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Law, Lawyers and Social Justice

Key Information

Module code
ISSU1050
Taught during
Session 1
Module leader
Jacqueline Kinghan
Pre-requisites
None. Standard UCL Summer entry criteria apply.
Assessment method
10-minute presentation (20%), 2,500 word essay (80%)
Download syllabus (PDF)
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Module overview

This module will consider the role that law plays in society, with a particular focus on the ways in which lawyers can achieve social change.

The module is rooted broadly in law and social sciences and will be richly interdisciplinary in its approach. It will introduce students to conceptions of social justice and to the lawyer-client relationship. Thereafter, students will consider the role of charities and NGOs in advocating and campaigning on social welfare and human rights. They will critically reflect on practical scenarios and real life campaigns and will be challenged to think about the law, and its limitations, in responding to social need. By the end of the module students will be able to question their assumptions about the ways in which the law is constructed and understood in society, as well as the ways in which lawyers achieve, or might fail to achieve, social justice.

Learning outcomes

Upon successful completion of this module, students will:

  • Be able to critically evaluate the role of the law in addressing social justice issues
  • Understand and be able to describe the role of the lawyer and / or legal NGO within the wider justice system
  • Be able to apply theory critically to analyse human rights / access to justice campaigns and case studies and evaluate their impact
  • Have developed team working, communication and presentation skills
  • Have employed appropriate problem solving techniques in practical case study scenarios

Module prerequisites

This is a level one module (equivalent to first year undergraduate). No prior subject knowledge is required to study this module but students are expected to have a keen interest in the subject area.

Module hours

Classes (usually three or four hours per day) take place on the Bloomsbury campus from Monday to Friday any time between 9am and 6pm.

Assessment

  • 10-minute presentation (20%)
  • 2,500 word essay (80%)

Module leader

Jacqueline Kinghan is a Principal Teaching Fellow at UCL Faculty of Laws and a qualified Barrister with experience in criminal law and human rights. She was the founding Director of the UCL Centre for Access to Justice and has particular expertise in clinical legal education. Her teaching and research focuses on the ways in which law students can make a social impact through law school clinics, pro bono projects and public legal education initiatives in partnership with local charities and NGOs. Her research interests lie in access to justice, legal education and progressive lawyering.

Application information

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