This unit of study introduces students to the main bodies of literature in the sociology of law. These include studies on the sociology of justice and relationship between justice and crime, on courts and the delivery of justice, and on punishment and imprisonment. Students will have an opportunity to explore in-depth a particular area of justice, such as the law and Indigenous Australians, affirmative action, the law and young people, theories of policing, and explanations of the causes of crime. The unit of study will be underpinned by a survey of classical and contemporary social theory as applied to law and order.

Unit details

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Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Critically review the main frameworks of understanding in the Sociology of Law;  
  2. Appraise contemporary debates about law, regulation and social control elements of the basis of social order;  
  3. Apply theoretical tools drawn from sociology and the history of the human sciences to current problems in law and social regulation; and  
  4. Prepare a discussion paper and written submission/paper on a public policy paper on social order.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Exercise Short answer preliminary exercise in class 20%
Report Tutorial presentation and research report (750 words) 30%
Essay Major essay (2000 words) 50%

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