AUT University's law degree is distinctive. It goes several steps beyond the generally prescribed curriculum for Law Degrees in New Zealand by including, in its core curriculum, compulsory papers in intellectual property and company law. This solid foundation enables students to study areas of law that are important to future employers in depth. Examples include
- Competition and regulation
- Corporate and financial law
- International trade law
- Law and technology
- Media and entertainment law
- Resource management
Law graduates with a strong grounding in commercial law are now greatly sought after by a wide range of employers in the private sector. These include: law and accounting firms; banks; financial advisers; patent attorneys; and large corporates.
The law degree has a learning pedagogy based on student engagement which is designed to develop student capabilities in academic learning, communication, problem solving and interpersonal skills. Key features of the unique learning environment and experience at AUT Law School include:
- Small classes. Our workshops have between 18 and 25 students maximum, which allows significant opportunities for direct interaction with experienced lecturers. Electives generally have a maximum of 35-40. Our pedagogical preference for small classes, a high degree of interaction between students and lecturers and high levels of availability to lecturers has a noticeable positive effect on students’ learning.
- Interactive workshops. The core full-year Legal Reasoning and Writing paper is taught entirely through workshops. All Part 2 papers and all compulsory Part 3 and 4 papers are taught through a combination of lectures and workshops, as are a number of electives.
- Focus on development and practice of professionally-relevant legal skills in all aspects of law studies. Although there are a variety of methods of assessment, many lecturers deliberately opt for "real world" exercises/assignments to allow students to put the theory into practice. Examples include submissions, drafting legal opinions, memoranda, and other commercial documents. The practical application of law underpins all of our teaching.