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  This module is a resource for lecturers  

 

Student assessment

 

To assess students' understanding of the Module, the following post-class assignment is proposed. The correct answers are highlighted.

Evaluation test (20 questions)

1. Judicial independence and impartiality are considered:

a) as having the same meaning

b) two different concepts both referring to the judicial process

c) two different concepts: independence is a means to guarantee the impartiality of the judge in the judicial process

 

2. Judicial independence is a cornerstone of the rule of law, in the sense that:

a) the judiciary is an effective check on the way public functions are performed

b) the judiciary, being a branch of the State, acts in the judicial process on behalf of the interest of the State

c) public institutions are above the law and cannot be parties in a judicial process

 

3. Public trust in the judiciary is important because:

a) the consensus of the parties, and of the general public, facilitate the acceptance of judges' decisions

b) the judiciary is a State power and its decisions are binding for the parties, thus there is no need for public trust

c) public trust is important in the countries where the judiciary is not democratically elected

 

4. Independence and accountability:

a) are incompatible: to be really independent judges must be free of accountability

b) are both necessary and a balance has to be found

c) independence is more important than accountability

 

5. According to academic literature, the 'political relevance' of the judiciary implies:

a) that the judiciary has a political role, being judges not completely isolated from politics

b) that some degree of creativity and discretion is inherent in judges' interpretation activity

c) that judges are politically accountable

 

6. Internal independence implies that:

a) judges are independent from the political branches of government

b) judges are independent from other judges

c) judges are independent from the parties in the judicial process

 

7. In civil service judiciaries:

a) judges are recruited from among experience lawyers

b) judges are recruited from among public officials

c) judges are recruited from among young law graduates

 

8. In common law judiciaries:

a) the political affiliation of the candidate is always considered for judicial appointment

b) the political affiliation of the candidate may be considered for judicial appointment

c) the political affiliation of the candidate is never considered for judicial appointment

 

9. The establishment of judicial councils is considered a measure to improve internal independence, in the sense that:

a) they reduce the influence of hierarchical superiors in judicial appointment and career

b) they increase the influence of hierarchical superiors in judicial appointment and career

c) they increase the independence of a judge from the parties in the judicial process

 

10. To safeguard judges' independence and accountability:

a) no removal of judges must be possible before retirement age

b) the removal of judges before retirement age can be possible on condition that it is based on well-defined grounds provided by law

c) the removal of judges before retirement age can be based on discretionary power of hierarchical superiors

 

11. Judicial codes of conduct:

a) are considered to be more effective if they are issued with the participation of the judiciary

b) are considered to be more effective if they are issued by nonjudicial authorities

c) are considered to be more effective if they are established by Parliament through law

 

12. Public prosecutors are the 'gate keepers' of criminal justice, in the sense that:

a) only cases that are brought to courts by public prosecutors can be processed and adjudicated by judges

b) Prosecutors are responsible for criminal action but, nevertheless, judges can investigate and prosecute cases on their own initiative

c) Prosecutors determines the workload of the police forces

 

13. The independence of public prosecutors:

a) varies among countries, depending on the structure of the prosecution service

b) is the same as the independence of judges

c) public prosecutors are not independent as they are subject to the Executive

 

14. It is the duty of the prosecutors:

a) To secure the conviction

b) To search for the truth

c) To pay attention only to the circumstances to the disadvantage of the suspect

 

15. When criminal action is governed by the 'opportunity principle' usually:

a) Prosecutors have no discretion in prosecution, a criminal action must always be initiated if there are sufficient grounds

b) Prosecutors have full discretion in prosecution, no institutional authorities can give instructions to them

c) The exercise of discretion to prosecute is regulated by policy guidelines and instructions issued by competent institutional authorities

 

16. In the 'judicial model':

a) Prosecutors usually have a monopoly in initiating criminal action and such a monopoly is exercised in full independence

b) The exercise of discretion to prosecute is regulated by policy guidelines and instructions issued by competent institutional authorities

c) Only the Ministry of justice can give instructions to prosecutors

 

17. In some systems prosecutors act as 'legal advisors' of the police forces:

a) True

b) False

 

18. In some systems prosecutors belong to the Executive, which controls their appointment and career:

a) True

b) False

 

19. It is generally accepted that in the systems where prosecutors are not in charge of investigation:

a) The risk of the so-called ' hunter's syndrome'  is very high

b) The risk of the so-called ' hunter's syndrome' is low

 

20. It is generally believed that in the systems where prosecutors belong to the judiciary:

a) the image of the prosecutor as a 'third party' might be undermined

b) the image of the defense lawyer is undermined

c) the image of the judge as a 'third party' might be undermined

 
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