Postgraduate study

European Law LLM

Awards: LLM

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding opportunities

Programme website: European Law

An in-depth knowledge and understanding of EU law is now more essential than ever for anyone considering a career in law, business, politics or policy within the UK, EU or beyond.

EU law is a complex and fascinating subject that weighs ever more heavily on policymaking in the UK, Europe and internationally. This programme is designed to equip you with the knowledge and understanding of European law required for any future legal career.

The negotiations on the UK’s departure from the EU will raise complex questions, with a possible special status for Scotland (or even renewed calls for independence) adding a further layer of complexity. Even after a so-called Brexit, EU law will remain relevant to lawyers in the UK not only when they are dealing with pre-Brexit questions, but also because any future EU-UK relationship is likely to be heavily influenced by it. Against that background, the importance of advanced knowledge in EU law to employment in the public and private sectors will only increase.

At Edinburgh, we take an interdisciplinary approach. You will combine study of the law and legal systems of the EU with courses on both policy implications and applied economics. The involvement of legal practitioners and policymakers in our programme, as well as the high-profile lectures and activities hosted by the Europa Institute, will give you first-hand knowledge of what is happening in Europe right now.

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. These courses will be led by members of the Law School academic community and those practising at the forefront of European Law decision making.

You are expected to prepare in advance by reading the required materials and by reflecting on the issues to be discussed, and your participation in classes will be assessed. For the dissertation you will have a supervisor from whom you can expect guidance and support, but the purpose of the dissertation is to allow you to independently design and conduct a piece of research and analysis.

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.

Find out more about compulsory and optional courses

We link to the latest information available. Please note that this may be for a previous academic year and should be considered indicative.

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
LLM1 YearFull-timeProgramme structure 2020/21
LLM2 YearsPart-timeProgramme structure 2020/21

By the end of this programme, students should have acquired a sophisticated understanding of the European Union's legal system and its law-making processes, and substantive knowledge of their chosen policy/course strands.

They will have explored differing approaches to the subject and developed a greater familiarity with research materials and methods.

The LLM in European Law is not only for law graduates who plan to develop a career in the field of EU law, but also for law students or practising lawyers looking to gain a competitive edge in the employment market more generally within law, business or policymaking. Many graduates develop dynamic careers working in Brussels, home of the European Commission.

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

We will also consider candidates with a UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent,in a social science subject.

Supporting Your Application

Relevant work experience is not required but may increase your chances of acceptance.

Relevant professional qualifications will be considered.

Preference will be given to those with grades above the minimum requirements due to strong competition for places on this programme.

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

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 or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

For 2021 entry we will accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS: total 7.0 (at least 7.0 in the writing component and 6.5 in each other module)
  • TOEFL-iBT (including Special Home Edition): total 100 (at least 25 in writing and 23 in each other module)
  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 185 in writing and 176 in each other module)
  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components

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.

Find out more about our language requirements:

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
LLM1 YearFull-timeTuition fees
LLM2 YearsPart-timeTuition fees

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

Due to high demand, the school operates a number of selection deadlines. We will make a small number of offers to the most outstanding candidates on an ongoing basis, but hold the majority of applications until the next published selection deadline when we will offer a proportion of the places available to applicants selected through a competitive process.

Deadlines for applicants applying to study in 2021/22 are shown below.

Round Application deadline Places awarded
1 11 December 2020 09 February 2021
2 05 March 2021 09 April 2021
3 14 May 2021 29 June 2021
4 21 July 2021 10 August 2021

You must submit one reference with your application.

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