Postgraduate study

Comparative and European Private Law LLM

Awards: LLM

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding opportunities

This programme aims to equip you with an in-depth understanding of core areas of private law across the two great legal traditions of Europe, common and civil law. It offers you the opportunity to obtain an advanced qualification that is both academically rigorous and professionally beneficial.

Drawing on both the civil and common-law traditions, it combines the comparative study of key areas of private law with the dynamics of European harmonisation initiatives. It is particularly suited to those who have studied a range of private law subjects at undergraduate level, although it is also open to those whose undergraduate law degree has combined other specialisations.

The programme offers you a wide range of subjects that deal with various aspects of private law from a comparative and European perspective, enabling you to tailor the LLM to meet your specific interests. Courses are taught by members of the Law School academic community who are experts in the field.

You must complete 180 credits of study – 60 credits are taken in the compulsory dissertation and the remaining 120 credits are taken in taught courses. You will choose a minimum of 80 credits from the compulsory courses and up to 40 credits of option courses.

Please note that due to unforeseen circumstances or lack of demand for particular courses, we may not be able to run all courses as advertised come the start of the academic year.

This programme is designed to equip students with recognised Masters-level training in European Private Law.

You will receive advanced legal training enabling you to identify and interpret problems relating to private law using tools of comparative analysis.

As well as providing training in legal research, you will gain an understanding of the main challenges for modern comparative law, including issues of European harmonisation. The programme will also enable students to progress to the PhD should they so wish.

This programme will provide you with an excellent foundation for both doctoral research in the growing field of comparative and European private law and legal practice in transnational law firms, or employment in international organisations.

A minimum 2:1 honours degree from a UK university, or its international equivalent, in law.

We will also consider candidates with a degree in a related discipline which includes relevant prior study.

Entry to this programme is competitive. Meeting minimum requirements for consideration does not guarantee an offer of study.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS: total 7.0 (at least 6.5 in each module)

  • TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 23 in each module)

  • PTE Academic: total 67 (at least 61 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)

  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 176 in each module)

  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, PTE Academic or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries.

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than three and a half years old at the beginning of your programme of study.*

(*Revised 8/11/2018 to provide more accurate information on English language qualifications expiry dates. Revised 22/03/2019 to provide more accurate/comprehensive information.)

Find out more about our language requirements:

Read our general information on tuition fees and studying costs:

UK government postgraduate loans

If you live in the UK, you may be able to apply for a postgraduate loan from one of the UK’s governments. The type and amount of financial support you are eligible for will depend on your programme, the duration of your studies, and your residency status. (Programmes studied on a part-time intermittent basis are not eligible.)

Other funding opportunities

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • Edinburgh Law School Postgraduate Office
  • Old College
  • South Bridge
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9YL

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • Edinburgh Law School Postgraduate Office
  • Old College
  • South Bridge
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9YL