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Posted Nov. 15, 2016

Spotlight On: LLM in Criminal Law

LLM in Criminal LawCriminal law is one of the most interesting and contentious aspects of law that you can choose – and studying an LLM in Criminal Law is a great way to fast track yourself into a career in this field. A massive range of issues are covered by criminal law, including, assault, murder, or international banking fraud. One of the hallmarks of this branch of the law is that it is highly contentious by its very nature. It is possible to work for the defense or act for the Public Defender or Crown Prosecution Service.

What’s involved?

An LLM course in Criminal Law will normally be for one year of full-time study. A 15,000-word dissertation will be a requirement for most courses. A student would typically receive between two to four hours teaching a week.

What qualifications do you need?

To study Master of Laws in the UK or US, it is necessary to have an honours degree in law at undergraduate level or equivalent degree with a significant legal element. A lot of universities would like candidates to have at least a 2:1 grade. For international students, because of the specialist language, it is essential that they have a high competency level in the English language.

What do you study?

An LLM in Criminal Law will explore many social contemporary issues including jurisprudential points such as terrorism and euthanasia. Lots of the debates crosscut through modules and jurisdictions. The LLM program has a fundamental aim to help the student understand theories and concepts that have relevance to criminal law, and how it functions in the modern world. Although course modules will obviously vary from one institution to another, here are some examples of what could be studied:

  • Current issues in criminal law and criminal justice
  • Philosophy of criminal law
  • Criminalisation
  • Corruption and organised crime
  • International criminal law
  • Sexual offending
  • Global crime
  • The penal process
  • Modern criminal procedures

LLM programs in criminal law are offered by a wide range of institutions in the UK and the US. A lot of course in this sector will provide a combination of Criminal Law and Criminal Justice.

Career opportunities

An LLM in Criminal Law can advance careers in a number of professions, such as the police force, probation service, social worker, lawyers, journalists, and charity workers. Having an LLM in Criminal Law will also be useful for students who want to have a career in criminal justice or take up policy work relating to the subject as a member of the civil service or law reform organisation or body.

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