Postgraduate Module Descriptor

LAWM640: Dissertation

This module descriptor refers to the 2018/9 academic year.

Module Aims

The aim of this module is to pursue, under the guidance of an academic supervisor, an individual programme of research on a topic within the scope of a named degree programme, approved by the programme director, applying appropriate research methodologies and drawing on appropriate materials. The module seeks to encourage and inspire deep and critical engagement with legal/socio-legal research and scholarship and the production of an original, substantial and significant contribution to legal/socio-legal knowledge as appropriate to your degree programme.

By taking this module, you will have the opportunity to develop an extensive knowledge of the law (and/or socio-legal research where appropriate) in your chosen research area, together with the skills and methodological tools to analyse, categorise and criticise the law in an extended formal piece of legal or socio-legal writing. You will also have the opportunity to gain a clear understanding of the role of research in legal education, as well as in developing the law in the UK and other countries.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

This module's assessment will evaluate your achievement of the ILOs listed here - you will see reference to these ILO numbers in the details of the assessment for this module.

On successfully completing the programme you will be able to:
Module-Specific Skills1. Demonstrate deep and systematic knowledge and understanding of the law/ socio-legal research and methods applicable to the project that you will have selected and constructed, building on prior legal/socio-legal knowledge, and using research skills and theoretical perspectives acquired in the taught part of the programme;
2. Undertake complex critical evaluation of the main legal rules, institutions and procedure/methods relevant to the specific area of law/socio-legal study chosen for study in the dissertation, using specialist literature and current research going beyond the knowledge acquired in the taught part of the programme;
Discipline-Specific Skills3. Demonstrate detailed and comprehensive knowledge and understanding of a range of legal/socio-legal concepts, values, principles, institutions and procedures, and the ability to evaluate systematically the relationships among them, as well as their limits;
4. Show clear evidence of virtually autonomous research underpinning self-directed learning by selecting, integrating, evaluating and presenting relevant law and complex legal/socio-legal/theoretical arguments, clearly, autonomously and competently, in writing;
5. Demonstrate flexible and innovative capacity to analyse complex legal/socio-legal problems, identify the relative significance of applicable rules and principles, and select appropriate methods for investigating and critically evaluating them;
Personal and Key Skills6. Manage relevant learning resources/ information/ learning strategies confidently and independently, and develop own arguments and opinions at a very high/ professional level;
7. Communicate and engage in written debate effectively, confidently and autonomously, in a manner appropriate to the discipline;
8. Clarify, plan and undertake tasks confidently and independently, reflect critically on the learning process and make use of feedback effectively.