Reproductive Justice - LAWS9420

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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 curriculum will focus on the issues of reproductive rights, reproductive justice and the appropriate limits on reproductive autonomy. Topics covered will include moral and legal status of the embryo and fetus and the 'right to life' as it applies in this context; the regulation of embryo research and assisted reproductive technologies; surrogacy; contraception, abortion, sterilisation and the legal regulation of pregnancy.


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 - Optional
MSc Reproductive Medicine - Compulsory

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
100% coursework

Indicative reading

• Rebecca J Cook, Bernard Dickens and Mahmoud F Fathalla, Reproductive Health and Human Rights (2003)
• Ruth Deech and Anna Smajdor, From IVF to immortality: controversy in the era of reproductive technology (2007)
• Emily Jackson, Text and Materials in Medical Law (5th edition, 2019).
• Emily Jackson, Regulating reproduction: law, technology and autonomy (2001)
• Loretta Ross, Rickie Solinger, Reproductive Justice: An Introduction (2017)
• Deborah Rhode, 'Reproductive Justice' 13 Stan. J. C.R. & C.L. 29 (2017)
• Dorothy Roberts 'Reproductive Justice, Not Just Rights' 62 Dissent (2015)

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 a systematic understanding of the legal regulation of reproduction and the ethical principles upon which this regulation is based.
2. Demonstrate a systematic understanding of human rights law as it applies to the legal regulation of reproduction.
3. Demonstrate critical insight into the broader social, political and economic factors that impact on the legal regulation of reproduction.
4. Demonstrate a systematic understanding of current and continuing debates over the appropriate limits upon reproductive autonomy.

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

1. Critically evaluate the application and practice of law within different contexts and from different perspectives;
2. Identify relevant issues from complex factual situations;
3. Undertake independent and original research;
4. Formulate reasoned, critical arguments – demonstrating originality in the application of knowledge;
5. Analyse complex problems from a range of different theoretical perspectives and disciplinary approaches.


  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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