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Postgraduate study

LLM Master of Laws

The LLM enhances your knowledge of the fundamental principles of law, combined with the flexibility to explore your own interests with support from research-active teaching staff.


Course overview

The underlying philosophy of this course is to enable you to continue your professional, educational and personal development by consolidating, enhancing and extending your disciplinary expertise, professional ethics, experience and abilities.

You develop recognised subject-specific knowledge and understanding as well as cognitive, intellectual, practical, professional and generic key skills and qualities. The course enables you to more effectively plan, manage and evaluate your own learning to become an independent lifelong learner. You work with complex knowledge, theory and concepts appropriate to postgraduate study and are required to demonstrate high levels of personal responsibility and self-direction. The LLM course is the result of research carried out by academics and lawyers at Teesside University to develop a programme focusing on the philosophical theories that underpin the law, and building on current perspectives in law. It focuses on the underlying legal theories that determine the scope of the existing law and proposals for changes to legislation and the common law. The student-centred nature of assessment across all modules allows you to tailor your studies to your own areas of interest. The LLM course:

  • enhances your professional, ethical, intellectual and personal development and self-awareness
  • enables you to plan, manage and evaluate your learning and continue your development as an independent lifelong learner
  • helps you develop intellectual and professional independence
  • introduces, enhances and extends your knowledge of contemporary theoretical perspectives and issues in aspects of law, appropriate to postgraduate study
  • introduces, enhances and extends your understanding of research methods appropriate to the postgraduate study of law
  • challenges the orthodoxy of the law by encouraging debate, exchange, application and reflection
  • enables you to demonstrate your ability to integrate, synthesize and critique philosophical content, concepts and research methodologies in the production of a research-based dissertation in law
  • equips you with the ability to make a contribution to the theory and practice of areas of law and to make informed contributions to the development of policy.

Top reasons to study this course

> Study this course and you may be eligible for a £2,500 Sir Keith Skeoch postgraduate scholarship.
> You will be a valued member of our law community – fully supported and encouraged to succeed on the course, and beyond. We know our students and they know us.
> Your skillset is transferable and highly valued by a range of employers.
> Your cohort will come from a range of backgrounds and you learn in an inclusive, diverse and supportive environment, which will enrich your learning experience.
> Your experienced and knowledgeable course team are research active and many are highly regarded researchers within their field.
> Our well-established links with the legal and other professions across the region and beyond creates opportunities for work experience, placements and permanent employment.

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Course details

You study four taught modules and the dissertation module.

Course structure

Core modules

Contemporary Legal Issues and Skills

This module has the dual role of developing and consolidating legal research skills to Masters level and possible publication or future academic study, as well as introducing and highlighting current complex legal issues, initiating discussion and critical analysis. The contemporary issues element of the module is delivered by a variety of specialist speakers and current research active and subject specialist members of the School, ensuring that your learning is based on expert discipline-based research and experience.

Criminal Law

This module promotes a deep and critical understanding of the theories that underpin our criminal law, and the key substantive legal issues faced by judges and legislators of criminal law today. You examine culpability and blameworthiness, and explore these theories in the context of specific academic debates. You also examine factors associated with, and circumstances surrounding certain mala in se crimes, both against the person and against property.


The dissertation is the culmination of the LLM programme – an opportunity for you to apply your knowledge and research skills to a specific area of interest through a 20,000-word dissertation.

International Law

You gain a comprehensive understanding of the principles and structures which underpin international law, the sources and modes of development of international law, the nature of key international institutions and of the operation and enforcement of international law in specific areas and in the context of current international issues. You critically examine the extent to which international law performs its function of maintaining the international legal order.

Legal Theory in Context

You gain knowledge of key theories and concepts that underpin the development of law and policy and develop a depth of knowledge that enables you to actively contribute to policy development in your specialist area. You are encouraged to critically examine and challenge the theories and to engage in philosophical debate throughout the course.


Modules offered may vary.


How you learn

The link between legal theory and practice is the central theme of the programme and is incorporated into the teaching through a blend of directed and student-centred learning to develop an understanding of methodology, practice and presentation. This is achieved through a combination of lectures, seminars, group work, debates, audio-visual presentations, guided reading and research exercises.

Typically, the taught sessions are delivered through seminars, discussions and the virtual learning environment (VLE). The core taught modules are led by individual staff research and option modules are delivered by staff specializing in the relevant discipline.

How you are assessed

Progress is measured by both formative and summative assessment.

Formative assessment
Formative work/assessments are given as an aid to learning. Feedback is provided to assist you in preparation for summative assessments.

Summative assessment
Summative assessments refer to work that is assessed and graded which counts towards your degree award. You receive feedback on these assessments and you should consider how that feedback can help you with other work you complete.

You decide on your assessment questions after consultation and agreement with tutors. This leads to assessments focused on your area of interest and promotes autonomy and responsibility for learning. It enables you to engage with problems that employers are interested in solving.

Our assessments help you develop essential skills to work successfully at postgraduate level, as well as for continuing professional roles and lifelong learning. Your work is assessed in a variety of ways, including:

  • individual presentations
  • research proposal
  • written assignments
  • dissertation


Entry requirements

A 2.2 (minimum) honours degree in a legal or related discipline or equivalent qualification or equivalent experience.

Equivalent qualifications include, for example CiLEX, or level 6 equivalent law degrees from other jurisdictions, and equivalent experience includes work involving regulatory compliance.

For general information please see our overview of entry requirements

International applicants can find out what qualifications they need by visiting Your Country



Career opportunities

Upon graduation you will have developed recognised subject-specific knowledge and understanding, cognitive, intellectual, practical, professional and generic key skills and qualities, which have a directly beneficial effect on future employability, whether in the legal profession or in subject-related disciplines, including academia. You will be equipped to contribute to and inform policy-making decisions in your chosen sphere.

A number of our previous students have published work in academic journals, and / or have progressed to PhD study.



Information for international applicants


International applicants - find out what qualifications you need by selecting your country below.

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Useful information

Visit our international pages for useful information for non-UK students and applicants.

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2024/25 entry

Fee for UK applicants
£6,710 a year

More details about our fees

Fee for international applicants
£17,000 a year

More details about our fees for international applicants

  • Length: within 1 year
  • Start date: September or January
  • Semester dates

Apply now (full-time)



2024/25 entry

Fee for UK applicants
£750 for each 20 credits

More details about our fees

Apply now (part-time)

Apply now (part-time)


Choose Teesside

  • Student and graduate profiles

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    Emma Hill

    Emma HillLLM Master of Laws

    Emma's postgraduate qualification is helping her get closer to her career goal

    Meet Emma


Teesside University Law School

At Teesside University Law School we have over 30 years' experience of delivering high-quality education in the field of law and criminal justice.

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UK students


Telephone: 01642 738801

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International students


Telephone: +44 (0) 1642 738900

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