LW5006 - Human Rights and Law Reform

What will I learn on this module?

On this module you will learn about some of the human rights that are protected by law in England and Wales. You will learn about the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) and the way in which the Human Rights Act 1998 has affected how human rights are protected. You will achieve detailed knowledge of the law relating to particular topics studied during the course. Topics will be based upon the substantive rights contained in the ECHR but can change to suit topical issues in any given year.

You will also gain an understanding of areas of domestic law that may need reform and develop and justify your own opinion about what reforms are needed while being able to recognise other potential conclusions.

You will further develop your ability to identify gaps in your knowledge and to ask searching questions about human rights law along with the ability to carry out your own research in this area. Through reflecting on your learning, you will learn more about your own learning and enhance your ability to work independently and with others, a key employability skill. This will, among other benefits, help prepare you for working in the Student Law Office at Level 6.

How will I learn on this module?

This module is delivered by a blend of lectures and Problem-Based Learning sessions in workshops and studio hubs. The lectures in this module will provide background and contextual information, allowing you to then delve deeper into the law in your Problem-Based Learning sessions. In addition to the lectures, you will be directed and closely facilitated in your learning by a mixture of attendance at supervised studio sessions (group guided sessions in computer hub/collaborative working spaces) and small group (Workshops) as well as via an opportunity for independent reading and research and group tasks. The module is Tutor-guided and facilitated and your learning will take place through a combination of collaborative (team work with a small group of students) and wholly independent, self-directed, learning.

There is an opportunity for independent reading and research tasks throughout the module. The module is Tutor-guided and facilitated and your learning will take place through a combination of collaborative (team-work with a small group of students duringtaught sessions) and wholly independent, self-directed, learning.There will be weekly substantive lectures in this module to help provide you with some background and context to the human rights legislative framework, as well as topicalareas of human rights. In addition, you will be directed and closely facilitated in your learning by a mixture of attendance and participation at weekly Hub sessions (group guided sessions in computer hub/collaborative working spaces) and small group sessions (Workshops)

Workshop (Hub) Sessions

These sessions will take place in collaborative work spaces. In your groups you will identify (facilitated by the Tutor) what areas of law you need to research to address the questionss/areas set. You will achieve this by drafting research reports. You will then use the taught sessions, as well as your own time outside of taught sessions, to further research the areas in order to provide singular answers to these questions, The tutor will guide and facilitate you through this process.


The small group sessions will be used for you to demonstrate and receive feedback on the learning you have achieved through the Hub Sessions and through your collaborative and independent learning. They will allow critical discussion of the law to take place between you and the Tutor, and for you to develop your personal and professional learning journey.

Collaborative and Independent Learning

This is an important aspect of the module which will centre on you identifying further reading and research to provide deeper/broader knowledge and understanding of the law. You will be required to work collaboratively with others, and independently, to research areas of law to address topical issues. This will entail you working on your research skills to identify further reading material and legal sources which will lead to deeper knowledge and understanding of the topics

Assessment of learning

You will be assessed firstly by a 10 minute group presentation that is worth 40% of the overall mark for the module. This will take place mid-semester and time slots will be allocated at the beginning of the module. Marks will be awarded individually rather than collectlively as a single group mark.

You will then be assessed at the end of the module by a 1500 word piece of written coursework in the form of an academic blog. This is worth 60% of the overall mark for the module.

Throughout the course of the module you will receive formative feedback, both written and oral, from the teaching team.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

The University will support you in learning and research with an excellent library and teaching facilities, access to on-line databases and resources and appropriate software.

This Module is designed and will be managed by the Module Tutor who will be responsible for guiding you in your engagement and learning on the Module. Material will be delivered to you in the timetabled sessions and through the eLP. The Module has a dedicated eLP site which includes workshop instruction briefs, and other relevant resources. This is in addition to the reading list.

The comprehensive online reading list includes books, articles, television and radio programmes. You will have regular contact with your Tutor. Should you have queries you may speak to your Tutor or e-mail them with your query. Support will include oral feedback from Tutors during the timetabled sessions. Your Tutor will also be available to answer queries by e mail or in person, provided an appointment has been arranged. You are encouraged to make contact with your Tutor if you encounter any difficulties relating to any aspect of the Module.

The Programme Administration and Student Liaison teams are responsible for the non-academic administration of the Module, such as receiving your completed assignment, returning your marked assignment and recording your marks.

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
At the end of the Module you will have:

• Apply and interpret substantive and procedural law of Human Rights in the wider context of a hypothetical or actual legal case or project.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities

At the end of the Module you will be able :
• To recognise ambiguity and uncertainty in Human Rights law and identify potential alternative conclusions and provide supporting reasons for them.

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):

At the end of the Module you will have:
• Developed intellectual independence by being able to ask and answer cogent questions about the law relating to human rights and the development of the law relating to human rights. You will also have identified gaps in your knowledge and acquired new knowledge.
• Developed independent thinking and curiosity.

How will I be assessed?

Formative assessment will be provided by oral and written feedback in timetabled sessions on the formative tasks that are required for effective workshop participation. Students will also have the opportunity to attend assessment drop-in sessions whereby the teaching team can provide feedback on small extracts of work before final submission.

Summative Assessment Will be undertaken in two parts.

First summative assessment is 10 minute group presentation that requires the group to identify and explain the law, critically analyse it and suggest proposals for how that area could be reformed, or if that area of law is sound.

Second summative assessment is an individual piece of written coursework. This coursework will be in the form of a academic blog. Therefore, this will allow students to provide reasoned opinions on an area of law that is of their own choice. Again, this assessment requires the student to identify and explain the law, critically analyse it and suggest why this area of law is of importance.

There will be specific lectures providing assessment guidance as well as guidance throughout the small group sessions.

Assessment criteria are provided to enable you to understand what is expected of you and how you will be judged on your performance for both assessments

You will be provided with appropriate written feedback on your assessments in accordance with the Law School’s Undergraduate feedback policy.





Module abstract

You will critically explore how certain topical human rights are protected in England and Wales, leading you to identify areas you believe are in need of reform. Rather than solely being ‘lectured’ about the state of the law, you will primarily find out about it for yourself by working with other students and independently in small group sessions in order to, think critically about how you think the law could be improved.

You will be studying a topical, dynamic and fascinating area of the law which impacts upon everyone’s lives and can protect vulnerable sections of society and minority groups. You will actively engage with how the law can be reformed, which is not something you will normally get to spend much time doing. You will be taught and encouraged to research contemporary human rights issues.

Course info

UCAS Code M101

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years full-time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department Northumbria Law School

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024 or September 2025

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


Your Learning Experience

Find out about our distinctive approach at 

Admissions Terms and Conditions

Fees and Funding

Admissions Policy

Admissions Complaints Policy