British Law Centre (at Warsaw University) Regulations 2022-2023
The following regulations apply to all British Law Centre Participants (‘Diploma Participants’ or ‘You’) studying toward the 1-year Diploma in English Law and Legal Skills with the British Law Centre (‘BLC’) in Warsaw during the academic year 2022-2023. The BLC at UW WPiA complies with general UW WPiA policies regarding issues such as fee refunds and online teaching policies as they may exist from time to time. If any UW WPiA policy conflicts with the BLC course regulations set out below, the BLC will comply with the UW WPiA policy, and the regulations shall be adapted accordingly.
1. COURSE CURRICULUM
Through lectures, classes, materials and training exercises, the Course provides instruction in the following subjects and the opportunity to develop associated practical legal skills.
ENGLISH LEGAL SYSTEM
Legal research, fact management, case analysis and oral advocacy
CONTRACT LAW (INCLUDING CONTRACT NEGOTIATIONS & DRAFTING)
Contract negotiation and drafting, client interaction
LITIGATION AND ADVOCACY
Case and fact management, statutory interpretation, working with legal precedent, trial preparation, witness handling and oral advocacy
Client interviewing, written advocacy, analysing precedents
Mooting, preparing of written submissions (‘skeleton arguments’)
To successfully graduate the Diploma, you must pass 4 written assignments, one from each of the substantive law modules above (excluding Litigation & Advocacy). Each assignment involves preparing written work (approx. 2,000 words) to test the knowledge and skills learned during the relevant module. Written assignments are completed at home throughout the academic year, not in a traditional exam-style session. For further details, see ‘Assessment’ in Section 4 below.
Teaching is delivered via lectures, classes and legal skills sessions. We try to ensure that, as far as possible, “lecture weeks” and “class weeks” (discussed below) do not overlap, so that you will have either lectures or classes in any given week, but generally not both. However, very exceptionally, timetabling constraints may mean that lectures and classes happen in the same week
The Diploma involves a minimum of 10 “lecture weeks”. In each “lecture week” there is one lecture per day (Monday-Friday) taking place at 18.30-20.00.
A detailed lecture timetable is available on our website. Click here for details.
If it proves necessary to amend this timetable (e.g. if we need to reschedule a lecture to be given by one of the BLC’s a guest lecturers ), you will be given as much prior notice as possible.
– Who will my lecturers be?
Lectures may be given by any of the following groups of persons:
- the resident teaching staff of the British Law Centre (“BLC”) at the University of Warsaw
- visiting lecturers from Cambridge University and other leading universities
- visiting lecturers from the legal professions in the UK, Poland and elsewhere
- other special guest lecturers (inc. eminent scholars or practitioners)
The website shows some of the people who have given lectures to BLC students in recent years.
2. Classes (Seminars and Tutorials)
The Diploma involves 10 “class weeks”. In each “class week” you will attend one tutorial and one seminar (i.e., a total of 20 classes in total). All tutorials and seminars last for 90 minutes and are taught as interactive, small-group classes (approx. 15 people per class).
Additionally, you may join extra workshops, lectures and classes that are offered as part of the Diploma in any given year.
– Registering for classes and choosing times of attendance
A BLC class timetable is available on our website. Click here for details. It shows the range of available times at which classes take place (the current draft of this will be available on the lecture timetable page). Each type of class (i.e., tutorials and seminars) is repeated at various times during each class week.
As a Diploma Participant, you will choose one tutorial and one seminar time at which to attend classes during each of the 10 class weeks. We will provide you with details of how to register for classes, shortly before the course begins in October.
Registering for classes is done on a first-come-first-served basis. However, if you have documentary proof of your limited availability (e.g. due to work or competing study commitments), you may be given priority in making class choices.
The latest time at which classes (both tutorials and seminars) takes place is 16.45-18.15. This timing avoids potential conflicts with lectures, which begin at 18.30. Even if someone has a class at 16.45-18.15, they will be able to attend a lecture afterwards. However (as mentioned above) we aim to keep lecture weeks and class weeks separate, so lectures will not usually happen in the same weeks that you will have classes. Exceptionally, however, it may happen that you have a class and a lecture on the same day (e.g. to enable a lecture to be given by a BLC visiting lecturer).
– One-off attendance of classes other than your registered class
Once you choose a particular seminar and tutorial time, you should attend those times in each of the 10 class weeks. However, if you (exceptionally) need to attend a different class time in a particular week (e.g. for work-related reasons, or due to ill-health), you should write to us in advance and ask for our permission to attend an alternative class time.
– Content of classes
The legal issues/topics discussed in “class weeks” usually focus on the same issues of law that were discussed in the preceding “lecture week”. This helps to strengthen your understanding, by discussing and resolving practical legal problems involving the same issues. It also allows you to ask the BLC teacher for further information or guidance on areas you may still find difficult. Some classes concentrate on issues other than those discussed in lectures. They may involve exercises to develop practical skills such as advocacy, drafting contracts, or client interviewing (see part C below)..
– Preparing for classes
We expect you to participle actively during classes. In advance of classes, we provided you with questions and topics that we will discuss, together with any preparatory materials. You are responsible for preparing answers to these questions and arriving at classes ready to discuss them, or (as the case may be) ready to take part in a scheduled legal skills exercise (see part C below).
– Attendance requirements
A record is kept of your class attendance, which is subject to a ‘70+70’ minimum attendance rule (see part D below).
– Online Content
The DELLS course will be delivered at UW WPiA in a face-to-face format, subject to the following exceptions which may or may not apply in any given year:
(i) Some teaching may be delivered online by UK-based lecturers or other lecturers from abroad.
(ii) Bonus (extra-curricular) teaching events may be delivered online;
(iii) UW general policies governing the delivery of teaching in a face-to-face format will apply to the BLC
3. Seminars and Tutorials focusing on skill-training
Some seminars and/or tutorials adopt a different format and focus on interactive exercises to help you develop or improve skills that are important in legal practice and which may enhance your CV and career prospects.
Skill-training seminars and tutorials will include issues such as: analysing case-law, analysing and interpreting statute law, legal writing skills, negotiating, analysing and drafting contracts, client-interviewing and advocacy skills.
The precise skills focused on may vary from year to year. We may ask you to represent a fictional client in contract negotiations (e.g. Seller or Buyer), to appear on behalf of a client in litigation (e.g. Prosecution or Defence; Claimant or Defendant), to draft/redraft parts of a written contract etc.
You will need to prepare in advance to get the most out of all BLC classes, including skills sessions. In all such sessions, the emphasis remains on ‘learning by doing’—i.e. adopting a practical, interactive style rather than more passive and theoretical approaches.
4. Attendance and the ‘70 + 70’ rule
We expect that, apart from in exceptional circumstances, you will attend all lectures and classes (at your chosen class times), especially those delivered by a visiting guest.
Nevertheless, if you are unable to attend all lectures or classes in any particular module, you will still be entitled to submit your assignment if you satisfy the ‘70 + 70’ rule – i.e. if you attended at least 70% of the lectures and 70% of the classes in the relevant module.
We keep records of your attendance at, and active participation in, classes and lectures. We check these records when deciding (i) if your attendance is at a sufficient level to enable us to recommended that you graduate the Diploma course and (ii) whether we are prepared to write references on your behalf, if requested, in relation to future educational/career opportunities.
What happens if your attendance falls below the requirements?
If your attendance record does not satisfy the ‘70 + 70’ rule (see above) in a particular subject module, you may be deemed ineligible to submit the assignment for that module or may be required to complete an additional piece of written work in order to acquire eligibility. In extreme cases, you may be informed that you are ineligible to pass the Diploma and that you would need to re-enrol or repeat the relevant module(s) in a subsequent academic year before you can complete the course.
Any Diploma Participants needing to repeat modules in a subsequent academic year must comply with the course arrangements and regulations as they stand at the time.
A fee is payable if you complete the Diploma later than the year in which you commenced BLC studies. Details of the Returners’ Fee are given in Section 3 below ‘COURSE FEES (INC. PAYMENT INSTALMENTS)’).
Attendance and records
We maintain attendance records for each Diploma Participant. You are responsible for:
- attending your chosen class times;
- informing the BLC staff in advance if you will (exceptionally) be unable to attend your particular class time and arrange an alternative time to attend;
- arrive punctually at all relevant classes
- ensure that the BLC teacher is aware of your presence at the start of class so that this may be properly recorded;
- prepare for and actively participate in all classes
Where to find BLC Workbooks and other course materials?
Each module uses written/audio-visual materials to explain the relevant law and give you questions to prepare for class discussions. The materials can be downloaded from our website. Preparing these materials is essential to ensuring that you actively participate in classes, so you should ensure that you prepare properly and bring any relevant materials with you to classes (e.g. printed or on a device which you can easily read).
3. COURSE FEES AND PAYMENT
Details of the Course Fees are available here. Please note that you must pay one fee (in EUR) to us (Juris Angliae Scientia) and a separate fee (in PLN) to the University of Warsaw, as the Host Institution.
As part of the application process, you send us your CV and motivation letter for review. If, following this, we offer you a place on the Diploma, we will send you Payment Instructions, which constitute an integral part of these Course Regulations.
You can choose to pay course fees by means of a single payment or in instalments (see below).
You are entitled to pay a reduced fee (“Student Fees”) if you provide us with evidence confirming your status as a full-time University student or a current student of a vocational course which must be passed before you can practise as a lawyer – i.e. aplikacja prawna.
Unless you provide us with credible evidence of your eligibility to pay the Student Fees rate, you will be obliged to pay the Non-Student Fees rate.
If you choose not to pay your full course fees before the course commences, you may split your payments into a maximum of three instalments in accordance with the following Standard Payment Timetable:
- First Payment (within 14 days of us offering you a place on the course): A payment of €200 of the total course fees due (the ‘First Payment’) must be received by us within 2 weeks of us having offered you a place on the Diploma course. After your €200 First Payment is made, this amount is deducted from the total course fee you owe. You will then receive access to the course page and available materials. To benefit from the Earlybird fee reduction (see below), the €200 First Payment must be paid by 30 June at the latest.
- Second Payment (by 31 October): At least 50% of your full course fees: By this date, you must have paid at least 50% of your total course fees, including the fees payable to JAS and those payable to UW WPiA. For example, if your total course fees payable to JAS are €660, the Second Payment will be at least €130 (€660 divided by 2, minus the First Payment amount of €200).
- Third Payment (by 28 February): By this date, you must have fully paid your course fees, to both JAS and UW WPiA.
Earlybird fee reduction
An Earlybird fee reduction of €85 applies if we receive your €200 First Payment by 30 June.
e.g., if you would owe €660 as the Student Fee level but we receive your €200 First Payment by 30 June (the “Earlybird Fee Deadline”), you are entitled to reduce your fees by €85 (i.e., to €575). After paying the €200 First Payment, you owe €375 more. If you do not pay the First Payment by 30 June, you would continue to owe €460 after making the €200 First Payment.
By 31 October you must have paid at least 50% of your total fees.
If you owe €660 as the Student Fee level but made the €200 First Payment by 30 June, you must pay at least €87.50 by 31 October, so that you have paid €287.5 and have a further €287.50 to pay.
If you owe €660 as the Student Fee level and paid the €200 First Payment later than 30 June, you must pay at least €130 by 31 October, so that you have paid €330 and have a further €330 to pay.
By 28 February, you must have completely paid your course fees.
We cannot offer course fees reductions other than as described above, but it may be possible for you to agree an Individual Payment Timetable for payment of your course fees if your financial situation necessitates this. Please contact us to discuss this possibility.
Withdrawing from the Diploma Course
After we offer you a place and you pay the non-refundable €200 First Payment, you will be formally registered as a Diploma Participant and granted access to the BLC’s website, from which you can access the course materials.
If you choose to withdraw from the course, for whatever reason, after having been granted access to the BLC’s website containing the course materials, you must email us to clearly state this.
Your withdrawal will have the following effect on the course fees you owe:
Impact on fees still owed
Within 14 days of us having offered you a place on the course*
No fees are payable
More than 14 days after we offered you a place on the course*
€200 First Payment must have been paid (and remains due if not paid). But no further course fees are payable.
After 31 October
You become obliged to pay the full course fees, but can pay in instalments if you wish.
At least 50% of total fees must be paid by this date.
After 28 February
100% of your course fees must have been paid by this date
* The 14-day period will be deemed to have expired on 31 October in any case (e.g. if someone is offered a place on 20 October, the 14-day period will be deemed to have expired on 31 October).
Important note on banking charges
If you pay via a bank transfer to JAS’s account (which is located in the UK), you must cover all charges that apply in connection with your payment[s], whether imposed by your bank or by JAS’s bank. If we receive an amount which is less than the course fees you owe, you remain liable to pay the shortfall.
Incomplete Studies and Returners’ Fees
We aim to ensure that you will be able to graduate the Diploma course at the end of the academic year in which you started studying with us. However, sometimes personal circumstances can prevent this (e.g., due to other commitments, illness, etc.) If you are unable to successfully pass all four of the written course assignments in the academic year when you commenced your BLC studies, you are entitled to extend your BLC studies and complete the Diploma by passing any uncompleted assignment(s) in the subsequent academic year. We refer to such Diploma Participants as “Returners”.
A “Returners’ Fee” is payable for each uncompleted assignment(s) which you seek to pass in the subsequent academic year.
The Returners’ Fee payable by those who do not complete all assignments in 2022-23 and need to complete in 2023-24 is €125 for each assignment not yet successfully passed (e.g. if you need to pass one assignment, you must pay €125; if you need to complete two assignments in 2023-24, you must pay €250 etc.).
If you extend your BLC studies in this way and pay the appropriate Returners’ Fee, you will be granted full access to our website (including any updated materials) and be welcome (but not obliged) to join any/all lectures, classes and workshops offered on the Diploma in the academic year in which you are a Returner.
The Returners Fees Timetable uses the same dates/amounts as the Standard Payment Timetable (above), subject to the possibility that the First Payment may be €125 if you only need to complete one assignment (i.e. if your full Returners’ Fee is only €125).
You are only entitled to return to the BLC and complete any missing assignment(s) in the year immediately following the academic year in which you commenced your BLC studies or in the subsequent academic year.
e.g. If you commenced BLC studies in 2022-23 but did not fully complete all assignments in that academic year, you are entitled to return and complete the Diploma during the 2023-24 or 2024-25 academic years, but not later.
You must pass one assignment in each of the four substantive law modules taught (i.e. 4 written assignments in total), plus complete an online research exercise, in order to receive the Diploma in English Law & Legal Skills
Written assignments are either essay-style questions, involving discussion of a specific legal hypothesis, or problem-based questions, requiring participants to advise fictional clients on their rights and obligations arising from a given factual scenario.
There are two possible opportunities to pass each of the written assignments in any given academic year (Topic 1 and Topic 2). These are spread throughout the year, so that you can focus on one assignment at one time. Details are provided in the course timetable available here.
Marking standards and procedures
All assignments are marked on a percentage basis reflecting the criteria and standards applied by UK universities.
A pass mark is any grade higher than 40% and a “first class” mark is signified by a mark of 70% or above. Grades above 75% indicate work of such outstanding quality that there are many years in which no participant receives such a high grade. Any assignment which fails to reach the minimum pass grade of 40% is simply indicated as a “FAIL” (or “0” on Moodle, where only numerical grade can be entered). This does not mean that the work achieved 0%, but merely that it did not reach the requisite 40% pass mark.
Requesting a review of assignment marking
If you wish to query the grade awarded or to raise any other query in relation to an assignment, you must first do so with the tutor who marked the assignment. This must be done within 14 days of the date on which your graded assignment was returned to you, directly or via Moodle. The BLC tutor will review your grade or other concern that you raised. The tutor’s decision will generally be final. In exceptional cases, a review will be referred to the BLC Academic Committee for further consideration and absolute final decision.
All assignments are originally marked by members of the BLC teaching staff. These are returned to participants with comments indicating areas of strength and areas where improvements can be made.
Moderation of marking by external examiners
All assignments are subject to double external examination. Currently, the external examiners responsible for finalising BLC participant results are from the University of Cambridge and the University of Glasgow. Accordingly, any grades awarded by BLC teaching staff are “provisional” until they have been approved by our external examiners, which occurs as part of as an annual review of our marking quality and standards. This review can last for 2-3 months after all assignments for the year have been completed and graded, so the fact of your graduation is usually confirmed in autumn of the year after which you completed the Diploma assignments.
Failed assignments and retakes
If you submitted and failed an assignment (i.e. did not receive a grade of 40% or higher), you will automatically be assigned a grade of 0% until you pass a retake assignment in that same module.
Retake submissions are assessed on a pass/fail basis. A retake pass (i.e. a pass following an original fail) is graded as 40%, with no possibility of a higher grade. If, at the end of the relevant academic year, you have not passed all 4 assignments, you would need to complete the relevant assignment[s] in the next academic year (and pay any applicable Returner’s Fee).
5. COMPLETION AND CERTIFICATION
Once you have successfully passed all 4 written assignments, you will be recommended for the Diploma. The formal decision to award the Diploma is subject to completion of the external examiners process (mentioned above). Following this, you will be formally informed of your status as a graduand and of the time and place of the graduation ceremony, if such will take place. This process can last for 2-3 months, so graduation is usually confirmed in autumn of the academic year after which the Diploma is completed.
Graduates of the BLC Diploma course offered at the University of Warsaw shall receive the following:
- A Course Diploma signed by senior representatives from Juris Angliae Scientia (currently Prof. Richard Fentiman – director of JAS and Professor of Private International Law at the University of Cambridge’s Faculty of Law) and the University of Warsaw Faculty of Law and Administration
- ECTS points as part of the University of Warsaw law degree*.
(The Diploma is categorized into Pass, Merit or Distinction according to the level of grades obtained during the course and participation in BLC classes and activities.)
16 ECTS credits are awarded for the course in total. These credits are assigned after you have successfully passed all modules and been recommended for the award of the Diploma. Any queries relating to Warsaw credits should be directed to the BLC-UW Kierownik by clicking here.
*If you join the course at UW WPiA but are a student from another university, the possibility for you to receive ECTS points is something that you would need to discuss with your university. We can, or course, provide a written confirmation that you have completed the Diploma course, which you can use to apply for ECTS points at your university.
Overall Diploma Grade – Best 3 grades
Although you must successfully pass assignments in all 4 modules, your overall Diploma grade is based on the ‘best 3’ results (i.e. the worst of your 4 grades is ignored when calculating your average).
- Email details
When registering for the Diploma course, you must provide us with an email address which we will use for all communications related to the Diploma. This email address will be added to a Google emailing group, to which we will send group emails. To avoid any problems in receiving our emails, you should add the email domain “@britishlawcentre.co.uk” as a ‘safe sender’ (i.e., by adding that domain to the ‘white list’ on your email software/platform). This ensures that BLC teachers can write to you without fear of the email being categorised as spam.
If you change your email address, you must inform us immediately so that we can update your email address in the various locations we use it (i.e. our website, Moodle and mailing lists etc.). Until we receive your notification, we will regard all emails sent to your original email address as received and accessible by you.
- Location of the British Law Centre
The BLC office is located at the following address:
University of Warsaw
Wybrzeże Kościuszkowskie 47 (room 11)
Tel/Fax: (+48 22) 552 7278
- Course Provider and Applicable Law
The course is provided by the Juris Angliae Scientia (JAS), with its registered office at the Faculty of Law, University of Cambridge, 10 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9BZ, United Kingdom.
The interpretation and application of these regulations is governed by English law to the fullest permissible extent.
By commencing studies on the Diploma Course, you accept and consent to these Course Regulations, including the rules on paying course fees and the processing and retention of your personal data by the BLC strictly in accordance with our Privacy and Data Retention Policy (see below).
- Privacy and Data Retention Policy
When you submitted your online application to us, you provided us with permission to contact you electronically. The permission for which we asked is voluntary and may be revoked by you at any time, for example by sending a message in reply to any electronic correspondence which you receive from us. If you did not provide the permission we requested, or if you subsequently revoke such permission, we will be unable to address any electronic communications to you, which will adversely impact your ability to continue the Diploma course.
Anyone who applies to join a BLC course provides contact data which we store in accordance with this Privacy and Data Retention Policy and the applicable law.
The personal data you provided is processed by Juris Angliae Scientia Ltd. to enable us to contact you regarding all aspects of the Diploma course and to keep you informed about the activities of the BLC and our sponsor law firms. We guarantee all your rights in this respect, including your right to request access to this data, to transfer such data, to correct such data, to delete such data and to delimit its processing and also your right to object to our processing of your data.
Unless you contact us and request us to delete your data, we retain the contact details you provided for 2 years from when you provided us with that data, and use it to inform you about the activities of the BLC and our sponsors. If you fully or partly completed the Diploma, we retain your contact details and data regarding your grades and attendance records permanently, in order for us to be able to confirm your participation on the course at any future time, if requested by you or any 3rd party authorised by you or the applicable law to receive such information, and to inform you that we have received such a request.
If, as a result of your objection to us processing your data, it becomes unreasonable or excessively difficult for us to continue contacting you or enabling you to access course materials, assignments etc., we reserve the right to deemed your objection as being equivalent to you withdrawing from the Diploma course.
Please contact us if you have any questions about our data retention policy (e.g. regarding your right to lodge a complaint with an oversight authority, or to ask us to rectify, transfer or delete your data).