Triangle

Course overview

Our Master of Laws LLM allows you to tailor your postgraduate degree to your specific areas of interest, offering an authentic learning experience that prepares you for the working world. With an advanced law degree from the University of Nottingham, you will graduate with the knowledge, practical skills and confidence to pursue your career goals. 

Choose from an extensive range of modules from across our specialist programmes including human rights law; international law; international business and commercial law; and technology and intellectual property law. 

What we offer

Research-led teaching

The school has six major research centres: 

  • University of Nottingham Commercial Law Centre
  • Criminal Justice Research Centre
  • Human Rights Law Centre
  • Nottingham International Law and Security Centre
  • Public Procurement Research Group
  • History of Law and Governance Centre

These centres offer LLM students a variety of opportunities to enhance their academic pursuits and develop skills for professional practice.

Other postgraduate programmes at the School of Law

Why choose this course?

Flexible course

with a broad range of modules informed by our world-leading law research

Taught in small groups

where possible, allowing for an open, interactive learning experience

Dedicated resources

including legal skills advice through workshops and one-to-one sessions

Gain real experience

by applying for internships and placements through our faculty placements programme

Close links

to leading firms, private industry, governmental institutions and NGOs

Modules

Core modules

Students must take all modules in this group:

Applying Legal Skills and Research Methods

The aim of this core module is to enable students to apply a wide range of practical legal skills and research methods when investigating legal questions. Working in groups, students will be given opportunities to explore the nature of legal reasoning in a variety of contexts, drawing on materials from diverse areas of law. Students will also be encouraged to analyse legal and cross-disciplinary scholarship and demonstrate independent learning and critical thinking. 

Dissertation

Written work on a legal topic of your choice resulting from individual research and normally based upon material falling within the area covered by the degree for which you are registered.

Optional modules

Students must take five optional modules: two in semester one, and three in semester two.

Semester one

Students should take a minimum of zero modules and a maximum of two modules from this group:

Corporate Finance Law

This module examines how companies raise equity and debt finance. Whilst the focus will be the law of England and Wales, pertinent international legal frameworks will also be touched upon. The module explores the various options available to a company when raising finance, and engages in a critical assessment of the advantages and disadvantages of each option. It also examines the risks that raising finance entails, for the company, its creditors, and the wider financial system.

Global Data Protection Law

Global Data Protection Law explores the obligations of data controllers and processors, the rights of data subjects, and the powers of data protection authorities across international, regional, and national data protection laws. It analyses the differences between those data protection laws and critically evaluates their effectiveness in balancing the protection of personal data with other values and interests.

International Aspects of Corporate Law and Corporate Governance

This module considers: fundamental issues in company law such as separate legal personality and limited liability; enforcement of directors’ duties; theories of corporate governance and the implications of these in practice; the evolution of corporate governance across different jurisdictions; key corporate governance debates including shareholder-stakeholder debate, directors’ remuneration; and the relevance of corporate governance in the wider social, economic, and political context within which corporations operate. 

International Commercial Arbitration

This module offers the fundamentals of international commercial arbitration, the most important dispute resolution mechanism for international business transactions.

The module begins with the legal framework of international commercial arbitration. It then deals with jurisdiction of arbitration tribunals and certain procedural issues arising in arbitration practice. The module ends with the setting aside and recognition and enforcement of arbitral awards. 

The module focuses mainly on English law of arbitration which is put in comparative perspective and compared and contrasted especially with the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration.

International Criminal Law

An introduction to international criminal law issues, with particular emphasis on institutions (such as Nuremberg and Tokyo IMTs, the ad hoc Tribunals and the International Criminal Court) as well as substantive and procedural aspects of international criminal law.

The module focuses on the institutional developments in international criminal law as well as the definition and application of the crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and aggression. Principles of liability and defences will also be covered.

International Human Rights Law

This module will introduce you to the law and practice related to international human rights. You will be encouraged to explore the foundations of international human rights law. The global, regional and national mechanisms of human rights protection will be introduced and evaluated.

A selection of substantive human rights will be examined and contemporary challenges to human rights protection will be discussed.

International Sale of Goods

This module examines the body of rules and principles governing international sales transactions under two prominent legal regimes of the United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (Vienna, 1980), and English Sales Law.

Students should take a minimum of zero modules and a maximum of three modules from this group:

Economic and Social Rights

This module begins with a consideration of the historical origins and philosophical underpinnings of economic and social rights (ESR). Key themes that will be developed throughout the course include perceptions of the nature of such rights and the related question of the extent to which such rights are, and should be, justiciable.

You will evaluate the different ways in which ESR are protected and implemented, both domestically and internationally. The module will consider litigation and judicial enforcement of ESR in various jurisdictions.

The module will equip you with the knowledge and understanding necessary to engage in, and critically analyse, the debates surrounding ESR that exist both amongst legal commentators and at a broader societal level.

Equality, Discrimination and Criminal Justice

This module will examine theories of equality to understand how equality is conceptualised, protected and promoted in law. It will also examine the interaction of individuals with protected characteristics including gender, race, disability and sexuality as both victims and defendants with the criminal justice system. It will critically evaluate the discrimination and barriers to justice they experience and the extent to which law and policy effectively prevents discrimination and promotes justice for these groups. 

International Environmental Law

International Environmental Law is a foundations module on international environmental law (IEL). It will provide a broad overview of IEL and allow you to develop a number of research-related skills.

At the start of the course, you will study the basic principles of IEL. The next block of seminars cover some major multilateral environmental agreements, primarily concerned with pollution, climate change, and biodiversity. You will develop an in-depth knowledge of these instruments: their key mechanisms, institutional architecture, and related legal/policy frameworks.

In the final set of seminars, you will apply this knowledge by researching how contemporary and emerging issues of IEL are addressed through the law. The selected topics will cut across two or more environmental treaties and so you will develop a deep understanding about the connections between different areas of the law.

International Investment Law

This module deals with key aspects of the international system for the regulation of foreign investment. The module focuses mainly on issues arising from investor-host state relations under Bilateral Investment Treaties or BITs but also touches upon international investment contracts. Special attention will be given to the means of regulating investment using BITs, including standards of treatment, such as fair and equitable treatment, full protection and security, national treatment and MFN, and breaches thereof, the taking of foreign property and the settlement of investment disputes by means of third party dispute settlement.

Attention will focus on the substantial and procedural aspects of international investment arbitration with specific reference to ICSID, as well as ad hoc arbitration, using UNCITRAL arbitration rules or the rules of other relevant arbitral fora.

Philosophical Foundations of Human Rights and Criminal Justice

This module gives a broad-based introduction to the philosophical foundations of human rights and criminal justice, emphasising the moral and political underpinnings of legal rules, doctrines and principles. It considers key issues and questions in contemporary debates surrounding human rights and criminal justice through the contrasting lenses of two rival philosophical perspectives, utilitarianism and liberal deontology. 

The Private International Law of Intellectual Property

This module will offer an in-depth analysis of the relationship between intellectual property and private international law. It will cover all aspects of jurisdiction and choice of law.

Regulation of the Digital Economy and the Information Society

This module offers an in depth examination of the laws and regulatory perspectives relating to the digital economy. It explores the implications of UK, European and international rules that apply to digital platforms and Big Tech, and their impacts on end-users and digital consumers. The module engages with a series of themes and topics like privacy and commercial surveillance in data-driven economies, cybersecurity, social media and online harms, algorithmic governance and automation. participation for digital citizens. 

Semester two

Students should take a minimum of zero modules and a maximum of three modules from this group:

Business and Human Rights

This module considers how business increasingly conducts its operations with responsibility to its stakeholders and to society at large. It examines the emergence of the business and human rights regime, which forms the basis for addressing both legal developments and voluntary initiatives across a spectrum of business and industry sectors and different types of business, operating both globally and locally.  

Corporate Insolvency Law

The course examines the law applicable to insolvent and financially distressed companies. The main insolvency procedures available under the law of England and Wales will be examined to determine the extent to which they meet their aims and objectives. Key international insolvency law frameworks will also be touched given the prospect of cross-border insolvency scenarios. We will look at the justifications underpinning a corporate insolvency regime and consider how effectively different goals are balanced within it. The case for reform will also be evaluated.

Global Competition Law and International Business

The module examines the global competition law development from the perspective of international business. In summary it uses the US, EU and Chinese competition regimes and high profile international business cases as targets for analysis.

It first critically examines the origins of global competition rules against international business, by focusing on EU, US and Chinese competition regimes on the one hand and international organizations on the other hand. It then examines in-depth the challenges faced by international business in the areas of international price cartel regulation, multiple regulations on abuse of market dominance and cross-border mergers. It further critically examine the public and private enforcements of competition rules against international business in the global context.

By critically examining the challenges faced by international business in both the substance and enforcement of global competition regulation, the module aims to engage and motivate you to undertake original thinking and explore innovative solutions to tackle the challenges.

International and Comparative Trade Mark Law

The module will deal with the basic principles of trade mark law and it will do so from an international and comparative perspective. Special attention will be paid to European and US trade mark law before attention will turn to passing-off and comparative advertising issues.

Law, Artificial Intelligence and Robotics

This module aims to develop an understanding of the legal and ethical challenges posed by AI and robotics technologies, along with consideration of appropriate legal and regulatory responses. It provides a philosophical and legal framework for considering concepts and principles that relate to the development and use of such technologies. It also considers legal and regulatory governance at the international, regional, and national levels.

Technology and Human Rights Law

This module aims to provide an in-depth understanding of the risks and harms that the digital environment and technologies pose to the effective exercise of human rights. The module enables students to critically reflect upon the potential, and limitations, of human rights law and reasoning to accommodate and address such risks and harms posed by technology. While doing so, students will engage with applying human rights-based and ethical approaches to technology.

United Nations Law

This module examines the international institutional law and general international law governing the United Nations, including the central organs (for example the Security Council and General Assembly), subsidiary organs (such as the UNEP and the UNDP), and the specialised agencies (for example, the WHO, UNESCO, ICAO). 

It considers:

  • the UN's constitutional basis
  • its legal personality and powers
  • membership and budgetary matters
  • representation and decision making
  • sanctions regimes
  • the UN's military options
  • issues of responsibility, accountability and immunities
  • the UN's contribution to the development and enforcement of international law

Students should take a minimum of zero modules and a maximum of three modules from this group:

Fair Trials, Human Rights, Criminal Justice and Technology

This module critically considers the concept of ‘fair (criminal) trial’ in theory and practice. International human rights law, particularly as it derives from Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights, will naturally be central to this inquiry. But the law of human rights is neither our starting point nor our final destination. More ambitiously, this module draws on criminal justice, socio-legal, and comparative approaches and perspectives in order to place the law and practice of English and Welsh criminal trials in their broader legal, political, social, and moral contexts.

Although some points of law and practice will be treated in detail, developing an exhaustive account of English criminal trials is not the principal objective. Rather, we will use these details as examples and case-studies to illustrate methodological issues, broader themes and trends in criminal policy, and international comparisons highlighting the ways in which western democracies have attempted, successfully or otherwise, to meet the challenges of integrating human rights law into their domestic criminal trial processes.

International and Comparative Patent Law

The module will deal with the basic principles of patent law and it will do so from an international and comparative perspective. Special attention will be paid to European and US patent law before attention will turn to biotechnological inventions and a case study on stem cell patents.

International Disaster Law

This module explores this emerging field of international law, which is seeing growing prominence within international legal research, international law and policymaking. States, international organisations, NGOs and community actors are increasingly addressing the effects of disasters in terms of human rights law, refugee law, and international humanitarian law, particularly when it comes to laws regarding humanitarian assistance.  

International Humanitarian Law

This module examines the legal constraints of international and national warfare. It traces the historical and contextual development of the law and focuses upon the principles which govern warfare. During the module, you will also study the mechanisms for the enforcement and the implementation of international humanitarian law.

International Law of the Sea

International law of the sea regulates the order of the oceans. It is one of the oldest branches of public international law and one of the most dynamic areas of law.

Topics cover: maritime boundary disputes and delimitation, exploration of hydrocarbons in contested waters, the use of marine genetic resources from maritime spaces beyond national jurisdiction, maritime terrorism, and the protection of human lives at sea.

Introduction to Energy Law

This module provides an introduction to energy law. Through scholarly works and practical case studies, it will address some of the most important legal issues which relate to energy such as: the exploration of natural resources in disputed areas; transparency and control of oil revenues; environmental law issues; and justice and gender in energy transitions. Although both fossils and low carbon/renewable resources will be examined, considerable attention will be paid to hydrocarbons, as they still dominate the energy sector.

The Rights of the Child

The module will explore the rights of the child in international human rights law, focusing on topics such as the concepts of childhood and the best interests of the child, family rights and the right to family life, education, child soldiers, child labour, gender and the rights of the girl child.

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules (including methods of assessment) may change or be updated, or modules may be cancelled, over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for information on available modules. This content was last updated on Thursday 11 July 2024.

Due to timetabling availability, there may be restrictions on some module combinations.

Learning and assessment

How you will learn

  • Seminars

We teach in small group seminars where possible, allowing for an open, interactive learning experience. You are required to prepare for, and participate in seminars so that you get the maximum benefit from them.

To help support you in this, you will also have access to our virtual library, which includes relevant eBooks, eJournals, official documents and supporting scanning service.

How you will be assessed

  • Dissertation
  • Examinations
  • Coursework

You will be assessed by a range of assessments including coursework, examinations, oral presentations and a dissertation.

Practice assignments, guidance on exam techniques, time management workshops, and one-to-one legal skills advice sessions are offered throughout the year to prepare you for these assessments.

Contact time and study hours

Supporting your development

In addition to seminars for each module, you will have the opportunity to meet and discuss your academic progress and development with members of staff in the school, as well as attend optional seminars and workshops to support your learning and network with other students and legal scholars and professionals.

Our dedicated Legal Skills Team are also available and can offer support in the following areas:

  • Induction support on navigating the study of law as a subject and using academic resources
  • Guidance for international students to support their academic transition to studying law at Nottingham
  • Workshops on how to answer problem questions, referencing, tips for effective case reading and note-taking
  • Advice on research, planning and project managing your dissertation
  • Tailored one-tone sessions giving advice on general academic and legal (subject specific) skills
  • Exam reflection appointments, reviewing completed assessments to identify opportunities for development of new skills or existing study skills

Enhancing your knowledge and skills

Teachers will incorporate different activities into their modules to help you develop skills which you can translate to professional practice. Depending on what modules you choose, you gain skills in:

  • advising a client
  • writing a policy brief

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2025 entry.

Undergraduate degree2:1 (or international equivalent) in law, humanities or social sciences

Applying

Our step-by-step guide covers everything you need to know about applying.

How to apply

Fees

Qualification LLM
Home / UK £11,850
International £22,600

Additional information for international students

If you are a student from the EU, EEA or Switzerland, you may be asked to complete a fee status questionnaire and your answers will be assessed using guidance issued by the UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) .

These fees are for full-time study. If you are studying part-time, you will be charged a proportion of this fee each year (subject to inflation).

Additional costs

All students will need at least one device to approve security access requests via Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA). We also recommend students have a suitable laptop to work both on and off-campus. For more information, please check the equipment advice.

As a student on this course, you should factor some additional costs into your budget, alongside your tuition fees and living expenses.

You should be able to access most of the books you'll need through our libraries, though you may wish to purchase your own copies or more specific titles. Our libraries also have an excellent range of free electronic books and journals that you can download.

Funding

There are many ways to fund your postgraduate course, from scholarships to government loans.

We also offer a range of international masters scholarships for high-achieving international scholars who can put their Nottingham degree to great use in their careers.

Check our guide to find out more about funding your postgraduate degree.

Postgraduate funding

Careers

We offer individual careers support for all postgraduate students.

Expert staff can help you research career options and job vacancies, build your CV or résumé, develop your interview skills and meet employers.

Each year 1,100 employers advertise graduate jobs and internships through our online vacancy service. We host regular careers fairs, including specialist fairs for different sectors.

International students who complete an eligible degree programme in the UK on a student visa can apply to stay and work in the UK after their course under the Graduate immigration route. Eligible courses at the University of Nottingham include bachelors, masters and research degrees, and PGCE courses.

Graduate destinations

Our graduates go on to a wide range of careers. Many go into the legal profession or return to their previous legal careers with specialist knowledge and enhanced prospects. Others work in international organisations and NGOs. Some graduates further their academic career by progressing onto our PhD programme.

Recent graduate destinations include BAE Systems, Clifford Chance, London Stock Exchange and Simmons & Simmons.

Career progression

92.9% of postgraduates from the School of Law secured graduate level employment or further study within 15 months of graduation. 100% of graduates feel that their current activity is meaningful. The average annual salary for these graduates was £29,005.*

* HESA Graduate Outcomes 2020/2021 data published in 2023. The Graduate Outcomes % is derived using The Guardian University Guide methodology. The average annual salary is based on graduates working full-time, postgraduate, home graduates within the UK.

Our faculty work placements and internship programme provides valuable work experience, self-confidence and a practical application of your studies.

Two masters graduates proudly holding their certificates

Related courses

This content was last updated on Thursday 11 July 2024. Every effort has been made to ensure that this information is accurate, but changes are likely to occur given the interval between the date of publishing and course start date. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply.