How this course is delivered
We've made some changes to the way our courses are taught to keep everyone safe, connected and involved in university life.
At the moment, students have a blend of on-campus and digitally enabled remote learning that provides lots of opportunities to interact and engage with lecturers and other students.
The rules relating to the formation, operation and termination of contracts, including the remedies available to the parties and the doctrine of privity of contract; an outline of the law of restitution.
The general foundations of criminal liability and defences; the major criminal offences (eg homicide, non-fatal offences against the person, theft) and their constituent elements.
Equity and Trusts
The relationship between equity and the common law; types of trust, the role of trustees and consequences of a breach of trust; nature and scope of equitable rights and equitable remedies.
European Union Law
The constitutional framework of the EU; the implementation and enforcement of EU law (including the free movement of workers, competition law, consumer protection law); the relationship between EU law and national law.
The foundation concepts of land law; the relationship between the common law and equitable rights; the scope, nature and effect of estates and interests in land; registered and unregistered conveyancing; co-ownership; the essentials of landlord and tenant.
Law of Torts
The foundations of tortious liability, including vicarious and joint liability and remedies in respect of torts; the principal torts (eg negligence, trespass, nuisance, defamation) and their constituent elements.
Legal System, Method and Skills
Sources, personnel and structure of the English legal system; civil and criminal process; access to justice; the impact of the Human Rights Act 1998 on the English legal system.
Constitutional legal principles; the basic features and characteristics of the UK's constitution; civil liberties; administrative law, including judicial review.
The final project involves researching for and writing a 5,000-word dissertation on an area of law that you are particularly interested in.
Recent topics have included:
- ancillary relief
- assisted suicide
- breach of duty in medical negligence
- commercial surrogacy
- domestic violence
- European copyright in relation to online copyright protection
- legal issues in biomedicine - human embryo research and gene therapy
- repossession orders and
- the duty of care owed to mentally ill prisoners.
Extracurricular activities such as mooting, client interviewing and pro-bono work allow you to develop practical skills in legal research, problem-solving, critical analysis and communication.
Our University of Brighton Innocence Programme provides you with the opportunity to investigate wrongful criminal convictions, referring them back to the Court of Appeal. Supervised by academics and working with practising lawyers, you provide pro bono assistance to prisoners who maintain their innocence and have exhausted their appeal rights.
Through our Community Legal Outreach Collaboration initiative, you can also gain real experience and training from legal firms and HM Courts by volunteering as a legal companion, providing vital help and support to disadvantaged communities.
Masters in Law (LLM) Top-up
On successful completion of the CPE conversion course, you can either go directly into the vocational stage of your legal training or enrol for a further year of study to obtain the Masters in Law (LLM) award.
The LLM degree is essentially an optional learning module that involves researching and writing a dissertation on a legal topic of your choice. Recent topics have included media law, medical law, family law, housing law and international law.
You will be allocated a subject-specialist supervisor drawn from the law subject group who will be available to support you, advise you and discuss your personal research needs during the year. In addition, LLM students have the opportunity to attend workshops covering research methods and ethical issues and to share ideas and strategies.
Many law firms prefer job candidates with an LLM degree because it indicates that a lawyer has acquired advanced, specialised legal training.
Assessment for the LLM award is a 15,000–20,000-word dissertation.
Our supportive learning environment includes an induction programme and specialist diagnostic tools to assess your learning strengths and needs. You will also be assigned an academic supervisor to support you in your project work. We also provide free language and support services throughout for international students.
Online learning tools and libraries also ensure academic journals, e-books, business articles and other resources are available to you 24/7, both for use at the university and at home.
You will also have access to our Careers Service, including CV checking, mock interviews and advice on setting up your own business. Read more on our careers service website.
You will have access to a range of online legal research services, such as Westlaw, Lawtel, LexisNexis Butterworths and HeinOnline. These online resources can be accessed on and off campus.
We also have an outstanding library which houses the tools of the lawyers' trade: primary sources of law such as statutes and cases, and secondary sources such as books, periodicals and journals.
Other student support services include the university's careers centre, welfare service, a counselling service, chaplaincy and childcare provision.
Student Law Society
The Student Law Society is a thriving community of over 150 law students. With support from the Students’ Union, it organises an exciting schedule of social and educational events.
Members have recently enjoyed visits to Lewes Crown Court, Brighton Magistrates Court and the Houses of Parliament. Social events have included paintballing, go-karting, surfing, a Christmas Ball at the Brighton Hilton Metropole, and a trip with law students from other universities to Amsterdam.
Through initiatives such as these, the society provides excellent opportunities for personal development and for networking with other students interested in a career in law.
Dr Claire-Michelle Smyth, LLM, is your course leader. Claire-Michelle graduated with a PhD from Queens University Belfast where her research centred on social and economic rights and the European Convention on Human Rights. Claire-Michelle’s main interests are in Equity and Trusts and Human Rights Law. She has published extensively in this area and regularly attends national and international conferences discussing her research.
Find out more about Claire