Advanced Legal Research Methods

    Unit code: LLW5900 | Study level: Undergraduate
    (Generally, 1 credit = 10 hours of classes and independent study.)
    City Campus
    Online Real Time
    Must be enrolled in course {LHCR, LHGE, LHLA, LHLB LHLW or LHWP}
    (Or equivalent to be determined by unit coordinator)


    This unit of study provides an advanced program of research training for students of proven academic ability. It provides structured and systematic examination of the nature, aims and methodologies of legal research as a foundation for dissertation design and writing. Included in the unit of study content are examinations of fundamental aspects of the legal research process, including problem definition, methodology, design of the research proposal, considerations of ethical issues, quantitative research in law, questionnaire and survey design, interdisciplinary approaches to investigating legal controversies, comparative research and the publication of legal research. Also included is a systematic review of the main online research tools for finding primary and secondary legal sources, including foreign legal materials. Overall, the unit provides students the opportunity to apply and modify investigative, analytical and critical skills gained and developed through the coursework units to the resolution of a legal problem.

    Learning Outcomes

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

    1. Exemplify high level competency in legal research in respect of all categories of research materials: primary and secondary; domestic and foreign;
    2. Conceptually map the intersection between theory and practice with intellectual independence;
    3. Exercise critical thinking and judgement in the learning and application of law, drawing on knowledge of research principles and methods of law and cognate disciplines; and
    4. Extrapolate and interpret legal research implications, knowledge and skills and create and present a research dissertation plan to provide solutions to complex legal problems related to local and global communities.


    For Melbourne campuses

    Assessment type: Exercise
    Grade: 10%
    Preliminary outline of research form
    Assessment type: Report
    Grade: 60%
    Research Proposal
    Assessment type: Presentation
    Grade: 30%
    Presentation of Research Proposal

    Required reading

    Nemes and Coss' Effective Legal Research
    Bott, B & Talbot-Stokes, R, 2015| LexisNexis

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