LAWS 3040 Islamic Law in a Changing World

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 101465

Coordinator Jan Ali Opens in new window

Description This subject introduces students to Islamic legal theory, its sources and principles, and its application by different schools and scholars to derive religious verdicts. Students will study efforts to 'streamline' Islamic law through a number of Sunni and Shiite schools, various conceptions of shari'ah, and modern attempts at law reform through dynamic scholarship and ijtihad (independent judgment). Upon completion, students should be able to explain developments in Islamic legal thought within their socio-historical contexts, and identify key debates among Muslim scholars. Using current case studies, students will also study Islamic law issues affecting Muslims today, especially Muslim minorities.

School Humanities & Comm Arts

Discipline Law, Not Elsewhere Classified.

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 4 10cp

Check your fees via the Fees page.

Level Undergraduate Level 3 subject

Pre-requisite(s) HUMN 1047 OR
LANG 2017


Successful completion of 60 credit points of study in currently enrolled program.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of historical and theoretical methods of research relevant to Islamic law
  2. Critically assess the developments in Islamic legal thought and their socio-historical contexts
  3. Demonstrate an anlaytical appreciation of key debates about Islamic law.

Subject Content

Introduction to Islamic Law in a Changing World
The Islamic conception of justice
Shariah and Fiqh: Conception and definitions
Sources I: Revealed (Quran and Prophetic Traditions
Sources II: Non-revealed (Ijtihad)
Evolution and Development
Major schools of legal thought (Madhahib)
Goals, Purpose, and Objectives (Maqasid)
Rights, Democracy, State, and Shariah
Crime and Punishment (Hudud)
International law in Islam (Siyar)
Islamic Law and Muslim Minorities
Contemporary implementation and reform


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
Essay 1,500 words 30 N Individual
Critical Review 1000 words 30 N Individual
Essay 2,000 words 40 N Individual

Teaching Periods

Spring (2023)

Bankstown City


Subject Contact Jan Ali Opens in new window

View timetable Opens in new window



Subject Contact Jan Ali Opens in new window

View timetable Opens in new window