Skip to content | Change text size

LAW4165 - Comparative constitutions and rights 406

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate Faculty of Law


Not offered in 2007


Focuses on the human rights and fundamental freedoms of the individual within at least four constitutional systems eg. Australia, the UK, Canada and New Zealand. These systems will provide a broad range of fundamental rights and freedoms. The mechanisms for enforcement of such rights will also be examined. Freedom of expression, right to life, minority rights, and rights of refugees are compared. Comparative and theoretical perspectives are incorporated. The scope, definition and limitations of rights, the utility of entrenching rights and prospects of reform are studied.


Upon completion of this unit, students should

  1. have a general understanding of the constitutional law and statutory framework that operate in the relevant countries;
  2. analyse and critically comment upon the impact of the constitutional system on the protection of individual human rights and fundamental freedoms;
  3. have specific understanding of the particular rights studied, and the framework for protection established under the relevant constitutional systems;
  4. have a general understanding of the role of international law and human rights issues as they relate to the relevant constitutional systems;
  5. be able to understand, evaluate and apply policy arguments for and against reform of the legal protection of rights and freedoms;
  6. be able to identify or find the relevant principles, laws and precedents and apply them to resolve issues relating to breaches of individual rights and freedoms;
  7. have further developed legal research and writing, and legal argument skills by undertaking systematic research into legal policy, rules and procedures and comparative perspectives relating to constitutional law and individual rights;
  8. have developed skills of oral presentation of legal policy, rules and argument in an interactive learning context.


Research paper (4000 words): 50%
Examination (1.5 hours writing time plus 30 minutes reading and noting time): 50% OR Examination: (3 hours writing time plus 30 minutes reading and noting time): 100%

Contact hours

Three hours of lectures per week