LAW40620 Punishment, Prisons & Public Policy

Academic Year 2022/2023

The response to crime since the mid-1990s has been characterised in many developed countries by an emphasis on penal expansionism. This module explores some of the dilemmas that confront prison systems everywhere (e.g. violence, self-harm, segregation, and recidivism). The extent to which these problems have characteristics that reflect peculiarly local conditions is a recurrent theme. What, if anything, is distinctive about the 'society of captives' in Ireland?

(Please note that in spring 2023 this module will be run over six weeks rather than twelve, with two seminars taking place each week.)

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

Students will be familiar with key debates in the penal policy arena.

Students will be able to analyse international developments in an Irish context.

Students will be able to interpret contemporary challenges of imprisonment and identify pathways to reform.

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours
Autonomous Student Learning






Approaches to Teaching and Learning:

Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations

Not applicable to this module.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
Not applicable to this module.
Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Assignment: presentation and 1500 word assignment Varies over the Trimester n/a Graded No


Essay: Essay - 3500 words Coursework (End of Trimester) n/a Graded No


Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Autumn No
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Not yet recorded.

Timetabling information is displayed only for guidance purposes, relates to the current Academic Year only and is subject to change.
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 Mon 11:00 - 12:50
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 Tues 14:00 - 15:50