Course No. 2: Basic course in different legal scientific methods

12-15 June 2018 - Department of Law, Aarhus University

2017.12.08 | Linda Andersen

Date Tue 12 Jun Fri 15 Jun
Time 09:00    14:30
Location Building 1410, room 247, Department of Law, Aarhus University, Bartholins Allé 16, 8000 Aarhus C


The idea behind this course is to give the PhD fellows knowledge of useful methods related to legal research. The purpose of the course is to focus on the necessity of a good connection between your research aims, your research questions, and your sources and your methods.

The course will be focused on designs, theories and methods. We will cover all the main methods – legal dogmatic, comparative legal methods, legal sociology, fieldwork in law, and theories of legal pluralism and governance theories. Some scholars have highlighted the potential for incoherence in research based on legal pluralism, whereas others have pointed out the need for legal pluralism as part of a realistic description of the current legal situation. We will include this issue in the course and also present and discuss the special challenges related to empirical research, interdisciplinary approaches and different legal methodologies.


Course responsible

Professor Ellen Margrethe Basse, Aarhus BSS, AU, and professor Sten Schaumburg-Müller, SDU

Participants' preparation

You will have to send in two papers in English.

Assignment no. 1: Please, send in a short paper (not more than 1 A4 Page) in which you explain how you are working on ensuring a connection between your research questions and your choice of methodologies. Please also explain why you are not using some of the other methods that are mentioned in the programme for this course. Give a brief consideration on each method, and indicate why you think that it may be relevant or irrelevant in your research project, and which difficulties – if any – you foresee. You are most welcome to end up with questions that you hope will be answered during the course.

Assignment no. 2: Please, make a brief summary in English of a text on legal research methodology and preferably – but not necessarily – something you have used or have considered using in your dissertation work. In your paper you will have to give an assessment of its usefulness (or lack of it) in relation to your project.

The assignments should be send to not later than 30 May 2018 at 12:00 under the heading “PhD course June 2018”. Remember to indicate your name on the papers.

Assignment no. 3: Please prepare to discuss the questions mentioned in the final part of this programme related to the workshop on interdisciplinarity/multidisciplinarity. Your preparation will help you in the workshop. You are not required to send written answers.


The course is included in the mandatory course package for PhD fellows at the Department of Law, Aarhus BSS, AU, where there is an overall credit. For other participants, the credit is 5 ECTS.


English, if there are participants who are not familiar with Danish

Registration fee

DKK 1,500 (covers all meals)


No later than 25 May 2018 – If you are a PhD-fellow at Aarhus University please send an email to Cita, other PhD-fellows, please use the webshop link

Course responsible PhD secretary Cita Dyveke Kristensen (

Number of participants

A maximum of 20 people