Not available to non-law students. Allocation to LW633 is limited and is done on the same basis as LW543.
OverviewThe provision of a Clinical Option with a focus on criminal justice is an opportunity for students to consider the most crucial aspects of the rule of law namely power, control and accountability. Criminal Justice as a branch of state power and paternalism opens many questions for debate not least the imposition of rules by the state and the degree to which those are balanced, fair and open to challenge.
Students on this module must become members of the Kent Law Clinic and work under solicitor supervision on client's cases that have been taken on by the Clinic. The proposed module will be based on the LW543 Clinical Option casework model.
Students are expected, from the second week of the Autumn term onwards until the end of the Spring term, to undertake the conduct of one substantial case under supervision or a project on an area of law relevant to the field of Criminal Justice and relevant to the objects of the Clinic. Students will normally work on cases rather than projects.
Students will be supervised on a one to one basis for between one and two hours per week. This may increase dependant on the stage a case has reached and supervision may increase considerably if the need to work intensively on the case arises. There may also be periods of little or no weekly supervision dependant on the demands of the case. Student will maintain client files in accordance with Case Management Guidelines and Student Folders containing drafts and research materials.
Putting law into practice in this way increases knowledge of the relevant law, procedure and legal practice and in turn further the aims and ethos of the Kent Law Clinic most importantly in the provision of a crucial public service.
Interactive seminars of 1.5 hours length are proposed due to the small number of students. Allowing additional time will allow flexibility in the structure of the session. For example in some weeks a proportion of the session will be used as a lecture on the area substantive law and the remainder for a discussion incorporating the required reading and informed by the private study undertaken. Other weeks may be presentations by students on their cases and the issues they have identified allowing for a discussion in which we will build on the knowledge and study from earlier substantive law seminars.
In summary, the primary aim of the module is to introduce students to the functions of key players in the CJS including police, prosecution, judiciary, probation and defence. This overarching understanding of the roles and regulation of each is advantageous to those interested in pursuing a career within the CJS. Through casework and research students will have the opportunity to apply the law, to consider appropriate legal strategies to help the client and to critically reflect on the laws and procedures they have encountered. The module should appeal to those students intending to practise in the areas of criminal law and civil liberties but is aimed too at those not intending to pursue a legal career.
This module appears in:
one 2 hour lecture seminar.
Method of assessment
100% coursework consisting of two problem questions, case/project work and a dissertation.
detailed and coherent knowledge of substantive law, procedure and practice in the fields of policing and criminal matters, and related areas of tort law
the ability to analyse complex and changing situations of dispute identifying appropriate legal and other resolution strategies and evaluating relevant ethical issues
specific legal skills such as: legal research, interviewing, negotiating, legal drafting, advocacy, presentation, case-management, and the ability to undertake appropriate further training of a legal professional nature
the ability to reflect critically upon the operation of the law in practice, drawing upon legal practice, wide reading and original research