Module Details

LW721-7-AU-CO: Critical Thinking

Note: This module is inactive. Visit the Module Directory to view modules and variants offered during the current academic year.

Year: 2016/17
Department: Law (School of)
Essex credit: 15
ECTS credit: 7.5
Available to Study Abroad / Exchange Students: No
Full Year Module Available to Study Abroad / Exchange Students for a Single Term: No
Outside Option: No

Supervisor: Mrs Kathryn Caldwell
Teaching Staff: Mrs Kathryn Caldwell
Contact details: School of Law, University of Essex. Telephone: 01206 872923; Email:

Module is taught during the following terms
Autumn Spring Summer

Module Description

This module is designed as an introduction to the theory and practice of critical thinking. It is primarily intended for postgraduate students from cultures which lack strong traditions of radical critique. It may also prove useful for students who have not had the opportunity to study legal theory or philosophy.

Selected texts will be used to examine the intellectual processes that underpin tertiary education and research: argumentation, deduction, reasoning, validity, critique, understanding and interpretation. The limitations of these processes will also be scrutinised. A purely formalistic approach (e.g. that taken by symbolic logic) will, however, be eschewed. It is felt more appropriate that law students examine arguments that are embedded in specific concrete controversies, e.g. the definination of justice in Plato's Republic.

This module is intended to support and encourage students to distinguish between a descriptive and a critical/analytic approach to research material and to feel confident about using both approaches.

Learning and Teaching Methods


100 per cent Coursework Mark


  • 2-hour weekly seminars

Further information