• Risha

Week starting 5 October

How to incorporate some contemporary examples into your answers

Yes, you can talk about COVID policies. But also, I’m not a teacher or an examiner so please ask your teacher to double check!!!

VCAA loves contemporary examples for legal studies. It shows them that you truly engaged with the content because you are able to relate it back to real world examples. Big bonus points for you!!

There are so many things you can relate legal studies back to and that’s one of the plus points of having a humanities subject: you can actually SEE examples occurring around you. You’ve probably signed petitions yourself this year. You’ve witnessed how unfair the criminal justice system can be with the acquittal of certain individuals in criminal cases across the year. These are all examples to use in your answers.

If you’re unsure about using a specific example, please ask your teacher. If they do not personally know, they will do their best to find out!! Stay away from any international examples, stick to Australia only, and where you can, keep it Victorian.

However, do not get political in your answers. Markers do not care about your personal views and values so try and remain as neutral as possible. If you are arguing something is unfair or ineffective, make sure you have evidence (that fits into the study design) to back up your answer. Giving your own opinion, will just waste time and lines, you won’t lose marks for it (but if the examiner doesn’t agree with it, they might start to get harsher, so be careful!!)

I’ve made a list of some interesting recent real- life examples you can use for Unit 4 AOS 2, they’re all pretty 2020 specific

  • How quickly Parliament responded to put in COVID restrictions. You can make this point when saying that Parliaments do have the ability to act quickly (the ability of parliament and the courts to respond to the need for law reform.)

  • The judges and jury with the Pell decision. Knowing it would be unpopular with most of the public (and not being afraid of voter backlash), but the jury did hold ‘reasonable doubt’ which is the standard of proof for criminal cases. Because of this, Pell was acquitted. These are very interesting points to make. I’ve attached the court record below, if people want a clearer idea of this. (the ability of parliament and the courts to respond to the need for law reform & the standard of proof – the presumption of innocence). https://www.hcourt.gov.au/assets/publications/judgment-summaries/2020/hca-12-2020-04-07.pdf

  • Petitions for Black Lives Matter circulating in June for the petitions dot point

  • School Strike for Climate Change, the freedom rallies in Victoria and Black Lives Matter marches for demonstrations

  • You can also link petitions through social media!! Talk about how sharing on stories and posts spreads news/petitions very quickly!!

  • You can also talk about how Police Brutality against Indigenous people in Australia is filmed and posted on social media, giving people and Parliament access to it. People then get angry, make petitions, demonstrations etc!!

  • Talk about the role of media in this way, the media was seen to “denounce” the demonstrations that went on during COVID and this would influence MP’s decisions for these matters.

Those are just some super relevant ones, but if you can think of any others, ask your teacher if it’s all good and then go ahead and put them in your notes. The more relevant your examples are, the more impressed your examiners will be!!

Good luck!!


Have a question


In the final weeks before exams Risha will be hosting 2 Live Q&A sessions to help everyone get fully prepared for exams. If you have a question on how to best get prepared, have been stuck on an exam question or want to clarify an area of content send it through here, and Risha might answer it live!

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