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The current and official versions of the course specifications are available on the web at https://www.usq.edu.au/course/specification/current.
Please consult the web for updates that may occur during the year.

HIS1115 Legal History

Units : 1
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts
School or Department : School of Humanities & Communication
Grading basis : Graded
Course fee schedule : https://www.unisq.edu.au/current-students/administration/fees/fee-schedules
Version produced : 4 February 2023


Enrolment is not permitted in HIS1115 if LAW1114 or LAW1202 has been previously completed.


This course is designed to introduce students to the broader historical and socio-political underpinnings of law in Australia, including the significant influences of English law and the Constitution of the United States of America. It includes a study of English legal history before and after European settlement in Australia, the American constitutional settlement, the impact of European settlement on Indigenous Australians, and the legal consequences of political and social changes in Australia. It also includes the development of skills relevant to legal study, including critical thinking and communication.

Law is shaped by its surrounding society. The study of history requires an appreciation of the effect changing social habits and attitudes have on law, and the study of law requires an understanding of social and historical setting in which political institutions and law developed. Students will address concepts that have affected the development of Australian institutions and law, and the historical circumstances that gave rise to constitutional principles such as the rule of law, sovereignty, the role of Parliament, the electoral franchise and the separation of powers. The impact of law on Indigenous Australians will also be included.

Course offers

Study period Mode Campus
Semester 1, 2022 On-campus Ipswich
Semester 1, 2022 On-campus Toowoomba
Semester 1, 2022 Online
Date printed 4 February 2023