LWMTCC-Intellectual Property Law: Copyright and Designs

Module Provider: School of Law
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded: LWMTCD Copyright and Designs
Current from: 2022/3

Module Convenor: Dr Basak Bak
Email: basak.baktezgel@reading.ac.uk

Type of module:

Summary module description:

This module provides advanced knowledge of the legal protection that is afforded to creative works and industrial designs. Students will be encouraged to critically assess statutory provisions and common law principles that govern copyright and design law, as well as the rationales justifying particular doctrines and the effects of the practical operation of these fields of intellectual property. Subject to discussion will be emergent topics in the area of copyright and design law, such as online copyright infringement, internet platform liability, artificial intelligence and parallel trade issues.


This module aims to provide students with advanced knowledge of copyright and design rights. The module also aims to enable students to appreciate and critically assess both the practical day to day operation of these areas of intellectual property law and the rationales for intellectual property protection. 

Assessable learning outcomes:

On completion of the module, students will be expected to be able to:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of the legal protection available under copyright and design rights, and the ability to critically assess topical issues in these legal areas;

  2. Identify the main rationales for affording legal protection to creative works and industrial designs;

  3. Demonstrate the ability to ascertain the substantial law from legislation, case law and secondary literature, as applied to copyright and designs.

Additional outcomes:

In addition to those listed in the School’s ‘core skills statement’, the module will encourage the development of:

  • High-level oral communication skills through reflective, analytical class discussion;

  • Advanced critical reading skills in relation to primary and/or secondary sources.

Outline content:

The topics that will be discussed include:

  1. Copyright and design: legislative framework, international obligations and EU harmonisation;

  2. Subsistence of copyright in literary, artistic, musical & dramatic works, copyright in functional and entrepreneurial works;

  3. Copyright ownership, exploitation and moral rights;

  4. Scope of copyright protection, infringement and defences;

  5. Registered and unregistered design, UK and EU design rights;

  6. Scope of protection and infringement, defences, overlaps with copyright.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

Teaching in this module is designed to provide students with a range of resources on which they can draw in their learning. The main elements are:

  • A list of required and recommended readings, with notes and questions that will be used to guide class discussion and reflection.

  • 6 seminars in the Autumn term. Seminars are discussion based classes.

  • Assessed work that will be used to develop students' skills and knowledge.
  • Discussion on case law will be in some instances supplemented with artefacts that have been involved in litigation. 

  • A set of in-class assignments (such as oral presentations, debating, research techniques, legal writing, client communication skills) that aim to enable the development of practical skills alongside the theoretical understanding of core issues.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Seminars 12
Guided independent study: 88
Total hours by term 100
Total hours for module 100

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 100

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:
1 assessed essay of 8 pages (formatted in accordance with the School of Law's Assessed Work Rules)

Formative assessment methods:

1 optional non-assessed essay of 4 pages (formatted in accordance with the School of Law’s Assessed Work Rules) and/or 1 optional non-assessed film review of 2 pages.

Penalties for late submission:

The below information applies to students on taught programmes except those on Postgraduate Flexible programmes. Penalties for late submission, and the associated procedures, which apply to Postgraduate Flexible programmes are specified in the policy “Penalties for late submission for Postgraduate Flexible programmes”, which can be found here: https://www.reading.ac.uk/cqsd/-/media/project/functions/cqsd/documents/cqsd-old-site-documents/penaltiesforlatesubmissionpgflexible.pdf
The Support Centres will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that 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: https://www.reading.ac.uk/cqsd/-/media/project/functions/cqsd/documents/cqsd-old-site-documents/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.

Assessment requirements for a pass:
50% overall

Reassessment arrangements:
See School of Law PGT Programme Handbook

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

1) Required text books: 

2) Specialist equipment or materials: 

3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear: 

4) Printing and binding: 

5) Computers and devices with a particular specification: 

6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence: 

Last updated: 22 September 2022


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