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Module Title
Practical Legal Skills and Ethics (Online LLB)

Research skills, advocacy, negotiation, client counselling; ehtical basis of law, legal practie and professional conduct

SCQF Points15
ECTS Points7.5
CreatedOctober 2009
ApprovedAugust 2013
AmendedJanuary 2013
Version No.1

This Version is No Longer Current
The latest version of this module is available here
Prerequisites for Module

None in addition to SCQF 9 requirements or equivalent.

Corequisite Modules


Precluded Modules


Aims of Module

1. To provide students with a working understanding of practical legal skills and knowledge such as of dispute resolution, written and oral advocacy, negotiation and client interviewing and counselling.
2. To enable students to obtain knowledge and understanding of the idea of justice, the idea of unjust law and the moral and ethical basis and context of law.
3. To allow students to understand the principles of ethical legal practice, and standards of professional conduct for lawyers in Scotland.

Learning Outcomes for Module

On completion of this module, students are expected to be able to:

1. Appraise the range of dispute resolution methods available.
2. Develop and demonstrate key document drafting skills pertinent to legal practice.
3. Demonstrate a practical knowledge and understanding of sound client interviewing and negotiating techniques.
4. Explain and demonstrate a critical understanding of the nature of legal concepts including legal rights, legal obligation and legal powers.
5. Explain and demonstrate a critical understanding of the idea of justice, the idea of unjust law, the moral and ethical basis and context of law and of ethical legal practice, and standards of professional conduct for lawyers in Scotland.

Indicative Module Content

The first part of the module will develop key practical transferrable skills required in the workplace such as knowledge of dispute resolution alternatives, written drafting skills, client interviewing and counselling and negotiation skills.

The remainder of the module will cover knowledge and understanding of major legal concepts including legal rights, obligation and powers and the idea of justice and of unjust law, the ethical basis of law and of legal practice and professional conduct for lawyers.

Indicative Student Workload

Contact Hours

Distance Learning
Online activities

Directed Study



Private Study



Mode of Delivery

This is a lecture and tutorial based module. Lectures provide core module content. Tutorials develop associated higher level skills through student centred learning. In the distance learning mode, in addition, online activities will form part of the module contact time.

Assessment Plan

Learning Outcomes Assessed
Component 1 1,2,3
Component 2 4,5
Component 3 1,2,3,4,5

Component 1 - Written coursework worth 60% of the overall module grade.

Component 3 - Compliance on a pass/fail basis with the requirement to participate (refer further - Module Performance Descriptor) to a reasonable level in online forum and tutorial activities.

Component 2 - Written coursework worth 40% of the overall module grade.

Indicative Bibliography

1.BROWN, H.J., 2011. ADR principles and practice. 3rd ed. London: Sweet and Maxwell.
2.CHERKASSKY, L., et al., 2011. Legal Skills. Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan.
3.FINCH, E., and FAFINSKI, S., 2014. Employability Skills for law students. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
4.HERRING, J., 2014. Legal ethics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
5.LEWICKI, R., et al., 2010. Essentials of negotiation. 5th ed. New York: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.
6.MALCOLM, E.A., 2009. A guide to mediating in Scotland. Dundee: Dundee University Press.
7.TODD, A. and SIM, I., 2016. Commercial awareness for lawyers. Edinburgh: W Green.
8.WACKS, R., 2015. Understanding jurisprudence. 4th ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Robert Gordon University, Garthdee House, Aberdeen, AB10 7QB, Scotland, UK: a Scottish charity, registration No. SC013781