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Graduate Diploma of Laws


Faculty of Arts
Graduate Diploma of Laws (GradDipLaw)
Admission Requirement:
• Australian level 7 bachelor's qualification or recognised equivalent
• GPA of 4.20 (out of 7.00)
English Language Proficiency:
IELTS of 7.0 overall with minimum 6.5 in each band, or equivalent
Study Mode:
Full-time, Part-time
Attendance Mode:
Internal, External
Candidature Length:
Full-time: 0.5 years - 1 year
North Ryde — Session 1 (February)
North Ryde — Session 2 (July)
External — Session 1 (February)
External — Session 2 (July)
Volume of Learning:
Equivalent to 1 year
General requirements:
Minimum number of credit points 32
Minimum number of credit points at 600 level 8
Minimum number of credit points at 800 level 24
Completion of other specific minimum requirements as set out below

In order to graduate students must ensure that they have satisfied all of the general requirements of the award.

Specific minimum requirements:

Credit points

600 level

Foundations of Law (4)
International Law (4)

800 level

8cp from
The Law of Obligations I - Contracts (4)
Theories of Law and Justice (4)
Applied Legal Ethics (4)
Company Law (4)
16cp from
LAW units at 800 level
LAWS units at 800 level


Program Learning Outcomes and Additional Information
AQF Level Level 8 Graduate Diploma
CRICOS Code 083763C
Overview and Aims of the Program The Graduate Diploma in Law is available to non-lawyers. It provides focused foundational knowledge and training of skills to prepare students for further postgraduate study in law or to provide training for individuals in allied professional fields, such as in government, advocacy, management or compliance roles in private and commercial settings. The level of preparation in the Diploma is more extensive than the Certificate as it permits students to complete advanced postgraduate units in law or to undertake additional subjects in core doctrinal areas.
Graduate Capabilities

The Graduate Capabilities Framework articulates the fundamentals that underpin all of Macquarie’s academic programs. It expresses these as follows:

Cognitive capabilities
(K) discipline specific knowledge and skills
(T) critical, analytical and integrative thinking
(P) problem solving and research capability
(I) creative and innovative

Interpersonal or social capabilities
(C) effective communication
(E) engaged and ethical local and global citizens
(A) socially and environmentally active and responsible

Personal capabilities
(J) capable of professional and personal judgement and initiative
(L) commitment to continuous learning

Program Learning Outcomes By the end of this program it is anticipated you should be able to:

1. demonstrated understanding of foundational concepts and skills in law across a range of doctrinal areas (K)
2. demonstrate your understanding of the broader interdisciplinary, international and comparative contexts for the application of legal principles (K, E)
3. apply advanced critical thinking and judgment in the recognition and resolution of legal problems (T, P)
4. apply advanced legal research and analytical skills to resolve contemporary legal problems (P)
5. communicate clearly and effectively in both oral and written forms to specialist and generalist audiences (C)
6. demonstrate the capacity for self-directed learning necessary for further postgraduate study in law (J).
Learning and Teaching Methods The Graduate Diploma in Law provides focused foundational knowledge and skills training for non-lawyers that will prepare them for further postgraduate study in law (via relevant pathways into the Diploma of Law, J.D. or LL.M.), while also building skills relevant to current work environments. The program emphasizes critical thinking, research, analytical and judgment skills, as well as developing the capacity to work in a self-directed way, all which will enhance the student’s ability to study at postgraduate level as well as to be able to deal with real world legal and policy challenges.

In order to achieve this aim, teaching and learning in this program is undertaken by means of various methods: lectures, tutorials, seminars, intensive on-campus sessions and supervised on-line activities. Lectures are delivered by experts in the legal fields relevant to the different units of the program. Lecturers use visual aids such as power-point slides, video clips and web-based materials. They also provide in advance appropriate readings that allow students to understand the content being taught. Lectures are recorded (and some of them are pre-recorded) for external students and for internal students unable to attend them or willing to listen to them again. Lectures are structured for the purpose of introducing each topic in a way that allows students to comprehend the compulsory and complementary readings and to participate in the seminars, tutorials and intensive on-campus sessions.

Internal students will attend a lecture followed by a seminar or a tutorial that is scheduled either in the week the lecture is delivered or in the following week. External students attend an on-campus session that is usually scheduled during the mid-semester break. Student-centered activities take place in seminars, tutorials and intensive on-campus session. In those activities, students divided in small groups have the opportunity to improve the knowledge acquired in the lecture and apply it to solve hypothetical or real life legal issues, or to develop critical perspectives on current legal problems. Those teaching activities are designed to train students in legal critical thinking, legal research skills, and in the ability to perform independent academic work at post-graduate level.

Finally, each unit of the Graduate Diploma in Law has an on-line website. Schedules of activities, readings, lecture slides, assessment tasks and other relevant information are uploaded onto the website. Each website also has one or more discussion forum in which students can ask questions to lecturers and tutors, discuss topics with their peers, and carry out supervised teaching and learning activities, such as collaborative research projects.
Assessment At the end of the Graduate Diploma in Law it is expected that students will be able to demonstrate understanding of foundational concepts and skills necessary for further study in law at a postgraduate level, apply advanced critical thinking and judgment in the recognition and resolution of legal problems, apply legal research and analytical skills to the identification of legal issues and resolution of specific legal problems, communicate clearly and effectively in both oral and written forms to specialist and generalist audiences, and demonstrate the capacity for self-directed learning necessary for postgraduate study. In addition, they will have developed appreciation of the broader context to which law and legal principles have application including interdisciplinary, international and comparative perspectives.

In order to achieve these learning outcomes, assessment in this program is undertaken by means of various tasks, including research essays, assignments and exams, online quizzes, collaborative projects, oral presentations, and class and online participation.

• Research essays require carrying out an independent research project, in which students should search for relevant primary and secondary sources, classify, analyse and evaluate them, and develop an original argument in written form for supporting a reasonable answer to a research question.
• Assignments and exams usually require students to apply acquired knowledge in order to solve complex theoretical or practical legal problems. Assignments and exams can also include analysis of cases, interpretation of statutes and the development of law reform proposals.
• Online quizzes are designed to test the development of precise legal skills, such as case briefing and statutory interpretation or the acquisition of certain substantial knowledge.
• Collaborative projects normally involve collective reflection on complex legal issues that allow for different perspectives. These projects aim to prepare students for environments of group-work in which disagreement is unavoidable. Oral presentations are typically the final stage of a research task. They seek to enhance the development of oral communication skills that are basic in the legal practice. Finally, active learning and engagement in each unit can be tested by means of class and online participation.
• Written essays, assignments and exams should usually be submitted via turnitin. This helps ensure compliance by students to the academic honesty policy of the University.

Each assessment task is marked against a rubric. Each rubric spells out the marking criteria that markers will use to determine the level of performance of students in the relevant task. Rubrics will be provided to students for each assessment prior to the due date. Moreover, detailed written feedback is provided for all written assignments. Students may seek additional feedback in consultation with the original marker or unit convenor. There is no automatic right to a remark for any assignment. Feedback is provided in a timely manner and within a timeframe to allow students to digest it and use it as guide to improving the completion of the other assessments in the unit. Grade appeals may be made at the end of each semester and are determined according to the Macquarie University policy on appeals against grade.
Recognition of Prior Learning

Macquarie University may recognise prior formal, informal and non-formal learning for the purpose of granting credit towards, or admission into, a program. The recognition of these forms of learning is enabled by the University’s Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) Policy (see and its associated Procedures and Guidelines. The RPL pages contain information on how to apply, links to registers, and the approval processes for recognising prior learning for entry or credit. 

Domestic Students
For undergraduate RPL information visit
For domestic postgraduate RPL information visit

International Students
For RPL information visit

Support for Learning

Macquarie University aspires to be an inclusive and supportive community of learners where all students are given the opportunity to meet their academic and personal goals. The University offers a comprehensive range of free and accessible student support services which include academic advice, counselling and psychological services, advocacy services and welfare advice, careers and employment, disability services and academic skills workshops amongst others. There is also a bulk billing medical service located on campus.

Further information can be found at

Campus Wellbeing contact details:
Phone: +61 2 9850 7497

Program Standards and Quality

The program is subject to an ongoing comprehensive process of quality review in accordance with a pre-determined schedule that complies with the Higher Education Standards Framework. The review is overseen by Macquarie University's peak academic governance body, the Academic Senate and takes into account feedback received from students, staff and external stakeholders.

Graduate Destinations and Employability This program enables students without a law background to acquire foundational knowledge and skills in law to enhance their ability to work in national and international corporate and government environments, and teachers, as well as private settings, to deal with contemporary legal and policy challenges. They can articulate through this award into further post-graduate level study (JD, LLM, MITCL or MILGP).
Assessment Regulations

This program is subject to Macquarie University regulations, including but not limited to those specified in the Assessment Policy, Academic Honesty Policy, the Final Examination Policy and relevant University Rules. For all approved University policies, procedures, guidelines and schedules visit

Accreditation This is an Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) accredited qualification.

2017 Unit Information

When offered:
S1 Day
Permission of Executive Dean of Faculty
HSC Chinese, CHN113, CHN148