Offering a distinctively contextual approach to criminal justice, this course examines the theoretical, comparative and international aspects of criminal process and the penal system.
As well as providing substantive information about criminal law and its enforcement, it enables you to engage with the methodological foundations of research and scholarship, and to appreciate their implications for penal policymaking and practice.
The emphasis is on understanding issues, problems, institutions, processes and cultures of penal law and policy, against a backdrop of ever-increasing globalisation in criminality and law enforcement across national boundaries.
Criminal justice teaching and scholarship in the school is founded on the reputation and achievements of Sir John Smith, one of the greatest academic lawyers of the 20th century. Generations of lawyers across the common law world were first introduced to the subject by Smith and Hogan's Criminal Law.
You will be taught by academics with a high level of expertise in criminal justice who have made a significant impact in the area. We also have a long-running criminal justice discussion group, which meets every semester and gives you the opportunity to attend talks by academics and practitioners on exciting and often controversial topics.
You will also have an opportunity to engage with members of the Criminal Justice Research Centre, which encourages collaborations between researchers and practitioners on the ground. The centre's annual Sir John Smith Lecture on Criminal Law and Justice is an opportunity for you to hear at first hand from a keynote speaker who has pursued a career in criminal justice.
Academic English preparation and support
If you require additional support to take your language skills to the required level, you may be able to attend a presessional course at the Centre for English Language Education, which is accredited by the British Council for the teaching of English in the UK.
Students who successfully complete the presessional course to the required level can progress to postgraduate study without retaking IELTS or equivalent. A specialist law course is available and you could be eligible for a joint offer, which means you will only need to apply for your visa once.
- Top 100 worldwide in the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2018
- 81% of our research considered world-leading or internationally excellent in the latest Research Excellence Framework
- 96% of law postgraduates in work or further study within six months of graduation
- Dedicated resources including legal skills advice through workshops and one-to-one sessions, computer room, and a full range of legal study and research materials online and in the Hallward Library
- Links to leading firms in London and the regions, private industry and consultancies, and governmental institutions and non-governmental organisations across the UK and wider world
You will complete a minimum of 90 credits of specialist optional modules. The remaining 30 credits can be chosen from the full selection of optional modules available on the LLM programme. You will also undertake a 60-credit dissertation.
Guidance and support on choosing a criminal justice dissertation topic and designing your project will be provided through bespoke workshops and one-to-one support.
We teach in small-group seminars where possible, allowing for an integrated, interactive learning experience. You are encouraged and expected to prepare for, and participate in, seminars so that you get the maximum benefit from them.
You will be assessed by examination or essay, or a combination of both. All assessments take place at the end of the spring term.
Practice assignments, guidance on exam techniques, time management workshops, and one-to-one legal skills advice sessions are offered throughout the academic year to prepare you for these assessments.
Qualifying module options
- Contemporary Issues in Criminal Justice
- Imprisonment and Human Rights
- International Criminal Evidence
- International Criminal Law
- Philosophical Foundations of Human Rights and Criminal Justice
The modules we offer are inspired by the research interests of our staff and as a result may change for reasons of, for example, research developments or legislation changes. This list is an example of typical modules we offer, not a definitive list.
Our graduates move into a wide range of careers. Many go into the legal profession or return to their previous legal careers with specialist knowledge and enhanced prospects. Others successfully seek employment with international organisations as well as international and local NGOs. Recent graduate destinations include BAE Systems, Clifford Chance, London Stock Exchange and Simmons & Simmons.
Some graduates further their academic career by progressing onto our PhD programme. These students often choose to stay at the University of Nottingham beyond their doctorate, with a number of academics becoming members of staff after completing their LLM/masters and PhD with us.
With an advanced law degree from the University of Nottingham, you will be well-placed to pursue your career ambitions and realise your goals.
Employability and average starting salary
96% of postgraduates from the School of Law who were available for employment secured work or further study within six months of graduation. £19,800 was the average starting salary, with the highest being £42,000.*
* Known destinations of full-time home postgraduates 2016/17. Salaries are calculated based on the median of those in full-time paid employment within the UK.
Career and professional development
Whether you are looking to enhance your career prospects or develop your knowledge, a postgraduate degree from the University of Nottingham can help take you where you want to be.
Our award-winning Careers and Employability Service offers specialist support and guidance while you study and for life after you graduate. They will help you explore and plan your next career move, through regular events, employer-led skills sessions, placement opportunities and one-to-one discussions.
2:1 (or international equivalent) in law, humanities or social sciences
English language requirements
IELTS: 7.0 (no less than 7.0 in writing, 6.5 in reading, and 6.0 in speaking and listening)
This school offers programs in:
Last updated November 1, 2018