London is almost synonymous with high-quality education, displaying increasing levels of enrolment, with 92 universities and colleges situated in and around the city. The study field that most people associate with the U.K. and with London is Law.
Britain’s pioneering role in the establishing of modern Law as we know it started in 1215 with Magna Carta Libertatum, the first bill of rights. No place represents this British judicial tradition better than London, the capital and creative heart of the country.
Obtaining a Law degree (LL.M.) from a reputable London university or college can have a very strong impact in consolidating your career. So, read on and see why you should get a Bachelor's or Master's of Law from a London law school!
Why study abroad in London?
The U.K.’s education system is highly competitive worldwide, being properly designed for international students and potentially more affordable than many counterparts in the U.S., Europe or elsewhere.
London has 96 universities and higher education institutions which have become international hotspots for diversity, culture and professional development. Many of the institutions occupy top places in international rankings, mainly thanks to their focus on highly funded research projects. These, in turn, result in prestigious citations worldwide.
Being such a competitive higher education market, London’s numerous top law schools and universities makes it more likely you’ll get the best student services in addition to top quality education. Moreover, London has a rich cultural heritage, which ensures that established fields such as Law are handled with experience, as well as modern insight.
There are so many things to visit in London, specially tailored for every kind of traveller: for history buffs, there’s the huge British Museum which offers free entrance for students and for thrill seekers, there’s the dizzying London Eye and the harrowing London Dungeon. The best London experience is with its traditional open tour buses, which offer a refreshing blend of sights, history, art, architecture and activities, all from the left side of the road.
And don't forget the top international student destinations, and multicultural environment – you’ll find a lot of internationals such as yourself, making it easy to fit in a foreign country.
Why study a Law degree in London?
Law is a field which inspires discipline, strong communication skills, problem-solving, functional administrative skills and ethical awareness, all characteristics fully embraced by British culture and organisational culture.
As a large cosmopolitan metropolis of over 7 million people, London has a long-lasting tradition and experience in higher education and it functions not only as the capital of the U.K., but also as headquarters for institutions belonging to the Commonwealth of Nations, Amnesty International and the International Maritime Organisation.
These organisations have added to the experience of London-based universities, enabling them to offer targeted Law study programmes, aimed at training capable Law professionals.
Teaching style in London universities and colleges
They offer widely recognised degrees, comprehensive and up-to-date curricula and an international academic staff who maintains the balance, objectivity and relevance of courses regardless of field or specialisation. In the U.K., the study of Law is generally divided into practical domains, which can also become study majors: Constitutional Law, European Law, Business Law, Criminal Law and Private Law. The focus is on peer to peer interaction in the educational process, encouraging debates, discussions, creative thinking and stimulating individual research confidence.
Top universities offering Law degrees in London
- City University of London
- Queen Mary University of London (no. 151 in World Academic Ranking)
- King’s College London (no. 50 in World Academic Ranking)
- London School of International Business
- Regent’s University London
- Richmond, the American International University in London
- Birkbeck University of London
- University of West London
- London Metropolitan University
- University College London (no. 17 in World Academic Ranking)
- London School of Economics and Political Science (no. 151 in World Academic Ranking)
- University of Westminster
- Brunel University London
- London South Bank University
Career perspectives for Law graduates in London
Throughout the U.K., Law professionals are divided into solicitors and barristers, depending on the jurisdiction of their chosen career option. Therefore, graduates must choose for one or the other, being issued a practising certificate which is not compatible with the other.
Given the highly complicated nature of integrating U.K. Law with European Law, as well as with International Law, most London-based companies have ample legal departments in search for well-trained graduates, experts in the specifics of British Law.
Moreover, the historic and cultural similarities between the U.K. and its former colonies means that most Commonwealth nations (especially Australia, Canada and New Zealand), but also former colonies like Hong Kong or Singapore, recognise and appreciate the value of a Law Degree from a London University. Also, Commonwealth countries have modelled their higher education system to imitate the British model and are constantly searching for U.K.-educated staff.
Finally, the recent Brexit decision means that there will be a considerable demand for legal professionals to implement the results and implications of the legal transition out of the EU.
Living in London: accommodation and transport
Given that the U.K. is one of the most expensive cities in the world for expats, prospective international students need to pay great attention to budgets and costs. The average living cost for London is between 1,137- 2,157 GBP/month, but it may reach higher levels due to accommodation demands.
For accommodation in London, you would have to pay just over:
- 1,632 GBP/month for a one-bedroom apartment in the city centre
- around 1,120 GBP/month for outside of the centre
However, most universities offer multiple housing options, both on-campus and farther away. These offers will be significantly more affordable for students, especially since they involve shared accommodation and facilities between students. Additionally, the costs for on-campus living averages at 200 GBP/week, including utility and cafeteria fees.
Transport in London
Transport is also very expensive, but there are many options for travelling in and around the city, including subway, taxis, buses or trains. A fully-priced monthly pass for London public transport is 130 GBP, while a one-way ticket is around 2.5 GBP. Taxis are slightly more expensive, at 3.89 GBP/km. While personal cars might seem more affordable with relatively reasonable fuel costs (around 1 GBP/litre), remember that traffic is high and you would have to drive on the left side.
Tuition fees for Law degrees in London
While tuition fees in the U.K. vary widely, the average for a Master's programme ranges from 6,000 to 10,000 GBP/year, while those for Bachelor’s degrees can be anywhere between 4,000 to 16,000 GBP/year.
Some of the tuition fees you can find in London are:
- King’s College, Master’s Degrees in Law for 5,600 GBP/year
- University of West London, Master’s Degree in Legal Practice for 3,700 GBP/year
- University College London, Master’s in Social Justice and Education for 15,525 GBP/year
- City University of London, Masters in Criminology and Criminal Justice for 14,000 GBP/year
- London School of Economics and Political Science, Masters in Laws for 18,251 GBP/year
Scholarships and grants for Law students in London
Some of the universities such as King’s College, University College London organise their own scholarship programmes, including for their Law degree programmes. There are also external scholarship and grant options, offered by institutions such as The Royal Society or the Commonwealth of Nations (for students coming from member states), as well as governmental plans.
Find out more about your funding options in the U.K.
Student visa requirements for the U.K.
Getting a student visa for the U.K. (or a Tier 4 General visa) will not be necessary if you are coming from the European Union (EU), the EEA or Switzerland. Also, if you are from Nigeria, India, Malaysia or China you will have a specific set of guidelines for your country. Generally, you need to have proven English language skills, be over 16 years old and prove that you have been accepted to study at a university in the U.K. Read more about visa requirements for the U.K.