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LLM: Corporate Social Responsibility

Course Description


As traditional forms of legal regulation through company law or trade law fail, the concept of corporate social responsibility has gained in relevance. With corporate social responsibility becoming highly topical over the past decade, the general public is increasingly aware of companies' responsibilities to their stakeholders. This results in pressure on companies to ensure that their products and services - whether in the food and drink, oil, chemical, technology, financial, retail or hospitality industries - are made, managed, sourced and delivered responsibly, fairly, ethically and in accordance with human rights standards.
The LLM in Corporate Social Responsibility at the University of Stirling offers a distinctive multi-disciplinary approach to corporate responsibility by combining perspectives from law, business, management, history and philosophy. The programme draws on the expertise of staff within the Law School and Stirling's Business and Management Schools. By the end of the course, students will be familiar with the origins of the debate surrounding corporate social responsibility and will have gained an in-depth understanding of current developments in the area, as well as clarity on how businesses operate in society.

Key information

- Degree type: LLM
- Study methods: Full-time, Part-time
- Duration: One year, full time; 27 months part time
- Start date: September
- Course Director: Dr Ioana Cismas

Course objectives

The purpose of this course is:
- To introduce students to the topic of corporate social responsibility and to develop students’ understanding and awareness of contemporary issues in the area.
- To provide a rigorous and intellectually challenging training at an advanced level in corporate social responsibility issues as preparation for, or as an enhancement to, a career in this area
- To develop problem-solving skills to Master's level by means of legal problems which require the use and understanding of core legal rules and principles
- To develop independent critical legal thought and legal research and writing skills to LLM level through the preparation and presentation of written arguments

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your English language skills:
- IELTS: 6.0 with 5.5 minimum in each skill
- Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE): Grade C
- Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE): Grade C
- Pearson Test of English (Academic): 54 with 51 in each component
- IBT TOEFL: 80 with no subtest less than 17

For more information go to English language requirements https://www.stir.ac.uk/study-in-the-uk/entry-requirements/english/

If you don’t meet the required score you may be able to register for one of our pre-sessional English courses. To register you must hold a conditional offer for your course and have an IELTS score 0.5 or 1.0 below the required standard. View the range of pre-sessional courses http://www.intohigher.com/uk/en-gb/our-centres/into-university-of-stirling/studying/our-courses/course-list/pre-sessional-english.aspx .

Structure and content

The taught component of the course facilitates staged intellectual progress in key areas relevant to corporate social responsibility. This stage consists of six modules which are taken over two semesters. The modules provide in-depth insights into current developments in corporate social responsibility in various areas of law, business and management. In addition, students are able to develop the relevant practical skills necessary for information retrieval and utilisation, and data collection and analysis in a dedicated legal research methods module.
The culmination of the course is the 10,000-word dissertation which can be completed as a work-based dissertation project in collaboration with external organisations.

Careers and employability

Career opportunities

- Skills you can develop through this course
On completion of the module, students will have:
- Developed an understanding of the key areas of corporate social responsibility and underlying policy issues, including knowledge of relevant national and international laws and legal frameworks
- Analysed and evaluated current policy and law and the different approaches to legal analysis
- Developed skills to solve legal problems
- Carried out independent legal research to a high level
- Demonstrated an ability to present effective and structured arguments in writing
- Demonstrated an ability to present arguments effectively in oral presentations
- Developed the ability to work independently and meet deadlines

- Chances to expand your horizons
A programme of workshop and talks are available to postgraduate students to help develop their skills and employment prospects.

- Where do our graduates go?
An LLM prepares our graduates for many destinations. Those who wish to continue in academia may proceed on to a PhD, while others will be well placed to take up careers in law, business, finance, banking and international organisations. Corporate Social Responsibility is increasingly important for those wishing to pursue a career in law and/or business. Corporate lawyers are often required to advise their business clients on their widening legal liabilities and their responsibilities towards stakeholders other than shareholders; lawyers for non-governmental organisations, employees organisations or governmental bodies are required to be aware of the growing number of legal tools which can be used to hold international companies to account; and, business managers need to be increasingly astute to their companies’ responsibilities towards the communities within which they operate if they are to avoid liability. An LLM in Corporate Social Responsibility thus prepares graduates for a wide range of careers.


An LLM prepares our graduates for many destinations. In a world of globalisation and international trade, your knowledge of how businesses are governed internally and through law will set you apart from the crowd. Whether you’re interested in developing a career in Europe or working for one of the many international companies with offices in Scotland and the UK, this is the course for you.

Visit the LLM: Corporate Social Responsibility page on the University of Stirling web site for more details!

Entry Requirements

A minimum of a second class Honours degree (2.1 preferred) or equivalent in a relevant subject. Applicants without these formal qualifications but with significant appropriate/relevant work/life experience are encouraged to apply.

Course Fees

2015/16: Home/EU £6,000; Overseas £13,500

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