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Government: Roles and responsibilities

Curriculum Content

The roles and responsibilities of Australia’s three levels of government.


  • clarifying the roles and responsibilities of the three levels of government (local, state/territory and federal)
  • identifying issues where federal and state parliaments both have the power to make laws; recognising that federal law will override the state law if federal and state laws conflict on these issues
  • identifying instances where there may be multiple levels of government involved (for example, in relation to the environment such as management of the Murray-Darling river system)

Snapshots - three levels of government

This is a video explaining the three levels of government in Australia. It shows teachers and students the roles and responsibilities of each level of government. It is supported with a diagram that illustrates the process and a downloadable fact sheet.

Australian Civics and Citizenship Curriculum Year 6 Unit of Work

This unit of work explores aspects of the Curriculum that deal with key concepts relating to Australia's federal Parliament. The resource is divided into three sections which explore the key institutions of Australia's democratic system of government; the roles and responsibilities of the three levels of government; and how federal laws are passed through Parliament. It contains lessons, differentiated activities, assessment items and a marking rubric.


This fact sheet explores the role and functions of the Australian Government, including who is in the government, how it is formed, minority government and the principle of responsible government.