Theory and Argumentation in Law

SubjectTheory and Argumentation in Law
Semester3/4 semester
Study programme:Law studies (Master)
Primary language:Slovene

No special conditions (or specify)  

Content :
The first part of the course is designed to provide an in-depth and focused overview of legal theories, legal concepts, the validity of law, the development of law in history, the structure of legal language and legal terminology. The second part of the course focuses on the theory of argumentation in law (the concept of application of law, interpretation of law, methods of interpretation, legal syllogism), supported by practical examples of rational reconstruction of court decisions. At the same time, the subject is multidisciplinary and provides expertise in history, philosophy, politics and current affairs.


Required readings:

  • Novak, Marko. 2008. Poglavja iz filozofije in teorije prava. Nova Gorica: Evropska pravna fakulteta.
  • Novak, Marko. 2021. Pravna argumentacija v teoriji in praksi. Ljubljana: Uradni list RS.
  • Legal practice (given during the lectures).

Recommended readings:

  • Freeman: Lloyd's Introduction to Jurisprudence, Seventh Edition, Thomson – Sweet and Maxwell, London 2001
  • Hart: Dve razpravi o pravu in morali, GV Založba, Ljubljana 2018.
  • Jambrek: Ustavna demokracija, Državna založba Slovenije, Ljubljana 1992.
  • Kelsen: Kaj je pravičnost?, GV Založba, Ljubljana 2016

Objectives and competences:

Students will acquire general competencies:

  • Ability and encouragement to take into account ethical values, socially responsible thinking and a critical attitude towards social events in decisions, regardless of the subject and level of decision-making.
  • Initiative and independence in decision-making.
  • Expanding the general legal horizon in the field of optional subjects, providing a broader view, which is extremely important for the establishment of quality decision-making.
  • Ability to work independently and in teams, in professional and scientific research work.
  • Development and use of legal syllogism and argumentation, general communication skills, presentation of acquired knowledge inside and outside the organization and the international environment.
  • Ability to use different interpretive methods for interpretation of legal texts.
  • Ability to do basic scientific research from legal sources.
  • Ability to use solutions from various professional and scientific disciplines in planning the goals of the organization and introducing changes in the organization.

Students will develop subject-specific competencies:

  • Ability to combine knowledge from different fields (interdisciplinarity);
  • Ability to place new information and interpretations in the context of the development of the profession;
  • Use of effective legal approaches in companies and the public sector;
  • Knowledge of the use of analysis, synthesis and prediction of solutions and the consequences of phenomena in intercultural communication and international business;
  • Ability to use knowledge of business ethics and culture in unpredictable situations of international business, most especially the EU.

Intended learning outcomes:

After successfully completing the course, students will be able to:

  • theoretically analyze the law, including issues related to justice and ethics;
  • analyze the relationship between legal theory and legal practice, evaluate legal information and conduct legal research with primary and secondary sources;
  • apply legal theory to key issues of law and evaluate the operation of legal theory and practice from the point of view of ethics and justice;
  • formulate concise oral and written texts for a legal audience;
  • apply critical thinking skills to a variety of legal and theoretical issues and develop an original case of research.

Learning and teaching methods:
Lectures, seminars, tutorials, individual work with students, case studies.


  • written exam (50%) and
  • written assignment (50%).

The condition for taking the written exam is a positively assessed written assignment.

Lecturer's references:
Dr. Petja Mihelič. Študijska pot je potekala preko Filozofske fakultete in Evropske pravne fakultete v Ljubljani ter študijem na Japonskem na Fakulteti za pravo in književnost (Faculty of Law and Literature, Shimane University).

Delovne izkušnje so iz slovenskih in nemških ustanov (Socialna akademija, Ljubljana; Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung, Bonn; MitOst, Berlin; Studienhaus Wiesneck, Institut für politische Bildung Baden-Württemberg, Freiburg), s temeljno usmeritvijo v pripravo in izpeljavo pedagoških dejavnostih, znanstveno raziskovanje, pisanje strokovnih člankov in mnenj ter organizacijo seminarjev in strokovnih obiskov.

Dr. Mihelič je docent na Fakulteti za pravo in poslovne vede, udeleženec mednarodnih znanstvenih konferenc in pisec znanstvenih člankov s področja prava.