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Hugh McFaul

Profile summary

Professional biography

Hugh is Director of the Open Justice Centre and Senior Lecturer in The Open University Law School. Prior to this he was Senior Lecturer at BPP Law School Manchester. Hugh has studied at the Universities of Edinburgh, Oxford, Liverpool John Moores and The Open University and was called to the Bar at Middle Temple. He is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. 

Research interests

Hugh has research interests in the public understanding of law, legal ethics and technology enhanced learning. He has published his research in academic journals and presented at conferences in the UK, Europe and the USA.

Teaching interests

As Director of the  Open Justice Centre he has worked to develop a range of innovative community based experiential learning opportunities for OU students by developing partnerships with Citizens Advice, The Personal Support Unit, Young Citizens, Refugee Action and the St Giles Trust.
He is particularly interested in harnessing the potential of online technologies to support the social justice agenda by increasing levels of public legal literacy and has utilised virtual reality technology to support the development of law student employability skills. 
He has recently written OU teaching materials on professional ethics, the European Union and human rights and has authored materials for the UK Civil Service. 

External collaborations

Hugh has made an active contribution to The Open University's validation partnership work in the UK College sector. He served as a validation panel chair for degree programmes at Leeds City College, Hull College and Sheffield College. He is currently academic advisor to the law degree programme at Leeds City College.

He was awarded a £67000 grant from the Equality and Human Rights Commission for a collaborative project with AdviceUK to develop Human Rights and Discrimination training in the free advice sector. 

Hugh was the academic advisor for the critically acclaimed four part BBC2 / OU television documentary series The Detectives  screened in September 2017 and is currently working on a forthcoming series to be broadcast in 2020. 


Taking Clinical Legal Education Online: Songs of Innocence and Experience (2020-12-11)
McFaul, Hugh; Hardie, Liz; Ryan, Francine; Lloyd Bright, Keren and Graffin, Neil
International Journal of Clinical Legal Education, 27(4) (pp. 6-38)

A realist evaluation of student use of a virtual reality smartphone application in undergraduate legal education (2020-03)
Mcfaul, Hugh and FitzGerald, Elizabeth
British Journal of Educational Technology, 51(2) (pp. 572-589)

Does Clinical Legal Education Need Theory? (2020)
McFaul, Hugh
Asian Journal of Legal Education, 7(2) (pp. 152-163)

A mobile app for public legal education: a case study of co-designing with students (2020)
McFaul, Hugh; FitzGerald, Elizabeth; Ryan, Francine and Byrne, David
Research in Learning Technology, 28, Article 2434

Connectivity, confidentiality and confidence: Key issues in the provision of online pro bono activities (2018-09-05)
Jones, Emma; Ryan, Francine and Mcfaul, Hugh
International Journal of Clinical Legal Education, 25(2) (pp. 48-88)

Pushing the Boundaries: Legal Approaches to the Definition of Religion (2018)
Mcfaul, Hugh
Implicit Religion, 21(3) (pp. 223-238)

Beneficent Spiritist Center União do Vegetal v Secretary of State for the Home Department: [2017] EWHC 1963 (Admin): High Court of Justice (England and Wales), Queen’s Bench Division (Administrative Court): Sir Ross Cranston: 28 June 2017 [Case Note] (2017-12-13)
Mcfaul, Hugh
Oxford Journal of Law and Religion, 7(1) (pp. 169-170)

Clinical legal education in the United Kingdom: Origins, growth and the technological innovations and challenges of its future (2017-05)
Jones, Emma; Mcfaul, Hugh and Ryan, Francine
German Journal of Legal Education, 4 (pp. 107-136)

Henderson v General Municipal and Boilermakers Union[2016] EWCA Civ 1049: Court of Appeal (Civil Division): Underhill, Briggs LJJ: 11 October 2016 [Case Note] (2017-03-02)
Mcfaul, Hugh
Oxford Journal of Law and Religion, 6(1) (pp. 218-219)

Legal personality, minority religions and religious accommodation in Eastern Europe (2017)
Mcfaul, Hugh
Culture and Society. Journal of Social Research, 8(2) (pp. 13-30)

Lee v Ashers Baking Co Ltd & Ors[2015] NICty 2: Northern Ireland County Court: Brownlie DJ: 19 May 2015 [Case Note] (2016-09-14)
Mcfaul, Hugh
Oxford Journal of Law and Religion, 5(3) (pp. 633-634)

Karaahmed v Bulgaria : Application no 30587/13: European Court of Human Rights (Fourth Section); Raimondi (President), Hirvelä, Nicolaou, Tsotsoria, Kalaydjieva, Wojtyczek, Vehabović, JJ: 24 February 2015 [Case Note] (2016-05-04)
Mcfaul, Hugh
Oxford Journal of Law and Religion, 5(2) (pp. 366-366)

Habeas Corpus and the campaign for animal personhood (2015-10)
Mcfaul, Hugh
Journal of Commonwealth Law and Legal Education, 10(1) (pp. 84-88)

General Municipal and Boilermakers Union v Henderson UKEAT/73/14: Employment Appeal Tribunal: Mrs Justice Simler: 13 March 2015 [Case Note] (2015-09-11)
Mcfaul, Hugh
Oxford Journal of Law and Religion, 4(3) (pp. 539-540)

R (Geller & Anor) v Secretary of State for the Home Department[2015] EWCA Civ 45: Court of Appeal (England and Wales) (Civil Division): Patten, Tomlinson, and Floyd LJJ: 5 February 2015 [Case Note] (2015-07-23)
Mcfaul, Hugh
Oxford Journal of Law and Religion, 4(3) (pp. 540-541)

Teaching legal ethics at the open university – avoiding the pitfalls of formalism (2015-03-01)
McFaul, Hugh
Revista Bio Ciencias, 3(2) (pp. (Supl 2) 20-25)

Church of Scientology of St Petersburg & Others v Russia. Application no 47191/06: European Court of Human Rights (First Section); Berro-Lefèvre, Laffranque, Pinto de Albuquerque, Sicilianos, Møse, Turković, Dedov: 2 October 2014 [Case Note] (2015-01-30)
Mcfaul, Hugh
Oxford Journal of Law and Religion, 4(1) (pp. 155-156)

Innovative technologies in UK legal education (2020-02-05)
Ryan, Francine and Mcfaul, Hugh
In: Jones, Emma and Cownie, Fiona eds. Key Directions in Legal Education National and International Perspectives (pp. 67-79)
ISBN : 9780429448065 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : Abingdon

Law Clinics: What, why and how? (2020)
Bleasedale, Lydia; Rizzotto, Beverley; Stalker, Rachel; Yeatman, Lucy; McFaul, Hugh; Ryan, Francine; Johnson, Nick and Thomas, Linden
In: Thomas, Linden and Johnson, Nick eds. The Clinical Legal Education Handbook (pp. 7-56)
ISBN : 978-1-911507-17-8 | Publisher : University of London Press

50 years of Clinical Legal Education: Looking Back to the Future (2020)
Hardie, Liz; Mcfaul, Hugh and Ryan, Francine
In: Claydon, Lisa; Derry, Caroline and Ajevski, Marjan eds. Law in Motion: 50 years of Legal Change (pp. 212-227)
ISBN : 978-1-4730-3148-7 | Publisher : The Open University Law School

Brexit and the Environment (2018-11)
Mcfaul, Hugh
In: Prinz von Sachsen Gessaphe, Karl August; Garcia Blesa, Juan J. and Szuka, Nils eds. Legal Implications of Brexit. Hagener Rechtswissenschaftliche Schriften (pp. 351-364)
Publisher : MV-WISSENSCHAFT | Published : Münster

Freedom of Religion and the Invention of Tradition (2018-09-28)
McFaul, Hugh
In: Giles, Jessica; Pin, Andrea and Ravitch, Frank S. eds. Law, Religion and Tradition. Law and Religion in a Global Context (pp. 119-133)
ISBN : 978-3-319-96748-6 | Publisher : Springer