Vicky Thirlaway

Vicky Thirlaway BA, PGDip, PGCert

Student Experience Lead for the Department of Law and Criminology


I am the Student Experience Lead for the Department of Law and Criminology, and the module leader for UK Constitutional Law and Practice on the Law and Law with Criminology undergraduate programmes.


I qualified as a criminal defence solicitor in 2001 and practiced for several years, specialising in representing young people in care, anti-social behaviour and welfare benefit fraud.

I have taught at Post Graduate and Undergraduate level across a range of law subjects including criminal law, advocacy, human rights law, and constitutional law. I have experience as a course leader of Post Graduate provision and of ensuring compliance with professional body requirements and standards.

My main area of teaching now is on our first year module introducing students to the study of constitutional and administrative law.
As student experience lead for the department I co-ordinate the provision of pastoral care through our academic advising system, and seek to ensure that all our students are supported whilst they are studying with us. I also work at an institutional level to improve the way that we obtain and act on feedback from our students.

I have been nominated by students for an inspirational teaching award every year that I have been at Hallam. I have been chosen as a faculty award winner eight times, and, having been chosen as a recipient of the university award for three consecutive  years, I was given a Vice-Chancellor's award in recognition of this achievement.

My current areas of research activity are on understanding and improving student engagement.

As a legal practitioner, I am particularly interested in how we can develop not only academic knowledge, but also the skills that lawyers need. I was delighted to be given the opportunity to join the Department of Law, Criminology and Criminal Justice because of the emphasis on clinical education for lawyers.

I am lucky to be able to work as part of the team responsible for the Clinical Legal Education module which gives all level 5 students the opportunity to participate in a simulated criminal or civil case, and understand how legal knowledge is applied in "the real world".

I am also interested in the development of the United Kingdom's constitution and, in particular, the impact of the European Convention on Human Rights and the Human Rights Act. For example, the the revelation that the footballer, Ryan Giggs, was having an extra-marital affair raises questions about the conflict between an individual's right to privacy and the rights of the press to report information, and the freedoms given to Members of Parliament to ignore a court injunction.


Department Of Law and Criminology


Law with Criminology


UK Constitutional Law and Practice


Journal articles

Thirlaway, V. (2017). Conspiracy: An alarming response to protest? Journal of Criminal Law, 81 (6), 455-466.

Thirlaway, V. (2016). Teaching contentious topics in public law. European Journal of Current Legal Issues.

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