Privacy and Data Protection Law - LAWS9210

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2024 to 2025
Spring Term 7 20 (10) Pamela White checkmark-circle


The module will explore emerging privacy and data protection issues. Students will be challenged to critically examine how e.g. personal, financial, health and transactional data are managed and who has access to this information. It will require students to assess emerging legal, regulatory, data protection and personal privacy issues raised by widespread access to personal information, including genetic data.

The essential aims and objectives of the proposed LLM module are to equip students to undertake a sustained analysis of privacy and data protection law. Students will be asked to critically examine whether privacy protection, consent and confidentiality measures are proportionate to the legal requirements to protect personal information while balancing the requirements of economic commerce, the state and public administrations to collect, use and share personal information.


Contact hours

Contact hours: 18
Private study hours: 182
Total study hours: 200


LLM in (Specialisation); LLM in Law; PG Diploma in (Specialisation); PG Certificate in Law. Available to non-law students with convenor's permission.

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods

Option 1:
Assessment 5,000 words (100%)

Option 2:
Blog/Briefing Note assessment: 1,000 words (20%)
Essay: 4,000 words (80%)

Reassessment methods

Indicative reading

C. Bennett, Privacy Advocates: Resisting the Spread of Surveillance (MIT Press, 2008).
P. Carey, Data Protection: a practical guide to UK and EU Law (Oxford: OUP, 2009).
R. N. Charette, Online Advertisers Turning up the Heat Against Making "Do Not Track" Browsers' Default Setting, IEEE SPECTRUM,
M. Hickman, 9 Things You Probably Shouldn't Do in the Presence of a Google Street View Vehicle, MOTHER NATURE ETWORK,;
Artist Captures Bizarre Images Shot by Google's Street View Cameras, N.Y. DAILY NEWS,
L. Katz, (2013) 'Symposium on Cybercrime'. Jr. of Criminal Law and Criminology, 103 (3).
A. Kenyon and M. Richardson, New Dimensions in Privacy Law (Cambridge: CUP, 2006).
C. Kunar, International Data Privacy Law (Oxford: OUP, 2013).
G. Laurie, Genetic Privacy: Challenge to Medico-legal Norms (Cambridge: CUP, 2002).
D. Lyon, Surveillance Studies: An overview (Cambridge: Polity Press, 2007).
R. A. Posner, (1981) The Economics of Privacy, 71 AM. ECON. REV. 405.
M. D. Scott, (2008) Tort Liability for Vendors of Insecure Software: Has the Time Finally Come?, 67 MD. L. REV. 425, 442–50.
Solove, P. Schwartz, Information Privacy Law (Harvard University Press, 2008).
Solove, P. Schwartz, Privacy, Information, and Technology, 3nd edition (Aspen Publishing Co., 2012).
D. Solove, Understanding Privacy (Harvard University Press, 2008).
F. Westin, Privacy and Freedom (NY: Atheneum, 1967).
A.F. Westin, (2003) 'Social and Political Dimensions of Privacy', Jr. of Social Issues 59(2), 431-453.
R. Williams, P. Johnston, Genetic Policing: The Use of DNA in Criminal Investigations (Willan Publishing, 2008).
R. Williams, Making Identity Matter (York: Sociology Press, 2000).

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module, students will be able to:

1. Demonstrate an advanced grounding in concepts, principles and rules of data protection, consent, and privacy.
2. Demonstrate a systematic understanding of the origins and development of data protection laws.
3. Critically analyse emerging issues in data protection.
4. Demonstrate a critical awareness of, and the ability to evaluate legal and regulatory actions taken in response to the failure to protect data and ensure confidentiality.
5. Critically analyse and evaluate the permeability of public/private boundaries in the workplace, in public and commercial spaces, on the Internet and in cyber space.
6. Demonstrate a critical understanding of the public and private tensions involved in privacy and data protection.

The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module, students will be able to:

1. Present relevant knowledge and understanding in the form of an original and reasoned argument.
2. Identify, analyse and critically evaluate complex legal and policy problems.
3. Carry out independent research from a variety of sources informing an original, sustained and detailed argument.
4. Summarise detailed conceptual material, recognising, critically evaluating and synthesising different positions that arise in the literature surveyed.


  1. Credit level 7. Undergraduate or postgraduate masters level module.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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