LAWS13021 - Criminal Law in Practice

General Information

Unit Synopsis

Criminal Law in Practice is delivered via intensive mode. The unit will build on your existing knowledge of criminal law with an emphasis on developing practical oral and written communication skills designed to assist you in the practice of criminal law. You will complete advocacy based assessment tasks that will require you to present legal argument, orally, via the use of zoom. You will analyse fundamental aspects of criminal law and apply the law using a practical methodology. In this unit you will study practical topics relating to specific criminal law issues including police powers and responsibilities in arrest and questioning, applying for bail, the registry committal and committal hearing process, procedures to ensure a fair trial, the role of the jury and verdict, sentencing of youth offenders and adult offenders and the appeals process to the District Court of Queensland, the Queensland Court of Appeal and the High Court of Australia. The unit has a maximum number of students who can enrol due to the advocacy based assessment tasks.


Level Undergraduate
Unit Level 3
Credit Points 6
Student Contribution Band SCA Band 4
Fraction of Full-Time Student Load 0.125
Pre-requisites or Co-requisites

Pre-requisites: 48 credit points of law units including LAWS11060 and

Co-requisite LAWS13010 

Important note: Students enrolled in a subsequent unit who failed their pre-requisite unit, should drop the subsequent unit before the census date or within 10 working days of Fail grade notification. Students who do not drop the unit in this timeframe cannot later drop the unit without academic and financial liability. See details in the Assessment Policy and Procedure (Higher Education Coursework).

Class Timetable View Unit Timetable
Residential School No Residential School

Unit Availabilities from Term 2 - 2023

Term 1 - 2024 Profile

Attendance Requirements

All on-campus students are expected to attend scheduled classes – in some units, these classes are identified as a mandatory (pass/fail) component and attendance is compulsory. International students, on a student visa, must maintain a full time study load and meet both attendance and academic progress requirements in each study period (satisfactory attendance for International students is defined as maintaining at least an 80% attendance record).

Assessment Overview

Recommended Student Time Commitment

Each 6-credit Undergraduate unit at CQUniversity requires an overall time commitment of an average of 12.5 hours of study per week, making a total of 150 hours for the unit.

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Task Weighting
1. Practical Assessment 40%
2. Written Assessment 60%

This is a graded unit: your overall grade will be calculated from the marks or grades for each assessment task, based on the relative weightings shown in the table above. You must obtain an overall mark for the unit of at least 50%, or an overall grade of ‘pass’ in order to pass the unit. If any ‘pass/fail’ tasks are shown in the table above they must also be completed successfully (‘pass’ grade). You must also meet any minimum mark requirements specified for a particular assessment task, as detailed in the ‘assessment task’ section (note that in some instances, the minimum mark for a task may be greater than 50%).

Consult the University’s Grades and Results Policy for more details of interim results and final grades

Past Exams

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Previous Feedback

Term 1 - 2023 : The overall satisfaction for students in the last offering of this course was 93.33% (`Agree` and `Strongly Agree` responses), based on a 37.50% response rate.

Feedback, Recommendations and Responses

Every unit is reviewed for enhancement each year. At the most recent review, the following staff and student feedback items were identified and recommendations were made.

Source: Survey, email correspondence with the UC and in class.
Students commended the availability of the unit materials, podcasts and assessment tasks two weeks before the unit went live on Moodle.
The UC will continue to have all unit materials, podcasts and the first assessment task available for students to access on the day Moodle goes live.
Action Taken
All unit materials were made available the day Moodle went live.
Source: Survey, email correspondence from students to the UC.
Students commended the practical based advocacy assessment tasks.
The UC will continue to develop assessment tasks that are based on real-life criminal law scenarios with the objective of developing and refining advocacy skills that are necessary to prepare students for legal practice.
Action Taken
The unit continued to assess advocacy skills based on criminal law scenarios to ensure the unit was authentic.
Source: Student feedback
Students gave positive feedback that all materials were available when Moodle went live.
The UC will ensure that all material is available the day Moodle goes live.
Action Taken
Source: Student feedback
Students gave positive feedback that the unit materials and the design of assessment tasks were relevant to the degree and preparing them for legal practice.
The UC when updating the unit materials and designing the assessment tasks, will ensure the materials and assessment tasks are authentic and prepare students for legal practice, which can be achieved through criminal law scenarios.
Action Taken
Unit learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  1. Research and apply principles of criminal law from legislation, rules and case law to the analysis of practical criminal law scenarios
  2. Demonstrate persuasive written and oral communication skills in response to practical criminal law scenarios
  3. Apply critical legal thinking, analytical reasoning and professional judgment that demonstrate an in-depth understanding of criminal law issues.

Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Learning Outcomes
Assessment Tasks Learning Outcomes
1 2 3
1 - Practical Assessment
2 - Written Assessment
Alignment of Graduate Attributes to Learning Outcomes
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Graduate Attributes Learning Outcomes
1 2 3
1 - Communication
2 - Problem Solving
3 - Critical Thinking
4 - Information Literacy
Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Graduate Attributes
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Assessment Tasks Graduate Attributes
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10