LW7057 - LLM Project

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What will I learn on this module?

This module is an opportunity for you to devise, develop and complete a substantial piece of independent research at Master’s level, in dissertation form, on a legal topic of your choice linked to your study on the BPTC.

You will work under the guidance of a project supervisor, using the knowledge and understanding you have gained on your Qualifying Law Degree and on the LLM in Bar Professional Training programme.

The LLM Project module focuses on the development of skills in three key areas: problem identification and analysis, research and information gathering and the written presentation of results. You will develop your ability to undertake legal research, addressing complex and current issues in your subject area. You will also engage critically with research material and analyse current skills and practice. The LLM Project module will also develop your skill in effectively formulating, communicating and presenting written argument to both a specialist and non-specialist audience.

How will I learn on this module?

You will learn through a combination of tutor-directed and independent learning practice. The module will contain enhanced taught elements of research skills to support you in your learning.

In the initial stage of the module your focus will be on tutor-directed learning via a module dedicated e-learning site (eLP), where you will be provided with detailed learning materials and resources, including guided reading and self-evaluative tasks, to help you develop the research and writing skills that are needed for you to undertake a project. During the induction period you will receive instruction on how to structure and conduct research for your dissertation, as well as how to develop your legal writing and referencing skills. In addition, you will have the opportunity to receive formative feedback on short writing tasks as you progress through the year.

Independent learning will focus on you identifying the reading and research required to complete your dissertation. Additionally, you will be allocated a project supervisor for your project. Your summative assessment for the module is your finished research project and here too you will be provided with feedback on your work. Thus, through such independent study, research and feedback you can also develop your learning through reflective practice.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

The LLM is supported by the appointment of an individual project supervisor to guide you through a research-oriented and research enquiry based learning process. You are encouraged to maintain regular contact with your supervisor, with whom you will discuss your research topic and methodology to help clarify your understanding, analysis and presentation. In semester one, you will be required to submit a project proposal and ethics Form. Your proposal will identify a title, the underlying aims and structure of your work, any preliminary sources and a timetable for its completion the following year. Once submitted, your supervisor will provide you with formative feedback and form a view on whether your proposal and ethics form are Competent/Not Yet Competent and what you might do to improve your work. Failure to submit a project proposal by the stated deadline in semester one will prevent you from progressing on the LLM route. As you proceed through the year, you will receive written feedback from your project supervisor on draft work as you work towards completion of your project in semester 3.

The University is well placed to support you in learning and research with an excellent library and teaching facilities, access to on-line legal databases, resources and appropriate software. Programme support will be provided through the e-learning portal and resources through the University Library. This will provide you with tutored guidance on legal skills, research and assessment in this module. The Programme Leader can be contacted in addition to your supervisor in respect of any problems.

The Programme Administration and Student Progress teams are responsible for the non-academic administration of the module, such as receiving your completed project, returning your marked project and recording your marks. They and the project supervisor will contact you throughout the duration of your module with important dates and other issues.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at: http://readinglists.northumbria.ac.uk
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team – http://library.northumbria.ac.uk/readinglists)

What will I be expected to achieve?

At the end of the module you will have:

• Developed critical knowledge and understanding of your chosen subject, informed by current practice, advanced scholarship and research, including a critical awareness and evaluation of current issues and developments in the subject.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
• Developed an ability to formulate a research proposal which enables you to engage in critical discourse in relation to your chosen area of study, to formulate balanced judgements if information is ambiguous or incomplete and communicate clearly to both a specialist and a non-specialist audience.

• Developed an ability to conceptualise, theorise and reflect on your own practice and the practice of others and undertake research which addresses complex issues and which advances understanding in your chosen area of study.

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
• You will be able to devise, develop and complete a substantial independent research project, including selecting an appropriate subject area, conducting research and making editorial choices and decisions.
• You will demonstrate awareness of principles and values of law and justice and ethical issues arising in the context of a substantial Master’s level research project

How will I be assessed?

Summative assessment: The summative assessment on this module is your submission of a 8,000 to 10,000 word research project.

There are opportunities for formative assessment throughout the module including advice on the suitability of your proposed topic, on your research techniques, on whether your project is sufficiently analytical and well-structured and written and complies with University ethics requirements. There is initial legal research instruction, with linked resources, which provide self-test questions and exercises on legal research and writing. Thereafter you will receive feedback from your supervisor on draft work as you work towards producing your dissertation.

The marking criteria used to assess the project are outlined and explained when you embark on the module to ensure you can understand what is expected of you and how you will be judged on your performance. Once your project has been marked, you will be provided with a written feedback sheet on how well it met with the assessment criteria.

Pre-requisite(s)

None

Co-requisite(s)

None

Module abstract

The aim of this module is to enable you to enhance your Bar qualification, your knowledge, your research skills and your employability through the completion of a supervised independent research project on a specialist topic of your choosing. You will integrate your understanding of topics and skills learnt throughout the Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC), gaining an internationally recognised Masters qualification.

As part of this module, you will critically engage with research outputs as part of your research-rich learning, drawing from Northumbria’s extensive on-line databases and library facilities. You will further develop the necessary skills to conduct effective legal research, essential and integral skills to successful practice at the Bar. The final assessed research project will consolidate your understanding of a linked area of study on the BPTC and develop your skills of critical analysis.

Course info

Credits 60

Level of Study Postgraduate

Mode of Study 1 year full-time
1 other options available

Department Northumbria Law School

Location Law and NBS Building, City Campus East

City Newcastle

Start September 2019

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