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Negotiations (LAWS50131)

Graduate coursework level 5Points: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

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Overview

Year of offer2018
Subject levelGraduate coursework Level 5
Subject codeLAWS50131
Campus
Parkville
Availability(Quotas apply)
Summer Term
December
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

Negotiation is an essential skill-set for lawyers and the legal profession. Due to negotiations by lawyers, many civil and criminal law cases are settled before the parties even enter the courtroom. Lawyers negotiate on behalf of their client with other lawyers as well as third party non-lawyers. Lawyers must also negotiate internally with their own client as well as other parties to reach consensus. Negotiations also occur in various forms, from traditional settings such as conference rooms and courtrooms, to non-traditional settings such as e-mail and social media communication. Thus, the ability for lawyers to develop and utilise a negotiator's toolbox to negotiate within and among a broad array of environments are essential elements of the legal profession.

The aim of this subject is to acquaint students with the theory and practice of legal negotiations as they relate to the strategic legal process. This class will be highly interactive. Students will have the opportunity to read and discuss a variety of written materials, engage in a variety of negotiation simulations (involving role-playing scenarios, case hypotheticals, and experimental games), as well as become intricately involved in other negotiation-related scenarios and situations.

Classes will generally be comprised of (1) concepts/strategies (theory) presented; (2) simulation and role-playing scenarios applying such concepts/strategies (practice); and (3) a de-briefing of the two components (theory and practice). For the negotiation simulations to be as valuable and realistic as possible, preparation and active participation is expected by those negotiating and playing specified roles - for each participant's individual benefit as well as for the benefit of all class participants as a collaborative group.

Intended learning outcomes

On completion of the subject students should have developed the following skills as they relate to the field of law:

  • To analyse and apply competitive (positional bargaining) as well as collaborative (interest-based, problem solving) negotiation skill-sets as legal professionals;
  • The ability to develop an advanced understanding of the nature of disputes, including ethical, cultural, and economic factors, in one or more legal jurisdictions;
  • Possess a unique and critical awareness of the emotional and psychological encouragements and barriers to consensus building as well as those involving rational choice theory;
  • Actively participate in a series of useful, interesting and challenging negotiation concepts, strategies, and simulation negotiation scenarios helpful in the field of law;
  • Understand the role of lawyers and non-lawyers in identifying and using the negotiation process most appropriate to the particular dispute;
  • Critically analyse the main theories of influence, sway, and negotiation and their application in the field of law and other related fields;
  • Work effectively as a team member to resolve dispute resolution challenges as future legal professionals; and
  • Identify and integrate ethical issues arising in dispute resolution contexts in the field of law.

Generic skills

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  • Understand how conflict arises within and between legal and other related organisations;
  • Apply and leverage the main theories related to conflict and its resolution within the contexts of organisations and other diverse environments within law;
  • Analyse and synthesise negotiation theories, skill-sets, and studies, in conjunction with the ability to evaluate their respective usefulness as future legal professionals;
  • Develop a value-added negotiation toolbox and confidence as negotiators for application in the legal field;
  • Apply theories, models and frameworks to understand conflict, influence and negotiation within academic and professional legal settings; and
  • Possess an acute ability to "think like a negotiator" by leveraging, inter alia, a strategic "negotiator's lens" (framework) that will prove beneficial in a wide variety of situations within the field of law.

Eligibility and requirements

Prerequisites

Successful completion of all the below subjects:

Code Name Teaching period Credit Points
LAWS50023 Legal Method and Reasoning
Summer Term
12.5
LAWS50024 Principles of Public Law
Semester 1
12.5
LAWS50025 Torts
Semester 1
November
12.5
LAWS50026 Obligations
Semester 1
12.5
LAWS50027 Dispute Resolution
Semester 1
12.5

Corequisites

None

Non-allowed subjects

Students cannot enrol in this subject if they have previously undertaken either of the following subjects:

Code Name Teaching period Credit Points
LAWS70468 Negotiation Skills
February
February
12.5
LAWS90062 Business Negotiations and Deal-Making
February
July
12.5

Core participation requirements

The University of Melbourne is committed to providing students with reasonable adjustments to assessment and participation under the Disability Standards for Education (2005), and the Assessment and Results Policy (MPF1326). Students are expected to meet the core participation requirements for their course. These can be viewed under Entry and Participation Requirements for the course outlines in the Handbook.

Further details on how to seek academic adjustments can be found on the Student Equity and Disability Support website: http://services.unimelb.edu.au/student-equity/home

Assessment

Additional details

  • A 4,500 word research paper on a topic approved by the subject coordinator, due approximately 3.5 weeks after the end of teaching (75%);
  • Participation - based on in-class discussions, and simulation case participation (25%).

The due date of the above assessment will be available to students via the Assessment Schedule on the LMS Community.

Quotas apply to this subject

Dates & times

  • Summer Term
    Principal coordinatorJasper Kim
    Mode of deliveryOn Campus — Parkville
    Contact hours36 hours
    Total time commitment144 hours
    Pre teaching start date11 January 2018
    Pre teaching requirementsStudents are expected to access and review the Reading Guide that will be available from the LMS subject page and the subject materials provided by the subject coordinator, which will be available from Melbourne Law School. Refer to the Reading Guide for confirmation of which resources need to be read and what other preparation is required before the teaching period commences.
    Teaching period29 January 2018 to 2 February 2018
    Last self-enrol date 4 December 2017
    Census date29 January 2018
    Last date to withdraw without fail 9 February 2018
    Assessment period ends28 February 2018

    Summer Term contact information

    Email: law-aso@unimelb.edu.au
    Phone: +61 3 8344 4475
    Website: law.unimelb.edu.au

  • December
    Principal coordinatorJasper Kim
    Mode of deliveryOn Campus — Parkville
    Contact hours36 hours
    Total time commitment144 hours
    Pre teaching start date19 November 2018
    Pre teaching requirementsStudents are expected to access and review the Reading Guide that will be available from the LMS subject page and the subject materials provided by the subject coordinator, which will be available from Melbourne Law School. Refer to the Reading Guide for confirmation of which resources need to be read and what other preparation is required before the teaching period commences.
    Teaching period 3 December 2018 to 7 December 2018
    Last self-enrol date 4 December 2017
    Census date 3 December 2018
    Last date to withdraw without fail21 December 2018
    Assessment period ends 4 January 2019

    December contact information

    Email: law-aso@unimelb.edu.au
    Phone: +61 3 8344 4475
    Website: law.unimelb.edu.au

Additional delivery details

Quota: This subject has an enrolment quota of 50 students (25 per stream). Your subject enrolment will not be confirmed until the selection process has been run. Selection is conducted on a random basis with outcomes communicated to students shortly after re-enrolment closes. Please refer to the Melbourne Law School website for more information on the JD Quota Elective selection process.

Further information

  • Texts

    Prescribed texts

    Summer Term

    • L Randolph Lowry and Charles Wiggins, Negotiation and Settlement Advocacy (West, 2nd ed, 2008);
    • William Ury, Roger Fisher and Bruce Patton, Getting to Yes (Penguin Books, 2011).

    December

    • Jasper Kim, Persuasion: The Hidden Forces That Influence Negotiations (Routledge Press, New York, 2018)
Last updated: 22 February 2019