Criminal Justice Systems

Unit code: ASL1003 | Study level: Undergraduate
(Generally, 1 credit = 10 hours of classes and independent study.)
Footscray Park
Online Real Time


This unit is offered in the First Year Model where you will study the unit intensively over a four-week block. In this unit we will explore the concepts of crime and criminality. This is because how we as a society understand these concepts, shapes how we construct and use our criminal justice systems in order to respond to crime. We will see that there are many different ways in which ideas about crime and criminality are produced and shared amongst members of society, including those representations of crime produced by, for example, stories circulated by the media, case law produced through the courts, statistics produced by government bodies, speeches made by politicians, and expert analysis produced by academics. By doing this, we shall see that the concepts of crime and criminality are complex. As we shall also see, these complex ideas about what crime is are linked to the systems through which crime is addressed. Through our studies in this unit we shall begin to appreciate the complexity of the Australian criminal justice systems.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Differentiate between conceptions of crime and criminality;
  2. Analyse diverse representations of crime and criminality to interpret the complexity of these concepts.
  3. Investigate relations between representations of crime, criminality and responses to them, and;
  4. Work collaboratively to collate and critically assess research information from diverse sources.
  5. Participate in an academic community through reflective and critical engagement in academic texts and understanding of principles of academic integrity.

Study as a single unit

This unit can be studied on its own, without enrolling in a full degree.

Learn more about single units of study at VU


For Melbourne campuses

Academic Integrity is an integral part of University skills. All four Academic Integrity Modules must be successfully completed in order to pass the unit.

Assessment type: Test
Grade: 10%
Quiz matching activity
Assessment type: Exercise
Grade: 40%
Summary reports (2 reports A and B)
Assessment type: Review
Grade: 5%
Peer review
Assessment type: Case Study
Grade: 45%
Group presentation and report
Assessment type: Other
Grade: 0%
Evidence of completion of the Academic Integrity Modules (Hurdle)

Required reading

Students will be provided with a reading list via VU Collaborate.

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following course(s):

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