Administrative Law (Professor Heckman)

Course number: LAW 3530

Instructors: Gerald Heckman 


Administrative law is about the struggle to achieve a balance between the competing interests that shape the design and implementation of public programs.  While the state must, in the public interest, deliver programs effectively, efficiently and consistently with principles of good government, it must also respect the core values of the rule of law – government that is subject to law and that respects claims of individual dignity and basic liberties, including those reflected in international human rights law.  In this class, we will explore how courts enforce the principles of procedural fairness by ensuring that parties affected by administrative decisions are heard by unbiased decision makers.  We will examine how courts review the substance of administrative decisions.  Finally, we will examine the constitutional dimensions of administrative law.

Teaching Method

Lectures and discussions on the assigned readings. Optional weekly one hour question and answer tutorial sessions at a time and place TBD.


1. Two take home assignments (due on dates to be assigned) counting for around 30% of your final mark which you may work on in groups of between 3 and 5 people.

2. A three-hour open book examination counting for between 60 and 70% of your final mark.  The exam will consist of one or two long hypothetical problems and may also include an essay question.  This exam will take place in the December exam period.

3. Class participation / engagement mark no greater than 10% based on a combination of one or more of in-class participation, participation in online forums and out-of-class engagement (to be determined).

Course Material

Van Harten, Heckman & Mullan, Administrative Law – Cases, Text & Materials, 6th ed. (Toronto: Emond Montgomery, 2010), Supplement (online), cases and materials posted on course page.

Instructors: Gerald Heckman

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