Course Title: Practise in a legal environment

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2017

Course Code: JUST5751

Course Title: Practise in a legal environment

School: 650T Vocational Business Education

Campus: City Campus

Program: C6141 - Advanced Diploma of Legal Practice

Course Contact: Robert Sheen

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 5759

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Robyn Lang

Nominal Hours: 70

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites


Course Description

This unit describes the skills and knowledge required to support the work of a legal office, practice or associated context, by operating according to legislative protocols and organisational policies and procedures in order to: initiate client files; take instructions and provide required legislative information; consult with internal/external specialist/s, and prepare, develop and manage legal documents to ensure that all necessary information is obtained and that documentation accurately reflects the clients’ needs.

This unit supports the work of personnel engaged in the operation of a legal office or associated fields within public and/or corporate sectors.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

VU21642 Practise in a legal environment


1.Open client file, take instructions and provide required legislative information

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Determine risk acceptance criteria and establish acceptable risk levels based on evaluation of exposure for area of legal interest 1.2 Open and prepare the client file, based on relevant enterprise and legislative requirements 1.3 Take client instructions and record them accurately 1.4 Establish and record essential details to meet legislative requirements and risk acceptance criteria 1.5 Provide client with accurate legislative information as instructed by the enterprise and answer client questions accurately, completely and in language appropriate to the client


2.Consult appropriate specialist/s

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Identify and consult with appropriate specialist/s in a timely manner and according to appropriate protocol 2.2 Provide to, and obtain from, complete and accurate information specialist/s as required 2.3 Follow-up and complete appropriate action/s, resulting from consultation with the specialist/s


3.Obtain, prepare and manage legal documentation on the instructions and under the supervision of a solicitor or barrister

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Obtain legal documentation from appropriate source/s within appropriate timeframes 3.2 Prepare and check legal documentation in accordance with statutory requirements, legal and organisational specifications and format 3.3 Undertake management of legal documentation according to legal and organisational timeframes and guidelines 3.4 Upon completion of the project, file and store legal documentation according to legal and organisational requirements


4.Maintain communication with the client

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Inform the client on the progress of the file at appropriate and regular intervals 4.2 Consult the client on decision-making matters and/or legislative requirements when required 4.3 Check the database to ensure that there is no conflict with the existing client and inform the client of the consequences and procedures should conflict arise


5.Identify and apply legal ethics and practice

Performance Criteria:

5.1 Identify and describe the main duties of legal practitioners and others employed in the legal profession 5.2 Identify legislative and other sources of information on legal ethics and practice and assess for application 5.3 Identify potential ethical conflicts, including conflicts of interest between clients 5.4 When required, report complete and appropriate responses to ethical conflicts and review them according to legislative and organisational requirements 5.5 Identify and discuss confidentiality requirements in the legal profession

Learning Outcomes


Details of Learning Activities

A range of learning activities are planned for this course including self-paced and collaborative classroom-based activities.

The self-paced activities will be delivered through various technology platforms and may include your contribution to wikis and discussion threads, reflective journals, quizzes and interactive sessions.

The collaborative classroom-based activities will include group discussions, group problem-solving activities and opportunities to practice your skills in a simulated/real workplace environment. We expect you to participate and contribute in all scheduled learning activities.

Teaching Schedule

Induction Session

Prior to training commencement a program level induction session will be conducted that comprises the following:

  • Program overview and requirements
  • MyRMIT/Blackboard
  • Overview of assessment requirements
  • Pre-Training Review including:
    • Recognition of Prior Learning and Credit Transfers
    • Assessment of current skills and knowledge
  • Competency/Grading Criteria
  • Plagiarism
  • Appeals
  • Extensions
  • Feedback
  • Privacy
  • Submission requirements
  • Resubmission policy
  • Where to get support
  • Student responsibilities 

This course is one of six (6) courses comprising the “Working in a Legal Environment” (WiLE) segment of this program, the details of which are as follows:


 Practise in a Legal Environment (PILE)


 Undertake Career Planning


 Use Communication to Build Relationships


 Develop Keyboarding Speed and Accuracy


 Produce Complex Legal Documents


 Establish and Maintain a Trust Account


The above courses are all co-delivered.

The weekly teaching schedule for this course is located in the attached file named "WiLE Weekly Schedule_Sem 1 2017". (Please note that this schedule is subject to change)

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Other Resources


Overview of Assessment

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit

In order to demonstrate competency in this unit, you must provide evidence of:

• taking instructions to open a client file and provide legislative information
• maintaining a client file according to instruction and applying relevant organisational technology and procedures to produce, file, store, and retrieve legal documents
• consulting with appropriate specialist/s to obtain information and complete documentation necessary to meet and reflect a client’s needs
• knowledge of the theory and practice related to the areas of Law of Torts, Contract Law, Evidence and Legal Processes and/or other areas of legal ethics
• knowledge of and the application of relevant organisational technology to produce legal documents, and file management systems to store and retrieve files
• knowledge of professional code of conduct in the legal industry

Context for assessment

Assessment must ensure:

• activities are related to a legal practice context
• activities are related to laws, regulations and procedures currently operating across the jurisdictions relevant to this qualification
• activities and assessments will be undertaken on the basis that only Australian Legal Practitioners (Solicitors/Barristers) may engage in legal practice (which includes providing legal advice and services and doing legal work); and that others must work on the instructions and under the supervision of an Australian Legal Practitioner

You are advised that you are likely to be asked to personally demonstrate your assessment work to your teacher to ensure that the relevant competency standards are being met.


Feedback will be provided throughout the semester in class and/or online discussions. You are encouraged to ask and answer questions during class time and online sessions so that you can obtain feedback on your understanding of the concepts and issues being discussed.

You should take note of all feedback received and use this information to improve your learning effectiveness and final performance in the course.

Finally, you can email or arrange an appointment with your teacher to gain more feedback on your progress.

Assessment Tasks

The details of the assessment tasks for the six (6) co-delivered courses mentioned earlier in this course guide are also located in the attachment named "WiLE Weekly Schedule_Sem 1 2017".

Assessment Matrix

Other Information

Submission Requirements

You should:

  • Ensure that you submit assessments on or before the due date.
  • Always retain a copy of your assessment tasks (both hard copy and soft copy).
  • Use a cover sheet that includes a declaration and statement of authorship when you submit work for assessment at RMIT University. You must complete, sign and submit a cover sheet with all work you submit for assessment, whether individual or group work. On the cover sheet you must declare that the work you are presenting for assessment is your own work. An assignment cover sheet for submission of each assessment task is available on Blackboard.
  • Include a footer (appearing on each page of your assessment) with your name, student number, assessment title, course code, course title and page numbers. For example, Kelly Hervey, 324567, Task 2, OHS2345C Ensure safe workplace, Page 1 of 10.

Late Submission Procedures

You are required to submit assessment items and/or ensure performance based assessment is completed by the due dates.

If you are prevented from submitting an assessment item on time, by circumstances outside your control, you may apply in advance to your teacher for an extension to the due date of up to seven calendar days. For more Information go to:

The application form may be obtained from:

Where an extension of greater than seven days is needed, you must apply for Special Consideration. Applications for Special Consideration must be submitted no later than two working days after the assessment task deadline or scheduled examination. For more Information go to:;ID=g43abm17hc9w

The application form may be obtained from:

Resubmissions (VE Programs):

You must satisfactorily complete all assessment tasks in order to achieve competency.

If an assessment task is assessed as not yet satisfactory, you will be allowed one resubmission opportunity only. Your teacher will provide feedback detailing what you need to do in order to satisfactorily complete that task, and will set a new deadline for the resubmission within the current semester.

If your resubmission is deemed to be not yet satisfactory then you must apply in writing to your Program Manager outlining the steps you will take to demonstrate competence in that course. Your submission will be considered by the Program Team and you will be advised of the outcome as soon as practical.

If your resubmission is deemed satisfactory then you may still achieve competency for the course, provided that all other assessment tasks are satisfactorily completed. Further, if this satisfactory resubmission is of a task that contributes to the overall grading of this course, then it shall only be entitled to receive a score that equates to 50% of the total marks allocated for that task.

Adjustments to Assessment

In certain circumstances students may be eligible for an assessment adjustment. For more information about the circumstances under which an adjustment to the assessment arrangements might be granted please access the following website:;ID=7usdbki1fjf31

Marking Guide (Competency)

You must demonstrate through your performance in the Course Assessment Tasks that you have all the required skills and knowledge as specified in the unit of competency (course) you are studying.

Your submitted assessments are the evidence used to determine if you have met all critical aspects of the assessments, and if any critical aspects have not been met, then you cannot be deemed competent in this course.

On each assessment task you will receive feedback against the competency requirements for that task, and the outcome of the task will be recorded as either satisfactory (all requirements have been met) or not yet satisfactory (one or more requirements has not yet been met).

Only when all assessment tasks have been assessed as satisfactory will you be deemed competent in this course.

Marking Guide (Grading)

This course is graded. However, only after achieving competency in this course will you receive a grade corresponding to your level of performance in the course. 

The reported Final Grade will be one of the following:


 Competent with High Distinction


 Competent with Distinction


 Competent with Credit


 Competency Achieved – Graded


 Not Yet Competent (all assessment tasks submitted)


 Did Not Submit (one or more assessment tasks not submitted)

Further details regarding the application of the grading criteria will be provided by your teacher.

Course Overview: Access Course Overview