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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Law : Law

Postgraduate Course: Comparative Property Law (LAWS11240)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Law CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis is an advanced level course on the law of property taught from a comparative perspective. It will examine the treatment of key areas in property law, in particular ownership and limited real rights. Both moveable and immoveable property will be considered. In its comparative approach, the course will refer to jurisdictions in continental Europe and the USA as well as other mixed legal systems such as Louisiana and South Africa. Recent initiatives to harmonise property law in Europe will be considered, in particular the Draft Common Frame of Reference.

The course is designed mainly for those students who have already studied the law of property in their own system. Those who have not may still apply for a place in the course, but they should be aware that significant additional study may be required.
Course description Beginning with an overview of civil law and common law systems of property, the course will then consider transfer of ownership of moveable property and of land. The law of possession will be examined, before the course moves on to consider subordinate rights such as servitudes and security rights. Finally, convergence and harmonisation of property law will be studied.

The course will be taught by weekly seminars of two hours. A handout with reading will be issued in advance. Students are expected to have done the reading before the seminar and to participate in discussion based on this.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  25
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 176 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) One 5000-word essay (100%)
Feedback There will be a 2500-word formative essay at the midpoint of the course. Students will be provided with individual detailed feedback on this. At the end of the course students will also be given individual detailed feedback on the summative essay.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate a critical knowledge and understanding of the law of property;
  2. Appreciate the comparative approach to legal study;
  3. Comment critically and engage in debate on the issues examined;
  4. Evidence problem-solving skills in formulating solutions to the problems considered.
Reading List
The two most useful books are M Graziadei and L Smith (eds), Comparative Property Law: Global Perspectives (2017) and Sjef van Erp and Bram Akkermans (eds), Cases, Materials and Text on Property Law (2012).
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Skills and Abilities in Research and Enquiry:
- Students will be required to undertake comprehensive research in relation to the UK and other jurisdictions via paper and online research methods.

Skills and Abilities in Personal and Intellectual Autonomy:
Students will acquire the ability to:
- carry out detailed preparation and research for each seminar;
- develop a working methodology that fosters research skills;
- develop independent skills including how to prioritise reading and research materials;
- learn to analyse rigorously academic and other sources; and
- develop verbal and written skills that will enable clear presentation of findings and conclusions.

Skills and Abilities in Communication:
These will include the ability to:
- contribute to the seminars by engaging in class discussions;
- learn skills that will allow coherent presentation of arguments that support opinions and research conclusions;
- learn interpersonal communication skills of listening and taking on board other arguments; and
- develop the skills of presenting finished work for marked assessments.

Skills and Abilities in Personal Effectiveness:
These will include:
- developing study skills; and
- developing effective time management skills including skills to help with prioritising important and relevant materials
Keywordsproperty law; common law; land registration; ownership
Course organiserDr Alasdair Peterson
Tel: (0131 6)50 2008
Course secretaryMiss Bethan Walters
Tel: (0131 6)50 2386
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