LW4012 - Contract Law

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What will I learn on this module?

In this module you will develop an understanding of the law relating to the formation, operation and termination of contracts. You will, through the study of contract, be introduced to the finding, reading and use of a primary source of law, the law report. As the law of Contract is mainly a case law based subject you will be expected to read law reports and extract rules from this source of law. Such law will then be used to analyse problem and essay questions.
This module covers the following topics:
• An overview of the law of contract, its place in the common law and the operation of the doctrine of judicial precedent, and the factors affecting the development of modern contract law.
• Formation of Contract: agreement, certainty, intention to create legal relations and consideration, including promissory estoppel.
• Contents of contract: express and implied terms; interpretation of contracts; exemption clauses and unfair terms.
• Vitiating factors: misrepresentation, mistake, duress and undue influence.
• The doctrine of privity of contract and the exceptions to the doctrine.
• Discharge of contract: performance, breach, agreement and frustration.
• An outline of the law of remedies for breach of contract.
• A brief outline of the law of restitution.

How will I learn on this module?

You will study ‘Contract Law’ in one 12-week semester. You will learn through large group sessions, via Panopto lectures (available in advance), workshops, seminars and tutor-guided independent learning.

Use of Large Group Sessions:
The large group Panopto lectures are intended to introduce you to the major principles of the key topics of contract law. They will also enable you to develop fact analysis and problem solving skills, for example by applying the principles to which the lectures relate in the context of factual scenarios. You will also be expected to undertake independent learning (for example, reading major cases from the area of contract law) in consolidation of the lecture programme and the related programme of directed learning.
Use of Small Group Sessions:
The small group seminar and workshop discussions will be taught in one 3 hour session delivered together, over the Semester. Sessions will cover a range of activities to develop your analytical abilities. In preparing for seminars and workshops you will be required to undertake independent and directed learning, perform fact analysis, critical thinking and identify relevant principles of contract law. Seminars will also require you to demonstrate your ability to locate and make effective use of legal source materials. You will be expected to engage in independent and, at times, directed learning in consolidation of work done in preparation for and during seminars. The tutor will facilitate learning in the seminar/workshop sessions.
Importantly, you will also learn at work, through reflecting on your experiences and applying your knowledge to your practice in the workplace. The seminars, workshops and lectures will introduce you to theories and concepts and allow you to discuss with the tutors and your peers how these relate to your own work based experiences and practice.

You will be building a portfolio of evidence that illustrates your development as a solicitor throughout the first year of the programme. This portfolio will enable you to demonstrate how you have applied your learning from across all first stage modules into your workplace practice.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

The University supports you in learning and research with an excellent library and teaching facilities, access to on-line legal databases and resources and appropriate software.
This module is designed and will be managed by a designated Module Tutor who will be responsible for guiding you in your engagement and learning on the module. Material will be delivered to you by PAnopto lecture and through the eLP. The eLP site will contain the following resources: lecture notes; Powerpoint slides; the module handbook, which will contain seminar exercises; advice on assessment, supported by sample questions and answers; and Panopto recordings of lectures. As well as lectures you will also be taught by a seminar/workshop tutor. Should you have queries you may approach the your seminar tutor. It is also possible to make an appointment to speak to a contract tutor face to face. You may communicate with your Module Tutor by e-mail and are encouraged to make contact if you encounter any difficulties relating to any aspect of the module.
Academic support is also available to you through formative and summative feedback on assessments. You will have the opportunity to submit written work and to work through sample questions prior to the end of module assessment.
As above, your module is also supported by an e-learning portal, which houses all the module learning materials, workshop resources, interactive activities, assessment details and various other support facilities which are provided by the University. In addition, in order to assist you in developing knowledge, you will have access to the University’s library facilities, including extensive electronic resources, eBooks and electronic academic journal articles.
Support will also include opportunities to gain feedback from your Guidance Tutor. The Programme Leader can be contacted in addition to your Guidance Tutor in respect of any problems.

The Programme Administration Team and Student Progress Team are responsible for the non-academic administration of the module, such as receiving your completed assignment, returning your marked assignment and recording your marks. They and the module tutor 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?

Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the module you should be able to explain what is required to form a contract, understand the legal and commercial impact of various terms of a contract, recognise when a contract is invalidly formed, explain how a contract may be brought to an end, outline the remedies available upon a contract being broken and explain and appreciate the principles of restitution.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:

• Understand how you are to read and use case law.
• You will develop an ability to construct commercially appropriate legal advice and/or legal argument from the application of case law and legislation to a body of factual material, and be able to explain contractual principles and their application clearly and succinctly in a written form.

How will I be assessed?

Please reference impact on end point assessment where applicable. Reference to PSRB competences may also apply.

Please give details of all formative and summative assessment process indicating which MLOs will be addressed and how feedback will be provided.

Please reference impact on end point assessment where applicable. Reference to PSRB competences may also apply.

Formative assessment
There will be two opportunities to submit written answers to seminar questions for review and feedback.
Additionally, answers to multiple choice questions will be reviewed in a seminar and in a lecture.
You will receive feedback on all of the formative assessment, as detailed above. This will show you how you are progressing and enable you to assess your progress.
Summative assessment
The examination will in Part A test your ability to read and understand a case. In preparation for the examination you will have to undertake independent research in order to understand and analyse the case specified.
Part B requires an understanding of the principles of the law of contract and an ability to use and/or apply those principles to problem or essay questions. Answers will have to be clear, coherent and seek to develop arguments using legal authority.
Summative feedback will be available in written form on scripts, via the elp as notes for guidance and orally from module tutors.
Assessment Criteria and Grade-Related Criteria will be made available to you to support you in completing assessments. Grade-Related Descriptors are descriptions of the level of skills, knowledge and/or attributes that you need to demonstrate in order achieve a certain grade or mark in an assessment, providing a mechanism by which the quality of an assessment can be measured and placed within the overall set of marks.

Pre-requisite(s)

None

Co-requisite(s)

None

Module abstract

One of the most important law subjects you will study is the law of contract. Contracts are encountered in all walks of life, and on a daily basis, ranging from buying a sandwich or a bus ticket, to finding employment; the law of contract underpins all such transactions. It forms the basis for an understanding of employment law, sale of goods, landlord and tenant and many other areas of law. On the module you will be taught general principles of contract law including what is needed to form a contract, how to recognise the terms of the contract and understand the effect of such terms and how to bring a contract to an end. The consequences of bringing a contract to an end are also explored, particularly the remedy of damages. In studying contract you will also be introduced to finding, reading and using primary sources of law, particularly case law.

Course info

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 5-6 years part-time

Department Northumbria Law School

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2021

Fee Information

Module Information

All information on this course page is accurate at the time of viewing.

Courses starting in 2021 are offered as a mix of online and face to face teaching due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

We continue to monitor government and local authority guidance in relation to Covid-19 and we are ready and able to flex accordingly to ensure the health and safety of our students and staff.

Students will be required to attend campus as far as restrictions allow. Contact time will increase as restrictions ease, or decrease, potentially to a full online offer, should restrictions increase.

Our online activity will be delivered through Blackboard Ultra, enabling collaboration, connection and engagement with materials and people.

 

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