Module SXL-3113:
Dissertation

Module Facts

Run by School of Law

20 Credits or 10 ECTS Credits

Semester 1 & 2

Organiser: Dr Marie Parker

Overall aims and purpose

The Dissertation module is an optional module in the LLB programme. The purpose of this module is to provide students with the opportunity to write an extended piece of independent research-based work on a legal topic of their choice. In particular, the aims of the module include enabling students to formulate a research proposal setting out appropriate research techniques and methodologies; enabling students to plan, organise and write a lengthy piece of work; and enabling students to demonstrate an ability to undertake a detailed and sustained investigation into a particular topic or issue within the field of legal scholarship.

Course content

The module will provide students with the opportunity to develop their research skills; an opportunity to develop their skills of written presentation; and an opportunity to research a topic in more depth than is otherwise possible during their undergraduate studies.

Assessment Criteria

excellent

An outstanding, possibly brilliant, answer, containing all the material relevant to the question and no irrelevancy, all the material and references being accurate and correct, there being no inaccuracy or error, the whole presented in a clear, logical, critical argument with little room for improvement. An answer which demonstrates a complete mastery of the subject.

good

A comprehensive answer, containing all the material relevant to the question and no irrelevancy, all the material and references being accurate and correct, there being no inaccuracy or error, the whole presented in an argument which, while clear, logical and critical, leaves room for improvement in its construction and presentation. An answer which shows complete competence in the subject.

threshold

An answer which, while predominantly correct in its presentation of material, contains a significant level of error and is therefore not entirely reliable.

Learning outcomes

  1. Independently conduct sustained and focused research.

  2. Identify and obtain relevant materials and sources.

  3. Review and abstract relevant materials.

  4. Analyse legal authorities in contexts relevant to the dissertation topic.

  5. Demonstrate the ability to identify, explain, and articulate arguments in, a problem area.

  6. Demonstrate the ability to engage in critical evaluation.

  7. Demonstrate the ability to present clealy structured written arguments.

  8. Demonstrate the ability to use appropriate referencing systems.

  9. Demonstrate the ability to use information technology.

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
Dissertation 100

Teaching and Learning Strategy

Hours
Private study 192
Tutorial

The majority of learning hours is covered through independent study. Personal one-to-one supervisions will take place over two semesters and supervisors will provide written and verbal feedback on the work.

8

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.
  • Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team
  • Mentoring - Able to support, help, guide, inspire and/or coach others
  • 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
  • Leadership - Able to lead and manage, develop action plans and objectives, offer guidance and direction to others, and cope with the related pressures such authority can result in

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

Optional in courses: