Mode of Attendance: Full-time or Part-time
The School of Law accepts candidates for research work leading to a PhD. The central feature of PhD work is the close relationship between the doctoral candidate and his or her supervisor, in which they meet regularly and consult closely. This relationship is supported and strengthened in various ways. Every doctoral candidate has an adjunct supervisor, another member of staff with a close interest in the candidate’s region and/or subfield of the discipline.
There is a research tutor with overall responsibility for doctoral candidates who is available for a discussion of general problems. In addition, there are a number of other activities which contribute to a doctoral candidate’s work and training. All incoming MPhil/PhD candidates are required to take the School of Law’s Research Seminar Programme in their first year.
Doctoral candidates are encouraged to contribute to the research activities of the department. Several of them are active in the various Research Centres run in the School of Law and are encouraged to participate in conferences and other projects organised by the department. The School of Law hosts Reading Groups, which doctoral candidates are encouraged to participate in. Doctoral candidates are expected to participate in the School of Law PhD Colloquium which is held once a year. The colloquium gives doctoral candidates the opportunity to present their research and progress to colleagues and staff.
Many SOAS doctoral candidates spend some time doing fieldwork in the regions of their research. The School, and other members of SOAS, through their various connections with individuals and institutions in the universities and governments of Asia and Africa, facilitate this work with personal contacts and introductions. The School’s language training facilities are also available to doctoral candidates to develop their facility in an appropriate language for research purposes.
Applicants must normally have an advanced degree equivalent in level and content to the School of Law’s LLM or MA.
Students must take modules to a total value of 180, consisting of a dissertation (60 credits) and 120 credits of taught modules. Taught modules are worth either 15 or 30 credits.
Students who wish to graduate with an LLM (Master of Laws) are required to take at least 90 credits from the School of Law (General Law Postgraduate Taught Module List), and a final 30 unit which can either be taken within the School of Law or from the Postgraduate Module Open Option List with the LLM Programme Convenor’s permission. The dissertation topic will be connected to one of the taught LLM modules studied.
Please note: Not all modules listed will be available every year.
Dissertation (12,000 words), on a topic related to the specialism of the degree.
- LLM Dissertation in Law
- Guided Option
Choose modules from the List of General PGT Law Options below to the value of 90 credits.
- Choose a module(s) from the List of General PGT Law Options below or from Postgraduate Open Options to the value of 30 credits.
List of Modules (subject to availability)
General Law Options
- Alternative Dispute Resolution
- Gender, Sexuality and Law: Selected Topics
- Gender, Sexuality and Law: Theories and Methodologies
- Human Rights and Islamic Law
- International Commercial Arbitration
- International Human Rights Clinic
- International Investment Law
- Islamic Law (MA/LLM)
- Law and Development in Africa
- Law and Society in Southeast Asia
- Law and Society in The Middle East and North Africa
- Law, Rights & Social Change
- Preliminary Law, Legal Reasoning and Legal Methods
- International Migration Law
- International Refugee Law
- Law and Society in South Asia
- Mapping International Law in London: International Legal Geography in the Capital of Empire
- Law, Environment and Social Justice
- Law and Justice in Contemporary China
- Climate Change Law and Policy
- Colonialism, Empire and International Law
- Comparative Constitutional Law
- Foundations of International Law
- Human Rights Of Women
- International Criminal Law
- International Environmental and Sustainable Development Law
- International Protection of Human Rights
- Justice, Reconciliation and Reconstruction in Post Conflict Societies
- Law and Natural Resources
- Law and Policy of International Courts and Tribunals
- Law and Postcolonial Theory
- Law of Islamic Finance
- Law, Human Rights and Peace Building: The Israeli-Palestinian Case
- Multinational Enterprises and The Law
- The Law of Armed Conflict
- The Law of International Trade and/or Financial Regulation
- Water Law and Development: Conflicts, Governance and Justice
- Water Law: Justice and Governance
Open Options Note
Open options will need the approval of deputy PG programme convenor (LLM or MA).
The information on the programme page reflects the intended programme structure against the given academic session.
Admissions and Applications
You can apply for this course via the online application form.
We aim to assess a complete application and provide a decision within a 5-week time frame. Overseas students who require a Tier 4 visa and wish to join SOAS should bear in mind visa applications can take several weeks, so you should apply as soon as possible.
Consideration of Application
The whole application, including transcript and references, is considered before a decision is reached. You are therefore advised to submit a complete application including references and transcript (where required). An incomplete application will add considerable delays to the decision-making process.
Students will receive an acknowledgement of their application. Each application is carefully considered and although we try and respond as quickly as possible, we do ask that students should expect to receive a response within five weeks of receipt.
Candidates who are available in the United Kingdom may be called for an interview. The absence of academic members of staff (or instance on study leave) may affect the timing of decisions.
Minimum upper second class honours degree (or equivalent) in Law. We welcome applications from students who are close to an upper second class honours degree (High 2:2) and who have other relevant qualifications or work experience.
English Language Entry Requirements
You must be able to show that your English is of a high enough standard to successfully engage with and complete your course at SOAS. Please note that we take our English language requirements seriously and failure to meet them exactly may well result in your application to SOAS being rejected. It is not possible to negotiate if your scores are below our required levels, with the expectation that because they are 'close enough' they will be accepted. It is important that you plan appropriately, well in advance, so that your English language test comes in good time and so that you have time to retake the test if necessary. We do not accept reasons of inconvenience or financial hardship for not submitting or retaking an English test.
For EU and International students who need a visa, if unconditional entry scores are achieved we accept qualifications from several countries, as well as a range of international qualifications and tests.
If a Tier 4 entry visa is required then a SELT, such as UKVI IELTS may be needed. For this reason, we recommend all Tier 4 visa students to choose the UKVI IELTS Academic test as the test of first resort.
About the School
SOAS University of London welcomes the brightest minds to study on its central London campus with like-minded individuals who feel passionately about contemporary world issues.