find the latest legal job
Part Time Risk & Compliance Officer
Category: Other | Location: Brisbane QLD 4000
· Brisbane City · Flexible Part Time Hours
View details
Infrastructure Lawyer/SA
Category: Construction Law | Location: Sydney CBD, Inner West & Eastern Suburbs Sydney NSW
· Global elite law firm · Dedicated Infrastructure team
View details
Property Lawyer
Category: Property Law | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· 12 Month Contract · Diverse Work
View details
Family Lawyer
Category: Family Law | Location: Eastern Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Boutique Firm · Great Reputation
View details
Infrastructure Lawyers
Category: Construction Law | Location: All Perth WA
· We'd be particularly interested to hear from you if you were a lawyer who knows your way around the infrastructure and energy sectors.
View details
New dean engaged at Sydney Law School

New dean engaged at Sydney Law School

Sydney Law School’s new dean, Joellen Riley, wants her students to engage as deeply with the law as she did while studying at Oxford University in the mid 1990s.

“At Oxford I learned to appreciate the great benefit of classroom dialogue between student and tutor,” said Professor Riley, who was appointed dean at the University of Sydney’s law faculty last month.

“Although we are never likely to be able to fund the Oxford tutorial teaching model in Australian law schools, we should still work towards ensuring engaged debate in classrooms.”

“The removal of caps on student university places and the emergence of massive open online courses (MOOCs) have been identified as presenting particular challenges to traditional face-to-face university courses”, Riley added.

“Straight lectures are easy to replicate online, so the classroom experience needs to offer more than just content delivery.  Our challenge is to provide a classroom experience that engages students, with us and with each other, so that they value the time spent in classes.”

Riley said she believes face-to-face dialogue with teachers who undertake world-class research is crucial to a university education, and this won’t be threatened by MOOCs.

It will be particularly challenging funding that kind of experience in an environment where governments are committing less funding towards tertiary education, she added.

Her focus during her first year as dean will be on consolidating recent growth at the law school.

“It’s incumbent on us not to provide more places if we feel this will diminish the quality of educational experience we can offer,” she says.

“There is always a temptation to add new programs and courses, but it is important to bed down new initiatives before we expand further.”

Riley studied to be a teacher, worked as a journalist at Fairfax media and had two daughters before starting a postgraduate law degree at the University of Sydney in 1992.

After completing her degree she worked at King & Wood Mallesons before receiving the Ivan Roberts scholarship to study at Oxford. It was on her return home, shortly after Paul Keating had lost office and as John Howard’s Workplace Relations Act 1996 was being tabled in Parliament, that she was drawn to academia.

Co-authoring a book on that act with her mentor Greg McCarry launched Riley into a career as a labour lawyer. She later began teaching employment and industrial law and completed a PhD blending her interests in employment, equity and commercial law.

After a stint as associate professor in commercial law at the University of New South Wales, Riley returned to her alma mater as professor of labour law in 2009. She stepped into the role of pro-dean at the Sydney Law School after Gillian Triggs left to become president of the Human Rights Commission.

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

New dean engaged at Sydney Law School
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Violence
Nov 17 2017
It's time for politicians to commit to eradicating domestic violence
The national shame of domestic violence cannot be left unaddressed, writes Christine Smyth. ...
Nov 16 2017
From lawyer in law firm to senior governance professional
Promoted by Governance Institute of Australia As a law graduate, Kate Griffiths never imagined...
marriage equality
Nov 16 2017
Legislation the next hurdle for marriage equality
Lawyers have underscored the importance of ensuring same-sex marriage legislation does not limit ant...
APPOINTMENTS
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
opinion
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
Help
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...