LLM International Economic Law

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Intellectual Property Law

Course unit fact file
Unit code LAWS70101
Credit rating 30
Unit level FHEQ level 7 – master's degree or fourth year of an integrated master's degree
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Available as a free choice unit? No


Intellectual Property Law is an important but somewhat controversial part of the legal landscape due to its topical nature and its direct impact on important topics such as competition, human rights, access to knowledge, economic development as well innovation and new technologies, Therefore, this course will examine the policies affecting national and international intellectual property rights and will offer students the chance to study a wide range of interesting topics such as the protection of inventions, the societal and economic role of brands as well as the public policies surrounding the protection of creative works.

This course will be divided into three key areas, namely Copyright, Patents and Trade Mark Law. The course will examine the legal protection provided to these rights and the harmonisation process of such protections throughout the European Union (before and after Brexit). The course will also assess the justifications for protecting these rights and the current state of the law by examining the provisions of the relevant national laws, as well as the European Directives and their application by the judgements of the Court of Justice of the European Union.


  • To provide students with the opportunity of studying intellectual property rights ("IPRs") and their significance at the European and international level and to improve their knowledge of the relevant law;
  • To introduce students to some of the economic rational of IPRs and to enable them to understand the influence of economic and other factors on the development of the relevant law at the European and international level;
  • To encourage students to analyse the relevance of IPRs to the development of the European single market and to appreciate the relationships between IPRs and other areas of law; such as Competition Law and Law & Economics.
  • To develop students' research, analytical, critical, reasoning and presentational skills.
  • To give the students the needed knowledge to research and work in the field of IP.

Teaching and learning methods

  • 30 hours of lectures(including 2 hours of revision lectures)
  • 6 seminars (6 hours).
  • Feedback and support available in drop-in office hours

All materials, detailed lecture handouts and seminar handouts as well as other forms of guidance will be posted on Blackboard.

Knowledge and understanding

On successful completion of the unit, students will have:

  • A broad understanding of the treaties and agreements which govern IPRs at the European and international level and of some discrete topics within this area;
  • A clear understanding of  the economic rationale of IPRs and be able to relate trends and developments in IPRs at the European and international level to their economic context;

A detailed knowledge of the relationships between IPRs and other areas of law such as competition and human rights. 

Intellectual skills

On successful completion of the unit, students will have:

  • An ability to obtain relevant information, critically analyse it and present their conclusions in a logical, coherent and well-reasoned form;
  • An ability to analyse and evaluate the relevant law from an economic perspective and using other standpoints;
  • An ability to argue effectively and relevantly in class discussions and in their written work.

Practical skills

  • Research legal and other relevant information from a number of paper and electronic sources, including the World Wide Web;
  • Present complex ideas and legal arguments orally and in writing.

Transferable skills and personal qualities

  • Develop the analytical, critical, evaluative and presentational skills indicated above
  • Understand and apply time- management skills
  • Acquire the experience to work as a team member and as a leader of a team.

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Written exam 100%

Feedback methods

An Open Written exam


  • An optional un-assessed course work will be set and written feedback will be provided on the answers.
  • An outline of issues for the exam question will be published after the final assessment on Blackboard.

Recommended reading

  • Intellectual Property Law, by L. Bently & B. Sherman, 6th ed. (OUP 2022)
  • Intellectual Property: Patents, Copyrights, Trademarks & Allied Rights, by W. Cornish, D. Llewelyn & T. Aplin 9th ed. (2019).

More details will be announced at the first lecture, and will be made available on Blackboard

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Assessment written exam 3
Independent study hours
Independent study 300

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Pinar Oruc Unit coordinator

Additional notes

1. Students wanting to undertake a research paper or dissertation on this subject, certain topics/titles will be suggested as suitable themes for research papers. Students could also submit their own titles. Approval will mainly be based on the course unit director’s assessment of whether the proposed research is manageable given the time constraints and the length of the research project. Approval will not be based on a subjective or objective assessment of an individual student’s abilities or understanding.

2. This course is assessed by a seen exam (open exam). Students will be given the exam questions (6 questions) one month prior to the exam date but only 3 questions out of the 6 questions will be given in the actual exam. Students will have to answer the 3 questions given.

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