Criminal Law (727M3)

15 credits, Level 7 (Masters)

Spring teaching

Topics may include:
the elements of a crime: actus reus and mens rea, negligence and strict liability
the criminal liability of corporations and children
non-fatal offences against the person
theft and other property offences
inchoate offences.

The module places the law within the framework of the Human Rights Act 1998 and some aspects of criminal law theory such as theories of punishment, why conduct should be criminalised and, where appropriate, deals with issues of procedure, evidence and sentencing that are relevant to the substantive law.

Students will be encouraged to reflect critically on the type of conduct that should be criminalised in society and the underlying aims that the criminal law pursues in doing this such as deterrence and punishment.


100%: Seminar


50%: Examination (Distance examination)
50%: Written assessment (Essay)

Contact hours and workload

This module is approximately 150 hours of work. This breaks down into about 22 hours of contact time and about 128 hours of independent study. The University may make minor variations to the contact hours for operational reasons, including timetabling requirements.

We regularly review our modules to incorporate student feedback, staff expertise, as well as the latest research and teaching methodology. We’re planning to run these modules in the academic year 2024/25. However, there may be changes to these modules in response to feedback, staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let you know of any material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.