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Unit information: Law of Contract in 2016/17

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Unit name Law of Contract
Unit code LAWD10008
Credit points 20
Level of study C/4
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Mrs. Deehan
Open unit status Not open
Pre-requisites

None

Co-requisites

None

School/department University of Bristol Law School
Faculty Faculty of Social Sciences and Law

Description

Contract law is a component of the modern law of obligations. Fundamentally, contract law is concerned with the promises which people make to one another. It governs questions such as:

  • which agreements will the law enforce?
  • what obligations are imposed by the agreement in question? and
  • what remedies are imposed if the obligations that have been promised are not fulfilled?

Topics covered include: offer and acceptance; consideration and promissory estoppel; intention to create legal relations; privity; illegitimate pressure; express and implied terms, including exclusion and limitation clauses; misrepresentation; mistake; frustration; performance and breach; and remedies.

The unit aims to ensure that students are able to:

  • identify and craft a ratio decidendi for any particular contract law case;
  • demonstrate an in-depth, critical understanding of the application of the rules of contract;
  • apply the law relating to contracts to complex situations, noting any areas of legal or factual uncertainty;
  • recognise the strengths and weaknesses of existing case law;
  • present complex legal arguments in a coherent and persuasive fashion;
  • analyse and evaluate case law;
  • synthesise case law.

Intended learning outcomes

By the end of this unit a successful student will be able to:

  • Demonstrate a basic working knowledge of the English law of contract
  • Identify and craft a ratio decidendi for any particular contract law case;
  • Demonstrate an in-depth, critical understanding of the application of the rules of contract;
  • Apply the law relating to contracts to complex situations, noting any areas of legal or factual uncertainty;
  • Recognise the strengths and weaknesses of existing case law;
  • Present complex legal arguments in a coherent and persuasive fashion;
  • Analyse and evaluate case law;
  • Synthesise case law.

Teaching details

The unit will be taught by a combination of 30 lectures and 8 tutorials.

Assessment Details

Formative assessment: one mid-sessional examination in January plus one other piece of formative work.

The (formative) mid-sessional exam is mandatory; the other formative assessment is optional.

Summative assessment: one 3-hour (unseen) exam consisting of essays and problem questions (100% of mark).

The assessments will assess all of the intended learning outcomes for this unit.

Reading and References

  • A Burrows, A Casebook on Contract Law (4th edn., Hart, 2013)
  • E McKendrick, Contract Law (11th edn., Palgrave MacMillan, 2015)
  • Beatson et al, Ansons Law of Contract 29th edn., OUP, 2010)
  • Chen-Wishart, Contract Law (5th edn., Oxford, 2015)
  • Cheshire, Fifoot & Furmston, The Law of Contract (16th edn., Oxford, 2012)
  • Peel, Treitel: The Law of Contract (14th edn., Thomson, Sweet & Maxwell, 2015)
  • O’Sullivan & Hilliard, The Law of Contract (7th edn., OUP, 2016)

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