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A new, flexible, online short course focusing on a key area of international trade – when buyer and seller are located in different legal systems.

Gain the professional advantage of specialist expertise in the CISG (Vienna Convention) and UK Sale of Goods legislation.

As a lawyer working in a firm, in-house, or government organisation anywhere in the world, you can enjoy this career boost with the convenience of distance learning from a university with a strong reputation in international commercial law.



Overview

Economic globalisation and recent world events have thrown a spotlight on the issues, challenges and complexities of international trade. Critical issues can arise when the buyer and the seller of goods are located in different legal systems.

This short course considers the definition and sources of international sale of goods law, and the legal issues arising for the buyer, and for the seller, in an international sale of goods transaction.

The UN Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (CISG, also known as the Vienna Convention) is today the prevalent foundation of international sales law, governing sale of goods contracts between buyers and sellers located in different countries.  It is the law of 87 countries.

The UK however is one of very few countries which has not ratified the CISG, meaning the Sale of Goods Act 1979 applies to sale of goods contracts when English law is chosen even if the parties are international.  Often thought of as only English law, the Sale of Goods Act 1979 applies to all the UK albeit with some differences.

You’ll examine the issues arising in relation to transactions to which the CISG may apply, and compare similarities and differences between CISG and the UK's Sale of Goods Act from the point of view of a buyer and a seller.

This short course will be particularly beneficial for lawyers working in countries which have ratified CISG but who may not have studied this system in detail in their undergraduate degree. The thorough grounding you will receive in this course will also deepen your knowledge of contract law, particularly that which pertains in your own jurisdiction, and will add significant value to your professional relationship with your clients and benefit to your career.


Why Aberdeen for this course?

The combination of track record, strong international outlook, breadth and depth of expertise in teaching, research, and in influencing public policy, makes Aberdeen the obvious provider of first-class education in all areas of international and national law.

Our international School of Law is one the UK's elite training grounds for lawyers, ranked 10th  out of over 90 law schools in the UK, (The Complete University Guide 2018) and number 1 for for Graduate Prospects ( The Times Good University Guide 2018), highly rated for teaching, research and student care, 93%  student satisfaction score (NSS 2017).

We boast one of the largest and most internationally-experienced teams of legal experts in any European law school, with huge experience and connections in all areas of international law. Tutors on this course have authored definitive texts of the challenges explored in this course.

Previous graduates have gone on to enjoy highly successful careers. These range from senior positions in legal firms, in industry, NGOs, and with government organisations across the world.

As an online student you’ll enjoy access to the wonderful online resources of our award-winning Sir Duncan Rice Library and Law Library, with a first-class collection of reference works in law and related subjects.

You can study this course as a standalone, online, credit-bearing short course, or as a taster to continue your professional development with a PGCert, PGDip, and progress to a full online Masters programme in our popular and topical portfolio across the spectrum of law.

As a member of the Aberdeen community you will gain all the benefits of over 500 years of rich academic heritage combined with 21st century innovation and dynamism which today creates and delivers sought-after, flexible, globally-focused, world class programmes.


What you'll study

This course focuses on the legal challenges which may arise in connection with a contract of sale of goods when the buyer and the seller of the goods are each located in different legal systems.

The course considers the definition and sources of international sale of goods law, and the legal issues arising for the buyer, and for the seller, in an international sale of goods transaction.

The UN Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (CISG, also known as the Vienna Convention) is today the prevalent foundation of international sales law governing contract between the buyer and seller, accepted by most countries in the world. The UK is one of very few countries which has not ratified the CISG, using instead the UK Sale of Goods Act 1979 to regulate contract and commercial law.

You’ll examine the issues arising in relation to transactions to which the CISG may apply, and compare similarities and differences between CISG and the UK's Sale of Goods Act from the point of view of a buyer and a seller. You’ll also consider some aspects of carriage of the goods from seller to buyer, and trade terms which are shorthand abbreviations terms and conditions designed to assist traders when goods are sold and transported. In addition, the course focuses on dispute resolution as well as private international law issues in relation to international sales contracts.


How you'll study

This online, 12-week distance-learning short course offers all the flexibility and convenience to study when, where and how you choose, and to fit your learning around your location, employment and personal commitments.

Our online courses are delivered through our Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) as self-contained units of learning taught and assessed to the same quality as our degree programmes, and developed specifically for an online audience using a range of learning materials and assessment activities.

We aim to create an online classroom experience and student community which enables you to enjoy the same learning experience as students on our full degree programmes, including access to a suite of learning resources and support.

You’ll be guided through your programme with podcasts of lectures, videos, slides and reading lists, and regular quizzes will keep an eye on your progress. You’ll also be asked to keep a reflective journal of your learning throughout the first few weeks of the course.

Our first-class support structure will ensure that you are not alone in your study. Contact with your course tutors may be by email, Skype or Facetime, and you can use social media and discussion boards to find and talk to your fellow students wherever they are.

Wherever you are in the world, as you enjoy the career advantage of this course combined with the convenience of online distance study, you will still feel part of our very special Aberdeen learning community.


Assessment

Our online courses are delivered through an online Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) developed specifically for an online audience using a range of learning materials and assessment activities.

Your assessment is built around your participation in a mock international sales transaction and dispute. You will be given a scenario and asked to play the role of either the claimant or the respondent.  You will write your submission for the case you arguing and be assessed on this.


Entry Requirements

Normally, a 2.1 honours degree (or equivalent) in Law will be required to be accepted onto this course. Relevant practical experience in a related field will also be beneficial.

All students entering the University, including online courses, must provide evidence that they can use English well enough to study our programmes effectively. Details of our English language entry requirements can be found on our English Language Requirements webpages. For details of our pre-sessional English courses see our Language Centre website.