LAWS101-19W (C) Whole Year 2019

Legal System: Legal Method and Institutions

30 points

Start Date: Monday, 18 February 2019
End Date: Sunday, 10 November 2019
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Friday, 15 March 2019
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Friday, 23 August 2019


The course aims to provide a foundation in the skills of legal method, comprising case analysis, statutory interpretation and legal reasoning. It also introduces , and gives a descriptive outline of, the legal systems in New Zealand and England, including the structure of the courts, the sources of law, the classification of substantive law, dispute resolution and legal services.

Learning Outcomes

  • A successful student will, by the end of this course, be able to demonstrate an understanding of the New Zealand legal system, including the:
  • sources of law;
  • structure of the courts;
  • role of legal services;
  • role of dispute resolution;
  • impact of English law and international law;
  • and of the techniques of case analysis, statutory interpretation and legal reasoning.
    • University Graduate Attributes

      This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:

      Critically competent in a core academic discipline of their award

      Students know and can critically evaluate and, where applicable, apply this knowledge to topics/issues within their majoring subject.

      Biculturally competent and confident

      Students will be aware of and understand the nature of biculturalism in Aotearoa New Zealand, and its relevance to their area of study and/or their degree.


Timetable Note

The stipulated rooms have only sufficient seats for students allocated for each lecture stream at enrolment. Serious seating problems will arise if students arbitrarily shift streams.
Tutorials will be held in LAWS101. Information regarding the timetable and tutorial enrolment will be made available via email at the start of the course.

Course Coordinator / Lecturer

Simon Dorset


Toni Collins , Shea Esterling , Henry Holderness , Sacha McMeeking , Sascha Mueller and Karen Scott

Lecturers in the course in recent years have included the above lecturers.


Assessment Due Date Percentage 
Online Quiz 1 5%
Online Quiz 2 10%
Test One 10%
Test Two 10 Sep 2019 10%
Tutorial Attendance 5%
Final Examination 60%

Assessment in LAWS101 is subject to the New Zealand Council of Legal Education's Guidelines issued pursuant to the Professional Examination in Law Regulations 2008. The NZCLE requires there must be a final examination that counts for no less than 60% of the final grade for the course.

Recently, LAWS101 has been assessed by way of online quizzes, tutorial attendance, two tests and one final examination.  Assessment details will be confirmed in the first week of lectures. The first test will be held in the mid-year examination period - date to be advised.  The second test will take place in the first two weeks of Term 4 - date to be advised (evening test, commencing at 6.30pm).

NOTE: Assignments, tests and examinations will be assessed only once. Resubmissions or resits are not permitted.

Textbooks / Resources

Recommended Reading

G Morris; Law Alive: The New Zealand Legal System in Context ; 3rd ed; Oxford University Press, Melbourne, 2015.

R Krever and others; Mastering law studies and law exam techniques ; 8th ed; LexisNexis, Butterworths, Chatswood, 2014.

S Penk & M-R Russell; New Zealand Law: Foundations and Method ; 2nd ed; Thomson Reuters, 2018.

Scragg, Richard J.1948- , Scragg, Richard J; The principles of legal method in New Zealand ; 3rd edition; Thomson Reuters, 2016.

Spiller, Peter; New Zealand law dictionary ; Eighth edition;

Webb, Duncan , Ruru, Jacinta, Scott, Paul; The New Zealand legal system : structures and processes ; 6th edition;

All recommended texts will be available in the library. Students are not required to purchase texts.  The course coordinator will provide an introduction to the recommended texts at the start of the course.


Successful completion of this course makes students eligible for consideration for selection for Laws 200 courses.

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $1,612.00

International fee $7,550.00

* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.

For further information see Faculty of Law .

All LAWS101 Occurrences

  • LAWS101-19W (C) Whole Year 2019