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International Trade and Commercial Law (LLM)

Course Description

This programme offers students from a wide variety of backgrounds the opportunity to develop their legal knowledge and skills in some of the most intellectually challenging and practically relevant areas of trade and commercial law. The course has a particular emphasis upon the international aspects of these areas of legal knowledge and practice.

During the first two terms of the programme, students study taught modules drawn from a wide variety of topics on international trade and commercial law. Students then complete their studies by writing a dissertation on a topic chosen by them, and supervised by a member of staff with expertise in their selected subject area. Teaching is by a mixture of lectures and smaller, student-led, seminar or tutorial groups. The dissertation is pursued by independent research with individual supervision.

Students attending the programme are drawn from a broad range of countries, and their previous academic or professional experiences enrich the programme. The School is host to the Institute of Commercial and Corporate Law, and students on the LLM are encouraged to participate in its activities.

Course Structure

Students must study one compulsory module in Applied Research Methods in Law. You must also choose a number of additional taught modules, from a large body of optional modules. Finally, a dissertation must be completed, on a topic chosen by you in consultation with your allotted supervisor.

Core Modules

-Applied Research Methods in Law
-Dissertation (of 10,000, 15,000 or 20,000 words)

Optional Modules

Please note: not all modules necessarily run every year, and we regularly introduce new modules. The list below provides an example of the type of modules which may be offered.
-Advanced Issues in International Economic Law
-Advanced Issues in the Constitutional Law of the EU
-Advanced Issues of International Intellectual Property Law
-Advanced Law of Obligations
-Advanced Research in EU Law
-Carriage of Goods by Sea
-Commercial Fraud
-Comparative and Transnational Law
-Comparative Corporate Governance
-Comparative Insurance Law
-Comparative Private Law
-Corporate Compliance
-Corporate Social Responsibility
-Corporations in an EU Context
-Current Issues in Commercial Law
-Current Issues in Company Law
-Current Problems of International Law
-Domestic Anti-Discrimination Law
-Electronic Commerce
-Environement Law and International Trade
-EU Competition Law
-EU Trade Law
-European Discrimination Law
-Free Speech Problems in International and Comparative Perspective
-Fundamentals of International Law
-International and Comparative Advertising Law
-International and Comparative Corporate Insolvency Law
-International Banking Law
-International Commercial Dispute Resolution
-International Co-operation in Criminal Matters
-International Human Rights Law
-International Human Rights Law, Development and Commerce
-International Investment Law
-International Law of Human Rights
-International Perspectives on Law and Gender
-International Sales Law
-Introduction to Corporate Governance
-Introduction to EU Law
-Introduction to Intellectual Property Law
-Introduction to International Criminal Justice
-Introduction to Media Freedom under the Human Rights Act
-Introduction to the Law of Oil Contracts
-Islamic Law
-Law of the WTO
-Media Freedom under the Human Rights Act
-Mergers and Acquisitions
-Perspectives on Securities Law and Capital Markets
-Principles of Corporate Insolvency Law
-Rights of the Child
-Selected Issues in Competition Law
-Selected Issues in European Law
-Selected Issues of Intellectual Property Law
-Takeover Regulation in the EU
-Tax Law and Policy
-The Community Legal Order
-The European Union and International Trade
-Unjust Enrichment

Learning and Teaching

This programme involves both taught modules and a substantial dissertation component. Taught modules are delivered by a mixture of lectures and seminars. Although most lectures do encourage student participation, they are used primarily to introduce chosen topics, identify relevant concepts, and introduce the student to the main debates and ideas relevant to the chosen topic. They give students a framework of knowledge that students can then develop, and reflect on, through their own reading and study.

Seminars are smaller-sized, student-led classes. Students are expected to carry out reading prior to classes, and are usually set questions or problems to which to apply the knowledge they have developed. Through class discussion, or the presentation of student papers, students are given the opportunity to test and refine their knowledge and understanding, in a relaxed and supportive environment.

The number of contact hours in each module will reflect that module’s credit weighting. 15-credit modules will have, in total, 15 contact hours (of either lectures or seminars); 30-credit modules will have 30 contact hours. Students must accumulate, in total, between 90 and 120 credits of taught modules for the programme (depending upon the length of their dissertation). In addition to their taught modules, all students must produce a dissertation of between 10,000 and 20,000 words. This is intended to be the product of the student’s own independent research. Each student is allocated a dissertation supervisor, and will have a series of (usually four) one-to-one meetings with their supervisor over the course of the academic year.

Finally, all taught postgraduate students on this programme, are encouraged to attend the various events, including guest lectures and seminars, organised through the School’s research centres, including the Institute for Commercial and Corporate Law, and Durham European Law Institute.

Visit the International Trade and Commercial Law (LLM) page on the Durham University website for more details!

Entry Requirements

A good 2:1 degree (or its equivalent) in law, or in a degree in which law is a major component.

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