LAWS 4010 Designing Law Apps for Access to Justice

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 201040

Coordinator Grace Borsellino Opens in new window

Description This subject will teach students how to design and build an application using expert system software. This subject will provide students with a clinical legal experience by providing access to a community based client to ascertain their needs and undertake collaborative work to provide a solution that requires applied legal research, teamwork, innovative and creative design thinking, and the capacity to manage a project. This subject will teach students how to identify, design and build appropriate legal information systems for use in generating legal documents from precedents and assisting users to navigate solutions to legal problems. Students will be exposed to a variety of automated legal tasks and various legal and practical issues associated with their use, including issues of professional regulation. This will include guest lectures from those working on legal expert systems and related technologies. After learning the necessary skills, students will work in small groups to design and build a legal information system. This subject does not require students to have any pre-existing skills or experience in expert systems or computer programming. Instead, the subject itself includes instruction on how to use an expert system software.

School Law

Discipline Law, Not Elsewhere Classified.

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 4 10cp

Check your fees via the Fees page.

Level Undergraduate Level 4 subject


Successful completion of 120 credit points.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Appraise the limitations and implications of automated legal services in enhancing community access to legal information and services.
  2. Collaborate with community partners to obtain instructions, isolate legal problems, and design creative and innovative solutions.
  3. Design and build a basic automated legal information system to solve a real world problem.
  4. Work constructively as a member of a self-managed team on an extended automated legal service project.
  5. Present the automated legal solution clearly and persuasively. .

Subject Content

- Working with community partners
- Overview of legal service applications
- how to build and use A legal application
- principles of programming ? including precision, modularity, efficiency, maintainability, scalability, provability, user engagement, effectiveness, testing, debugging
- design thinking for The new future: case-by-case analysis, aggregated data, data visualization, insights
- teamwork and Project collaboration
- work-based Project management
- Presenting Project solutions to clients


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
Applied Project Design a Law App 60 N Group
Presentation 60 Minutes 20 N Group
Reflection 2,000 words 20 N Individual

Prescribed Texts

  • Kevin D Ashley, Artificial Intelligence and Legal Analytics: New Tools for Law Practice in the Digital Age (Cambridge University Press, 2018).
  • Joanna Goodman, Robots in Law: How Artificial Intelligence is Transforming Legal Services (ARK Group, 2016).
  • Richard Susskind, Tomorrow�fs Lawyers: An Introduction to Your Future (Oxford University Press, 2nd ed, 2017).
  • Additional Prescribed Resources will be provided on vUWS.

Structures that include subject