Skip to main content
Start Dates
Degree type


Course length

1 year full-time


Durham City

Programme code


Ready to Apply?

Course details

Laws exist throughout the world, across continents and in different cultures and societies, governing the way we live, work and play. Our LLM Master of Laws reflects this variety of contexts and offers you the opportunity to choose from a range of legal specialisms, with the result that you can tailor your legal qualification to suit your interests.

You can choose from the widest range of modules, which can be selected from areas across the Law School including International Trade and Commercial Law, European Trade and Commercial Law, Corporate Law and International Law and Governance where subjects range from the law of the sea to electronic commerce.

This one-year full-time course is comprised of taught modules delivered through a mixture of lectures, small-group seminars or tutorials and film showings, as well as a major dissertation, which you will produce under supervision following independent research. 

Students join the LLM from a broad range of countries and backgrounds, enriching the learning experience through the academic or professional experience they bring to the course. You will be able to participate in activities hosted by research centres who have their homes in the Law School, including the Institute for Commercial and Corporate Law, the Durham European Law Institute, the Centre for Criminal Law and Criminal Justice, Law and Global Justice at Durham and the Human Rights Centre.

Course Structure

Core modules

Applied Research Methods in Law provides specialised knowledge on the latest research methods and skills used in legal studies as well as an advanced understanding of their strengths and weaknesses and of their relevance for different forms of legal research. The module also creates a framework within which you will be able to critically assess potential research topics and, importantly, where you will be able to design, discuss and develop a detailed research proposal of the appropriate standards for your dissertation.

The Dissertation is based on an area of particular interest in an area of law and can be of one of three lengths – 10,000, 15,000 or 20,000 words. Depending on the length chosen, the dissertation is equivalent to 2, 2.5 or 3 modules.

To offer maximum flexibility, the remaining modules are chosen from an extensive range of options (* indicates half modules) which have previously included:

  • Advanced Issues in Corporate Law*
  • Advanced Issues in Human Rights*
  • Advanced Issues in International Economic Law
  • Advanced Issues of International Intellectual Property Law*
  • Advanced Law of Obligations
  • China and the International Legal Order*
  • Commercial Fraud*
  • Comparative and Transnational Law*
  • Comparative Corporate Governance
  • Competition Law
  • Consumption Tax Law and Policy*
  • Corporate Compliance*
  • Corporations in an EU Context
  • Current Issues in Commercial Law
  • Current Problems of International Law
  • Electronic Commerce*
  • Free Speech Problems in International and Comparative Perspectives*
  • Frontiers in Biolaw*
  • Fundamental Issues in International Legal Governance*
  • Fundamentals of Corporate Law*
  • Fundamentals of International Law*
  • Global Environmental Law*
  • Global Financial Law
  • Global Institutions
  • Horizontal Human Rights*
  • International and Comparative Corporate Insolvency Law*
  • International Banking Law
  • International Commercial Dispute Resolution
  • International Counter Terrorism: Theory and Practice*
  • International Humanitarian Law
  • International Investment Law*
  • International Perspectives on Law and Gender*
  • International Protection of Human Rights
  • International Sales Law
  • International Tax Law*
  • International Trade Law and Policy
  • Introduction to Corporate Governance*
  • Introduction to Corporate Insolvency Law*
  • Introduction to EU Law*
  • Introduction to Intellectual Property Law*
  • Introduction to International Criminal Justice
  • Islamic Law
  • Law of Oil and Gas Contracts*
  • Law of the Sea 
  • Medical Law and Ethics
  • Mergers and Acquisitions*
  • Multinational Corporations and Human Rights*
  • Private International Law and China*
  • Protection of Human Rights in Europe
  • Renewable Energy Law*
  • Securities Law and Capital Markets
  • Takeover Regulation in the EU*
  • US Business Associations
  • Cross-Border Commercial Litigation
  • International Law of Peace and Security
  • International Perspectives in Cartel Control*
  • The Law of Subsidy and State Aid Control*
  • Current Issues in International Law and Governance*
  • US Corporate Law*
  • Modules offered by another Board of Studies (subject to approval)


This Master of Laws course involved a range of taught modules. The flexible nature of the subject means you can choose the majority of your modules to suit your professional interests and aspirations. Taught modules are delivered by a mixture of lectures and small seminar groups and there are also film showings, workshops, discussion groups and optional field trips.

You will also produce a dissertation on a topic that you have proposed and that has been approved by your supervisor who will be an expert in that area. Again, the course is structured for maximum flexibility so you can choose a dissertation of between 10,000 and 20,000 words. If you choose a lower word count you will make up the remaining capacity with further taught modules.

We aim to ensure that the learning process takes place in a relaxed and supportive environment and the total contact hours will be 15 hours or 30 hours, depending on the modules chosen. You will also have four one-to-one meetings with your supervisor during the dissertation process.


Assessment is rigorous and carried out through writing tasks with the majority of the modules you will choose assessed through the production of essays of 3,000-6,000 words in length. The assessment for the core module on applied research methods will be based on a proposal you will present for a research topic.

Finally, you will be assessed on a dissertation of between 10,000 and 20,000 words in length, which is worth between one-third and one-half of your total mark.

Entry requirements

A good 2:1 degree (or its equivalent) in law, or in a degree in which law is a major component.

English language requirements

Fees and funding

Full Time Fees

Tuition fees
Home students £12,750 per year
EU students £26,900 per year
Island students £12,750 per year
International students £26,900 per year

The tuition fees shown are for one complete academic year of full time study, are set according to the academic year of entry, and remain the same throughout the duration of the programme for that cohort (unless otherwise stated).

Please also check costs for colleges and accommodation.

Scholarships and Bursaries

We are committed to supporting the best students irrespective of financial circumstances and are delighted to offer a range of funding opportunities. 

Find out more about Scholarships and Bursaries

Career opportunities

Law School

Our global reputation for legal research and teaching of the highest quality is reflected in the career trajectory of our alumni.

Graduates serve across the full range of legal professions including solicitors, barristers, judges, members of the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeal and as consultants and in government. Others have secured stimulating and rewarding positions in national and international law firms.

We are fully aware of the degree of competition that exists in securing a role in the legal profession and the School provides a range of resources to help alumni stand out as ideal candidates during the recruitment process. This includes detailed information about the steps involved in becoming a solicitor or barrister, visits from law firms and guidance on preparing for interviews and assessment days.

Department information

Law School

Durham Law School is a global leader in the development and framing of law. Led by academics who are experts in their field, we carry out cutting-edge legal research that feeds into our Masters and research qualifications, building knowledge and nurturing the skills needed to help shape law in the future.

The reputation of the School means our legal know-how is respected by parliamentarians and policy makers around the world. Our academics have been called to give evidence in Parliament and have had their research work quoted by courts and international bodies.

International law and questions of global policy and governance are an area of special interest at Durham, but our expertise extends to other areas including criminal law and criminal justice, ethics, human rights, European law, gender and law, Chinese law, Commercial and Corporate law and Global Justice.

The research-led learning environment in the School is one of commitment, innovation and passion for the subject. Our highly respected research groups organise lectures and seminars offer opportunities to hear from eminent scholars and practitioners. Speakers have included judges from the UK Supreme Court, from the European Court of Justice and leading officials from national and international institutions.

For more information visit our department pages.


  • World Top 50 in the QS World University Subject Rankings 2023
  • 6th in The Complete University Guide 2024
  • Top 10 in The Guardian University Guide 2024
  • Top 10 in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2024


For a current list of staff, please see the Law School pages.

Research Excellence Framework

  • 5th in the UK for research environment
  • 100% of our research impact and environment was rated world-leading or internationally excellent


Situated close to a number of academic departments and University services with views of the magnificent Durham Cathedral as well as offering easy access to the historic city, we believe that we have one of the most striking and best-equipped law buildings in the UK.

The Law School is located in the University’s award-winning flagship Palatine Centre, part of a £48.4m sustainable building development.

The School’s facilities are purpose-built and state-of-the-art, featuring a moot court, pro bono room, Harvard-style Hogan Lovells lecture theatre, spacious dedicated work suites and modern wireless and audio-video-enabled research spaces and attractive social areas.


Find out more:

Apply for a postgraduate course (including PGCE International) via our online portal.  

Visit Us

The best way to find out what Durham is really like is to come and see for yourself!

Join a Postgraduate Open Day
  • Date: 01/09/2023 - 31/08/2024
  • Time: 09:00 - 17:00
Find out more
Self-Guided Tours
  • Date: 01/09/2023 - 31/08/2024
  • Time: 09:00 - 16:00
Find out more

Similar courses

Corporate Law - LLM

Program Code: M1KB16
Start: September 2024
Corporate Law

European Trade and Commercial Law - LLM

Program Code: M1K616
Start: September 2024
European Trade and Commercial Law

Intellectual Property Law - LLM

Program Code: M1KF16
Start: September 2024
Intellectual Property Law

International Environmental Law - LLM

Program Code: M1KG16
Start: September 2024
International Environmental Law

International Law and Governance - LLM

Program Code: M1K916
Start: September 2024
International Law and Governance

International Trade and Commercial Law - LLM

Program Code: M1K316
Start: September 2024
International Trade and Commercial Law

Medical Law and Ethics - LLM

Program Code: M1KH16
Start: September 2024
Medical Law and Ethics