LAW5437 - China's legal system - 2017

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Quota applies

Postgraduate programs are based on a model of small group teaching and therefore class sizes need to be restricted.

Not offered in 2017


For postgraduate Law discontinuation dates, please see

For postgraduate Law unit timetables, please see

Previously coded as LAW7540


This unit aims to provide students with a basic understanding of Chinese legal institutions. There will be focus not just on the law itself, but also on matters of legal culture, politics, economics, institutional design, and other matters that effect the development and operation of the law. In addition, by way of specific examples, the unit examines contract law and company law in China in some detail. This will be of particular interest for students who wish to understand Chinese law for the purposes of trade and cooperation with Chinese enterprises.

A key element will be on examining the Chinese legal system as an example of one where all legal action is highly politicized and where this is considered proper.

Classes will, where possible, use reports, journal articles or cases as a basis for analysis and discussion.


On completion of this unit students will be able to:

  • Apply knowledge and understanding of fundamental issues in Chinese law with creativity and initiative to new situations in professional practice;
  • Investigate, analyse and synthesise complex information, problems, concepts and theories in relation to Chinese law and policy using a comparative perspective;
  • Conduct research into the Chinese legal system to create new understandings of key developments, likely future directions and current and emerging problems based on knowledge of appropriate research principles and methods;
  • Use cognitive, technical and creative skills to generate and evaluate at an abstract level complex ideas and concepts relevant to the Chinese legal system effectively and persuasively to specialist or non-specialist audiences and peers.


Class Participation: 10%

Research assignment (3,750 words): 50%

Take-home exam (3,000 words) : 40%

Workload requirements

24 contact hours per semester (either intensive, semi-intensive or semester long, depending on the Faculty resources, timetabling and requirements)

Chief examiner(s)