Course Title: Mass Communication Law and Regulation

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Mass Communication Law and Regulation

Credit Points: 12

Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


335H Applied Communication


Sem 1 2007

Course Coordinator: To be confirmed

Course Coordinator Phone: To be confirmed

Course Coordinator Email:To be confirmed

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

The course will examine the key laws and regulations which affect the media, and how they affect people who work in communications, including journalists, broadcasters and public relations professionals.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

Students should develop a sound basic understanding of both legal and self-regulatory restrictions on expression, the reasons for these restrictions, and how to produce quality professional work within them.

It aims to give students a good understanding of the legal and self-regulatory structures which influence mass communication. There will be a focus on defamation and contempt of court laws, and their implications for communications professionals. Other areas of importance include privacy law, ethics, broadcasting law and intellectual property.

Overview of Learning Activities

The aims of the course will be achieved in a variety of ways, through formal lectures, providing information on the historical, social and economic context in which media law has evolved, group discussion and class activities, structured weekly reading, guest speakers, the use of selected multi-media material, including on-line material and assessment exercises designed to ensure that understand key concepts relating to media law and regulation are understood.

Overview of Learning Resources

Pearson, Mark, The Journalist’s Guide to Media Law, Allen & Unwin

This book clearly and concisely explains the law in lay person’s terms.
Despite the title, it is relevant to all communications professionals, not just journalists. This book is essential to understanding the material in this course. We recommend that you buy your own copy.

Overview of Assessment

There will be a number of assessments in the course.

It is recommended that students attend all lectures and tutorials in order to gain the knowledge, skills and understandings required to achieve a pass or better.

Tasks & Value:
Preparatory essay: Topic – Plagiarism: 10%
Tutorial presentation: 20%
Court report: 20%
Major essay: 40%
Participation: 10%