CONSTITUTION-These notes provide comprehensive descriptions and examples of the division of powers outlined within the constitution as well as the methods to alter/change the constitution such as a referendum, high court interpretation and referral of powers. Within these methods is a thorough discussion of factors influencing the effectiveness of these methods.
PARLIAMENT AND THE CITIZEN-Australia’s parliamentary system both federal and state-structure (role of the houses/effectiveness etc), westminster system, separation of powers, responsible and representative government, VLRC (formal law reform body), formal and informal methods of influencing change in the law, overall effectiveness of parliament, contemporary examples.
PRECEDENCE- court hierarchy, doctrine of precedence, ability of judges to make laws, methods available to judges when interpreting a law, statutory interpretation (effectiveness and reasons for), strengths and weaknesses of law making through the courts, relationship between courts and parliament
DISPUTE RESOLUTION METHODS-reasons for court hierarchy and it’s effectiveness in comparison to a one level system, overviews of both the original and appellate jurisdiction of the mag, county, supreme courts, Dispute resolution methods used through the courts and VCAT, alternative dispute resolution, strengths and weaknesses of ADR/VCAT/Courts
COURT PROCESSES AND PROCEDURES- factors that contribute to an effective legal system, adversary system, comparison to the inquisitorial system, adversary system reforms, criminal pre-trial procedures inc. bail, reman, committal proceedings, civil pre-trial procedures inc. pleadings, discovery and directions hearings, Post-trial procedures such as criminal sanctions (esp. imprisonment, fines and CCO) and civil remedies (esp. damages, injunctions), aims of criminal sanctions, effectiveness of civil pre-trial procedures, jury system and its effectiveness, factors that influence the composition of juries, comparison between civil and criminal pre-trial procedures
At the bottom of the VCE Legal Studies notes is a list of important statutes and laws/acts that are helpful throughout the course as well as relevant sections of the constitution which are essential to prove your knowledge and separate yourself from other students.