How Far The Australia’s Legal, Political And Educational Structures Are Modeled On British Institutions

Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 26 September 2016

How Far The Australia’s Legal, Political And Educational Structures Are Modeled On British Institutions

Australia was colonized by British and was granted independence in 1901. The six colonies which had been formerly inhabited by the British during colonization became the six states in the federal government that Australia assumed. Most of the legal, political and education systems borrowed a lot from British institutions, although Australia preferred to borrow the federal system from America (State University, 2009).  Some of the powers that had been held by the states were volunteered progressively and when the twentieth century came to close, the federal government was responsible in running Australia.

How Far the Australia’s Legal, Political and Educational Structures Are Modeled On British Institution

The major institutes in Australia such as bureaucracy, education and the language that is commonly used there have a British line modeling. Some of The universities that were in Australia in the 1920s boasted of being as old as three- quarter century. It was quite evident that there was no one teaching economics until 1913. The professor who was teaching history or philosophy gave a single or double lecture on the theory of economics in a week. Due to the extensive work load, economics experienced a lot of negligence something that profoundly shocked the Americans (Heaton, 2008).

Most universities in Australia had borrowed a lot of British ideas in their modeling and with special preference of Cambridge and Oxford which concentrated in technical training, back in 1920s. Economic science had minimal teaching in Britain until recently and Australia gave little attention as it held the British system highly. Mathematics, philosophy, classics and literature that were commonly offered in most universities in Britain were accorded a lot of respect by the Australians who also offered them in their universities.

There was a lot of attention in offering of law, medicine and engineering which were traditional courses offered in universities of Britain. The state established most universities in Australia, and the largest proportion of revenue was drawn from public coffers and this takes place up to date (Heaton, 2008).

Most endowments that were private contributed minimally to the development of universities in Australia unlike in America. These private endowments invested half the revenue that the government invested in public institutions. Money from the public was unconditionally granted by the government which made no attempt to seriously control policies and teaching. The universities were dependent on the state, similar to universities in Britain.

The first universities in Australia were established with the aim of meeting the standards that stressed their capability of meeting the values and norms of the models of British universities which were considered to be the most appropriate (University of Western Australia, 2003. These models that were adopted have made it impossible for newer universities to adopt any other system as a powerful effect has been exerted by the already existing universities.

The government draws a lot of security from scientific interests than culture and education is seen more of an instrument than experience (State University 2009). The community also perceives the university to be a place where it is served through the training of lawyers, engineers, dentists, teachers and doctors and thus these traditional courses continue holding a lot of attention.

Specialization is very common in most of the Australian universities and once a student goes to a specific department, they will be ignorant on other departments. This has resulted to the graduates being more professionalized than educated. This phenomenon is common in most prestigious universities in Britain. America has the most diversified university programs and there is a call for conformity of Australian universities by the people.

Australian law is comprised of the common law, (which derives its basis from the common law of Britain), the constitution and federal laws passed by parliament. The states within Australia exercise their own governing over the court systems and parliaments which are present in each. The systems of government and law that are currently existent in Australia have their legal dependence and validity on the British statutes (University of Western Australia, 2003)

  One such statute is the Act of 1900 known as Commonwealth of Constitution of Australia. The characters of legal institutions and Austrian law traditions have a monoculture characteristic. This reflects an origin which is English in nature. The Aborigines who were the natives of Australia were completely ignored by the British as they were too native and the Britons completely disregarded any laws that were in place, but instead subjected them to the England laws (Aroney 2007, p. 8).

Recently, Howard made the same maneuver in 2007, by initiating an intervention of communities of the Aborigines who live in the territory that lies in the North of Australia. The forces of the military were mobilized and the government granted them power to directly exercise control over the communities which were targeted. This was to last for five years and this move is no different from what the British did when they first arrived in Australia.

 The constitution protects Howard’s maneuvers as the state government can override the government authority in the Northern territory (Stringer 2007, p. 30). This law is still present in the constitution which gives the government the power to constitutionally usurp territorial governments’ sovereignty.  Howard is doing what the British did to the native aborigines since this intervention has been viewed as contravening the human rights due to its discriminatory nature.

Howard claims that he is saving the aboriginal children from being sexually abused by the whites in Australia (Stringer 2007,  32). It is evident that the constitution of Australia is still embedded on the Common Wealth Constitution by the British and nothing has been done to include the native Aborigines in the constitution.   The system of court that is present has still borrowed a lot of modeling from the English system (Goldring, 2003).    The high court is the final appeal court and also deals with constitution matters.

The basis of the constitution of Australia is the commonwealth constitution that was enacted in 1900 and this statute was used until 1942. The independence of the legislature was enacted in 1986 in Australia. This was a symbol of its freedom from Britain. Until 1990, Australia held the status of constitutional monarchy something it had inherited from Britain. Although there are supreme courts in all states, the high court was established to ensure the uniformity of the common law. The common law is inherent of the common law in Britain (Edwiyna 2008, p. 230).

The premier in the UK is an enviable character who enjoys a lot of executive powers that the presidents of America have no access to. This power is similar to what the premier in Australia enjoys a clear picture that Australia adopted the same political arrangement as Britain which had formerly colonized it (Bennister 2007, p. 335). Both the premiership in Australia exhibit a lot of similarities as the there is a lot of capacity and influence from the premier.

There are a lot of constraints in the institutional that are discrete, but the capacity of resources is easy to identify. Both of these premiers are stretching the institution through growth in the office of the leaders, policy advice which is bold and centralized and the ministerial adviser’s functions and roles have been strengthened. These new structures, practices and process are entrenched in the political systems of both the premiers and this is attributed to the practice of their executive powers (Bennister 2007, p. 330). Australia adopted the office of the premier with executive powers like Britain who can make decisions that are hardly challenged.


Australia, which was a British colony, has borrowed so much from Britain in terms of education, legal and political system. Most of its oldest universities were modeled from the famous British universities such as Cambridge and Oxford. There was a perception that the technical courses offered in these reputable institutions should be taken as the guidelines in the universities in Australia. This has made most private investors to shy away from establishing more universities and by 2007; there were only two private universities out of the 39 that were present in the country.  There has been an outcry for the education system to be diversified to conform to that of American universities that are seen as more appropriate.

The constitution that borrowed a lot from the Commonwealth Act needs some of the statutes to be reviewed to conform to the modern times. The Act that gives the government permission to usurp Northern territories sovereignty sounds so colonist and it should be reviewed to protect the Aboriginal communities. It is the high time that Australia reviewed its own constitution to include everyone and get rid of some of the statutes that were present during colonialism. From this review, it is clear that most Australian systems are modeled on British institutions.


Aroney, N 2007, Comparative law in Australian constitutional jurisprudence: University of Queensland law journal, University of Queensland, Vol. 26(2) pp 8

Bennister, M 2007, Tony Blair and John Howard: Comparative Predominance and ‘Institution Stretch’ in the UK and Australia, British journal of politics and international relations, Vol. 9 (3) pp 327-345

Edwiyna, H 2008, Colonialism and Long-Run Growth in Australia: An Examination of Institutional Change in Victoria’s Water Sector During the Nineteenth Century,  Blackwell publishing ltd Vol. 48 (3) pp 266-279

Goldring, J 2003, The Australian court system and its oral tradition, Retrieved April 25, 2009 from,+political+


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