LAW 3525 - Alternative Dispute Resolution

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2020

The course includes a detailed examination of the theory and practice of ADR methods in both society and in legal process, with a multidisciplinary focus. It evaluates the experience in Australia and other common law countries of the development and incorporation of ADR options in dispute resolution, in civil, administrative, family and criminal contexts. Additionally, the course explores the application of ADR processes in the international environment, including International Commercial Arbitration, and other forms of international dispute resolution in non commercial contexts, including those raising human rights and natural resource issues. The course has a direct focus on ADR in the context of indigenous peoples, particularly Aboriginal Australians, looking to learn from indigenous dispute resolution practice and experience. The course aims to develop ability to critically assess the legal, social and other issues associated with ADR, and to understand the implications of the operation of those theories in an adversarial legal context. Students will gain a strong practical skill set from this course, including communication theory and strategy, mediation practice, and dispute system design skills.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code LAW 3525
    Course Alternative Dispute Resolution
    Coordinating Unit Adelaide Law School
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate Law (LLB)
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Prerequisites LAW 1501
    Incompatible LAW 3010
    Assumed Knowledge LAW 3501
    Restrictions Available to LLB and B.Criminology with B.Laws and BArts Advanced with B.Laws students only
    Course Description The course includes a detailed examination of the theory and practice of ADR methods in both society and in legal process, with a multidisciplinary focus. It evaluates the experience in Australia and other common law countries of the development and incorporation of ADR options in dispute resolution, in civil, administrative, family and criminal contexts. Additionally, the course explores the application of ADR processes in the international environment, including International Commercial Arbitration, and other forms of international dispute resolution in non commercial contexts, including those raising human rights and natural resource issues. The course has a direct focus on ADR in the context of indigenous peoples, particularly Aboriginal Australians, looking to learn from indigenous dispute resolution practice and experience. The course aims to develop ability to critically assess the legal, social and other issues associated with ADR, and to understand the implications of the operation of those theories in an adversarial legal context. Students will gain a strong practical skill set from this course, including communication theory and strategy, mediation practice, and dispute system design skills.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Margaret Castles

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes

    On successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

    1. Demonstrate knowledge of the social relevance and historical context of DR models in Western and other social contexts; Capacity to identify and analyse the complex drivers of dispute behaviour in the community; active reflection of the theoretical models of dispute resolution and capacity to analyse their operation in both legal and social contexts
    2. Capacity to engage in advanced dispute resolution systems design; Ability to adaptively apply ADR theory in varied practical contexts, including international, industrial, and socio political
    3. Demonstrate sophisticated understanding of the ethical and legal ethical issues surrounding Dispute Resolution models and practice, demonstrated through written verbal and roleplay communication.
    4. Conduct a mediation roleplay exercise in role as mediator demonstrating effective communication and dispute resolution skills.
    5. Apply the contextual and interpersonal dimensions of human needs theory in written verbal and active evaluation of complex ADR scenarios
    6. Demonstrate interpersonal and relational communication skills in diverse roleplay and evaluative exercises in workshops. 
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    1-4
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    1,2, 4, 5
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    1,2, 5, 6
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    1,2, 3
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • Able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    3-6
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
    1,2
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    Sourdin Alternative Dispute Resolution 

    King et al Non Adversarial Justice

    Additional texts and resources will be recommended.

    Reading materials,  seminar guides – available on MYUNI
    Recommended Resources
    Supplementary reading, internet and other resources as recommended in seminar guides and via MYUNI or other electronic media.
    Online Learning
    Seminar guides, other useful material, and links to websites will be provided on MYUNI. Instructions for mediation and negotiation roleplays will be provided in MYUNI. Social media interface may also be implemented. Students may be asked to post comments or short summaries of material online for their seminar group. Discussion boards for the entire cohort and individual seminar groups will be used, as will file exchange, as appropriate, to facilitate students supporting each others’ learning process. Students are required to check MYUNI regularly to keep up to date with material announcements.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    This course focuses on interactive seminars and workshops of varied duration during which students will engage in a series of workshops including mediation, dispute system design, dispute system evaluation, guided discussion and problem solving, negotiation gaming, mini debate, and student led presentations.

    12 x 3 hour seminars per week, which will consist of a mix of lectures, group work, practical workshops, and individual and outcome group focussed exercises. 

    A detailed timetable of activities including lectures seminars and workshops will be provided before the course commences.

    Attendance at approximately 18 hours of workshops (ie half the course) will be compulsory, as active preparation for and engagement in the seminar process is central to student capacity to synthesise and evaluate the themes of the course. Attendance at seminars where students have been allocated a role play in partnership with other students is compulsory. Students will be expected to engage in self directed seminar preparation including internet research, focussed research, and investigation of different topics, and preparation for guided discussion on allocated topics. Preparation will range from reading and commenting on texts and materials, investigation of different approaches to ADR theory and practice, and may include informal evaluative inquiry of other persons, students, or organisation. This preparation will link directly to seminar programs. Details of compulsory session dates will be provided prior to the commencement of the course. 


    The scaffolding of lectures, student led preparation and investigation, synthesis of this investigation and preparation in seminars, and student led engagement throughout the course, aims to invest students with the basic knowledge and theory of ADR, and to enable them to build on this knowledge and theory in a self directed and inquisitive manner, sharing their perspectives and conclusions with their class. Students will draw on their own and others’ research and investigation, assisted by tutors, in developing a strongly analytical evaluative approach, that supports curiosity and investigation in this varied and interesting area, as well as encouraging imaginative approaches to ADR in a local and global context whilst maintaining an ethos of robust critical evaluation.
    Workload

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements. The University expects full time students to devote a total of 48 hours per week to their studies. In addition to 36 contact hours, students can expect to complete seminar preparation in approximately 2 – 4 hours per seminar topic. This does not include preparation for small group presentation, or other assessment.
    Learning Activities Summary
    Students will attend lectures, participate in active exercises in workshops and seminars, and engage in critical evaluation of a range of ADR processes and experiences in a range of contexts. Seminars will entail small group discussion, individual presentations and engagement, small group exercises, and the opportunity to engage in discussion with practitioners in the ADR field.
    Specific Course Requirements
    Students will be required to attend a range of the practical activities conducted as part of the course, and failure to do so without good reason (to be determined by application to the Course Coordinator in advance, or in the case of unexpected absence, post attendance default, and for which makeup work may be required to allow waiver of this condition) will result in failure of the course. Attendance at the following sessions will be required: 

    1 .  All ADR practical exercises/roleplays/fishbowls and ADR practice lectures. 

    2 . All Dispute System Design seminars (there will be one seminar on this topic, date to be determined)

    3. All workshops on communication techniques and cultural awareness. 

    In total attendance at 18 out of 36 hours of teaching will be mandated. As this course will call upon guest lectures, and will be partly responsive to the input of students as to flow and topics, it is not possible to fix dates at this time (four months before the start of the course) but dates will be fixed by the commencement of O week, and a non punitive and flexible approach taken to attendance. The main reason for attendance is that as an active integrated group learning experience, attendance is essential to acheive pedagogical outcomes as indicated below:

    REASONS
    Course objective 1 - this states that students learning is based on involvement and evaluation of engagement in integrated workshop activities, so attendance is necessary to acheive that. 

    Course objective 2 - Dispute System Design capacity is a course outcome and is acheived through group learning in class under direction of DSD practitioners in designing and reality testing a complex system design. Attendance necessary to achieve this. 

    Course objective 3 and 6 - demonstrate identified practice evaluative skills through roleplay and evaluation of roleplay - requires attendance. 


  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment % of final mark Due date Task Type (Group or Individual) Redeemable? Length Learning Outcomes
    Take Home Exam 40% Individual No 1-6
    Dispute Resolution Design assignment.  20% Monday 8 June 10 pm 2020 Groups of 4 No 1500 words

    2, 4, 5
    Essay - research essay 2500 words + bibliography 40% Monday 11 May 10 pm. Individual NO 2500 words 1, 2,3
    Assessment Related Requirements
    Students must attend and participate in all seminars each week to pass the course. Students must demonstrate preparation including completion of readings and allocated small research and investigative task, and preparation for roleplays in which they are involved. Students who fail to attend seminar in which they have a role in an interactive roleplay without prior notice (24 hours except in case of illness or emergency) without good reason will not be eligible to pass the course. The reason for this requirement is that the participation in mediation roleplays is a critically important part of this course. Students work in groups of 3 over 2 seminars (3 hours in total) which enables every student to play the role of mediator. If a student fails to attend a seminar in which they play a role, without notice, then the other two students are deprived of the activity for that seminar. For this reason, students must either attend the seminars or provide prior notice so that alternative arrangements can be made
    Assessment Detail
    1 20% Group Dispute System Design Exercise Groups of 4. Exercise partially completed in class over two seminars with teacher support and then written report submitted. 

    2 40% in class tests: CLOSED BOOK
    Test # 1: 10%; 10 questions multiple choice and/or short answer; in class (first hour) Week 4. Definitions and understanding of process. 40 minutes (online)

    Test # 2: 10 %; 10 questions multiple choice and/or short answer; in class (first hour) Week 7. Practical applicaton theory and process. 40 minutes (online)

    Test # 3: 20%; 4 short written answers; in class (first hour) 60 minutes; (handwritten) 10 questions will be provided week prior; 7 questions will be in the test; must answer 4 questions

    3 40% Essay – Up to 2500 words, on set topics.


    Submission
    Late submission : When an assessment is submitted after the due date, and without an extension, 5% of the total mark possible will be deducted for every 24 hours or part thereof that it is late, including each day on a weekend. For example, an essay that is submitted after the due date and time but within the first 24 hour period, and that has been graded at 63%, will have 5% deducted, for a final grade of 58%. An essay that is more than 24 hours late will lose 10%, etc. Hard copy submissions made after 5.00pm on a Friday will be assumed to have been submitted on the next business day and will be penalised 5% per day for every day including weekend days and public holidays. This penalty may be increased where the assignment is to be completed in a period of less than a week. Extensions on medical or compassionate grounds will be in accordance with University Policy (see below). As far as practicable, each item of assessment will be returned to students within 3 weeks of submission. Assessment that forms part of mid semester assessment will be as far as practicable returned within 2 weeks of submission.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Finality of Assessment Grades

    Students are advised that Course Coordinators will not enter into negotiations of any kind with any student regarding changes to their grades. It is irrelevant, in any given circumstance, that only a minimal number of additional marks are required to inflate a student’s grade for any individual assessment item or course as a whole. Pursuant to the University’s Assessment for Coursework Programs Policyand the Adelaide Law School Assessment Policies and Procedures, grades may only be varied through the appropriate channels for academic review (such as an official re-mark).

    Moderation
    In accordance with the University’s Assessment for Coursework Programs Policy, course coordinators ‘ensure that appropriate marking guidelines and cross-marking moderation processes across markers are in place’ in each course. Procedures adopted by Adelaide Law School to ensure consistency of marking in courses with multiple markers include:
    • assurance of the qualifications of markers, and their knowledge of the content covered in each course;
    • detailed marking guidelines and assessment rubrics to assist in the marking of items of assessment;
    • sharing of example marked assessments at various grade bands across markers;
    • reviewing of selected marked assessments from each marker by the course coordinator;
    • comparison of the marks and their distribution across markers;
    • automatic double-marking of all interim assessment receiving a fail grade, and of final assessments where a student’s overall result is a fail grade;
    • the availability of re-marking of assessments in accordance with Adelaide Law School’s Assessment Policies and Procedures.

    Approval of Results by Board of Examiners
    Students are reminded that all assessment results are subject to approval (and possible moderation/change) by the Law School’s Board of Examiners. Assessment results at the University are not scaled. Under the Assessment for Coursework Programs Policy, students are assessed ‘by reference to their performance against pre-determined criteria and standards … and not by ranking against the performance of the student cohort in the course’. However, under that same policy, the Board of Examiners (as the relevant Assessment Review Committee for courses at Adelaide Law School) is required to ‘ensure comparability of standards and consistency’ in assessment. On occasions, the Board of Examiners will form the view that some moderation is required to ensure the comparability of standards and consistency across courses and years, and accordingly provide fairness to all law students. All assessment results are therefore subject to approval (and possible change) until confirmed by the Board of Examiners and posted on Access Adelaide at the end of each semester.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy (http://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/101/) course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

    Student feedback The course is constantly being updated and revised to reflect the evolution of the law, to respond to student feedback, and to engage with the latest teaching practices. Student feedback is collected each time the course is run, including through SELT reports. Previous SELT reports, and staff feedback on them, are posted on the course MyUni site for students to view and consider.
  • Student Support

    The University Writing Centre provides academic learning and language development services and resources for local, international, undergraduate and postgraduate coursework students enrolled at the University of Adelaide.

    The centre offers practical advice and strategies for students to master reading, writing, note-taking, time management, oral presentation skills, referencing techniques and exam preparation for success at university through seminars, workshops and individual consultations.

    For more information please check out the Writing Centre website at http://www.adelaide.edu.au/writingcentre/  

    Lex Salus Program



    Lex Salus (law and wellbeing) is an initiative of the Adelaide Law School aimed at destigmatising mental health
    issues; promoting physical, mental and emotional wellness; building a strong community of staff and students; and celebrating diversity within the school.

    It also seeks to promote wellness within the legal profession, through the involvement of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of South Australia, the Honourable Chris Kourakis, as the official Patron of the program. Students can participate in the Lex Salus program by attending barbecue lunches, pancake breakfasts, knitting and crochet circles, seminars, guest speakers, conferences
    and other activities. Our FaceBook page at https://www.facebook.com/LexSalusALS/ , our website at https://law.adelaide.edu.au/lex-salus/ and regular allstudent emails promote upcoming events, and have tips and information on wellness. Our Lex Salus Youtube channel at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCN5jQ44r8SmVn0txjaNcj3w  also includes videos
    on topics like managing stress, and interviews with LGBTQ lawyers and their supporters which celebrate diversity and individuality. Students who commit to 10 hours of volunteering with Lex Salus in one year can have their service recognised on their academic transcript and through a thank you morning tea with the Chief Justice and law school staff.



    Counselling Service

    The University Counselling Service provides a free and confidential service to all enrolled students. We encourage you to contact the Counselling service on 8313 5663 to make an appointment to deal with any issues that may be affecting your study and life. More information is available at https://www.adelaide.edu.au/counselling_centre/

  • Policies & Guidelines

    This section contains links to relevant assessment-related policies and guidelines - all university policies.

    Further information regarding the Law School Policies and Procedures in relation to Supplementary Assessment, Extensions, and Remarks etc can be found at:

    https://unified.adelaide.edu.au/group/law-school/policies-and-procedures

    Academic Honesty

    Academic dishonesty is a serious act of academic misconduct. All students must be familiar with the University’s
    Academic Honesty Policy.

    Academic dishonesty is a serious matter and is treated as such by the Law School and the University. Academic
    dishonesty (which goes beyond plagiarism) can be a ground for a refusal by the Supreme Court of South Australia to admit a person to practice as a legal practitioner in South Australia.

    Academic honesty is an essential aspect of ethical and honest behaviour, which is central to the practice of the
    law and an understanding of what it is to be a lawyer.

     


  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.