CULT 3017 Legislation, Courts and Policing

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 101568

Coordinator Kate Linklater Opens in new window

Description This subject introduces students to the adversarial system, the legislative context of everyday policing, and the different forms of state and federal courts. It includes an emphasis on police powers (NSW and elsewhere), summary and indictable offences, and the role of enforcement and discretion. In particular alternative resolution and specialist courts are described and their role and function analysed. This subject is of value to students in policing, criminology, law, and community welfare.

School Social Sciences

Discipline Criminology

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 4 10cp

Check your fees via the Fees page.

Level Undergraduate Level 3 subject

Incompatible Subjects JUST 2012 - Law Evidence and Procedure

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  1. Critically analyse a criminal or traffic court matter.
  2. Describe the general principles of criminal liability in relation to the major substantive criminal offence categories.
  3. Explain the laws and acts which are most relevant to the policing role.
  4. Consider alternatives available to police to prevent individuals entering the criminal justice system.

Subject Content

The adversarial system (exception of the coroner?fs court).
Awareness of issues specific to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, other indigenous peoples, and peoples from disadvantaged backgrounds.
Court processes (observation field trip).
The court system (Actus Reus and Mens Rea; indictable and summary offences; alternative resolutions; specialist courts).
Types of law; Acts, statutes (state, inter-state; commonwealth).
Law Enforcement (Powers and Responsibilities) Act 2002 (LEPRA) (NSW) (rule of law; enforcement and discretion).
Law and its interpretation concerning social disorder; property crime; prohibited drugs; crimes of violence (homicide; family violence; armed robbery; assault); Child Protection Act; fraud and computer/electronic crime.
Topical examples such as anti-terrorism laws, bike gang laws etc.


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Type Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Quiz 5 x quizzes with 5 questions each 20 N Individual
Critical Review 1,500 words 40 N Individual
Case Study 1,500 words 40 N Individual

Prescribed Texts

  • Mills, B 2011, The criminal trial : courtroom practices, policies and procedures, Federation Press, Annandale, Australia.

Teaching Periods

Autumn (2024)

Penrith (Kingswood)


Subject Contact Kate Linklater Opens in new window

View timetable Opens in new window



Subject Contact Kate Linklater Opens in new window

View timetable Opens in new window