COMMLAW 7012 - Business and Corporations Law

North Terrace Campus - Trimester 1 - 2021

This course will introduce students to a range of legal issues that impact on business. Students will learn to identify areas of legal liability and risk and how to minimise legal risk. The topics covered in the course include an introduction to the legal system, the law of business structures, contract law, consumer protection law, competition law, corporate governance including directors and officers duties, the concept of corporate personality, the corporate constitution and Replaceable Rules, company contracts, financial reporting requirements, members rights and external administration.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code COMMLAW 7012
    Course Business and Corporations Law
    Coordinating Unit Adelaide Law School
    Term Trimester 1
    Level Postgraduate Coursework
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Course Description This course will introduce students to a range of legal issues that impact on business. Students will learn to identify areas of legal liability and risk and how to minimise legal risk. The topics covered in the course include an introduction to the legal system, the law of business structures, contract law, consumer protection law, competition law, corporate governance including directors and officers duties, the concept of corporate personality, the corporate constitution and Replaceable Rules, company contracts, financial reporting requirements, members rights and external administration.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Colette Langos

    Dr Colette Langos
    Room: 221 Ligertwood
    Consultation by appointment - please send an email.
    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. Identify fundamental aspects of the Australian legal system;
    2. Apply correct legal methodology: apply IRAC (Issues, Rules, Argument, Conclusion) framework to legal problems;
    3. Analyse legal themes relevant to business dealings critically;
    4. Conduct basic legal research; 
    5. Utilise modern technology effectively;
    6. Communicate legal argument effectively.
    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)
    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
    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
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    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
    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
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    Fitzpatrick, Symes, Veljanovski & Parker, 'Business and Corporations Law', 4th edition (Lexis Nexis).
    Recommended Resources
    Students may find the following textbooks helpful but are not expected to purchase them:

    Giancaspro & Langos, Understanding Contract Law: A Practical Guide (2016), Lexis Nexis.

    Latimer, Australian Business Law 35th (or any recent) edition, CCH.

    Lipton Herzberg & Welsh, Understanding Company Law 17th ed, Thomson Reuters.
    Hanrahan Ramsey and Stapeldon, Commercial Applications of Company Law 17th (or any recent) edition, CCH.

    The Corporations Act  is available free at legislation or at Commlaw.

    Online Learning
    Electronic copies of the lecture powerpoint slides, weekly seminar questions and assignment questions will be provided on MyUni.

    Students are strongly encouraged to regularlay check myUni for updates and course communication such as Announcements.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    The trimester iteration of Business and Corporations Law will be delivered via online lectures available to students via Echo360 (Course MyUni Page) and seminar sessions. Lecture and seminar sessions will be held in 3 hour blocks. Seminars cover topics covered in the preceeding lecture block. Students will have the option to attend the seminar blocks (sessions) on campus or via Zoom (online). Recordings of the Zoom seminar sessions will also be available on Echo360. Please pay close attention to the dates for lectures and seminars.

    No information currently available.

    Learning Activities Summary
    Lecture Block 1 (see dates)
    Lecture 1 - Introduction to the Course and the Australian Legal System
    Lecture 2 - Contract Formation (Focus on Offer and Acceptance)
    Lecture 3 - Contract Performance (Focus on Express Terms)

    Seminar Block 1  (option for on campus or via Zoom - see dates)
    Seminar 1 - Australian Legal System Practice Quiz
    Seminar 2 - Legal Problem on Offer and Acceptance
    Seminar 3 - Legal Problem on Express Terms

    Lecture Block 2 (see dates)
    Lecture 4 - Contract Termination
    Lecture 5 - Australian Consumer Law: Misleading or Deceptive Conduct

    Seminar Block 2 (option for on campus or via Zoom - see dates)
    Seminar 4 - Legal Problem on Contract Termination
    Seminar 5 - Legal Problem on Misleading or Deceptive Conduct

    Lecture Block 3 (see dates)
    Lecture 6 - Business Structures other than Companies (Focus on Partnerships)
    Lecture 7 - Companies (Focus on incorporation process and Company classification)
    Lecture 8 - Pre-registration Contracts

    Seminar Block 3 (option for on campus or via Zoom - see dates)
    Seminar 6 - Legal Problem on Partnership
    Seminar 7 - Legal Problem on Company types and incorporation Process
    Seminar 8 - Legal Problem on Pre-regislation Contracts

    Lecture Block 4 (see dates)
    Lecture 9 - Directors Duties
    Lecture 10 - Financial Reporting Requirements

    Seminar Block 4 (option for on campus or via Zoom - see dates)
    Seminar 9 - Legal Problem on Directors Duties
    Seminar 10 - Legal Problem on Financial Reporting Requirements
    Exam preparation and Information

  • 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 item % of final mark Dates Length Individual or Group Activity? Redeemable in exam? Learning Outcomes
    Online Quiz on Australian Legal System 10% Opens 9am 15th Feb and closes 9am 17th Feb 20 multiple choice Individual No 1,5,6
    Online Quiz on Australian Consumer Law 10% Opens 9am 1st March and closes 9am 3rd March    20 multiple choice Individua No 1,5,6
    Mid-Semester Assignment 30% Tuesday 16th March at 2pm 2500 max Individual or Group No 1,2,3,4,5,6
    Corporations Law Exam 50% See University Exam Timetable 120 minutes Individual No 1,2,3,6
    Assessment Detail
    The assessment components are as follows:

    Online Quiz
    First Online Quiz (10%)
    Second Online Quiz (10%) 

    Each Online Quiz will comprise of 20 multiple choice questions. Quiz questions for each individual student are drawn from a larger bank of questions and randomised.

    The first Online Quiz will test student knowledge on the Australian Legal System. The second Online Quiz will test student knowledge of the Australian Consumer Law.

    Business Law Assignment (30%)

    This task assesses student comprehension of the Business Law component of the course. It comprises of 3 Parts and is based on content taught in Lectures 2-5. Parts 1 and 2 comprise of legal problem questions. Students are assessed on their ability to synthesise and apply correct law; think critically. Part 3 is a short research essay. Students are assessed on their research and writing skills and must demonstrate appropriate adherence to legal research principles within a business context.

    Students may submit this assessment piece as an individual assignment or a group assignment (up to 4 people in a group) where all group members will be awarded the same mark. For students who wish to submit a group assignment, you must sign up (self select) into a group via MyUni by the end of Week 5.The word limit for this assessment is 2500 words regardless if you submit as an individual assignment or a group assignment.

    Final Exam (50%)

    There will be an Online Multiple Choice Question exam in the examination period. Examinable content will be drawn from content covered in Lectures 6-10. The Exam is open-book.

    No information currently available.

    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.

    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 ( 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.

    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.

    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, website and regular all-student emails promote upcoming events, and have tips and information on wellness.

    Our Lex Salus YouTube channel 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.

    Student Life Counselling Support
    The University’s Student Life Counselling Support service provides free and confidential service to all enrolled students. We encourage you to contact the Student Life Counselling Support service on 8313 5663 to make an appointment to deal with any issues that may be affecting your study and life.
  • Policies & Guidelines

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

    Academic Integrity
    All students must be familiar with the University’s Academic Integrity Policy. Academic Misconduct is a serious matter and is treated as such by the Law School and the University. Academic Misconduct (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 Integrity 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.