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LAW3054 : Sports Law

  • Offered for Year: 2023/24
  • Module Leader(s): Miss Jenny Johnstone
  • Lecturer: Mrs Penny Booth, Mrs Chris Fletcher
  • Owning School: Newcastle Law School
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
  • Capacity limit: 100 student places

Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0
European Credit Transfer System


Sports Law is an evolving area of law that impacts on grassroots to elite sport. The module will reflect the role that sport plays within society socially, politically, and culturally. Whilst Sports Governing Bodies have a regulatory function for their own sport there are legislative frameworks within which those governing bodies need to work. Situations relating to participants arise which might require recourse to both criminal and civil proceedings. Whilst not a regular module it uses other areas to bring together aspects of law which are in the public field. Sports law does not exist in its own right but when situations arise that go beyond the regulatory function, law and sport come together. This module has the opportunity to connect and link with other disciplines and the School of BNSS This module will give an insight to situations where this arise and adopting a socio legal and multi-disciplinary approach this module will aim to:

Provide an understanding of sport and its relationship with the Law from grassroots to professional sport.

To introduce students to a detailed understanding of the foundational elements and interactions between sport and the law

To introduce students to the impact of the operation of law in society in a context which already demonstrates an impactful influence in life – television, participation, spectatorship

To develop and apply the conceptual, critical, and analytical skills to the governance, structures and frameworks surrounding sport and its relationship with the law

To develop a critical understanding and evaluation of the areas of contemporary legal and policy debates within sport which may influence an improved understanding of law in operation in a module area which is popular.

Outline Of Syllabus

The module will allow students to study a range of issues which will cover the following:

• what sport is, what role sport plays in society, and how the regulatory environment of sport has developed which will look at the impact of the Code for Sports Governance. We will look at the impact of cases such as Ibrox, Valley Parade and Hillsborough
• the governance and regulation of sport from grassroots to elite and the impact of money;
• issues surrounding the integrity and ethics of sport, including anti-doping and child protection;
• discrimination in sport;
• the role of EU and international law in the development of sports law;
• contemporary and developing issues within sport

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture21:303:00PiP
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion170:0070:00Assessment preparation and completion
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops72:0014:00PiP
Structured Guided LearningStructured non-synchronous discussion81:008:00A combination of short recordings of lecture material and text published on VLE each week prior to the next workshop
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesFieldwork13:003:00Sport in Action activity relating to their own experience of sport and for reflective log. PiP
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery61:006:00Scheduled throughout the module PiP
Guided Independent StudyStudent-led group activity80:304:00Mixture of reflective learning/group prep for each workshop
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study901:0090:0058 hours own reading 8 hours group 24 Guided reading activities
Guided Independent StudyOnline Discussion12:002:00Moderated discussion board
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The teaching methods are designed to reflect a more interactive and inclusive approach to teaching through in person, online discussions, in person and online activities as well as a variety of guided student activities whilst allowing students to explore their own particular interests within the field of sport and its relationship with the law. Teaching methods promote critical analysis and awareness and provides opportunity for the above skills to be developed within group presentation, individual preparation of the research paper relating to a contemporary issue in sport.

The proposal is to divide that number into 4 groups of 25. A 2-hour workshop (with a break in between) will be used over 7 weeks. The number is small enough to equate to the small group teaching. It also provides for a simple structure.

The sessions will be skills and substantive knowledge focused applying the Graduate Framework and Education for Life strategy. The workshop model utilising skills to enhance the development of substantive knowledge will fit nicely to the subject. We will discuss and incorporate recent and historic sporting events to chart the development of sports law.
There will be a range of activities used within the workshop but all online lecture material/online discussions and drop ins will be geared to working towards the Workshops and ultimately the assessments.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written exercise2A100Short Journal Article - 3000 words
Formative Assessments

Formative Assessment is an assessment which develops your skills in being assessed, allows for you to receive feedback, and prepares you for being assessed. However, it does not count to your final mark.

Description Semester When Set Comment
Reflective log2MResearch paper plan (500 words)
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Reflective log
Students will be given a series of topics from which to choose to write a reflective log. This can also relate to their own experiences within sport. These topics will be linked to the journal article and students will be expected to draft an outline or plan for the journal article.

Journal article
Students will be given a choice of topics from which to write a short journal piece. These will relate to contemporary events. This will allow students to conduct their own research on

The workshops will be geared towards the assessments and will provide the opportunity for students to put materials together.

Reading Lists