Law & Justice
Our Law and Criminology and Justice degrees will provide you with a practical legal education and open doors to a range of challenging and rewarding careers in the legal, corporate and social justice fields.
Study Law Online
At ECU, we know you want to work towards your dream career wherever you are, as well as manage your other commitments.
ECU was the first WA University to offer an accredited online law degree and offers a reputable and inclusive program.
Studying online doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the university experience. Our online students have access to interactive learning spaces, recorded lectures and online discussion groups.
Beyond the Courtroom
Law or Criminology and Forensic Investigation students are given a range of opportunities to gain practical experience. Students complete work placements and participate in client interviewing, competitions, moots, legal research and writing clinics.
This balance of theory and practice provides greater options for rewarding careers in and beyond the courtroom, including youth justice, social work, corrections, forensic investigation, law enforcement, customs and business, to name a few.
Drive (Reverse) the Charge for Social Justice
ECU Criminology, Law and Forensic Investigation students may have the opportunity to gain experience while working towards an important cause, with ECU's Criminal Justice Review Project.
This "Innocence Project" is committed to exonerating the wrongfully convicted. Selected students join the project to work on real cases and appeals, under the supervision of ECU academics and criminal barristers.
Get Hands-On Experience on Campus
Law students may be invited to assist with real-life cases under the supervision of legal practitioners at the on-campus Joondalup Community Legal Centre (JCLC).
The Centre provides legal information and advice to the community in the areas of family and criminal law, domestic violence, tenancy, elder abuse and some areas of civil law. For Law students this offers vital practical experience.
"If you're considering ECU, my advice is, grab the opportunity with both hands and run with it. You won't be disappointed!"
"I have felt a sense of belonging at ECU since my first day; lecturers and tutors are welcoming and keen to share their knowledge and expertise. As a mature-age student I was a little apprehensive about being the odd one out in class, but I’ve made a point of participating in events and embracing uni life. Instead of being a barrier, my life experience has proved to be an asset to my study experience. In 2007 I won the Nicholson Shield for 'Negotiating' and the D.P. Murphy medal for 'Best Orator'. In the same year I was part of a team that represented ECU at the ALSA Conference in Canberra in a series of negotiating competitions. In 2008 I was a finalist in the Tottle Shield mooting competition. In 2009 I was selected to be part of an ECU team for the LAW ASIA Competition in Ho Chi Minh City. The experience of participating with 16 other universities from the Asian region, together with a field of international judges, was tremendous and unforgettable."
Bachelor of Laws student
John Button and Andrew Mallard address ECU Criminology students
Wrongfully convicted duo John Button and Andrew Mallard joined students in the Psychology and Criminal Justice unit for a guest lecture. John and Andrew shared their stories and talked about the moral and ethical responsibilities people may have in their roles as police officers, lawyers and judges.
They emphasised the importance of maintaining integrity when working in these positions, and shared their thoughts on the reforms required in the criminal justice system to prevent further miscarriages of justice. At the end of the presentations, the students were given the opportunity to ask questions.
Ms Nikki Rajakaruna, Psychology and Criminal Justice lecturer, invited the guest speakers as she believed they could teach an important lesson to students. John Button now assists the Criminal Justice Review Project ('Innocence Project') based at ECU, in the review of other claims of wrongful conviction.
ECU Criminology students learn beyond the classroom
Five ECU Criminology and Justice students attended the 2011 Australian Institute of Criminology (AIC) student forum held in Canberra. This is an annual one-day Criminology forum that gives students from across the country the chance to hear from leading criminologists in the areas of drug crime, trafficking, crime prevention and cyber crime.
The students were able to network with researchers, employers and students from other universities – and even fit in some sightseeing!
"The trip was more than just a conference; it was an entire experience in academia, networking and an appreciation for our political and social heritage," said student Aimee Adams.
Law students recognised by Department for Child Protection
Our third-year Law and Justice students completed 14 weeks of work experience in the Department for Child Protection's Civil Litigation Unit.
The Civil Litigation Unit acts on behalf of the CEO of the Department to conduct the legal claims of children in care. The students received training and practical experience in many areas, including administration applications, criminal injuries compensation and guardianship.
Students were given opportunities to attend proceedings in the Children's Court, Coroner's Court, the State Administrative Tribunal and the Supreme Court of Appeal, and made a significant contribution in progressing the legal claims of over 40 children in care.
This was the fourth program that ECU students have been involved in, with the program set to continue in coming years.
LAWASIA International Moot and VIS (East) competitions
The LAWASIA International Moot Competition is held annually in a different Asia-Pacific location. The VIS Moot (East) Competition is held annually in Hong Kong. Law schools from all over the world participate in the VIS Moot (East) competitions.
A team of ECU Law students has competed in both these competitions for the past three years, accompanied by Senior Law Lecturer Mr Michael Crowley, who provides invaluable advice, coaching and support. These competitions pose legal challenges that teams are judged on by expert panels.
"ECU's Law degree bridges the gap between theory and practice"
Practical skills are incorporated into the course from the very start. In my first year I was conducting mediations and negotiations and by my third year I was interviewing clients, under supervision, at the on-campus Joondalup Community Legal Centre. In my second year I was fortunate to receive ECU sponsorship to attend and compete in a National Mooting Competition. We won first prize for best written submissions and brought back to WA the Clayton Utz Cup. Before graduating I was selected for a Judges Associateship with the Supreme Court of WA and I already have a job lined up with Perth's top independent commercial law firm, Jackson McDonald, after my Associateship."
ECU Law students take out top prized in legal writing competition
Two first-year ECU Law students were named winners of the 2011 Plain English Drafting Competition, held by the Clear Writing Committee of the Law Society of Western Australia. Shane Van Styn and Michelle Wilkes joined four other WA students as the six winners of the 2011 competition.
Over 100 entries were received from all four WA law schools. The entries were blind-marked by a panel of senior legal practitioners, with just six winners chosen.
The competition is open to undergraduate law students in WA, and aims to encourage writing that communicates clearly and effectively to the intended reader. Students are given the task of applying clear writing drafting principles in a legal letter.
Law students celebrate success at 2011 Tottle Partners Mooting Cup
ECU Law students were given a great networking opportunity to meet Mr Paul Tottle of Tottle Partners Lawyers, and members of his staff, at a lunch in the Perth CBD. Hosted by our School of Law and Justice, the lunch celebrated the students' success at the Tottle Partners Mooting Cup, where Law students Daniel Coster and Steven Hardey were named winners.
Mr Tottle also offered Daniel and Steven work experience at his law firm. Runners‑up, Florentina Min and Aatika Ismailjee, were also offered work experience and commented, "We have really enjoyed participating in the moot, as it has built our confidence. The experience has given us opportunities we never imagined.”"
Students Fight for Justice Beyond the Classroom
The Justice Awareness Group (JAG) is based at ECU. Comprising of Law and Justice students, academics and community members, who share a goal of promoting equity and justice in the WA justice system by encouraging public discussion. In 2011, JAG members organised a public event focused on the issue of wrongful conviction.
Intrigued by TV shows like Silent Witness, Law & Order and CSI?
If you've ever imagined yourself in a scene from Silent Witness, Law and Order or CSI and in pursuit of justice, consider a career in solving crimes. Our Bachelor of Forensic Investigation differs from other forensic courses by combining applied science with relevant Law and Justice units.
Graduates will be able to collect, analyse and interpret forensic data and present that evidence in court.