Accrediting Indigenous Australian Content and Cultural Competency Within the Bachelor of Laws

Annette Gainsford, Marcus Smith, Alison Gerard

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The value and importance of embedding Indigenous Australian content and cultural competency within legal education is widely acknowledged. Universities Australia has produced several reports that establish a best practice framework for Indigenous cultural competence, which is reinforced by the Universities Australia Indigenous Strategy 2017-2020. 1 The most recent version of the Council of Australian Law Deans Law School Standards also calls for embedding Indigenous cultural competence in Australian law degrees as a matter of best practice.2 Indigenous cultural competence is not just about curriculum, and extends to Indigenous employment strategies, the involvement of Indigenous people in the corporate governance of the university, and the promotion of cultural safety for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff and students. 3 Universities and law schools have a responsibility to drive this change,4 to be reflective, and to contribute to an expanding community of practice on Indigenous cultural competence in legal education. As Kwaymullina writes, the ‘question for law schools is no longer so much whether law curriculum will be Indigenised, but rather when and how’. 5
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)59-80
Number of pages22
JournalLegal Education Review
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 7 Dec 2021


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