LLB Law first year modules

Legal Skills and Methods

Legal Skills and Methods will introduce students to key legal skills as well as developing their study skills in transitioning from school/college to University. Students will be introduced to the Law School and University, to the assessment regime and to the pastoral care available to them. This module will also allow students to begin to develop their employability skills and attributes. 

This module will use a combination of plenary lectures alongside practical seminars. Indicative content is as follows: 

  • Introduction to Legal Study 
  • The English Legal System
  • Cases and Precedent
  • Legislation
  • Solving Legal Problems
  • European Legal Frameworks
  • Presenting Legal Arguments
  • International Law and Human Rights
  • Law and Justice in the Real World
  • Writing about the Law
  • Life in the Law School (including orientation of personnel, differing types of assessments, welfare services, personal tutoring, inclusivity, academic skills)
  • Self-reflection skills
  • Careers; employability skills including writing a CV 

Criminal Law 

The module provides an exploration of substantive criminal law (ie, how the law defines and applies offences and defences). The following topics will be covered in a typical year: introduction to theories of criminalisation and punishment; actus reus; mens rea; homicide; offences against the person; sexual offences; property offences; denials of offending; and defences.  

Public Law

This module examines core public law principles, and seeks to enable students to further develop within the context of a substantive law subject, the academic and legal skills which they will have learned in the Legal Skills and Methods module in the first semester.

The substantive material covered in the module involves two components (each of which may involve the following topics): 

Section A examines foundational constitutional principles and issues including: the purpose of constitutions and the sources of constitutional rules; the evolution of the UK constitution including reference to international law, the European Union, devolution and the Human Rights Act 1998; and the distribution, use and control of legislative, judicial and executive powers in the UK. 

Section B is concerned with the grounds, procedure, remedies and constitutional foundations of judicial review in England and Wales.

Contract Law

This module covers a range of core issues in contract law, which may include the following areas: the nature of contract law and key ideas; contract formation (offer and acceptance, consideration, intention to create legal relations, certainty); contents and scope of the agreement; setting the contract aside; variation including promissory estoppel; performance, discharge and remedies for breach of contract.

Law of Contract discusses the development of contract law in some of its wider social, historical and economic context. Aspects of the module explore the theories and critiques about contract law.

Law Justice and Ethics

This course provides an introduction to legal ethics and professional responsibility based on an introduction to ethics more generally which examines various theories of ethical responsibility. Through a problem based approach it explores the applicability of ethical analysis to legal practice. In doing so it assists students in their first semester to understand the concept of a profession and the obligations which might follow from this. In particular it will place some emphasis on the wider responsibilities of lawyers in the communities with which they engage.

The module will explore the nature and purpose of professional conduct rules and surrounding questions of regulation and enforcement. The substantive issues included in the problems on which the students will work will be drawn from everyday ethical dilemmas of practice including potential conflicts of interest, legal privilege and other questions of confidentiality, responsibilities to the court and to the client and how these may be negotiated, obligations arising out of fiduciary duties, and wider issues of access to justice.

Decolonising Legal Concepts 

Decolonising Legal Concepts critically examines key legal constructs in their social, economic, historical and political contexts. It will equip students to reflect critically on the way legacies of empire, inequality and oppression intersect with and continue to inform law’s subjects, objects, and its construction. The module will do this by examining critical questions such as: 

  • Who/what is a person under the law?
  • What is the public (interest/domain)?
  • What is the United Kingdom and how did it come about?
  • What is the nation state and how did it come about?
  • What is the rule of law and how is it (if at all) distinct from or linked to domination?
  • What is law enforcement and how is it (if at all) distinct from or linked to illegitimate coercion?