Subject details

  • Topics
    • Introducing the Criminal Law
    • Understanding offences and offenders
    • Defences
    • Police powers I
    • Police powers II
    • Police Powers and Accountability
    • Pre-Trial Processes
    • The Criminal Trial
    • Sentencing
    • Appealing Court Decisions
    • Justice and Injustice
    • Review and conclusion
  • Study resources
    • Instructional Methods
      • Podcasting/Leacture capture
      • Disscusion forum/Discussion Board
      • Online assignment submission
    • Online Materials
      • Printable format materials
      • Online Assessment
      • Resources and Links

At the completion of this subject students will have:

  1. Understanding of the aims and functions of criminal law and how it operates in the Australian criminal justice system.
  2. Knowledge about criminal responsibility, the elements of crimes and the classification of offences.
  3. Familiarity with the processes by which alleged offences are investigated, brought to trial, punished and ability to critically analyse the impact of criminal law processes on people affected by them.
  4. Knowledge of the powers, functions and ethical responsibilities of police and other investigators, prosecutors, defence lawyers and judges in both pre-trial and trial processes.
  • Assignment 1 - Court report (40%)
  • Assignment 2 - Invigilated Exam (40%)
  • Assignment 3 - Online Quizzes (20%)

Textbooks are subject to change within the academic year. Students are advised to purchase their books no earlier than one to two months before the start of a subject

Entry Requirements

Equivalent Subjects

You cannot enrol in this unit if you have successfully completed any of the following subject(s) because they are considered academically equivalent:

  • GRF-CCJ17

Special requirements

No special requirements

Police Courts and Criminal Law explains the law and procedural processes which govern the way crimes are investigated, tried and punished in Australia. It begins by considering some general principles of criminal responsibility such as the aims and functions of the criminal law and its sources. The legal principles guiding police investigations are examined, including police powers and responsibilities, the rights of suspects, and the importance of obtaining reliable and admissible evidence. Finally, students learn about the ways cases can progress through the court system, from initial charge to final sentence. The subject focuses primarily on the Queensland criminal justice system. Other jurisdictions are examined in passing, and general principles are common to all Australian systems.

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