The LLM in Advanced Legislative Studies offers a unique opportunity to drafters, legal officers, policy makers and those interested in the process of lawmaking and in drafting to study the legislative environment and legislation as a tool for regulation.
The programme aims to promote an understanding of the principles of legislative studies and an in-depth awareness of what constitutes legislative quality and how this can be achieved. Legislative drafting is often perceived as a technical skill that one learns on the job. The view of the Institute’s Sir William Dale Centre for Legislative Studies is that legislative drafting is a practical discipline requiring awareness of the theoretical principles of drafting along with experience on the job. Legislative drafting has evolved to become the bedrock of political, economic and social transformation. It is still, however, relatively unexplored as an academic discipline. The LLM examines issues related to the policy process, the legislative process and the drafting process.
The programme is not prescriptive and allows participants to naturalize their knowledge and apply it in their own national environments. Capped class numbers allow individualized tuition. Alumni are usually employed by governments and international organizations.
How will this course benefit me?
The LLM is aimed at those seeking a career in legislative drafting, those already working as legislative drafters or those who want a career in, or are already working for, organizations that produce different types of draft normative acts. Many of our students are mid-career drafters employed by government (for example, by AG Chambers, the Ministry of Justice or other ministries).
We also have students who work for or aim to work for NGOs that propose normative acts to governments.
Degree overview and structure
The LLM in Advanced Legislative Studies has been offered by the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies with considerable success since 2004. The programme can be studied at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies in London or by distance learning from a location elsewhere in the world.
Students based in London can undertake the programme on either a full- or part-time basis. Students based elsewhere must undertake the programme on a part-time basis over two years.
The programme offers two options, the Common Law Direction and the EU Direction.
The Common Law direction core modules
- LLM Research Methods Training
- Comparative Legislative Studies 1 and 2
- Legislative Drafting 1 and 2
- Themes of Legislative Studies
The EU direction core modules
- LLM Research Methods Training
- EU Legislative Studies 1 and 2
- The Jean Monnet Module ‘Legislating for EU Membership and Accession’
- The Jean Monnet module ‘Theories of European Integration’
Teaching, learning and assessment
Those studying the course in London participate in lectures, seminars, and face-to-face discussions with tutors and other students. Those studying the course by distance learning receive access to extensive materials delivered online and by email and participate in online discussions with tutors and other students.
All students undertake private reading and independent research and benefit from individual tuition and support. All students are assigned a personal dissertation supervisor.
Students undertaking the course by distance learning are required to attend a week-long intensive residential induction in London. This gives students a chance to meet the tutors and other students and to start their studies with the maximum level of support.
Mode of Study
The LLM course mode of study is 12 months full-time or 24 months part-time. Part-time students take four modules in the first year of study, and two modules and the dissertation in the second year of study.
The distance learning course is 24 months part-time only. Part-time students take four modules in the first year of study, and two modules and the dissertation in the second year of study.
All students whose first language is not English must be able to provide recent evidence (gained in the last two years) that their written and spoken English language is adequate for postgraduate study. This requirement is specified in order to ensure that the academic progress of students is not hindered by language difficulties and that students are able to integrate socially while studying and living in the UK.
Further information can be found on the English language competency section of our Entry Requirements page.
What our students say
The legislative studies programme is an innovative course which caters for the lacuna in academic institutions around the world in much-needed training in legislative studies. I am glad to have taken part in this programme and the experience I have gained will transform me into a better drafter. The course is professionally organised, from the material offered through to teaching methods applied, and I would recommend this LLM to all drafters, regardless of their experience and background.
- MA student, Mookamedi Morwaagole (Botswana), describes his experience of the LLM course.