Module code: LAW1030

Module Overview

This module builds upon the principles of criminal liability outlined in Criminal Law I by exploring a selection of substantive criminal offences and relevant defences. The emphasis is on developing a critical approach to the criminal law whilst ensuring that students have a firm understanding of core legal principles and their operation. The module is designed around three themes to encourage students to look at the criminal law in an evaluative way: (1) the relationship between objectivity and subjectivity and the consequences of a shift from one to the other; (2) the conflict between principle and policy and (3) the shifting boundaries of criminal liability.

Module provider

School of Law

Module Leader

FINCH Emily (Schl of Law)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 4

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Workshop Hours: 10

Independent Learning Hours: 90

Lecture Hours: 22

Tutorial Hours: 6

Captured Content: 22

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

Criminal Law I

Module content

The module covers a range of substantive offences and defences:

  • Criminal damage

  • Non-fatal offences against the person

  • The defence of consent

  • Sexual offences against adults: rape, assault by penetration, sexual assault

  • Age-related sexual offences

  • Property offences: theft, robbery, burglary, fraud and making off without payment

  • Defences of duress by threats and self-defence

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework COURSEWORK 80

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate that they have understood key principles and policies of criminal law and that they are able to apply the law to a range of factual situations.


The first part of the summative assessment is a reflective evaluation of the student’s formative coursework (short answer to a simple problem question) that aims to ensure that students have a full understanding of the skills involved in the creation of an effective answer to a problem question. This covers knowledge of substantive law, the conventions of criminal law and the skills involved in a methodical approach to problem solving.


Formative feedback is an important component of the module. There are two formative feedback opportunities: firstly, a group session in which the answer to the formative question is explained that takes place immediately after the submission deadline to promote engagement with the formative assessment by the provision of (near) instant feedback and, secondly, individual verbal feedback on individual performance from the tutorial leaders. Students are expected to reflect on this feedback and evaluate their own performance in the formative assessment using the ten-point competence evaluation framework.


The summative assessment is a longer and more complex mixed issue problem solving.


Module aims

  • Examine specific criminal offences and relevant defences, identify their elements and explore their definitions.
  • Outline relevant statutory provisions and case law.
  • Encourage a methodical and legalistic evaluation of criminal liability.
  • To identify deficiencies with the existing law and to evaluate proposals for reform in the context of relevant theoretical frameworks.
  • Promote an understanding of the context within which the criminal law operates and to instill an awareness of the social factors that are relevant to the criminal law.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
002 Demonstrate an understanding of the principles and policies of the areas of criminal law covered KC
003 Identify, apply and discuss relevant statutory provisions and case law KCPT
004 Engage in critical discussion of the effectiveness of the current law and identify and evaluate proposals for reform CT
005 Carry out independent research and demonstrate core legal skills in research, writing, evaluation, analysis and synthesis PT
001 To provide students with an opportunity to develop group working skills PT
006 Adopt a reflective approach towards legal analysis and evolve an effective approach to problem solving in criminal law. KCPT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy encourages students to engage with principles and policies of criminal law and to appreciate the real-world impact of the criminal law.

Lectures will introduce the legal framework of each topic, setting out the key statutory provisions and case law and outlining key policy considerations. There will be emphasis on core legal skills during the lectures, with worked examples of problem-solving and the integration of current events wherever possible to emphasis the law-in-action approach of the module. 

Each topic will be explored in greater depth in the hour-long tutorials where students will engage in problem-solving activities and explore gaps in the law through a series of activities focused on the changing boundaries of criminal law. Preparation will be expected for tutorials but students will also be given questions to answer and activities to complete during the sessions.


The interactive workshops will focus on the skills needed to engage in effective analysis of criminal liability.


Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: LAW1030

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Law (Law and Technology Pathway) LLB (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Law (Philosophy, Politics and Law Pathway) LLB (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Law LLB (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Law with Criminology LLB (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Law with International Relations LLB (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2022/3 academic year.