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LLM (Master of Laws) - PGDip WTO Law

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  • Objectives
    The LLM in WTO Law provides an opportunity to study the functioning of the WTO and the characteristics of its legal system. The aim is to ensure that students gain a comprehensive understanding of international law as it applies to this specialist area and in particular of problems such as the role of human rights and social standards within WTO law.
  • Entry requirements
    Students will normally be required to have (or to be expecting) a first or upper second class honours degree, or an equivalent degree awarded by a university outside the United Kingdom. The degree may be in law or in a related discipline and we welcome applications from students holding degrees in related disciplines. In addition, students whose first or main language is not English must provide evidence of English language proficiency. An IELTS minimum score of 6.5 or TOEFL minimum score of 575 (paper-based) or 232 (computer-based) is required.
  • Academic Title
    LLM (Master of Laws) / PGDip WTO Law
  • Course description
    LLM (Master of Laws) / PGDip

    Founded little more than a decade ago, the World Trade Organisation is the cornerstone of worldwide economic relations. Its dispute settlement system is one of the few functioning obligatory dispute settlement mechanisms in the international community and it has had a significant impact on the development of international law. With the steady increase in international trade in goods and services, the role of the law within the WTO has risen correspondingly. Since the judicial branch of global governance is far more developed in the WTO than in any other international organisation, law plays a much greater role in it.

    Course content

    Students studying for the LLM/PGDip in WTO Law are required to complete the double compulsory module in International Law (40 credits) and the single compulsory module in Advanced Legal Research Methods (20 credits) during the first semester.

    In Semester 2 you must take the compulsory module in GATT Law. In addition you can choose any two of the following options (20 credits each, totalling 60 master's-level credits):

        * International Trade Law
        * Trade, Human Rights and Labour Standards
        * Independent Study Module
        * International Intellectual Property Law.

    Students studying for the LLM in WTO Law are also required to complete a 15,000-word dissertation on a topic related to any aspect of WTO law as agreed with the dissertation module leader. Full-time students will normally begin preliminary work on the dissertation in Semester 1 and formalise the topic and structure of the dissertation in Semester 2. The main work on the dissertation will normally take place from June to mid-August.
    *Note that availability of options may vary from year to year.

    Teaching, learning and assessment

    A wide diversity of teaching methods are employed throughout the LLM programmes in order to provide a high-quality learning experience. These include lectures, seminar discussions, individual and small group tutorials, case studies, and group and individual presentations. Particular emphasis is placed on skills training, with opportunities provided to acquire and practice legal reasoning as well as research and IT skills.

    Opportunities are also provided for extra-curricular activities such as the LLM student conference and the annual trip arranged for students to visit a range of international tribunals in The Hague. Assessment methods include coursework assessments and individual and group presentation assessments.


    The Law Department gained grade 4 rating in the last Research Assessment Exercise.
    All the members of the LLM course team are active researchers and encourage students to become involved in their respective areas of research by teaching specialist modules in which they have expertise, and by supervising dissertations in their specialist subjects.

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