LLB Law with Politics

Year of entry: 2023

Course unit details:
Law of Obligations II

Course unit fact file
Unit code LAWS30400
Credit rating 30
Unit level Level 3
Teaching period(s) Full year
Offered by Law
Available as a free choice unit? No


Obligations II (Tort law) is a core and dynamic subject occupying a central position (alongside Contract law) within the common law of obligations. The subject is based largely on case law, although some statutory provisions will be considered.

The course unit covers the following:

- Introduction to Tort Law

- The Intentional Torts (Trespass to the person and Wilkinson v Downton)

- The Law of Defamation

- The Law of Negligence - General and Specific Situations; Defences

- Occupiers' Liability

- The Law of Nuisance and Rylands v Fletcher

- The Doctrine of Vicarious Liability


- To continue students' acquaintance with the process of legal reasoning and analysis

- To acquire legal skills in understanding, interpreting and applying sources of information

- To acquire knowledge and understanding of tort law as a substantive body of law

- To understand the main theoretical underpinnings of torts and to appreciate the relationship between torts and the other branches of obligations law

Learning outcomes

To acquire knowledge, namely:

- to understand the rules contained in, and the underlying philosophies behind, tort law

- to understand legal precedents and to be aware of the major principles and policy considerations that may influence the future development of torts law.

To reinforce and develop skills, namely, to be able to:

- argue in a logical and persuasive manner- resolve torts problems using precedents and statutes

- understand the importance of case law and legal texts within the context of torts law



Teaching and learning methods

Lectures are designed to introduce students to main concepts.

Seminars are designed to promote small-group discussion around some of the controversial aspects of the law, and to provide practice in approaching hypothetical problem-style questions.

Lectures 40 (some may be provided online in light of Covid-19 pandemic; note that this allocated time may be distributed across a range of shorter recorded sessions and other asynchronous learning activities);

Seminars 8

Intellectual skills

Students should be able to construct, substantiate and deliver persuasive, lawyerly arguments both in the context of seminar discussions and formative coursework.

Questions are designed principally to assist students in their cultivation of a critical faculty. Problem questions in particular require students to identify and analyse the moot points in issue and to present a logically constructed, persuasively written, legal argument as to how a hypothetical scenario may be resolved on the strength of existing precedents and tort law doctrines.

Practical skills



Transferable skills and personal qualities



Assessment methods

Method Weight
Written exam 100%

Feedback methods

Open-book examination, 100%

Cohort feedback will be given following the exam, along with outlines of issues.

Students will also be given the opportunity to submit 1 piece of non-assessed (formative) coursework, following which individual and group feedback will be provided.

Seminars will also provide informal feedback in a group-setting on students' progress in understanding and applying tort law principles.


Recommended reading

Essential reading

R. Mulheron,Principles of Tort Law, 2nd ed., Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2020

Useful supplementary reading

Witting,Street on Torts, 16th ed., Oxford: Oxford UP, 2021


Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 40
Seminars 8

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Margaret Cunningham Unit coordinator

Additional notes

Teaching contact hours

Lectures 40 (may be provided online in light of Covid-19 pandemic; note that this allocated time may be distributed across a range of shorter recorded sessions and other asynchronous learning activities)

Seminars 8

Additional notes

Restricted to: 3rd year joint Law/Politics or Law/Criminology for whom this course is compulsory.

This course is available to incoming study abroad students.

Pre-requisites: Compulsory year 1 Law School courses

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