Each year, the TC Beirne School of Law is pleased to welcome several leading academic and professional visitors to the school.

Our visitors are selected for their expertise and/or established research profiles. Students are encouraged to take advantage of their presence in the school by enrolling in the courses listed below.


Dr Geoff Airo-Farulla

In Semester 1, 2017, Dr Airo-Farulla will teach:

LAWS7977 Advanced Administrative Law

Administrative law is central to the functioning of Australian governments. This course is aimed at students who practice, or are interested in practicing, in administrative law, whether in the private profession, as government lawyers, in or the not-for-profit sector. It is organised around four themes:

  • Administrative law's definition, role, values and impact;
  • 'Internal' administrative law - the foundations of governance of administrative agencies;
  • recent developments in administrative law; and
  • investigation in detail of some key doctrinal principles.

Geoff Airo-Farulla is Director, Operations North and FOI in the Commonwealth Ombudsman's Office, where he has worked since 2004. Prior to this, he served as senior lecturer in the Griffith Law School and Director of the Governance and Regulation program within the Socio-Legal Research Centre, Griffith University. He has also served terms on the Social Security Appeals Tribunal and the Queensland Gaming Commission.



Honorary Professor Nadja Alexander

In Semester 1, 2017, Professor Alexander will teach:

LAWS7930 Special Topic C – Conflict Coaching

This course will introduce you to the conflict coaching process and its skills. It will provide you with the models, techniques and skills to manage workplace conflicts in an effective and constructive manner through conflict coaching techniques. It will also show you how to encourage a positive culture around conflict and change.

Conflict can occur in any number of situations including within our private sphere of family and friends as well as professional contexts and the workplace. Yet despite the significant time investment we make in disagreements and disputes, many of us are ill-equipped to engage with conflict constructively and confidently. The course will address this issue.



Pat Cavanagh

In Semester 1, 2017, Pat Cavanagh will teach:

LAWS7851 Mediation

LAWS7851 involves the study of mediation theory and practice. By the end of the course, students should understand the role of mediation as a dispute management process. They should also possess the basic skills necessary to conduct an effective mediation in a legal context.

This course aims to provide a grounding in mediation theory, policy and practice.

Content should assist potential users of mediation services, advocates and supporters in mediation, lawyers, as well as mediators and other dispute resolution professionals, and academics.



Michelle Healy

In Semester 1, 2017, Michelle Healy will teach:

LAWS7853 Law of the World Trade Organization

This course will introduce the international legal rules, principles and institutions of the World Trade Organization. Students who undertake this course will gain an understanding of the WTO legal regime through the major WTO Agreements as well as of substantive WTO law, drawing heavily on reports of the WTO Appellate Body and panels. The course will cover the basic principles relating to trade in goods and trade in services, as well as some of the more specialised WTO Agreements. These will be examined through a consideration of the WTO Agreements and the legal disputes that have arisen under those agreements. Students will be asked to think critically about the effect of the WTO’s legal regime on Australia, and on developing countries. Although not a prerequisite, students are advised that some knowledge of international law, international relations and/or economics would be a distinct advantage.

This course will be taught by Ms Michelle Healy. After graduating from the University of Queensland in 1990, Michelle worked as an Associate to the Chief Justice of the High Court of Australia, Sir Anthony Mason. She completed an LL.M. degree at Columbia University in 1993 before spending several years working as a corporate attorney at U.S. law firms in New York and London. She returned to the TC Beirne school of law in 2002 and 2003, lecturing in competition and company law, before moving to Switzerland to undertake postgraduate studies. She is currently a Counsellor with the WTO Secretariat in Geneva, Switzerland, in the area of disputes between Member states relating to subsidies, safeguards and the imposition of anti-dumping duties.



Sarah Holland

In Semester 1, 2017, Ms Holland will teach:

LAWS5131/7131 Planning Law

The course consists of a detailed study of the Integrated Planning Act, 1997 including the Integrated Development Assessment System (IDAS) established under the Act. Specific topics include the role and legal status of plans, the centrality of environmental concerns and the jurisdiction of the Planning and Environment Court.



Mr Malcolm Holmes QC

In Semester 1, 2017, Mr Holmes will teach:

LAWS7868 International Commercial Arbitration Law

This course is concerned with an international process. The course first analyses the basic concepts in international commercial arbitration and considers how it has developed into the coherent system of choice to resolve disputes in cross border transactions. The nature and history of the major international instruments governing international arbitration are explained. The legal environment of an international commercial arbitration and the resulting award is considered. The course then addresses the practice and procedure of an international arbitration from the viewpoint both of legal representatives of the parties and of the members of an arbitral tribunal from the time of the dispute up to the making of the award. The course also includes a comparative introduction to investment treaty arbitration and an explanation of the issues involved in drafting an international arbitration agreement. 



Dr John de Groot

In Semester 1, 2017, Dr de Groot will teach:

LAWS7704 Estate Litigation

This course is an advanced level examination of the regulation and practice of litigating disputes over estates in Australia, including family provision claims, disputes about testamentary capacity, suspicious circumstances, and the use of mediation in the context of estate litigation. The course seeks to develop students’ ability to articulate clearly and coherently the legal and policy issues in relation to estate litigation, formulate and investigate problems, create solutions, innovate and suggest reform improvements in relation to the law.



Matthew Osborne

In Semester 1, 2017, Matthew will teach:

LAWS7711 Laws of War

This course will focus on selected topics in the law of war (or international humanitarian law). This body of law centres on the four Geneva Conventions of 1949 and their two Additional Protocols of 1977. We will examine issues such as the definition of armed conflict, the doctrine of military necessity, the significance of prisoner of war status, the relationship between international humanitarian law and human rights standards, and issues concerning implementation and enforcement. The course will consider the challenges posed to international humanitarian law by the changing character of armed conflict, the fragmentation of international law, and the evolving character of international relations. We will consider historical and current case studies to examine how humanitarian rules operate in practice.



Mr Tom Joyce

In Semester 1, 2017, Mr Joyce will teach courses:

LAWS7708 Intellectual Property Law

In a period of unprecedented technological change and global economic development, a solid understanding of intellectual property has never been more important.

Whether it be issues relating to copyright in an age of unfettered electronic commerce and communication or the role to be played by patenting in DNA testing, the issues are dynamic and make the study of intellectual property especially rewarding.

The primary focus of the course will be on copyright, trademarks, patents and registered designs, but the course will also examine confidential information, passing off, plant breeders' rights, circuit layout protection and database protection. The course will focus on Australian legislation and caselaw, while placing that within a contemporary international context.

By successfully completing the course, a student will obtain a useful 'toolkit' upon which they can build in-practice expertise in one or more areas, or the foundations for detailed future study.



Professor Rob Merkin QC

In Semester 1, 2017, Prof Merkin will teach:

LAWS7951 Marine Insurance Law

The course will outline the legal principles relating to marine insurance, the marine insurance market and the special rules which distinguish marine insurance from other forms of insurance. The course is suitable for postgraduate students and for practitioners.



Ms Anne-Marie Rice

In Semester 1, 2017, Ms Rice will teach the following elective course in the Bachelor of Laws program:

LAWS5121 Family Law

Family Law is a complex and broad jurisdiction and this course aims to provide a comprehensive overview of the relevant issues covered by the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) and associated legislation. The course primarily deals with the laws relating to marriage and de facto relationships and particularly the consequences of relationship breakdown (divorce; parenting arrangements; property settlements; maintenance; child support) and the means of resolving inter-personal disputes (mediation, ADR, litigation). The extent to which family law intersects with aspects of other LLB courses (including criminal law, contract, equity and trusts, property, tax, corporations and partnership law and jurisdictional/conflicts of laws) will be explored. The course also considers the application of the law to the changing face of families and examines the relevance of the social sciences (psychology, social work) in resolving interpersonal disputes and particularly the impact of parental conflict on children.


Find out more about the visiting research fellows program at the TC Beirne School of Law.

Learn more