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Study Legal Terminology and Master Legal Language



  • Lots of flexibility is where and how often you study -even what your learning is focussed on
  • Exams are optional and only needed if you want to use this study as a credit in a formal qualification -even then, we always give you the option to repeat exams
  • Exceptional tutor support -Our faculty includes around forty university trained professionals most with decades of industry experience. You have unlimited access to tutors over the phone or email.
  • After enrolling, watch our "orientation video" and discover how to use all sorts of services to support your study.

Legal terminology is the collection of words and phrases that have a precise or peculiar use in the law profession. Legal Terminology is not only used by Lawyers; but is also used in a wide range of associated legal professions.

This course is valuable for anyone who needs to understand and communicate better with legal language, from people who write about business and politics, to Paralegals, Legal Assistants, Solicitors, Law Professors, Legal Receptionists/Secretaries, Private Investigators, Authorised Government Inspectors and Officers, Law Enforcement Officers and many others.

Course Structure

There are 8 lessons in this module as follows:

Lesson 1. Scope and Nature of Legal Terminology

Codification, Origin of legal words, Development of Legal Language, The Role of Latin in the Development of Legal Language and Law, Common legal language, Sources of law, Broad Categories of Law, Substantive Vs Procedural Law, Private vs. Public Law, Civil vs. Common Law, Types of Law, Administrative Law, Adversarial (Accusatorial Law), Civil Law, Constitutional Law, Continental Law, Contract Law, Common Law (English Law), Criminal or Penal Law, Intellectual Property Law, International Law, Inquisitorial Law, Islamic Law, Property Law, Public Law, Roman Law, Socialist Law, Statute Law, Tort Law, Trust Law; Separation of Powers (Judicial, Legislative, Executive); Essential Features of the Westminster System, Common legal terms.

Lesson 2. The Legal Workplace

People & Processes; Types of Lawyers: Attorney (or Advocate), Barrister Vs Solicitor, Criminal Defence Lawyers, Corporate Lawyers, Bankruptcy Lawyers, Civil Lawyers, Other specialisations, Court Solicitors, Barristers, Court Agents, Paralegal Professionals, Law courts, Role of courts, Jurisdiction, Judicial Immunity, General jurisdiction, Limited (bounded or special) jurisdiction:, Criminal jurisdiction:, Monetary jurisdiction, Original jurisdiction:, Intermediate Jurisdiction, Appellate jurisdiction:, Ancillary jurisdiction:, Concurrent jurisdiction, Exclusive jurisdiction, Pendent jurisdiction, Subject matter jurisdiction, Levels of Courts, Appellate Court, Civil Court, Constitutional Court, Article Courts, Circuit Courts, County Court, Court of Assize, Court of Equity, Court of Record, District Court, Family Court, Federal Court, Full Court: (or full bench), Privy Council, International Court of Justice, International Criminal Court, Juvenile Court, Magistrate’s Court, Open Court, Probate Court, Small Claims Court, Superior Court, Supreme Court, English Court Structure, Dispute Resolution

Lesson 3. Legal systems

Australian, UK, International Law etc. Common law legal systems, Civil law, Codification of law, Separation of powers, Australian law system, International law, etc.

Lesson 4. Contract & Business Law

Nature of Contract, Unilateral contracts, Bilateral contracts, Classes of contract, Formal Contracts, Simple contracts, Validity and enforceability, Agreement, Rules as to offer, Rules as to acceptance of an offer, Revocation of an offer, Rules as to rejection of an offer, Rules as to lapse of an offer, Intention to Create Legal Relations, Consideration, Rules relating to consideration, Lawful Object, Capacity to Contract, Discharge and Conclusion of Contract, Formation of Simple Contract

Lesson 5. Property Law

Real Property, Personal Property, Conveyancing, England and Wales, Scotland, USA, Australia, Intellectual Property, Patent, Trademarks, Copyright, Design patent, Confidential information (trade secrets), Related terminology

Lesson 6. Wills, Probate, Estate Law

Estate, Wills, Heirs, Inheritance, Beneficiaries, Probate, Will Requirements (Testamentary intent, Testamentary capacity, Lack of duress, Absence of undue influence, Witnesses), Trusts, Related terminology

Lesson 7. Criminal Law

Social construction, History of punishment, Reasons for Punishment (Rehabilitation, Deterrence/Prevention, Protection of Society/Incapacitation, Restoration, Retribution, Education), USA - Criminal Law or Penal Law, Australian Criminal Law, Canadian Criminal Law, Tort Law, Classification of Torts (Intentional Tort, Unintentional Tort) Purpose of Tort Law (Compensation for Damages, Financial Responsibility, Deterrence, Avoiding “self-help”), Negligence, Statutory Torts, Nuisance, Defamation, Intentional Torts, Economic Torts; Duty of Care, Breach of Confidence, Causation, Related terms

Lesson 8. Other Categories

Family Law (Decree nisi, De facto marriage, Equitable adoption, Adoption by estoppels, Interlocutory decree, Judgement nisi, etc), Civil Actions, Bankruptcy, Insurance Law, Accidents Compensation and related terminology.



  • Explain the scope and nature of terminology used in law and allied professions.
  • Identify and describe legal occupations and roles
  • Compare and contrast different Legal Systems worldwide and discuss the role of International Law
  • Explain the meaning of Business Law and describe the processes involved in the formation of simple contracts
  • Explain the meaning of property law and its processes.
  • Research and explain common terms and processes related to wills, probate, estate law and Trusts.
  • Investigate and describe the meaning of terms and processes associated with Criminal Law and Torts (Civil Law)
  • Describe and investigate legal terminology associated with the areas of Family Law, Bankruptcy, Insurance, and Accident Compensation
Why Learn Legal Terminology

The law impacts upon every aspect of life; work, public and private.

  • Some people study legal terminology so that they can simply better understand  the legal documents they encounter, from loan agreements with a bank, to contracts between a business and client.
  • Others study this subject as a stepping stone toward working in a legal office or other related situation. Anyone who works in law enforcement, security, law courts, or criminal rehabilitation, amongst other things; will need to understand the law and this course is an excellent starting point for building that understanding.  





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Learn to Understand, Interpret and Use Legal Language

Legal systems elaborate rights and responsibilities in a variety of ways. A general distinction can be made between civil law jurisdictions, which codify their laws, and common law systems, where judge made law are not codified.

Businesses need to operate within the law, and an understanding of the law and the language of the law is critical for any businessman.

Meet some of our academics

David CrothersChartered Accountant with 20 years experience in corporate and financial roles. David has a FCA, GAICD, B.Sc.Econ (Hons), Cert IV TAA. Extensive international experience in business and finance.
Christine ToddUniversity lecturer, businesswoman, photographer, consultant and sustainability expert; with over 40 years industry experience B.A., M.Plan.Prac., M.A.(Social). An expert in planning, with years of practical experience in permaculture.
Kate Gibson B.Soc.Sc.15+ years experience in HR, marketing, education & project management. Kate has traveled and worked in a variety of locations including London, New Zealand and Australia.
Gavin Cole B.Sc.,M.Psych.Psychologist, Educator, Author, Psychotherapist. B.Sc., Psych.Cert., M. Psych. Cert.Garden Design, MACA Gavin has over 25 years of experience in psychology, in both Australia and England. He has co-authored several psychology text books and many courses including diploma and degree level courses in psychology and counselling. Gavin joined ACS in 2001.

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Working With PeopleAre you a "people person" looking for a job; or a better understanding of careers that might suit you? If so, this book was written for YOU!
English GrammarThe English Grammar ebook can be a great reference for students, people who are learning English and anybody who writes anything- ever. The English Grammar ebook takes grammar back to basics to help confirm correct use of grammar. Topics that are covered within this course include 1/ Introduction- the components of language, 2/ Types of words, 3/ Punctuation, 4/ Upper and lower case, abbreviations, numbers, bullet points and 5/ Using words together.
Getting Work in a Modern WorldGetting Work in a Modern World is a must read; for students, parents, the unemployed, careers advisors or anyone interested in changing or forging a sustainable career. This is realistic guide to getting a job or starting out in business and understanding different industries. Topics covered in this book include 1/Career Myths, 2/ Finding Your Path, 3/ Understanding Employers, 4/ Preparing for a Job, 5/ Jobs to Consider: Looking to the Future, 6/ Information Technology, 7/ Business, Management and Sales, 8/ Health and Wellbeing, 9/ Horticulture, 10/ Wildlife and Environmental, 11/ Animal Care, 12/ Agriculture, 13/ Hospitality and Tourism, 14/ Media and 15/ Education.