Why do societies need laws, and how are they made?
What factors determine the relations that countries have with one another?
Do people become lawyers to make money or to change the world?
Law helps to keep societies together, and international law helps to keep the nations of the world co-operating – at least in certain areas. The focus of this course is on law, but it will also be really valuable if you would like to understand human society through history, sociology or international relations, or even just improve your ability to think critically.
The nature of law
Why do we have laws? You’ll be introduced to the concept of jurisprudence, and begin to think about the nature of society and its need for rules. You’ll also consider how law and society are studied at university level.
You’ll be looking mainly at the legal system of the country you’re visiting, but you will compare it with others, and consider the different approaches towards studying it. You’ll also be considering the ways in which law is made and applied.
What does law have to say about human rights, and are there certain principles which should apply in any place and at any time? Lawyers frequently deal with important ethical questions, and you’ll be exploring some of them through some specific examples.
Making an argument
Here you’ll be practising the presentation of an argument on the basis of evidence – a great skill to develop in any context! Thinking like a lawyer is a crucial component of effective study at university level.
What happens if people break the law? Here you’ll be looking at criminal law, and at ways in which society deals with those who don’t comply. What’s it like to be a criminal lawyer?
Here you’ll be considering the scope of sociology, and some of the key theories you’ll be dealing with if you look further into the nature of society – and into how we could improve it. Also: what is involved in study in this field, and where does it lead?
The world today
For this unit, the subject is the nature of treaties and the broader question of international relations; you’ll also be considering, and practising, negotiation skills. You’ll be able to assess your aptitude for further study in this area.
Preparing to make a case
For this final unit, you’ll be taking a role in a mock trial, working on developing a convincing argument or evaluating evidence, depending on the role you have.