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Module SXL-2112:

Module Facts

Run by School of Law

20 Credits or 10 ECTS Credits

Semester 2

Organiser: Dr Hayley Roberts

Overall aims and purpose

A ‘tort’ is a ‘civil wrong,’ for which the law provides a remedy. Tort law, therefore, is the name given to a diverse collection of legal wrongs. The aim of the module is to enable students to gain an understanding of the types of interests protected by tort law and to study, in detail, the tort of negligence, which plays a central role in the law of torts. Indeed, more tort law claims are brought in the tort of negligence than in any other tort.

Course content

The module will cover the essential requirements for a potential claim in negligence: a duty of care, breach of duty and causation. Together with key defences to a claim in negligence, (voluntarily assuming the risk volenti non fit injuria or consent), contributory negligence and illegality. Other areas of tort law will also be covered in the module such as nuisance, economic loss, psychiatric injury, trespass to a person, occupiers liability, damages and key defences.

Assessment Criteria


  • Comprehensive knowledge
  • Detailed understanding
  • Extensive background study
  • Highly focussed answer and well structured
  • Logically presented and defended arguments
  • No factual/computational errors
  • Original interpretation
  • New links between topics are developed
  • New approach to a problem
  • Excellent presentation with very accurate communication


  • Strong knowledge
  • Understands most but not all
  • Evidence of background study
  • Focussed answer with good structure
  • Arguments presented coherently
  • Mostly free from factual/computational errors
  • Some limited original interpretation
  • Well known links between topics are described
  • Problems addressed by existing methods/approaches
  • Good presentation with accurate communication

C- to C+

  • Knowledge of key areas/principles
  • Understands main areas
  • Limited evidence of background study
  • Answer focussed on question but also with some irrelevant material and weaknesses in structure
  • Arguments presented but lack coherence
  • Has several factual/computational errors
  • No original interpretation
  • Only major links between topics are described
  • Limited problem solving
  • Some weaknesses in presentation and accuracy


  • Knowledge of key areas/principles only
  • Weaknesses in understanding of main areas
  • Limited evidence of background study
  • Answer only poorly focussed on question and with some irrelevant material and poor structure
  • Arguments presented but lack coherence
  • Several factual/computational errors
  • No original interpretation
  • Only major links between topics are described
  • Limited problem solving
  • Many weaknesses in presentation and accuracy

Learning outcomes

  1. Describe the main areas of social activity which are regulated by the law of tort and state the general principles of tort liability.

  2. Explain the essential elements of the tort of negligence, namely the notion of the duty of care, the standard of care and the concepts of causation (both factual and legal) and remoteness.

  3. Give an account of the general defences in tort and also of the rules relating to the assessment of damages, comparing the other sources of compensation which may be available.

  4. Identify and explain the legal issues arising from a given set of facts.

  5. Carry out effective research on legal issues using both primary and secondary sources.

  6. Expound the legal principles and rules which are relevant, citing appropriate authority for propositions of law.

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
Written assignment, including essay Written assignment 40
EXAM Final examination 60

Teaching and Learning Strategy


The module will be taught by means of 33 hours of lectures and 11 hours of workshops, both taught over the course of one semester.

Private study 156

The module will be taught by means of 36 hours of lectures and 8 hours of tutorials, both taught over the course of one semester. Tutorials will routinely require students to engage individually and in groups in acquiring, commenting upon, critically evaluating, and applying the principles and details of the subject under the guidance and instruction of the tutor.


Transferable skills

  • Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
  • Computer Literacy - Proficiency in using a varied range of computer software
  • Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
  • Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
  • Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
  • Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
  • Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
  • Presentation - Able to clearly present information and explanations to an audience. Through the written or oral mode of communication accurately and concisely.
  • Management - Able to utilise, coordinate and control resources (human, physical and/or financial)
  • Argument - Able to put forward, debate and justify an opinion or a course of action, with an individual or in a wider group setting
  • Self-awareness & Reflectivity - Having an awareness of your own strengths, weaknesses, aims and objectives. Able to regularly review, evaluate and reflect upon the performance of yourself and others

Subject specific skills

  • Develop the ability to interpret legal rules and employ techniques of legal reasoning competently and efficiently in order to offer a range of solutions and conclusions to actual or hypothetical complex legal problems, all supported by relevant academic literature, jurisprudence and legislative research. Such solutions will be clearly communicated and presented
  • Develop the ability to analyse complex legal issues, set against the background of the political, social, economic or cultural contexts in which they may arise
  • Develop those skills which are necessary for scholarship and research in legal subjects, namely the ability to identify relevant primary and secondary legal sources and to retrieve accurate legal information using paper and electronic sources


Pre- and Co-requisite Modules

Courses including this module

Compulsory in courses:

Optional in courses: