Master of Arts (Socio-Legal Studies)

Course 102SL (2013)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2013.

Year and Campus: 2013
CRICOS Code: 007306C
Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Level: Research Higher Degree
Duration & Credit Points: Students are expected to complete this research in 1.50 years full time, or equivalent part time.
Course Overview:

The Masters degree is designed for students to develop advanced skills in carrying out independent and sustained research. The thesis should demonstrate a critical application of specialist knowledge and make an independent contribution to existing scholarship in socio-legal studies. Candidates may advance to the Doctor of Philosophy degree after successful completion of the Masters or may apply to convert to the PhD at an earlier stage. An Honours grade of at least H3 (65%) must be attained to qualify for the award of the Masters degree.


On completion of the Masters, students should be able to:

  • demonstrate advanced learning in research skills and appropriate techniques, such as the use of archival or primary evidence, analysis of data, judgement of conflicting evidence etc;
  • demonstrate specialist knowledge in the area of their research;
  • present the results of their research in publishable form or work towards incorporating their findings in further research;
  • proceed to the PhD if the Masters thesis has demonstrated appropriate research potential;
  • gain admission to certain types of employment through this specialist qualification;
  • apply the research skills acquired to other projects;
  • demonstrate an understanding of, and commitment to, research ethics or codes of practice.
Course Structure & Available Subjects:

Thesis of 30,000 words

Entry Requirements:

A four-year BA (Honours) degree with a research component or equivalent in the appropriate area of study or closely related area. The grade for the honours thesis component must be at least equivalent to an H2A (75%) at The University of Melbourne and the overall honours result must be at least equivalent to an H2B (70%).

Applicants must include with their application a thesis proposal of 2,500 words and a writing sample (this may be an essay from your previous degree, a chapter from your Honours or Masters thesis or a published article). The primary basis for selection is academic merit, however, consideration will also be given to the quality of the thesis proposal, research potential and the availability of an appropriate supervisor. Academic references may be required to assess the applicant's eligibility.

Applicants should arrange an interview with the school's Postgraduate Coordinator prior to submitting their application in order to discuss their suitability for candidature and their proposed course of study.

Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering requests for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this course are articulated in the Course Description, Course Objectives and Generic Skills of this entry.
The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison Unit website:

Graduate Attributes:

Please refer to the University Graduate Attributes:


Candidates must submit an outline of their project of 2000-3000 words after six months of full-time candidature and an annual report of 1000 words on their research.
Candidates must also give a formal presentation in one of the following ways:

  • a twenty-minute paper on their topic at a Departmental seminar;
  • thesis-related material as part of a formal lecture for criminology or a related subject;
  • a paper at an academic conference.

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