Introduces and examines the general principles of the rules of evidence and the application of those rules in the determination of civil and criminal disputes. Considers the sources and acceptability of evidence, the burden and standards of proof, and the rules concerning hearsay admissions and confessions, illegally obtained evidence and res gestae. Critically examines the effectiveness of these principles in achieving their objectives in the legal system.
Topic 1: Introduction to the law of evidence: the basic threshold of relevance
Topic 2: Burden and standard of proof; presumptions and inferences
Topic 3: Testimony from witnesses: competence and compellability
Topic 4: The hearsay rule: its rationale and boundaries
Topic 5: Exceptions to the hearsay rule
Topic 6: Opinion evidence, experts, and identification
Topic 7: Tendency, coincidence and character evidence; sexual history of rape victims
Topic 8: Confessions/ admissions against interest; the right to silence
Topic 9: Discretions to exclude prejudicial evidence; judicial warnings; corroboration
Topic 10: Privileges
Topic 11: Cross-examination; credibility evidence; vulnerable witnesses
Topic 12: Documents; real evidence
Unit Learning Outcomes express learning achievement in terms of what a student should know, understand and be able to do on completion of a unit. These outcomes are aligned with the graduate attributes. The unit learning outcomes and graduate attributes are also the basis of evaluating prior learning.
|On completion of this unit, students should be able to:|
|1||demonstrate an understanding of the criteria by which common law and legislation in Australian jurisdictions admit or reject evidence|
|2||explain and evaluate the use to be made of evidence in civil and criminal proceedings|
|3||distinguish and evaluate the different burdens of proof which apply to civil and criminal proceedings|
|4||apply applicable legal principles to specific factual circumstances and synthesise responses which are appropriate in a legal professional environment and which demonstrate detailed knowledge and understanding of the issues|
On completion of this unit, students should be able to:
- demonstrate an understanding of the criteria by which common law and legislation in Australian jurisdictions admit or reject evidence
- explain and evaluate the use to be made of evidence in civil and criminal proceedings
- distinguish and evaluate the different burdens of proof which apply to civil and criminal proceedings
- apply applicable legal principles to specific factual circumstances and synthesise responses which are appropriate in a legal professional environment and which demonstrate detailed knowledge and understanding of the issues
Prescribed Learning Resources
- (Note: e-copies of textbooks cannot be taken into the examination room with you. Even in open-book exams, only materials written or printed on paper are permitted - electronic devices are not.) : Hemming, Andrew and Chesser, Brianna, 2020, Evidence: Commentary & Materials ("EvC&M"), 9th ed, Thomson Reuter/ LawBook Australia, Australia. ISBN: 9780455244747.
Teaching and assessment
Commonwealth Supported courses
For information regarding Student Contribution Amounts please visit the Student Contribution Amounts.
Please check the international course and fee list to determine the relevant fees.