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South African Law Schools

South African Law SchoolsThere are 17 law schools in South Africa to pick from and all but one offer an LLM qualification, although some of these are by research rather than being a taught course.

Navigating your way around the array of LLM courses in South Africa is tough, as is choosing a law school to attend in the first place.

If you're thinking about studying a Master of Laws program in South Africa, then here are a few tips on how to select the best South African law school and LLM course for you. 

Law School in South AfricaWays to pick a law school in South Africa

There are a few ways to choose between different law schools, and the reputation of the academic staff and that of the law school itself are both important factors. The best way to gain a proper understanding about this is to speak and network with legal professionals in the area of the law you are planning on specialising in to find out how well regarded your chosen law school – or schools – is. Rankings are another good way of comparing different law schools, and in South Africa, more emphasis is placed on global rankings, such as the Times Higher Education rankings or the Eduniversal Best Masters Ranking. An additional factor that you should bear in mind is the LLM tuition fees as these vary between the different South African law schools, too.

South African Law SchoolHow to find out more about South African law schools 

The best way to decide if a law school is the right place for you is to go and visit it. As you will already know, all universities have open days and if you contact the institution in advance, you'll be able to arrange to speak with the academic staff involved with the LLM course you're considering and find out the best time to pay them a visit. Viewing campuses online and reading their literature is a great place to start your research, but there is only so much information you can gain from viewing information online. 

South African Law SchoolsFind out more about the LLM course

Speak with former LLM students, especially recent graduates, when you're trying to choose an LLM course as they can tell you both the positive and negative aspects of the course, and even give you their thoughts on if they think that the course somewhere else is better. Try to connect with former alumni who are working in the specific area of the law you're interested in. That way you can find out if the course you're considering is the right path for the future career you envisage. Reach out to current and former students by joining social media groups and professional online networks. This start to your networking will be a help to you throughout your LLM course and into the future. 

South African Law SchoolsWhy are the activities of the law school important? 

Researching what else goes on at the law school and at the wider university is important to both the experience you can gain while studying and for relaxing outside of your studies. Most law schools in South Africa have a number of different departments all concentrating on different areas of the law, and within these departments, there are institutes and legal centres or clinics that students can participate in. Finding out about the activities of these groups will inform about the practical legal experiences you might be able to be involved with. Check out what the Law Student Council is up to. Do their activities match with your interests? Read through any law student newspapers or other publications to see what else is on offer. Have a look at the societies and clubs available throughout the university in general, as this will give you an idea of what you can do outside of your studies. Your LLM course is an intensive year if you're studying full time, and you'll need a chance to get away from it all. 

South African law SchoolsTop Ranked South African Law Schools 

Here is a table of the top ranked South African law schools* with details of their facilities and number of departments. 

South African Law Schools



Featured Institutions

University of Cape Town University of Cape Town Faculty of Law

University of South Africa 
University of South Africa College of Law


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