Studying online

There are now 2 possible online modes for units:

Units with modes Online timetabled and Online flexible are available for any student to self-enrol and study online.

Click on an offering mode for more details.

Unit Overview


This unit critically examines the legal rules and processes relating to the resolution of complex financial and parenting cases, with particular attention being paid to the way that legal rules are generated from the appellate process. There is consideration of the legal requirements for a successful appeal, the different appeal/review processes and the rules relating to further evidence and rehearings as background to the discussion of the substantive legal rules. In relation to financial proceedings students consider the Full Court's treatment of legal issues arising from the use of corporate entities and trust structures to hold wealth and how the content of such legal rules has been influenced by constitutional factors. In relation to parenting matters, students consider how the statutory framework and its interpretation has been applied in relation to appellate control of first instance determinations. Particular consideration is given to the way that concepts of equality and partnership, and reference to social science data, decisions of other jurisdictions and international treaties have infused the decisions of the Full Court of the Family Court. Students demonstrate their analytical and critically reflective skills by presenting a research paper on a chosen topic relating to the Full Court's approach to property division or parenting disputes; and produce a document prescribed by the Family Law Rules (for example a Summary of Argument or Application to Adduce Further Evidence) in relation to an appeal.

6 points

Students are able to (1) understand and apply legal rules relevant to the appeal process; (2) present legal argument appropriate to the conduct of an appeal to the Full Court of the Family Court; (3) understand and apply principles of statutory construction ; (4) analyse judicial precedents; (5) critically reflect on the principles underlying judicial decision making; (6) critically reflect on the legislative processes determining the content of statutory provisions; (7) analyse and critically reflect on the Full Court's involvement in the process of law reform; and (8) develop the capacity to present analytical and reflective thought in original structured writing and court documents.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) workshop attendance and participation; (2) written assessment; (3) research paper; and (4) examination. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Student may be offered supplementary assessment in this unit if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Unit Coordinator(s)
Dr Richard Ingleby
Contact hours
offered intensively (1 week)
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.
  • Contact hours provide an indication of the type and extent of in-class activities this unit may contain. The total amount of student work (including contact hours, assessment time, and self-study) will approximate 150 hours per 6 credit points.