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Support Material
for

Legal Studies

Stage 6 Syllabus


2010

© 2010 Copyright Board of Studies NSW for and on behalf of the Crown in right of the State of New South Wales.


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Published by Board of Studies NSW

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Internet: www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au

2010552
Contents
1 Structure and content of the Legal Studies syllabus 4

Structure of the Preliminary course 8

Structure of the HSC course 9

Assessment 9


2 Programming 10

The programming model 10

Sample Preliminary course Scope and Sequence 12

Sample HSC course Scope and Sequence 13

3 Sample Preliminary course program 14

Part I: The legal system 14

Part II: The individual and the law 30

Part III: Law in practice. 38

The research and investigation process 42

Analysing a website 44

4 Sample Preliminary course assessment tasks 46

Task 1: Law reform webquest 47

Task 2: Law in practice: Investigation 52
5 Sample HSC course program 54

Part I of the core: Crime 54

Part II of the core: Human rights 68

Option 1: Consumers 73

Option 2: Global environmental protection 81

Option 3: Family 86

Option 4: Indigenous Peoples 93

Option 5: Shelter 98

Option 6: Workplace 106

Option 7: World order 115


6 Sample HSC course assessment tasks 122

Task 1: Human rights 122

Task 2: Crime 125


1 Structure and content of the Legal Studies syllabus

The Legal Studies Stage 6 Syllabus (2009) is a revision of, and replaces, the Legal Studies Stage 6 Syllabus (1999). It will be implemented for Year 11 students in 2010 and will be first examined in the HSC in 2011.


The syllabus has been improved in the following ways:

  • It has fewer and clearer outcomes and they are organised in relation to objectives.

  • There is a simpler, more accessible content framework in which the relevant themes are integrated.
  • It provides enhanced opportunities for students to explore contemporary legal issues.


  • The content in each section of the syllabus has been reviewed to ensure greater coherence and engagement for students.

  • Overlap between the Preliminary and HSC courses has been removed.



What is similar?





  • Much of the content in the Legal Studies Stage 6 Syllabus (2009) builds on the 1999 syllabus. Learn about statements continue to describe the scope and depth of course content and outcomes.



  • Part I The Legal System continues to examine basic legal concepts, sources of law, the constitution and the operation of the legal system.



  • Part II The Individual and the Law covers similar content as the previous topic The Individual and the State, including rights and responsibilities and resolving disputes.



  • Part III Law in Practice still provides opportunities for students to undertake case studies to further understanding of principles of law covered in Parts I and II.



  • In the HSC course, students will continue to study the core topics Crime
    and Human Rights, and two Optional Studies. Crime and Human Rights have been strengthened, making up 50% of the HSC course total. The content is more clearly outlined and any major overlap with the Preliminary course has been removed.



  • Current programs may be modified to meet the requirements of the new syllabus and many existing units of work can form the basis of effective programs. Many existing resources will continue to be relevant.

What is different?



Course structure

  • Themes and Challenges replace Themes and Key Questions/Issues, ensuring a simpler overview. Themes and Challenges relate directly to each content area and are designed to be integrated into each topic.



  • Learn about and learn to statements have been incorporated into each topic to further clarify content, depth of knowledge required, relevant skills and learning outcomes. Previously there were no learn to statements in the syllabus. The structure of the Preliminary course has been simplified to ensure there is no repetition of content with HSC material and to ensure that topics are more relevant and engaging for students.

The Preliminary course:



  • Part I The Legal System now includes a more detailed examination of law reform and law reform in action. A law reform issue that is contemporary, relevant and engaging for students is now to be studied.


  • Part II the Individual and the Law has replaced The Individual and the State. This includes a new sub-topic The Individual and Technology which considers legal implications of the use of technology and its impact on the individual.



  • Part III the Law in Practice replaces The Law in Focus with enhanced opportunities to investigate a wider choice of topics that deepen understanding of the principles covered in Parts I and II. Students will have opportunities to develop the skills in research, analysis and communication that underpin the process of investigation. Law in Practice may be taught as a stand-alone topic or may be integrated with Parts 1 and 2, allowing greater flexibility for teachers.

The HSC course:


  • Parts I and II represent a strengthening of the Core topics Crime and Human Rights. Crime has been increased to a weighting of 30% and includes a section on young offenders and law reform in more depth. Human Rights allows the opportunity to study a choice of contemporary issues.




  • The Law and Justice section has been removed.



  • The Part III option Technological Change has been removed.

Outcomes

The revised syllabus continues to place emphasis on what students know and can do as a result of studying Legal Studies. The learning outcomes continue to be differentiated between Preliminary and HSC courses and cater for the full range of students.


In the syllabus the outcomes have been reduced in number and are:

  • clearer and more accessible for students and teachers

  • organised in relation to the objectives

  • differentiated between the Preliminary and HSC courses

  • linked explicitly to the syllabus content

  • suitable for the full range of students.


Content

Content has been written in clearer and simpler language. The layout of each topic is more straightforward. Significant overlap of content between the Preliminary and HSC courses has been removed. Opportunities to investigate relevant and engaging legal issues and to develop research skills have been included. A more logical sequence of content has been adopted across all topic areas.


Assessment

There are changes in the internal assessment advice to simplify and improve assessment requirements and allow for greater flexibility for teachers. Teachers may use their discretion in determining the manner in which they allocate tasks within course content. The Board of Studies considers that three to five assessment tasks are sufficient.

The mandatory oral task required in the previous assessment components has been removed.

The structure of the examination has changed.


Sections I and II form the Core, examining both Crime and Human Rights.

Section III examines the seven Options.

A specimen paper package will be available on the Board’s website at http://www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/syllabus_hsc/legal-studies.html

The State Library’s Legal Information Access Centre (LIAC) offers resources specifically written for the HSC Legal Studies syllabus. These may be accessed on: www.legalanswers.sl.nsw.gov.au/students_teachers – HSC Legal Studies.


Features of the Content pages

The principal focus provides the broad overview of the topic




Option 3: Family 25% of course time
Principal focus: Through the use of contemporary examples, students investigate the legal nature of family relationships and the effectiveness of the law in achieving justice.
Themes and challenges to be incorporated throughout this topic:




  • t
    Themes and challenges

    emphasise key aspects of the topic to be integrated in the content.


    he role of the law in encouraging cooperation and resolving conflict in regard to family

  • issues of compliance and non-compliance

  • changes to family law as a response to changing values of the community

  • role of law reform in achieving just outcomes for family members and society

  • effectiveness of legal and non-legal responses in achieving just outcomes for family members.


Learn to statements describe what students learn to do as a result of engaging with the subject matter.



Learn about statements detail the subject matter to be studied. All content in this section is to be studied.



Students learn about:
1. Nature of Family Law

  • concept of family law

  • legal requirements of marriage

  • alternative family relationships
  • legal rights and obligations of parents and children


  • adoption



Students learn to:


  • discuss the difficulty of defining family and the changing concepts of family

  • distinguish between state and federal jurisdiction in family law

  • outline the legal requirements of a valid marriage

  • explain the legal rights and obligations of parents and children, including those derived from international law



In designing teaching and learning programs, teachers should consider integrating the principal focus, themes and challenges, learn about and learn to statements, together with the relevant course outcomes.




Structure of the Preliminary course

The Preliminary course in Legal Studies is organised into three parts:



  • Part I – The Legal System (40% of course time)

  • Part II – The Individual and the Law (30% of course time)

  • Part III – Law in Practice (30% of course time).



Part I – The legal system


Students undertake all sections of Part I but have a choice of a contemporary law reform issue in section 5, Law reform in action.

Part II – The individual and the law


Students undertake all sections but have a choice of a contemporary issue in section 3, The individual and technology.

Part III – Law in practice

Part III of the Preliminary course is designed to provide opportunities for students to deepen their understanding of the principles of law covered in Parts I and II. Students will develop the skills in research, analysis and communication that underpin the process of investigation.
Part III can be treated as a separate unit or integrated with Part I and/or Part II. At least TWO contemporary issues should be studied. Students should be provided with opportunities to synthesise information from a range of sources (including cases, legislation, media and international instruments) to support a legal argument. Topics should extend particular areas of individual or group interests.
In the selection of a contemporary issue teachers need to consider:


  • how it may be of particular relevance or interest to students

  • the extent to which it enables a deeper understanding of the legal system and law in practice as reflected in the aims and objectives of the syllabus

  • how it meets the syllabus requirements of the Preliminary course

  • the extent to which it may provide a foundation for the HSC course.

While teachers have the flexibility to determine the depth and breadth of study of the contemporary issues and to select appropriate content to address the learn about and learn to statements, teachers must ensure there is no overlap or significant duplication with the HSC course.



Structure of the HSC course

The HSC course in Legal Studies is organised into three parts:



  • Core Part I – Crime (30% of course time)

  • Core Part II – Human Rights (20% of course time)
  • Part III – Options (two options, each of which accounts for 25% of course time)




Part I – Crime


Students undertake all sections of Part I Crime.

Part II – Human Rights


Students undertake all sections of Part II – Human Rights and have a choice of a contemporary issue which illustrates the promotion and/or enforcement of human rights.

Part III – Options


Students must study TWO of the seven options. Students undertake all sections of each Option.


Assessment



Assessment components and weightings

The suggested components and weightings for the Preliminary course are set out below. There should be a balance between the assessment of knowledge and understanding outcomes, skills outcomes and course content.




Component

Weighting

Knowledge and understanding of course content

60%

Research

20%

Communication

20%



HSC course

The mandatory components and weightings for the HSC course are set out below. The internal assessment mark for Legal Studies Stage 6 is to be based on the HSC course only. There must be a balance between the assessment of knowledge and understanding outcomes, skills outcomes and course content.




Component

Weighting

Knowledge and understanding of course content


60%

Research

20%

Communication

20%



Teachers may use their discretion in determining the manner in which they allocate tasks within the course content. The Board of Studies considers that three to five assessment tasks are sufficient.

2 Programming




The programming model

The sample material in this document is provided to illustrate an approach to programming using syllabus outcomes.


The outcomes in the Legal Studies Stage 6 Syllabus are designed to:

  • provide clear expectations of what students know and can do by the end of each of the Preliminary and HSC courses

  • identify the progress expected of students from the Preliminary to the HSC course

  • assist in the development of teaching and learning programs.

In programming the course, planning units of work and developing an assessment program, it is important that teachers ensure that the outcomes are addressed. The following pages provide an example of an approach that teachers might find useful when developing teaching and learning and assessment programs that address the outcomes.


The Scope and Sequences for both the Preliminary and HSC courses (pages 12 and 13) reflect the total planning for the course. The Scope and Sequence allows teachers to plan:

  • the outcomes to be addressed in each section of the course. This will enable teachers to determine at which stages of the course particular outcomes will be developed or reinforced


  • the programs to be taught and the time allocated to each topic

  • the relationship of the assessment program to the teaching and learning programs.

In developing the Scope and Sequence the following steps were used:


Step 1: Determine syllabus requirements, topics and time allocation
Step 2: Identify targeted outcomes for each topic

It is important to note that outcomes for Legal Studies relate to the whole course and are not linked to particular topics. In designing teaching and learning programs teachers should be clear about where and when the outcomes are explicitly taught during the course. The Scope and Sequences on pages 12 and 13 demonstrate this process by using selected topic areas to target particular outcomes. This is not to suggest that other outcomes are not being addressed through the topic. However, it is the targeted outcomes that provide the focus for the teaching and learning activities.


It should be noted that the selection of targeted outcomes for each topic is provided as an example only. Teachers will devise programs to meet the needs of their students. The sample is offered as a template that teachers may find useful for planning their own programs.
Step 3: Link the targeted outcomes and the assessment program

Placing assessment tasks within the Scope and Sequence enables clear links to be made to the related topics and indicates timing throughout the year.


Teachers should note the following features of an assessment program:

  • Assessment of learning outcomes is an integral part of the teaching and learning process.

  • Assessment of targeted outcomes occurs after they are addressed through teaching and learning strategies.
  • Outcomes do not need to be assessed every time they are targeted for teaching and learning.


  • Well-designed assessment tasks can effectively assess more than one outcome.

  • All outcomes (excluding those explicitly addressing values and attitudes) need to be assessed as part of the assessment program.

  • Assessment tasks need to be appropriate for the learning outcomes to which they are related (for example, an examination/test item may not be a valid instrument for assessing outcomes related to historical investigation).



Sample Preliminary course Scope and Sequence








Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Week 5

Week 6

Week 7

Week 8

Week 9

Week 10

Part I: The legal system – 12 weeks. Outcomes: P1, P2, P3, P4, P5, P6, P7.


Term1

Basic legal concepts



Sources of contemporary Australian law


Assessment task 1 – 20%

Classification of law




Law reform and

Law reform in action











Part II: The individual and the law – 9 weeks. Outcomes: P1, P3, P5, P6, P7.

Term 2

Law reform and

Law reform in action
*Assessment task 2

exam 20%

Your rights and responsibilities



Resolving disputes


Contemporary issue: The individual and technology












Part III: Law in practice – 9 weeks. Outcomes: P1, P4, P5, P6, P7, P8, P9, P10.

Term 3

Contemp.

Issue

(cont.)


Examine at least TWO contemporary issues that involve an Australian/s in either a domestic or another jurisdiction.


*Assessment task 3–30% Assessment task 4 – exam 30%



*NOTE: This Scope and Sequence treats Law in practice as a separate topic, but it may be integrated throughout the course. Timing for assessment tasks is a suggestion only.

Outcomes P8, P9 and P10 may be introduced according to the individual school program.

Sample HSC course Scope and Sequence





Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Week 5

Week 6

Week 7

Week 8

Week 9

Week 10

Term 4


Part I of the core: Crime – 10 weeks. Outcomes: H1, H2, H3, H4, H5, H6, H7.




The nature of crime


The criminal investigation process

The criminal trial process

Sentencing and punishment
* Assessment task 1

20%




Term 1




Part II of the core: Human rights – 6 weeks. Outcomes: H1, H2, H3, H4, H5, H6, H7.

Young offenders


International crime



The nature and development of human rights

Promoting and enforcing human rights

Investigation of a contemporary issue

EXAMINATION PERIOD
* Assessment task 2

30%




Term 2

Part III: Options – Option 1 Family – 8 weeks. Outcomes: H1, H2, H3, H5, H6, H7.


Option 2 Shelter –
8 weeks


The nature of family law



Responses to problems in family relationships

Contemporary issues concerning family law
* Assessment task 3 – 20%

The nature of shelter




Term 3

(Shelter continued…)

Legal protection and remedies associated with securing shelter


TRIAL EXAMINATION PERIOD
* Assessment task 4 – 30%

Contemporary issues concerning shelter

REVISION


*NOTE: This Scope and Sequence is a suggestion only; options can be replaced to suit individual schools. Timing for assessment tasks is a suggestion only.
Outcomes H8, H9 and H10 may be integrated throughout according to the individual school program.


3 Sample Preliminary course program






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