Number one for English language teachers


Students practise a range of different skills in relation to the topic of defamation.

This lesson looks at the law of defamation in the United Kingdom - libel and slander - and focuses on the outcome of a recent case, often called the ‘McLibel’ case. As well as being the longest trial in English civil case history, it was also remarkable as the defendants represented themselves in person.

Aim: To practise the skills of:

  • reading and understanding information in a text about UK defamation law
  • using the information to discuss and give legal advice about examples
  • reading an authentic newspaper article to understand the construction of a text by replacing missing paragraphs
  • guessing meaning of vocabulary and phrases related to text
  • answering questions about the text

Level: At least upper intermediate and above

Structure: This lesson could be divided into two parts. The first part covers the background to defamation with students working through the examples and giving feedback.
The second part deals with the McLibel text and exercises.

Time needed: The lesson is in 5 parts and if divided into 2 sessions: Parts 1 and 2, then Parts 3 to 5: these could easily take in excess of two hours in total.

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Readers' comments (3)

  • Hello, ESP legal material has not been updated over the last 3 years, are you considering updating it?
    Many thanks, Veronica

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  • Hi Veronica,
    The site will be getting a refresh soon and we will look into this.
    Thank you for the feedback,
    The onestopenglish team

  • very interesting

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  • I love all of the lesson plans offered too!

    I am very glad that I joined and got a membership.

    I have been using your webpage since 2005.

    Keep up the good work.

    This lesson is especially interesting and interactive for my students, got very good responses from them.

    Thank you.


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English for Law Enforcement

English for Law Enforcement is designed to meet the needs of law enforcement personnel

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