Doctoral Dreams Destroyed: Does Griffith University v Tang spell the end of judicial review of Australian University decisions?

Publisher:
Australia and New Zealand Education Law Association
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Citation:
Australia and New Zealand Journal of Law and Education, 2005, 10 (1), pp. 5 - 22
Issue Date:
2005-01
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Vivian Tang was excluded from her doctoral program at Griffith University on the basis of academic misconduct. Her academic dreams in that or in any other university were thus effectively curtailed as were her prospects of following a career in her chosen field. She sought judicial review of the universitys decision. Her application and its progress through the courts have recently brought into focus the justiciability of university decisions of an academic nature. The university unsuccessfully sought to have the action dismissed in both the Supreme Court of Queensland and the Court of Appeal. However, the High Court allowed the universitys appeal and by a 4-1 majority held that the student was not entitled to judicial review. Has this case effectively shut the gate on court intervention in university decisions affecting individual students? This article considers the nature of the relationship between Australian universities and their students and the desirability of the courts scrutiny in light of the High Court decision and judicial attitudes in comparative jurisdictions.
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