This foundation unit introduces students to the 'nuts and bolts' of the Australian Legal system and legal reasoning. In addition, it offers a selection of socio-political contexts within which to situate and critically evaluate the contemporary Australian legal system. This unit (BLB1101) provides a foundation for the study of law at Victoria University and, as such, successful completion is a pre-requisite for progression through the Law course. This unit: - Provides students with a working foundation in the technical structure of Australian legal systems and legal reasoning, using applied practical teaching and learning methods; - Exposes students to ways of making sense of Australian legal systems and legal process in a legal academic way, using selected contexts from criminal and private law; - Introduces students to the broader contexts in which legal issues may arise, including the political, social, historical, philosophical and economic contexts; and - Inducts students in the ways of the lawyer, including and legal reasoning and appropriate language use and structure - using reflective, applied and theory-based teaching and learning methods.

Unit details

Study level:
Credit points:
Unit code:

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Analyse the components of Australian legal systems, and elaborate how these components intersect and interact, and how lawyers use these systems;  
  2. Communicate using appropriate professional legal language and express ideas and perspectives;  
  3. Situate and analyse Australian legal systems within broader contemporary social and political contexts;  
  4. Articulate and write about law in a coherent and professional way; and  
  5. Work collaboratively and independently to use legal reasoning, (including statutory interpretation and application of case law) to create and present logical structured answers to problem-style legal questions.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Test Quiz 1 10%
Assignment Research assignment 30%
Assignment Critical Reflection and Legal Reasoning Task 50%
Test Final Quiz 10%

Required reading

Foundations of Australian Law and Legal Writing: A custom publication for Victoria University,
Raponi, K,de Saint, J, O'Sullivan, C, (eds) (2022),

Australian Guide to Legal Citation 4th
Melbourne University Law Review Association
Available in hard copy or online:

Additional readings as listed in Unit of Study Guide and/or unit's VU Collaborate space.