The purpose and methodology for the study

The primary purpose of the research project was to develop a framework for an internationalised law curriculum to prepare law graduates for practice in a global context and to enhance the wider recognition of Australian
law degrees.

The development of such a framework for an internationalised law curriculum required:

The focus of the research project was on the internationalisation of the law curriculum within the broader context of globalisation and its impact on legal services and legal education.

The project was conducted over a period of 18 months (January 2011 to June 2012), which included an extension of six months during which time a national symposium was held.

The projected adopted the following approach and methodology:

Phase 1: Scoping the project and preliminary literature review

A preliminary literature review was conducted and the scope of the project was defined.

Phase 2: Literature review and curriculum analysis

A comprehensive literature review was undertaken with the focus on curriculum internationalisation, the knowledge, skills and attributes required for working in an international and global context, graduate attributes by which the law curriculum is shaped, approaches to internationalisation and examples of internationalisation in law curricula.

Phase 3: Regional employer roundtables

Employer roundtables were held in Sydney, Canberra, Perth and Hong Kong. The aim of the roundtables was to consult with and seek input from key employers on their perceptions and views on the core knowledge, skills and other attributes required for law graduates to work in the global environment.

The data was used to inform the curriculum framework.

Phase 4: Develop a draft curriculum framework

A draft curriculum framework for a law curriculum suited to practice in a globalised world was developed based on the literature review and preliminary roundtable data. This also formed the basis for the program for the national symposium.

Phase 5: A national symposium

The aim of the national symposium was to engage key stakeholders in high level discussions on various aspects of internationalising the law curriculum, and to provide feedback on the interim findings of the project.

Phase 6: Amend and finalise curriculum framework

The final framework for an internationalised law curriculum to prepare law graduates for practice in a global context was developed based on the input from the symposium and the ongoing literature review of curriculum design and development.

Phase 7: Dissemination of results and outcomes

The project aims to disseminate the research findings and outcomes mainly through project reports, seminars and scholarly reports. The result will be to improve the Australian law curriculum as taught in Australian law schools; increase the mobility of both in-bound and out-bound law students across jurisdictions and significantly enhance the recognition of Australian law degrees.