Law and Society major

What impact does law have on our lives? To what extent does law either control what we do or allow us to achieve what we want? Is the law the same thing as justice? Can the world be saved by law? This major examines broad theoretical issues about the nature of law and society as well as how the relationship plays out in particular fields of legal and social policy at both domestic and international levels. The fields you may study include human rights, decisions about birth and death, crime and justice, Indigenous rights, freedom of expression and religion. Studying Law and Society will help you develop important skills in research, analysis, teamwork and communication.

Outcomes

Students are able to (1) demonstrate comprehensive understanding with depth in what we know about the law, how it is made and how it works in our society; (2) demonstrate understanding of the underlying dynamics of the interdisciplinary field of law and society and its relationship to criminology including an in-depth understanding of legal reasoning, rules, institutions, players and power structures; (3) demonstrate understanding of the relationship between local, national and international legal systems, rules, practices and institutions; (4) demonstrate understanding of how law operates within social, cultural, political and historical contexts; (5) demonstrate well-developed cognitive skills to review, analyse, consolidate and synthesise knowledge, identify and solve defined problems, and exercise critical judgement and thinking in creating new understanding; (6) demonstrate well-developed bibliographic and referencing skills; (7) demonstrate basic time and project management skills; (8) demonstrate well-developed skills to present data and evidence in an appropriate format and communicate through written and oral media clearly, effectively and appropriately in a range of contexts for a variety of audiences; (9) demonstrate well-developed skills to work productively in a group; (10) use judgement and initiative by developing (a) ethical approaches and mature judgement in practical and academic matters; and (b) the capacity for effective citizenship, leadership and teamwork; and (11) take responsibility and accountability for their own learning having developed attitudes which (a) value learning; and (b) respect Indigenous knowledge, values and culture.

Broadening guidelines

All students studying towards a Bachelor's Degree at UWA are required to Broaden their studies by completing a minimum of four units (24 points) of study outside their degree specific major. Broadening is your opportunity to explore other areas of interest, investigate new disciplines and knowledge paradigms and to shape your degree to suit your own aspirations and interests. Many of you will be able to undertake more than this minimum amount of broadening study and we encourage you to do so if this suits your aspirations. Over the next few months you will find here some broadening suggestions related to your degree-specific major. While we know that many students value guidance of this sort, these are only suggestions and students should not lose sight of the opportunity to explore that is afforded by your Broadening Choices. Advice can also be sought from your Allocated Student Advising Office.

Law and Society can be taken as a degree-specific major in the following degree courses:

BP001 Bachelor of Arts
BH005 Bachelor of Philosophy (Honours)

Overview of unit sequence

Law and Society is a degree-specific single major comprising:

  • two Level 1 units
  • three Level 2 units
  • three Level 3 units
Key to availability of units:
S1 = Semester 1; S2 = Semester 2; N/A = not available in 2021

Note: Units that are indicated as N/A may be available in 2022 or 2023.

Level 1

Degree-specific major units
Take all units (12 points):
Availability Unit code Unit name unit requirements
S2 LAWS1110 Crime and Society
S1 LAWS1111 Law, Conflict and Change

Level 2

Degree-specific major units
Take the following unit:
Availability Unit code Unit name unit requirements
S2 LAWS2227 Law in Action
Prerequisites:
LAWS1111 Law, Conflict and Change
Degree-specific major units
Take unit(s) to the value of 12 points:
Availability Unit code Unit name unit requirements
S2 EMPL2309 Work and the Law
Prerequisites:
EMPL1101 Introduction to Employment Relations;
or
EMPL1206 Social Psychology of Work;
for pre-2012 courses: any two relevant Level 1 units
or
equivalent
or
LAWS1111 Law, Conflict and Change
Incompatibility:
LAWS3309 Workplace Law
and
LAWS2309 Work and the Law
N/A LAWS2018 Law and Literature
Prerequisites:
Any level 1 Law and Society unit
or
any level 1 English unit
S2 LAWS2220 Birth, Life, Death and the Law
Prerequisites:
LAWS1104 Introduction to Law
or
LAWS1111 Law, Conflict and Change (formerly LAWS1111 Legal Systems)
or
LAWS1120 Australian Legal Principles and Institutions
or
LAWS1110 Crime and Society
or
LAWS1112 Adulting: Law for Everyday Lives
S1 LAWS2223 Criminal Justice Systems
Prerequisites:
LAWS1110 Crime and Society
S2 LAWS2224 Evolution of Human Rights
Co-requisites:
LAWS1111 Law, Conflict, and Change (formerly LAWS1111 Legal Systems)
N/A LAWS2225 Indigenous Peoples and the Law
Prerequisites:
LAWS1104 Introduction to Law
or
LAWS1111 Law, Conflict and Change (formerly LAWS1111 Legal Systems)
or
LAWS1120 Australian Legal Principles and Institutions
or
LAWS1112 Adulting: Law for Everyday Lives
S1 LAWS2226 International Legal Institutions
Prerequisites:
LAWS1111 Law, Conflict and Change

Level 3

Degree-specific major units
Take the following unit:
Availability Unit code Unit name unit requirements
S2 LAWS3316 Law, Advocacy, Activism and Change
Prerequisites:
Completion of at least 78 points which must include LAWS2227 Law in Action and at least one other level two Law and Society option unit
Degree-specific major units
Take unit(s) to the value of 12 points:
Availability Unit code Unit name unit requirements
S1 LAWS3221 Creative Expression and the Law
Prerequisites:
for Law and Society Major students LAWS1104 Introduction to Law
or
LAWS1111 Law, Conflict and Change
or
LAWS1120 Australian Legal Principles and Institutions
or
LAWS1112 Adulting: Law for Everyday Lives
and
LAWS2227 Law in Action
Incompatibility:
LAWS2221 Creative Expression and the Law
S1 LAWS3317 Social Media and the Law
Prerequisites:
LAWS1111 Law, Conflict and Change
or
LAWS1112 Adulting: Law for Everyday Lives
and
LAWS2227 Law in Action
N/A LAWS3330 Gender and the Law
Prerequisites:
For Criminology major students: LAWS1110 Crime and Society, LAWS2223 Criminal Justice System and at least one other Level 2 option unit from any major. For all other students: LAWS2227 Law in Action
or
LAWS2220 Birth, Life, Death and the Law and at least one other Level 2 Law and Society option.
S2 LAWS3334 Law and Religion
Prerequisites:
For Criminology major students: LAWS1110 Crime and Society
and
LAWS2223 Criminal Justice System. For all other students: LAWS2227 Law in Action.
N/A LAWS3344 Law and Contemporary Social Issues
Prerequisites:
LAWS2227 Law in Action and at least one Level 2 Law and Society option unit.
S2 LAWS3374 Crime, Justice and Public Policy
Prerequisites:
LAWS1110 Crime and Society LAWS2223 Criminal Justice System

Choosing your degree-specific major

Specialised degrees – Bachelor of Advanced Computer Science (Honours), Bachelor of Automation and Robotics, Bachelor of Environmental Design, Bachelor of Music

You must satisfy the requirements of the degree-specific major in your degree before you complete your course.

Bachelor of Philosophy, Politics and Economics

This comprehensive degree does not require you to choose a degree-specific major.

General degrees

You must satisfy the requirements of a degree-specific major before you complete your course. The flexible structure of an undergraduate course allows you to try out a number of different subjects to see what interests you before nominating your degree-specific major. You have the choice to either nominate your degree-specific major when you first enrol in the course or delay nominating it until your second year.

To plan the first year of your study without nominating a degree-specific major, you are advised to choose units that will pave the way to two or more degree-specific majors that are of interest to you. For examples of the choice of units available in first year, search the first-year study plans .

To fully understand the structure of an undergraduate course, read the course structure information and the Undergraduate Degree Course Rules.

The following example illustrates how the Law and Society degree-specific major can be included in the Bachelor of Arts course.

Example: Course Study Plan: CSP001-LWSOC

There are more choices open to you. For more examples, search the study plans .

Choosing a second major

You also have the option to choose a second major from those available in the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Biomedical Science, Bachelor of Commerce, Bachelor of Design Only available to re-enrolling students. and Bachelor of Science courses, giving you the opportunity to pursue your interests no matter how different they are.

The following example illustrates how the Law and Society degree-specific major can be combined with a second major in the Bachelor of Arts course.

Example: Course Study Plan: CSP001-LWSOC-Generic

For more examples of combinations of majors, search the study plans .