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  • PAC CodeDC662
  • Course Type Postgraduate
  • NFQ Level 9
  • Delivery Modes Full-Time
  • Duration 1 Year

The LLM (Master in Laws) is a one-year program offered by DCU’s School of Law and Government. We welcome applicants from Ireland, the EU and the wider world who are interested in deepening their understanding of law in broader social, political and global contexts.

The programme is designed to prepare you for a career in the 21st century workplace, where employers seek adaptable and outward-looking critical thinkers. To this end, the LLM offers a range of modules that goes beyond black-letter, formulaic legal study: the programme embraces a socio-legal methodology and has a European and international orientation.

Students can choose to specialise in a particular area of law or can pursue a more general degree (see section below for programme structure and module choice). We offer modules in three broadly discernible areas:

  • law & society, ethics, and human rights
  • EU, international and transnational law
  • institutions, public law and public policy 

Graduate View


“Working as a manager in the disability sector, what first attracted me to DCU’s LLM was its practical law-in-action emphasis. But more than that, I found a course which is extraordinarily intellectually stimulating, rigorous in its standard and taught with enthusiasm and energy by academics who are deservedly in the forefront of their legal specialisms. I discovered a lot of new things on this course, not least because the seminar type structure of most of the classes loans itself well to the kind of in-depth analysis and discussion that really entrenches information and learning at this advanced level of study.”

James Forbes Head of Care, ChildVision (National Education Centre for Blind Children), PhD candidate, Dublin City University, Graduate of the DCU LLM programme


“I would highly recommend the Master of Laws degree course at DCU. It is a particularly interesting course for those with a preference for a more general LLM. What attracted me was the broad range of modules offered from Medical Law and Bioethics to European Employment Law to specific aspects of International Law. As such, there was ample opportunity to gain an in-depth insight into numerous areas of law simultaneously, with an opportunity to explore a particular area of interest within each of those subject matters. The unique socio-legal research module affords students an opportunity to establish and advance their own research style, an important feature of any legal Masters programme. Student participation is both encouraged and expected by experienced lecturers which maintains the expected high standard of this LLM degree.”

Clare Barry, Barrister, PhD candidate, DCU (School of Law and Government), Graduate of the DCU LLM programme


Why Do This Programme?

  • a School with an inter-disciplinary research and teaching approach, engaging law and legal doctrine with political science, international relations, sociology, economics and European affairs more generally
  • a programme designed to develop the student’s critical, analytical and interdisciplinary thinking skills so that they are better positioned for access to, and advancement within, higher-end careers in law and related fields
  • a School with active links with major law firms; international and European institutions; NGOs; advocacy bodies and other such potential employers
  • an environment that facilitates the student in preparing for a career in academia or research, with opportunities to edit and contribute to academic journals, blogs; organise conferences, and to present academic papers
  • runs in conjunction with postgraduate programmes in international relations, public policy, EU law and policy, climate justice, international development 

Programme Structure and Content

The LLM at DCU is delivered as a one-year, full-time programme. You’ll be on-site for timetabled classes for two or three days a week in each semester (depending on the individual student’s module choice): 12 weeks before and 12 weeks after Christmas. Most students are on campus throughout the week: working on assignments, contributing in School research seminars, etc. To complete the program, you’re required to write a research dissertation, to be drafted in the summer period. In preparation for the dissertation, you’ll have regular supervision meetings as well as occasional collective dissertation initiatives (some students work off site for much of the summer period and are free to do so).

There are two obligatory modules: Legal and Socio-Legal Research Skills and the independent research Dissertation (15,000-20,000 words). Along with these modules, you’ll take five optional modules from among those on offer; two in the first semester, and three in the second semester (late January-April).

Programme Aims and Objectives

  • To create an authentically postgraduate and scholarly orientation with genuine intellectual depth through a small-group seminar model that promotes more intensive lecturer-student interaction
  • To make graduates better problem-solvers, critical thinkers, and more confident advocates, thus preparing them for careers in law, policy, administration, international affairs and related fields 

2017-2018 Modules

View the current course structure →


Why Choose DCU?

  • a young and innovative university with a reputation for excellence in teaching and research (consistently rated in the ‘Top 50 under 50’ by the QS World University Rankings)
  • an English-speaking, European universityengaged with Europe and the broader world, in an English-speaking country similarly engaged and committed 

Programme Chairperson: Dr. Tom Hickey

Tel: +353 (0)1 700 7858




Our graduates have gone on to, or have progressed within, careers in the legal professions (including the bar), academia and research (including a high proportion in funded PhD programmes and research positions), as well as NGOs, advocacy, civil service and public administration. With its internationalist orientation, the LLM programme caters well for those interested in access to or promotion within careers in international and European institutions. The programme is designed to make graduates better problem-solvers and more confident advocates: thus it prepares graduates for work as in-house lawyers in companies and organisations, as well as in higher level civil service or bureaucratic careers.

Potential Careers

  • The legal professions
  • Academia or research careers
  • NGOs and advocacy
  • Civil service and public administration
  • European and international organisations


General Entry Requirements

Applicants will normally have achieved a Second Class Honours Grade One (H2.1) in a primary degree (Level 8) in law or an interdisciplinary degree which includes law as a significant component. Applicants who have not achieved a H2.1 may apply but applications will be assessed on a competitive basis.

Appropriate combinations of professional qualifications and relevant work experience may be accepted as equivalent to an honours degree, in accordance with the relevant regulations of Dublin City University.

International Applications

International candidates are expected to have education qualifications of a standard to those outlined above In addition, where such candidates are non-native speakers of the English language they must satisfy the university of their competency in the English language. For further information on international applications click here.

Applications are currently being accepted for a September 2018 start.

Queries on Completed Applications

Any queries on completed applications should be emailed to

How to Apply and Closing Dates

Make an Application


All Applicants must submit

  • Certified academic transcripts for each and every year of study, with certified English translations if applicable

Non Native English Speakers

  • Evidence of English competency which meets DCU entry requirements - see link


EU Applicants - Apply online through the Postgraduate Applications Centre ( by 31st July 2018.

Non EU Applicants - Apply online through the Postgraduate Applications Centre ( by 10th July 2018. Applicants who require a study visa for the purposes of gaining entry into Ireland are advised to apply as early as possible.