LL4C5      Half Unit
Fundamentals of International Commercial Arbitration

This information is for the 2020/21 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Jan Kleinheisterkamp


This course is available on the LLM (extended part-time), LLM (full-time) and University of Pennsylvania Law School LLM Visiting Students. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

This course is capped at 60 students.

Course content

This course offers the fundamentals of international commercial arbitration, the most important dispute settlement mechanism for international commercial transactions. The course provides a complete introduction to the functioning of arbitration in theory and in practice. London being one of the main centres of arbitration in the world, this course focuses mainly on English arbitration law which is put into a comparative perspective and contrasted especially with the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration and French law. Special attention is given to the different types of rules that may have to be taken into consideration in an international arbitration. This course prepares for LL4C6 Advances Issues of International Commercial Arbitration and provides for some of the procedural basics for LL4E7 Investment Treaty Law.


This course is delivered through a combination of classes and lectures totalling a minimum of 20 hours in Lent Term. Students will usually have two additional hours in the Summer Term. This year teaching will be delivered through recorded online lectures and a mix of both in-person and online classes to accommodate students who are unable to physically be on campus. This course includes a reading week in Week 6 of Lent Term.

Formative coursework

One 2,500 word essay after week 6 on previous exam questions (choice of 1 out of 3).

Indicative reading

M. Moses, The Principles and Practice of International Commercial Arbitration (3rd edn, CUP 2017); G. Born, International Arbitration: Law and Practice (2nd edn, Kluwer 2015); N. Blackaby & C. Partasides, Redfern and Hunter on International Commercial Arbitration (6th edn, OUP 2015); J.-F. Poudret & S. Besson, Comparative Law of International Commercial Arbitration (Sweet & Maxwell 2007); E. Gaillard & J. Savage, Fouchard Gaillard Goldman on International Commercial Arbitration (1999).


Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours, reading time: 15 minutes) in the summer exam period.

Important information in response to COVID-19

Please note that during 2020/21 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the situation of students in attendance on campus and those studying online during the early part of the academic year. For assessment, this may involve changes to mode of delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.

Key facts

Department: Law

Total students 2019/20: 60

Average class size 2019/20: 10

Controlled access 2019/20: Yes

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Communication
  • Specialist skills