Postgraduate Module Descriptor

LAWM640: Dissertation

This module descriptor refers to the 2021/2 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 critically evaluate 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 values of legal/socio-legal research in the development of the law in the UK and beyond.

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 and legal/socio-legal research 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;
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 critical evaluation in the dissertation, using specialist literature and current research going beyond prior knowledge;
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 and integrating appropriate research methods for investigating, analysing and critically evaluating complex legal/socio-legal problems;
5. Plan and structure analysis clearly and effectively at an advanced level by identifying and solving complex legal/socio-legal problems that require critical evaluation;
Personal and Key Skills6. Manage relevant learning resources/ information/ learning strategies confidently and independently in order to develop own analyses and arguments at an advanced professional level;
7. Communicate and engage in written debate effectively, confidently and autonomously with strict adherence to the values and principles of academic integrity in a manner appropriate to the discipline;
8. Plan, clarify and undertake a range of research tasks confidently and independently, reflect critically on the learning process, structure and communication making use of feedback effectively.