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Edexcel BTEC Level 3 Certificate and BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma in Applied Law (QCF)

Unit introduction

Applied law allows the learner to understand the working of the English legal system and suited to those who prefer vocation aspects of learning, rather than external examinations. The brief course content is:

Understand the hierarchy of the court system

Civil courts structure: role, function and jurisdiction of Small Claims Court, county court, High Court, divisional courts, Court of Appeal (Civil Division), House of Lords, European Court of Justice; difference between first instance and appeal courts

Criminal courts structure: role, function and jurisdiction of Youth Court, magistrates’ court, Crown Court, Court of Appeal (Criminal Division), House of Lords; first instance and appeal courts; The Criminal Cases Review Commission

Understand the roles undertaken by the personnel of the courts

The legal profession (lawyers): work, training and regulation of barristers, solicitors, legal executives, paralegals; the Legal Services Ombudsman and complaints

The judiciary: organisation; selection and appointment of judges; roles in civil and criminal cases; judicial independence and immunity; removal from office

Lay people: magistrates – selection and appointment; training; role and powers; jurisdiction in civil and criminal cases; removal; advantages and disadvantages; juries – qualifications and disqualification, selection and role, summoning, vetting and challenging, advantages and disadvantages

Know about the alternatives to the courts

Alternative dispute resolution (ADR): tribunals; arbitration; mediation; conciliation; negotiation Comparison: with each other; with civil courts; advantages, disadvantages. Issues: cost; time; privacy; appeals; formality; representation; accessibility; appropriateness

Know about the finance of advice and representation

Alternative sources of advice: Citizens Advice Bureau; media. Finance of advice: private; insurance; conditional fees; pro bono work. Statutory provision: legal help and representation in civil and criminal matters

Understand how legal rules are created by precedent

Judicial precedent: development of the system; law reporting; binding authorities; persuasive authorities; ratio decidendi; obiter dicta statements; advantages and disadvantages

Avoiding judicial precedents: distinguishing previous decisions; reversing decisions; overruling previous decisions; practice statements

Understand how statutory rules are made.

Statutory legal rules: the pre-legislative process; public and private bills; private members bills; the process in parliament of a bill; commencement of an act; doctrine of parliamentary supremacy; criticisms of the process

Delegated legislation: types – orders in council, statutory instruments, by-laws; controls on delegated legislation both by the courts eg ultra vires and parliamentary, eg scrutiny committee; advantages and disadvantages.

Influences on Parliament: Law Commission; Royal Commissions; political power; media; pressure groups

Know how statutes are interpreted

Principles of statutory interpretation: literal rule; mischief rule; golden rule; integrated and purposive approaches; aids

Know the importance of the European legislative process and its institutions

European Union legal rules: treaties; regulations; directives and decisions; conflicts between EU and domestic legislation; role and functions of the European Court of Justice, Council, Commission and Parliament; conflict between European and national law

Understand the impact of the law of negligence

Existence of a duty of care: historical introduction; neighbour principle (Donaghue v Stevenson); three-part test (Caparo. Breach of duty: standard of the reasonable man; factors affecting standard of care – special characteristics of the defendant; special characteristics of the claimant; degree of risk; taking precautions; benefits of taking the risk; relevant case law, Damage: physical injury; to property; causation, intervening events, remoteness of damage (Wagon Mound)

Know the rules on damages

Damages: remedy; compensatory; pecuniary and non-pecuniary; interim awards; structured settlements; offsets; contributory negligence

Method of assessment

The learner is assessed on completion of a number of relevant tasks which meet the criteria for BTEC credit levels.

Edexcel BTEC Level 3 Certificate – 30 credits

The 30-credit BTEC Level 3 Certificate offers a specialist qualification that focuses on particular aspects of employment within the appropriate vocational sector. The BTEC Level 3 Certificate is a qualification which can extend a learner’s programme of study and give vocational emphasis. The BTEC Level 3 Certificate is broadly equivalent to one GCE AS Level.

The BTEC Level 3 Certificate is also suitable for those who wish to follow a vocational programme of study as part of their continued professional development or who want to move to a different area of employment.

Edexcel BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma – 60 credits

The 60-credit BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma extends the specialist work-related focus from the BTEC Level 3 Certificate and covers the key knowledge and practical skills required in the appropriate vocational sector. The BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma offers greater flexibility. It is broadly equivalent to one GCE A Level.

Entry requirements

5 GCSE’s  A* - C including English.


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