LAW37580 Research Module 10 cr

Academic Year 2022/2023

This module offers students an opportunity to pursue independent research on an aspect of law that is of particular interest to them.

This is a 10 credit module that takes place over both trimesters. At the end of the module students should have completed an 8.000 word paper on a research topic of their choice. Students are also expected to submit a research proposal (in trimester 1) and a short sample of writing on their topic for feedback (at the beginning of trimester 2).

This year students can choose between two options:
(A) Researching a topic from a select list of topics and research questions provided by potential supervisors.
(B) Research a topic of the student’s own choice, subject to agreement with an available member of staff

Students taking Law with Chinese can choose option A or B, but should note that they are expected to pick a topic which involves an aspect of Chinese Law.

Students will be asked to indicate their choice of topic, and the module coordinator will allocate an appropriate supervisor based on availability. While reasonable efforts will be made to accommodate the student's first choice of topic, this cannot be guaranteed and students should be prepared to choose alternative topics.

The module includes seminars designed to develop research skills. These skills include framing research questions, writing a research proposal, research and writing skills, and citation / referencing.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

At the end of this module students should be able to:

- frame a challenging but realistic research question;
- write a research proposal;
- conduct legal research to a high standard;
- engage in independent legal research;
- present legal research in a written form that is clear, concise and accurate in a longer research paper;
- formulate and present clear and convincing legal arguments.

Indicative Module Content:

The module includes three seminars designed to develop research and writing skills.

Week 1: Picking a research topic, Research Skills
Week 2: Writing a research proposal, Research Skills
Week 3: Reference and legal writing skills

The exact topics to be covered will depend on students’ needs. Students are encouraged to request the skills / issues they would like to discuss in class, and to get in touch if they want me to organise an extra seminar or workshop, or to discuss any issues and questions they have.

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours
Autonomous Student Learning


Seminar (or Webinar)




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
This module is primarily an independent research module, meaning that it is student led. However, seminars designed to develop research and writing skills are offered to support students. These skills include framing research questions, writing a research proposal, research and writing skills, and referencing skills. Students will provide peer support and offer feedback to each other on research topics and ideas. Students are also encouraged to request the skills / issues they would like to discuss in class, and to get in touch if they want me to organise an extra seminar or lunchtime workshop, or to discuss issues they are having.

In addition, students are expected to discuss their research proposals with supervisors during office hours (in person or via zoom (as appropriate)) in trimester 1 and there is one further mandatory supervisor meeting in which students can receive feedback on a draft of writing in trimester 2. This is an opportunity to obtain one to one feedback on your research.

Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations
Learning Exclusions:

This module cannot be taken if you have already taken the 5 credit Research Module Law 30750

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
LAW30630 - French Law Dissertation, LAW30750 - Research Module

Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Attendance: Meeting with supervisor in trimester 2 to obtain feedback on 1,000 word sample of writing Throughout the Trimester n/a Pass/Fail Grade Scale No


Essay: Final Research Paper, due April 2021; 8000 words Coursework (End of Trimester) n/a Graded No


Continuous Assessment: Research Proposal, due week 10 of trimester 1; 1500 words Week 10 n/a Graded No


Carry forward of passed components
Remediation Type Remediation Timing
Repeat Within Two Trimesters
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, on an activity or draft prior to summative assessment
• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Students will receive individual and peer feedback on their research ideas and research proposals in trimester 1. Students will be asked to submit a 1,000 word sample of writing to their supervisors in early trimester 2, and to arrange a face to face meeting with their supervisor during their office hours to obtain feedback on this draft. This is a key component of this module. Students will also be able to meet with their supervisor during office hours/via zoom to discuss their progress. Students will receive individual feedback from the supervisors on their final research papers.

Name Role
Assoc Professor Niamh Howlin Lecturer / Co-Lecturer