LW3FEU-Foundations of EU Law

Module Provider: School of Law
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded: LW2EUL EU Law
Module version for: 2017/8

Module Convenor: Dr Alina Tryfonidou

Email: a.tryfonidou@reading.ac.uk

Summary module description:


This module aims to provide students with a thorough understanding of the main institutional, constitutional and substantive features of the legal system of the EU. It aims to equip students with knowledge of the developing legal and constitutional framework of the expanding EU and its impact on the national legal orders of the Member States. The module will focus on a range of aspects of the internal market, the role - and interaction - of the institutions in the lawmaking process, the relationship between EU law and national law, and the judicial remedies available to institutions, Member States and private parties.

Assessable learning outcomes:

By the end of the module it is expected that the student will be able to: • explain and analyse the evolution of the EU from its single market origins to a more mature polity; • explain and analyse the institutional and law-making structure of the EU; • assess critically, the role of democracy and rights in EU governance; • compare and contrast the various doctrines and procedures for enforcing EU law and provide a critical assessment of these procedures; • assess critically the nature of the procedure of judicial review of actions of the EU institutions; • assess critically the relationship between national legal systems and the EU legal order and, in particular, explain how EU law can be enforced before national courts; •explain and assess critically the main principles governing the substantive law of the EU and, in particular, how the law governing the free movement of goods and persons (both economically active and inactive) has been developed mainly through ECJ jurisprudence.

Additional outcomes:
The module also aims to develop, among others, IT, oral presentation and research skills.

Outline content:

The module will start with a brief introduction to the history of the EU and to its institutional and law-making sturcture, including the various sources of EU law. This discussion will be set against a broader theoretical context centred around the concepts of democracy, legitimacy, subsdiarity and the genera principles of EU law. The module will also consider the relationship between teh EU and national legal orders. A key part of this will involve a comparison of the role of private enforcement in national courts with public enforcement mechanisms before the European courts. This will be followed by an analysis of the procedure for judicial review of EU acts. The final part of the module will consist of an analysis of the substantive elements of EU law. In particular, the internal market policy of the EU will be explained and analysed, with special emphasis being placed on the Court's case-law on the free movement of goods and persons (economically active and inactive).

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

There will normally be 2-hour lectures (and, in some weeks, an additional 1-hour lecture) in the Autumn and Spring terms (overall 30 lectures) and three 1-hour tutorials in each of these terms (overall 6 tutorials). The tutorials will involve structured group discussion and may involve the oral presentation of material.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 18 14
Tutorials 3 3
Guided independent study 79 83
Total hours by term 100.00 100.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 100

Other information on summative assessment:

Formative assessment methods:

1 essay to be submitted in the Autumn term (usually after Enhancement week).

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:
    3 hours

    Requirements for a pass:

    Reassessment arrangements:
    See School Guide (Programme Assessment)

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

    Required text books

    Last updated: 31 March 2017

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