Criminal Law of England and Wales (CL-FR) LAW1041

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Law
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 1 (SCQF level 7)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course provides an introduction to the substantive criminal law of England and Wales, focusing on a selection of key criminal offences. It offers a critical introduction to principles of criminalisation, and examines the use of criminal law as a mode of governing individual conduct. Students will be introduced to the key elements and building blocks of criminal liability, and will learn to apply this knowledge to diverse problem based scenarios.


There will be three one-hour lectures weekly, and tutorials run weekly from week 3, with 7 tutorials in total.

Requirements of Entry


Excluded Courses

LAW 1003 Criminal Law (course within the K16M320 DPGR Degree Programme LL.B. (Scots Law))




The course is 100% assessed on the basis of a two-hour exam that will take place in the December examination period. The exam has two sections and is part seen.

Main Assessment In: December

Course Aims

The course aims to introduce students to the criminal law of England and Wales, and the ways in which it regulates criminal conduct. It will provide a critical analysis of the present law(s), and the principles and practices of criminalisation. In particular, the course seeks to:

■ introduce the general principles of criminal law in England and Wales; 

■ explore the structure and elements of the key crimes studied;  

■ encourage critical understanding of the basic rules of criminal law and the requirements for criminal responsibility; 

develop the ability to analyse legal problems and apply the law to diverse fact-based scenarios.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ identify and explain the principles that can be used to justify decisions to criminalise or decriminalise conduct; 

■ assess critically the nature of criminal liability according to the legal systems of England and Wales; 

■ state and evaluate the requirements of criminal liability for selected criminal offences;

■ construct clear and coherent arguments, based on legal authority, for and against the use of criminal law in regulating particular forms of conduct; 

■ apply the law pertaining to selected criminal offences to concrete factual scenarios.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Completion of summative assessment.