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Social Justice Intern Program - LAWS3307
 Law Books

Faculty: Faculty of Law
School:  Faculty of Law
Course Outline: See below
Campus: Kensington Campus
Career: Undergraduate
Units of Credit: 6
EFTSL: 0.12500 (more info)
Indicative Contact Hours per Week: 7
Enrolment Requirements:
Currently enrolled in a program in the Faculty of Law.
Excluded: JURD7307
CSS Contribution Charge:Band 3 (more info)
Further Information: See Class Timetable


1. Course Information

1.1 Teaching Staff and Classes

Teaching staff
The program is overseen by the Director of Experiential Learning. The program is managed by the Internship Placement Coordinator. Each student has a supervisor at the host Centre. The supervisor will provide daily supervision, review the student’s presentation, and written and other work and advise whether a student has passed the course.

Frances Gibson
Director of Experiential Learning
Rm 335, Faculty of Law
University of New Wales
UNSW Sydney NSW 2052, Australia
Ph: (02) 9385 2230

Amber Rowe
Internship Placement Coordinator
Rm 330, Faculty of Law
University of New South Wales
UNSW Sydney NSW 2052, Australia
Ph: (02) 9385 1803

Please email your Academic Supervisor (Director of Experiential Learning) for academic guidance or Amber Rowe for administrative assistance.

Your classes
Each student will be required to attend the equivalent of 1 day per week for 12 weeks at the placement organisation. The exact time and day of this attendance will be negotiated between the student and the placement organisation. Students will be required to attend an introductory seminar .

The Introductory Seminar will be held at the Law Faculty of UNSW in Kensington. You will be advised of the room location prior to the date of the Seminar.

Students will make a 10-15-minute presentation outlining work they have carried out during the course of the internship, towards the end of the Semester. The time and dates of presentations will be confirmed and will be made available to students at a later date.

As a student in this program you will also have access to the Blackboard course page. Blackboard is an online materials and support site designed to complement your learning. Students are provided with personalised usernames (z plus your Student ID number) and passwords (zPass) to log on to the site to access information and resources specifically related to the courses in which they are enrolled. Typically, a Blackboard site includes course outlines, course handouts, links to law libraries, feedback from lecturers, discussion areas and email facilities. Students should ensure that they log into their Blackboard courses at least once a week as it is where lecturers will provide information and materials to supplement your studies.

UNSW Blackboard supports the following web browsers for Windows XP or VISTA:
• Internet Explorer (IE) version 7 or 8
• Firefox 3.0.x (must run version 3.0.3 and above)

UNSW Blackboard supports the following web browsers for Mac 10.4 or 10.5,
• Firefox 3.0.x (must run version 3.0.3 and above)
• Safari 2 or 3

Note: Mac OS 10.3 is not supported.

To log on to your Blackboard site, you will need to follow these steps:
1. Go to the TELT gateway and click the link to log into Blackboard.
2. Enter your Student ID and your zPass to login.
3. Choose from the courses that you are enrolled in.

Information and Blackboard support can also be found on the TELT gateway . For information on the zPass or how to create your zPass, visit Zpass information.

1.2 The Relationship between Research and Teaching
It is the policy of the Law School as far as possible to allow teachers to teach in their area of research and expertise. This means that students are exposed to academics and researchers who are experts in their fields. The areas of expertise of this course vary.
Frances Gibson was solicitor and Principal Solicitor at Redfern Legal Centre for 7 years and Director of Kingsford Legal Centre in the UNSW Law School from 1995 to 2004. She has worked at the Aboriginal Legal Service and Legal Aid Commission as well as a Principal Lawyer at the ICAC. She is recognised as a specialist in legal aid issues and clinical legal education.
Frances' expertise was recognised by the invitation in 1999 to be the first Visiting Clinical Scholar at New York University for six months. In 2000 she received the Vice Chancellor's Award for Teaching Excellence at the University of New South Wales. In 2001 she was a recipient of a Quality Teaching Award from the NSW Minister for Education and Training and the Australian College of Education as well as the national 2001 Australian Universities Teaching Committee Award for University Teaching, Law and Legal Studies. She was appointed as Coordinator of the School of Law Program at La Trobe's Bendigo campus in 2004. During that time she designed, coordinated and taught an externship clinical legal education program entitled Rural and Regional Issues in Justice and assisted in the setting up of the Loddon Campaspe Community Legal Centre. Her current appointment as Director of Experiential Studies at the Faculty of Law commenced in September 2010.

1.3 Course Description
This course affords students the opportunity to work in one of the nine specialist centres within the Faculty of Law which undertakes advocacy or research on aspects of policy and practice relating to an area of social justice. The Program provides formal and informal training, as well as supervised practical experience, in planning and implementing key aspects of research, writing, advocacy and related activities.

The participating Centres where students can complete a Social Justice Internship are as follows:

1 Australian Human Rights Centre
2 Centre for Refugee Research
3 Cyberspace Law and Policy Centre
4 Diplomacy Training Program
5 Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law
6 Indigenous Law Centre
7 National Children’s and Youth Law Centre
8 National Pro Bono Resource Centre
9 Social Justice Project
10 Criminal Justice Research Network

Each successful applicant for participation in the program is allocated as an intern to a particular Centre at the outset of the session. The Centre will assign a supervisor for each intern; the Students will work under the supervision of that Supervisor within the Centre for the duration of the internship.

Interns are required to attend their Centre for the equivalent of one day each week over 12 weeks, by arrangement between the intern and the Centre and confirmed with the Program Coordinator.

The range of projects in which the intern will be involved will be determined according to the project priorities of the Centre. However, in general it is expected that an intern’s duties will consist of a combination of research, project administrative, editing, writing, event coordination, preparing background materials, briefing papers, liaising with other organisations and doing relevant work of a substantive nature.

Interns may be required to attend Program Seminars held at the Law school during each session and to make one seminar presentation at the end of semester. The presentations will be attended by the student’s supervisor.

Attendance by interns at the Centre and at any Program Seminars is mandatory. Students whose attendance falls below the specified 12 days (or equivalent) or who do not attend Program Seminars without a medical certificate or other adequate evidence will be deemed not to have completed the subject requirements and will not be eligible to pass the course.

Application and selection of participants
Participation in the program is by competitive application. Selection and allocation of participants is the joint responsibility of the Program Coordinator and the partner organisations.

Applicants must be in the final or penultimate year of their LLB or JD course at UNSW, although in special circumstances they may be in earlier years. It is permissible to undertake both a Social Justice Internship (LAWS 3307/JURD7307) and a Public Interest Internship LAWS 3308/7307) but not at the same time.

Applicants are invited to indicate their preferences concerning the partner organisation which they would like to be allocated to as an intern. Applicants will need to familiarise themselves with any prerequisites or stipulations by the partner organisation (for example, internships may only be open to Indigenous students or to students who have completed certain courses in the Law School).

1.4 Aims
The aims and expected learning outcomes of this course are formulated with the UNSW Law School Graduate Attributes (GAs) in mind.

The aims of this course
The principal goal of the program is to provide students with training and practical experience in research, writing and advocacy on aspects of policy and practice relating to social justice and the law (especially the reduction of inequity and exploitation). The specific aims of the course are to:

1. Assist students to develop an understanding of the issues involved in legal practice and policy-making on social justice issues.(GA1)
2. Consolidate students’ skills related to legal practice and policy advocacy, such as legal analysis, writing, research and strategic planning (GA2, GA3);
3. Develop student understanding of work and management of social justice organisations
4 Develop students professional skills including refining their ability to communicate clearly in written and oral forms, and developing their commitment to ethical practice and policy-making;
5. Assist students to recognise the social justice issues present in the broader administration of the law, in the court system and in government policy (GA1, GA5).

Expected Learning Outcomes
Consistent with the aims of the course as above, the learning outcomes expected on the completion of this course include:
1. Have developed an appreciation for the professional and personal responsibilities associated with the practice of law and policy work(GA1);
2. Have observed and participated in a high level of problem solving flowing from the development of policy or legal practice (GA1, GA2);
3. Have developed the skills to evaluate the impact of law on individuals, communities and the Australian society as a whole (GA1, GA2, GA3);
4. Communicate effectively, in speaking and in writing (GA4).
(a) conducting research;
(b) preparing or editing written material (e.g., research, issues or briefing papers; parliamentary submissions; formal legal documents; articles; submissions; web resources; newsletters; etc);
(c) developing and utilising networks of organisations and individuals;
(d) organising and conducting interviews, delegations, seminars, media conferences and other meetings;
(e) preparing speeches or other oral presentations.

The skills and knowledge covered in this course complement other compulsory and elective courses in the undergraduate degree. It builds on the applied legal ethics introduced in Law, Lawyers and Society and allows students to experience first-hand the roles that social justice lawyers play in society and the justice system. This course provides an avenue for students practically to apply perspectives and knowledge gained in elective courses across the streams of human rights and social justice, and it complements other opportunities for clinical engagement in legal practice, research and policy offered through the Public Interest Internship Program and other clinical legal education programs available at Kingsford Legal Centre and otherwise within the Law School.

1.6 Learning Outcomes and Graduate Attributes
The UNSW Law School also aims to develop specific attributes (or capabilities) in all of its law graduates. Thus for this internship program, UNSW aims to develop in its students:
  • core disciplinary knowledge you will have a functioning and contextual knowledge of social justice law, theory and doctrine;
  • transferable intellectual skills you will gain intellectual skills of legal problem-solving, critical reflection about laws and their limitations, analysis of legal texts and documents, and an ability to make informed judgments about current events and legal issues involving social justice
  • research skills you will have the option to engage in scholarly research about social justice issues;
  • communication skills you will develop written and oral skills through the oral and written tasks assigned to you by your Partner Organisation;
  • personal and professional skills you will develop a heightened understanding of the role social justice plays in society and be able to reflect on what constitutes the most appropriate way to promote social justice
  • These attributes are described more fully in the Course Outline Appendix 1 Course Outline Appendices (PDF)

1.7 Teaching Rationale
It is the aim to give all students in this course the opportunity to learn independently in a professional environment outside of the University. The student is supported by the Academic Advisor (Director of Experiential Learning), Internship Placement Coordinator whilst on their placement. It is recognised that there are many different learning styles, and many different personalities interacting within this context and beyond. Thus, we try to offer a variety of learning experiences.

2. Assessment

2.1 Assessment Scheme
Assessment is on a pass/fail basis and is the responsibility of the relevant Academic Supervisor (Director of Experiential Learning) , in consultation with the Program Coordinator and Supervisor within the partner organisation.

Assessment will generally consist of:

o Fortnightly reflective notes on activities undertaken to be submitted on the following dates to your supervisor Monday 1st August, Monday 15th August, Monday 29th August, Monday 12th September, Monday 26th September and Monday 10th October 2011.
o Seminar presentation
o Satisfactory attendance and performance at the Centre

Each of these components must be satisfactorily completed.

a) Reflective Journals
In reflective journals student interns will be expected to reflect on in a sustained way, their analysis and critique of their activities and work undertaken during the internship. Students may reflect on aspects of the work which they themselves have produced, or may reflect on other activities which they have observed within the Centre more broadly.

Each of the reflective journals should be approximately a page. The reflective notes should be provided to the student’s supervisor by the dates advised above.

b) Seminar presentation
Students are required to make one seminar presentation during the session. This presentation should last no more than 10 minutes. There will be opportunity for questions from students and supervisors after each presentation. The seminar presentation should focus on the activities of the host organisation and particular projects which the student has worked on during the course of the internship.

c) Satisfactory attendance at the partner organisation and program seminars
Student interns are required to spend a minimum of the equivalent of one day each week during the academic session (12 weeks) working at the Centre , according to a working schedule to be determined by agreement between the student and the Organisation.

Attendance by interns at the Centre and at any program seminar is mandatory. Students whose attendance falls below the specified 12 days (or equivalent) or who do not attend program seminars without a medical certificate or other adequate evidence will be deemed not to have completed the subject requirements and will not be eligible to pass the subject.

Request for special consideration:
If you are asking for Special Consideration (eg. an extension to the due date for an assignment), please follow the procedure as outlined on the UNSW website

2.2 Formal Matters
Information produced by the UNSW Law School regarding assessments can be found through the School website
Further information about Formal Matters relating to Assessment can be found in the se Outline Appendix 2 at Course Outline Appendices (PDF) or Course Outline Appendices (WORD)

No essays or assignments can be accepted unless you sign the academic misconduct declaration that is included on the Law School assignment cover sheet.
It will be assumed that you are thoroughly familiar with the policies re academic misconduct and plagiarism of the Law School and UNSW.
See the Course Outline Appendix 3 at Course Outline Appendices (PDF) or Course Outline Appendices (WORD)

3. Course Schedule

There are no course materials for this course.

4. Additional Resources For Students
There are no course materials for this class. Please find the Course Outline posted on Blackboard. If you are having difficulty with any part of the course please contact your Academic Advisor or the Internship Placement Coordinator.

Please note: Course Materials for postgraduate students are no longer posted by Student Administration. All Course Materials and textbooks can be purchased from the UNSW Bookshop.

5. Continual Course Improvement

5.1 CATEI Evaluation Policy
Student feedback is very important to continual course improvement. This is demonstrated within the School of Law by the implementation of the UNSW Course and Teaching Evaluation and Improvement (CATEI) Process, which allows students to evaluate their learning experiences in an anonymous way. The resulting evaluations are ultimately returned to the course Convenor, who will use the feedback to make ongoing improvements to the course.

Notice on Distressing Course Material
Occupation Health and Safety
School of Law Office

See Course Outline Appendix 4 at Course Outline Appendices (PDF) or Course Outline Appendices (WORD)

URL for this page:

© The University of New South Wales (CRICOS Provider No.: 00098G), 2004-2011. The information contained in this Handbook is indicative only. While every effort is made to keep this information up-to-date, the University reserves the right to discontinue or vary arrangements, programs and courses at any time without notice and at its discretion. While the University will try to avoid or minimise any inconvenience, changes may also be made to programs, courses and staff after enrolment. The University may also set limits on the number of students in a course.