutional and interpretative methods.
03. Critique principles and doctrines of Australian constitutional law.

Subject options

Select to view your study options…

Start date between: and    Key dates

City Campus, 2021, Semester 2, Blended


Online enrolmentYes

Maximum enrolment sizeN/A

Subject Instance Co-ordinatorMadelaine Chiam

Class requirements

Lecture/SeminarWeek: 31 - 43
One 2.50 hours lecture/seminar per week on weekdays at night from week 31 to week 43 and delivered via face-to-face.

Unscheduled Online ClassWeek: 31 - 43
One 6.00 hours unscheduled online class per study period on weekdays at night from week 31 to week 43 and delivered via online.


Assessment elementCommentsCategoryContributionHurdle% ILO*

Online test (Word equivalent 1000 words)

N/AOther written examIndividualNo20 SILO3, SILO6

Written Assignment (2000 words)

N/AAssignmentIndividualNo30 SILO3, SILO6

Final Examination - 3 Hours (3000 word equivalent)

N/ACentral examIndividualNo50 SILO3, SILO4, SILO6