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Master of Laws: 6 leading law schools raising the bar in LLM education

Law students in Crowder Courtyard. James Byard / WUSTL Photos

In a fast-paced, globalised and increasingly complex world, there’s not a single sector that’s not oozing competition – and that includes the legal field. It’s now not enough to have relevant qualifications and work experience to get a foot firmly through the door. You need something more to give you an edge over others, like a Master of Laws (LLM) postgraduate qualification.

Although the LLM does not immediately grant you a place in your dream job, it can broaden your career choices, increase the chances of employability and creates global recognition. Intrigued to know more? Here are six leading law schools that are raising the bar in LLM education:

SCHOOL OF LAW, WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY IN ST. LOUIS (WashULaw) – USA

Finding the right university for your postgraduate law degree is simple if you consider the quality of the education offered and the school’s commitment to you as an individual.  Washington University in St. Louis (WashULaw) is ranked among the top 20 law schools in the U.S., and offers an exceptional classroom education as well as unique opportunities outside the classroom.  WashULaw offers several Master of Laws (LLM) programs for foreign-trained lawyers empowering you to acquire new knowledge and expand your expertise. Are you ready to take your career to the next level?

Image courtesy of Washington University in St. Louis

These programs are LLM in U.S. Law for Foreign Lawyers, LLM in Intellectual Property and Technology Law, LLM with a Concentration in Negotiation & Dispute Resolution and a Two-Year LLM for Foreign Lawyers.  The entry requirements for each LLM differ from one to the other, so be sure to check specific website links for a more in-depth explanation.

In addition to an outstanding education, WashULaw is committed to your personal experience. With a low ratio of faculty to students, you will have the opportunity to ask questions and to develop a rapport with your professors and with other classmates.  But that’s not all that makes WashULaw an excellent choice for your graduate law education.  In addition to the many academic programs, the law school offers unique opportunities outside the classroom to help you gain first-hand knowledge and sharpen your skills.  Contact WashULaw to take the first step.

THE LAW SCHOOL, UNIVERSITY OF NOTRE DAME – USA

With a tagline that promotes ‘A different kind of lawyer’, you can’t help but be intrigued by University of Notre Dame (ND) and its intentions. As it turns out, the ND aims to produce more than just well-rounded lawyers who achieve professional success, but also those who are respectful and act in the service of others.

Academic programmes are not only meant to train their students but also help them discover why they chose law, and how they can apply those skills in a way that gives back to society. Notre Dame offers three LLM degrees that can be studied at the university main campus in South Bend, Indiana or at the Law School’s London Law Centre, based in the UK capital.

Image courtesy of the University of Notre Dame

Pursuing an LLM in Indiana requires students to prepare for a rigorous academic programme that concentrates on ethics and values as legal writing and research.

NEBRASKA COLLEGE OF LAW, UNIVERSITY OF NEBRASKA-LINCOLN (UNL) – USA

Pursuing your dream career can be expensive, especially when you decide to take on postgraduate education. And with cost of living on the rise, potential students must look twice as hard to find a university they can afford, as well as one that suits their future career goals.

University of Nebraska-Lincoln understands that dilemma very well, which is probably why they are now recognised as one of the top 10 law schools with the lowest tuition fees, providing a world-class tuition without the high-class price tag. The law school offers two Master of Laws programmes which are LLM in Global Legal Practice and LLM in Space, Cyber and Telecommunications (with the latter being the first LLM in the U.S.).

Image courtesy of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln

The school offers a broad-based curriculum that includes courses and subjects such as international law, agricultural and water law, employment law, and many more.

SCHOOL OF LAW, QUEEN MARY UNIVERSITY OF LONDON (QMUL) – UK

Ranked first in London for law studies, and third in the UK by The Guardian University Guide, Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) proves that it’s the crème de la crème of law-based education. The school provides the UK’s largest LLM portfolio, with 22 diverse specialisms that cover a broad range of subjects.

Courses are offered on a full- or part-time basis to cater to working adults who’d like to further their education but lack sufficient time. If there’s one thing that sets it apart from its competitors, its QMUL’s direct connection within the law industry. Law students get the chance to work with guest speakers from a range of industries, as well as to be taught by prominent members of the judiciary.

Image courtesy of Queen Mary University of London

And if you’re looking to add some heavyweight to your CV, speak to the in-house internship co-ordinators – they liaise with a wide range of firms and chambers to establish relevant internships or relevant work-shadowing opportunities.

SCHOOL OF LAW, UNIVERSITY OF NOTTINGHAM – UK

Everything about University of Nottingham’s law school resonates excellence, from its reputable research centres to the general LLM programme, which allows you to mix and match module choices to create a personalised degree to compliment your chosen profession. Students of the general LLM get to choose from more than 45 modules, taught via research-led workshops and small group seminars to cater for an integrative and interactive learning experience.

If you have trouble keeping up the pace in class, the school has legal skills advisors who can schedule one-to-one sessions with you throughout the year. It’s a law school that’s consistently ranked among the top 10 in the country for teaching and legal research, but by no means is this the school’s only achievement; it’s also well-known for being one of the top universities for graduate employment.

Image courtesy of the University of Nottingham

The school boasts plenty of top-notch facilities and resources, with a library that has approximately 60,000 books on law-related matters and a 24-hour access to a private study for postgraduate research students.

LAW SCHOOL, UNIVERSITY OF STRATHCLYDE – UK

Looking for a school that’s modern, approachable and friendly? Then you’re in great hands at the University of Strathclyde, a top 15 law school in the UK. Leading the way with the first and biggest law clinic in Scotland, this university offers real-life work experience by allowing students to participate in a law clinic which provides free legal advice for those in need.

The clinic, established in 2003, has helped nearly 2,000 clients over the years. Aside from working in the clinic, students can join the Mooting Society, where you’ll get practical court-room experience by participating in training sessions and joining national and international competitions run by members of the legal profession.

Image courtesy of the University of Strathclyde

The university offers a wide variety of Master of Laws programmes such as Climate Change Law & Policy, Internet Law & Policy/IT & Telecommunications Law or Mediation & Conflict Resolution, just to name a few.

*Some of the institutions featured in this article are commercial partners of Study International

Feature image courtesy of Washington University in St. Louis

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