How to Stop Engineers from Becoming ‘Bush Lawyers’: The Art of Teaching Law to Engineering and Construction Students

Journal of Legal Affairs and Dispute Resolution in Engineering and Construction, Vol. 1, No. 4, 2009

Monash University Faculty of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2010/01

30 Pages Posted: 10 Sep 2010 Last revised: 15 Dec 2012

See all articles by Paula Gerber

Paula Gerber

Monash University - Faculty of Law

Date Written: 2009

Abstract

Law forms a core part of most engineering and construction programs. The way that these subjects are taught varies dramatically, and too often focuses on trying to teach students complex aspects of the law, such as contract, tort and trade practices. This paper suggests that the aim of including law subjects in construction and engineering degrees needs to be clearly understood as this determines the content of the law subject. It is argued that the reason for including a law subject should be not to teach students the law, but rather to train them to recognise when legal issues arise in their work, and how to respond to such issues. With this aim in mind, a model curriculum is proposed, and insight given into how to most effectively implement such a course.

Keywords: Legal Factors, Teaching Methods, Engineering Education, and Curricula

JEL Classification: K00, K10, K19, K32, K39, L60, L70, L74

Suggested Citation

Gerber, Paula, How to Stop Engineers from Becoming ‘Bush Lawyers’: The Art of Teaching Law to Engineering and Construction Students (2009). Journal of Legal Affairs and Dispute Resolution in Engineering and Construction, Vol. 1, No. 4, 2009; Monash University Faculty of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2010/01. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1674327

Paula Gerber (Contact Author)

Monash University - Faculty of Law ( email )

Wellington Road
Clayton, Victoria 3800
Australia

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