Course Title: Property law

Part A: Course Overview

Program: C6106 Advanced Diploma of Legal Practice

Course Title: Property law

Portfolio: BUS Portfolio Office

Nominal Hours: 51

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.

Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


650T Vocational Business Education

Distance / Correspondence or Face-to-Face or Internet or Workplace

Term1 2012,
Term2 2013,
Term2 2014,
Term2 2015,
Term1 2016

Course Contact: Doug Gourlay

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 5944

Course Contact Email:

Course Description

The purpose of this module is to provide detailed knowledge of property law as might be relevant to a person working in a legal office, conveyancing office, financial institution or lending mortgage department, government department, or other allied area requiring thorough knowledge of Property Law concepts and applications, including analysis of estates and interests, mortgages, easements, and covenants, tenancies, and adverse possession.

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

Pre-requisites:  VU20111 Legal Process

National Competency Codes and Titles

National Element Code & Title:

VU20109 Property law



Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course you will be able to:

Learning Outcome 1 - Determine and define the concept of property and the basis of land holding and transfer.
Assessment criteria
1.1 Define the meaning of property, examine and analyse the following:
• the feudal origin of concepts of land law
• the doctrine of tenure
• the doctrine of estates
• personal property
• real property
• fixtures and chattels
1.2 Define the term ‘convey’ and outline the features in the context of property law and conveyancing procedures.
1.3 Apply the concept ’convey’ to a relevant case study and examine the relevant evidence of transfer and conveyance.
1.4 Apply the tests to distinguish, fixtures and chattels (goods) to various case studies and analyse relevant case law.

Learning Outcome 2 - Analyse the various holdings in real estate and assess the implications for the holder of any of the various interests.
Assessment criteria
2.1 Outline the concept of the holding of land in fee simple. .
2.2 Examine the nature of estates other than a fee simple vested in possession.
2.3 Examine the nature of equitable estates and interests.
2.4 Analyse and differentiate between joint tenancy and tenancy in common.
2.5 Evaluate the effect of the rules of co-ownership by application of case studies, and relate the findings to various fact situations.

Learning Outcome 3 - Analyse and assess the various methods by which a person may prove that they possess a particular interest in land.
Assessment criteria
3.1 Examine the nature and proof of a common law title.
3.2 Outline the concept of Torrens title holding.
3.3 Examine the reasons for title investigation analysis.
3.4 Analyse different title examples in relation to 3.1, 3.2 and 3.3.

Learning Outcome 4 - Determine and assess the main features of the Torrens title system in relation to the transfer and proof of ownership of an interest in land.
Assessment criteria
4.1 Trace the development and provisions of the Transfer of Land Act, and analyse the following features:
• historical background to the Torrens system
• the aims and general features of the system
• the compensation scheme
• the registry of Land Victoria
• how land comes under the operation of the scheme including conversion of common law holdings
• the single document as proof of title
• the centrality of registration to the scheme
• distinction between title examples and styles
4.2 Outline the registration of interests other than freehold. Examine the relevant provisions of The Transfer of Land Act with reference to mortgages, caveats, easements, restrictive covenants and the process of registration.
4.3 Analyse the legislative provisions and case law in relation to:
• the conclusiveness of the register
• the estate of the registered proprietor being paramount and the exceptions
• the concept of indefeasibility and the controversy over whether it is immediate or deferred
• the meaning of "fraud" in the context of indefeasibility and its effect.
• in personam rights
• case example analysis and comparison
4.4 Specify the relevant procedures at the registry of Land Victoria.

Learning Outcome 5 - Examine the nature of a possessory title.
Assessment criteria
5.1 Analyse the meaning of adverse possession.
5.2 Examine the relevant provisions of Limitation of Actions Act.
5.3 Assess the procedures for obtaining a Certificate of Title based on adverse possession with reference to the Transfer of Land Act provisions, the Land Victoria guidelines and the analysis of case examples.

Learning Outcome 6 - Examine the nature of estates which are less than freehold and which may encumber freehold estates.
Assessment criteria
6.1 Examine the aspects of tenancies.
6.2 Examine the main provisions of the Residential Tenancies Act.
6.3 Assess the operation of the Retail Leases Act.

Learning Outcome 7 - Establish the nature and the function of a mortgage at common law and within the operation of the Transfer of Land.
Assessment criteria
7.1 Determine the nature of a mortgage.
7.2 Analyse the nature of a mortgage under the common law, and specify the following features:
• the mortgage as a conveyance
• the equity of redemption and the rights of mortgagor
• the concepts of postponing and ‘clogging’ the equity of redemption
7.3 Examine the nature of a mortgage under the Transfer of Land Act.

Learning Outcome 8 - Analyse and assess the basic nature and function of an easement and covenant.
Assessment criteria
8.1 Specify the essential elements, the nature and the function of an easement.
8.2 Determine and assess the basic nature and function of a restrictive covenant.
8.3 Analyse the features of an easement and covenant in relation to:
• a case study
• various case examples
• title examples

Overview of Assessment

Assessment methods have been designed to measure achievement of the requirements in a flexible manner over a range of assessment tasks and may include:

• case study analysis
• short answers questions
• written assignments/reports
• tests/examination
• oral presentations
• projects

Students are advised that they are likely to be asked to personally demonstrate their assessment work to their teacher to ensure that the relevant module standards are being met.