Download the course booklet to find out more about Lancaster University, how we teach Law and what you'll study as a Law student.
Law at Lancaster University
Our students talk about their experience of studying Law at Lancaster University.
7th for Politics
The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide (2022)
17th for Law
The Complete University Guide (2023)
Purpose-built Mock Court Room
Are you interested in developing practical legal knowledge and an understanding of how interplay between Law and Politics affects issues such as war and peace, poverty and inequality, order and justice, governance and power?
This Law degree is taught by the world-leading, research-active academics based in our Law School and Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion.
We have strong links to Chambers, Law firms and related professions from across the UK, including magic circle firms from London. We usually host a judicial lecture series, alumni visits and lectures, and a Law Fair, which is typically attended by lawyers (including trainees, associates and partners) and members of their recruitment teams. All of this should help you to make professional connections, learn more about their firms, and get a head start on your career in Law.
Our student-run Law Society usually organises a wide range of extracurricular activities including mooting and negotiation competitions (typically judged by barristers and members of the judiciary). In recent years they have organised a Law Ball, sporting fixtures, and a careers dinner. Each event is designed to help you build your peer and employer networks.
Practical experience is important in this degree, with a range of opportunities available. You may be able to take part in our Law Clinic which provides real-world experience of giving free legal advice to members of the local community. Our Miscarriages of Justice Project gives the chance to work on real criminal cases alongside practising lawyers as they support prisoners who maintain their innocence and have exhausted their appeal rights. The Street Law project provides experience in schools and organisations, advising and supporting them on specific areas of law.
We offer a wide range of diverse opportunities and try to ensure that all students can access the opportunities that interest them, however please note that places are limited on some schemes and modules.
80% of the Law School’s research was rated as internationally excellent or world leading in the most recent Research Excellence Framework (2014), while the Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion was ranked first in the UK for the impact of its research.
Your degree can open doors to a wide range of careers within, and beyond, the legal sector. We carefully devise, structure and support our degree programmes to help you prepare for the next step towards a career of your choosing.
Throughout your degree you will have the opportunity to:
All of this will help to optimise your ability to stand out in a crowded employment marketplace. Your degree could lead to a rewarding job in the public, private or third sector, such as:
Wider roles with a need for legal or political understanding include: Legal Recruitment Consultant, Chartered Company Secretary, Compliance Officer and Investment Banker.
Some of our graduates go on to Graduate Training Schemes or pursue opportunities with: Civil Service, Ministry of Justice, Probation Service, HM Courts and Tribunal Service, HMRC, Local Government and Trading Standards.
An undergraduate degree can also lead on to further study or academia and we have a wide range of postgraduate programmes.
Lancaster University is dedicated to ensuring you not only gain a highly reputable degree, but that you also graduate with relevant life and work based skills. We are unique in that every student is eligible to participate in The Lancaster Award which offers you the opportunity to complete key activities such as work experience, employability/career development, campus community and social development. Visit our Employability section for full details.
A Level AAB
IELTS 6.5 overall with at least 5.5 in each component. For other English language qualifications we accept, please see our English language requirements webpages.
International Baccalaureate 35 points overall with 16 points from the best 3 Higher Level subjects
BTEC Distinction, Distinction, Distinction
We welcome applications from students with a range of alternative UK and international qualifications, including combinations of qualifications. Further guidance on admission to the University, including other qualifications that we accept, frequently asked questions and information on applying, can be found on our general admissions webpages.
Contact Admissions Team + 44 (0) 1524 592028 or via email@example.com
Lancaster University offers a range of programmes, some of which follow a structured study programme, and others which offer the chance for you to devise a more flexible programme to complement your main specialism. We divide academic study into two sections - Part 1 (Year 1) and Part 2 (Year 2, 3 and sometimes 4). For most programmes Part 1 requires you to study 120 credits spread over at least three modules which, depending upon your programme, will be drawn from one, two or three different academic subjects. A higher degree of specialisation then develops in subsequent years. For more information about our teaching methods at Lancaster please visit our Teaching and Learning section.
The following courses do not offer modules outside of the subject area due to the structured nature of the programmes: Architecture, Law, Physics, Engineering, Medicine, Sports and Exercise Science, Biochemistry, Biology, Biomedicine and Biomedical Science.
Information contained on the website with respect to modules is correct at the time of publication, and the University will make every reasonable effort to offer modules as advertised. In some cases changes may be necessary and may result in some combinations being unavailable, for example as a result of student feedback, timetabling, Professional Statutory and Regulatory Bodies' (PSRB) requirements, staff changes and new research.
This engaging module immerses you in a broad investigation of criminal law, typically including legal rules, substantive crimes, the conditions of criminal responsibility, and law in practice. We will explore the scope of law and its enforcement in a political, economic, moral and social context.
You will develop an understanding of the principles of criminal liability, and the elements of major offences typically including homicide to theft, fraud to sexual offences, and offences against the person. You may also have the opportunity to explore such topics as complicity, inchoate offences and defences.
We encourage lively discourse and debate through a combination of workshops and seminars, both of which are linked to a lecture programme. This will help you to consolidate knowledge, analyse and argue about criminal law.
Our teaching is research-led and you will be encouraged to read as widely as possible on the subject. Not only does this module provide the foundation for further study in your second year and beyond, but it also establishes key skills in presentation, critical analysis, and intelligent debate.
This year-long module introduces you to the central tenets of the English Legal System and supports the development of the legal skills that will see you through your degree.
The module is your initiation into legal reasoning and the process of legal research. Within it we would typically include such topics as:
A combination of lectures, workshops and seminars provides you with a sustained opportunity to: deepen your knowledge of the English Legal System; learn how to read legal cases and journal articles and critically analyse legal materials; write law essays; and problem solve.
The module was developed by Dr Siobhan Weare who co-authored one of the leading textbooks in this area of Law.
Contract Law at Lancaster is studied from an interesting perspective – we begin by looking at resolution for breach of contract. This includes monetary compensation, injunctions and orders compelling parties to carry out their promises.
By starting at the end, you are constantly reminded of the purpose of Contract Law (to provide a remedy to an aggrieved party when the other party has broken its contractual obligations). It also means that you get to practice applying the law while studying this important but difficult topic, and, you will be able to competently address the main concern of clients when you begin practicing law: resolution.
Of course, we also typically study the formation of contract, terms of contract, and their interpretation and enforceability. But heavy emphasis remains on remedy.
The module involves self-study of the historical and theoretical aspects of contracts and contract law, including ‘Contract in Context’ which was co-authored by staff member Dr Richard Austen-Baker.
You’ll be introduced to some of the key themes in the study of modern politics, and will have the chance to gain critical insight into the nature and use of political power in the contemporary world. You will learn about: the foundations of the modern nation-state, and the ways in which our institutions can reflect or fail to meet the ideals of liberal democracy; the behaviour of individuals and groups in political contexts; the workings of national constitutions and international organisations; the interaction of global events and domestic agendas.
Areas of study typically include:
+ Political Theory: the study of the scope, nature, and justification of state authority, and the history of political thought.
+ British Politics: the study of the theory, and political reality, of British governance in the twenty-first century.
+ Comparative Politics: the study of the various institutions of the nation-state, in a comparative context.
+ Ideologies: the study of political ideologies such as (neo-)liberalism, (neo-)conservatism, socialism, and fascism, their cohesiveness and social/political function.
+ Political Behaviour: the study of the ways in which agents and groups engage with politics in the age of mass and social-media.
+ Politics and Religion: the study of the relevance of religion to politics in contemporary society.
+ Politics in a Global World: the influence of global movements and events on domestic and international politics.
Because of the increasing interdependence of the national and global, domestic politics and international relations can no longer be properly understood in isolation from one another. To ensure the best possible foundation for a degree in Politics, in first year, we strongly recommend you also take International Relations: Theory and Practice.
The European Union as a legal system operates differently to English law. This module will give you a basic understanding of the institutions of the EU, the way law is created and developed, the principles governing relations between the EU and its Member States, and the substantive law of the EU.
This core module introduces you to torts. You will critically explore the key torts and tort principles typically including such topics as trespass to the person, negligence, torts of strict liability and vicarious liability. You will also consider defences to torts and remedies for aggrieved parties.
This module aims to develop a critical understanding of Constitutional Law. The course seeks to problematise the legitimacy of the constitutional arrangements of the UK. A contextual approach is adopted which entails drawing upon historical, political, comparative and jurisprudential materials. The module will constantly question whether Constitutional Law functions as a 'real' regulator of legitimacy or as a symbolic one.
This module also provides an introduction to Administrative Law, and Human Rights/Civil Liberties in the UK.
This module tackles key questions around the organisational and institutional structures of the legal profession, taking a close look at the contemporary challenges that it now faces.
While the module primarily focuses on the Anglo-Welsh system, we will also address other systems through literature on law in the USA, Australia and other commonwealth jurisdictions.
Topics covered in the module may include:
Throughout the module, you should develop a solid understanding of issues relating to lawyer/client interactions, such as ethics, confidentiality, legal professional privilege, conflict of interest. You will also have the opportunity to study representations of lawyers and lawyering in fictional settings, such as TV, film, literature and plays. This module exposes you to a range of debates and encourages you to think creatively and critically, as well as from a socio-legal perspective.
This module focuses on the politics and international relations of the European Union. This includes a focus on the political systems of key EU member states (especially Germany, France and Poland) and the wider dynamics of European integration. The module will also offer an account of the activities of the various European institutions in Brussels, Strasbourg and Luxembourg (Council, Commission, Parliament, Court of Justice).
In the few years that have passed, the Middle East has experienced momentous changes. Most notable of these changes are the so-called ‘‘Arab Spring’’ uprisings, which started in late 2010, and the following consequences of these uprisings on the international relations of the region. Topics include the early emergence of Arab states, origins and sustainability of authoritarian regimes, state types and personality cult, masculinity and constructions of identity and belonging, women’s movements, social mobilization and the Arab uprisings. The module offers you the opportunity to engage with some of the most important themes in the study of the politics of the Middle East and to locate and contextualise them within wider debates and scholarship of international politics
This module explores British politics by focusing on the role of its central figure – the Prime Minister. Judging by media coverage, it would seem that the Prime Minister dominates the decision-making process, dwarfing other institutions such as the Cabinet, Parliament and the judiciary. But does this impression reflect reality? Does Britain really have a system of ‘Prime Ministerial’ – or, as some commentators have claimed – even ‘Presidential’ government? The module attempts to answer these crucial questions through case-studies of recent Prime Ministers and an examination of the sources of Prime Ministerial power, such as the ability to appoint ministers, to influence public opinion and to shape Britain’s foreign policy.
This module examines the domestic and the external sphere of Russian politics. By the end of the module you will have had the chance to develop an understanding of some doctrines of Russian politics and its wide-ranging effects on Russia’s engagement with the EU, the US, NATO, countries in the former Soviet space and the Middle East. We assess Russia’s response to the Arab Spring and its engagement in the conflict in Syria.
The module introduces you to Russia, an actor which gained presence and influence over several issue areas and regions. In this module we aim to prepare you for more extensive analyses of conceptualising Russia as an actor in their future studies
Race has played a central role in shaping the political agendas of many nations around the world – and has acted both as a mechanism of political exclusion and as a form of politicised identity. In this module we critically examine the notion of race, and its connection to the politics of ethnicity, religious identity, and class. We examine the role race has played, and continues to play, in the determination of domestic and international politics. We look at the way in which race is politicised and de-politicised, and consider the nature of various forms of racism that exist in politics.
This module covers the major types of trust and the key elements required for their validity and operation as well as relevant aspects of equitable remedies. The overarching imposition of Equity will be interwoven with the discussion of the substantive types of trust. As well as an in-depth exploration of the workings of each mode of trust, the emergence of each will also be examined before modern uses and policies are considered. Key current developments in relation to the law of trusts will also be drawn upon.
How does the law relate to land and property? And is the current law still fit for the 21st Century?
Our Land Law module immerses you in real life scenarios to promote an understanding of how the law actually works. You are given the opportunity to work through legal problems as though you are advising a client, and we discuss some of the documentation and protocols that are used by property lawyers.
We encourage lively debate and discussion, and aim to develop your skills in thinking and reasoning logically and creatively, challenging convention and understanding how land law has shaped our environment and society. You should also have an appreciation of the ways in which land law has developed and changed.
Topics typically covered include:
Your lecturers will be specialists in their field and active researchers. Current research within the teaching team addresses the system of land registration for the protection of title or ownership of land, and the history of property law and how well it works.
This module provides a historical and thematic introduction to the issues facing Africa in the international system today. The module is divided into two sections. The first section explores the historical incorporation of the continent into the emerging international system centred on Europe from the sixteenth to the twentieth century. We focus on the impact of colonialism and independence in terms of the economy, the state and the politics of race and the implications these have for the region’s prospects for democracy and development today. The second section looks at key contemporary issues and agents shaping the continent. The latter includes ‘top-down’ actors such as the Chinese state, as well as grassroots actors such as unionised South African workers.
This module presents a detailed analysis of the major developments in British foreign policy since 1945. It explains these developments within a global context, offering rival interpretations of Britain’s changing role and status – issues whose importance has been underlined by the debates surrounding the 2016 ‘Brexit’ referendum. The major themes include: the consequences of Britain’s participation in the Second World War; the retreat from Empire after 1945; the ‘special relationship’ with the United States; and the prolonged attempt to redefine Britain’s global role in the context of perceived economic and geopolitical decline.
The company law module covers the key areas of company law from incorporation to insolvency including corporate personality and piercing the corporate veil, the company’s constitution, contracts and companies, directors’ duties and minority shareholder protection. These practical, substantive areas of company law are discussed in accordance with relevant theories relating to the corporation and its role in society generally.
The Competition Law module is designed to give students a good grounding in contemporary competition law and the economics and policy which underlie it. The main focus will be on EU and UK competition law, but reference will also be made to US and Australian law where it provides a useful counterpoint. The module will examine the way in which antitrust and behavioural economics interact and inform the development of competition law and policy. Substantive areas such as the main EU antitrust provisions, their UK counterparts, and the merger control regimes in the EU and UK will be covered. The module will cover the basic provisions but special focus will be given to areas of controversy or recent reform. The enforcement of the law will also be given special consideration.
As the Middle East has long been [and still is] one of the most unstable regions in the world, and it is further bedevilled by strong authoritarian states and pervasive ethnic and sectarian violence, what explains this instability and ongoing tensions? By examining some of the key questions surrounding the study of Middle Eastern politics, this module aims to provide you with a critical perspective of the region’s politics. This module introduces you to an analysis of the history, politics, society, culture and religions of the Middle East with attention to major events in the region.
This module provides you with an opportunity to choose a topic related to some aspect of Politics and International Relations, Philosophy and Religious Studies which particularly interests you, and to pursue it in depth. The topic may be related to work that is being done on a formally taught course, or it may be less directly linked to course work. We encourage you to develop your research skills, and your ability to work at length under your own direction. You submit a 9,000 - 10,000 word dissertation by the end of the Lent term in your third year. To help you prepare for work on the dissertation, typically there is an introductory talk in second year on topics relating to doing one's own research and planning and writing a dissertation
The dissertation is an independent, in-depth inquiry into a research topic of your choosing, subject to there being a suitable expert in the department to supervise your project. The topic will relate to a key legal question or issue and may also directly relate to your professional/career interests.
This is your opportunity to make a contribution to the legal and academic community with new and original research and writing on a legal issue.
This module introduces you to the principles of the law of evidence in criminal cases. It also introduces you to the nature and theory of proof. These general issues are developed through the study of particular topics such as the burden and standard of proof; confessions and illegally obtained evidence; disputed identification evidence and other warnings to the jury; hearsay; the credibility of witnesses and bad character evidence.
Here we aim to provide you with a robust understanding of the theories and principles that underpin health care ethics and health care law. We will engage with theories from both an individual and a societal perspective, helping you to develop your critical evaluation skills and establish your own ethical viewpoint.
The module leaders will introduce you to their own research and will adjust the topics covered to ensure that the module focuses on the most up-to-date developments in the field. Examples of potential topics include:
While we will facilitate the workshops, the sessions will be predominantly led by you and other students as we aim to accommodate your interests and foster a sense of autonomous learning.
This module introduces the principles of UK immigration and asylum law. Asylum is a subject seldom out of the press and it has received unprecedented political attention in the last decade. Given that immigration is now such a wide subject, with a number of major new statutes, you will only be introduced to selected highlights and the module will focus mainly on the asylum process. Consideration of the general issues is developed through the study of particular topics such as the nature of an asylum claim and the link between human rights and asylum. Immigration detention and the foreign prisoner crisis and deportation issues will also be discussed. If possible, the module will be supplemented by a visit to the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal.
Focusing on new technologies and our own research in this area, this module addresses the changes in the law that are necessary to accommodate the impact of the internet, developments in 3D printing, artificial intelligence, and advancements in bio-technology.
You will examine intellectual property law and the protection of intangible property, particularly copyright and patent law. And you will explore the theories that justify the legal protection of human creativity, whilst also studying its practical application.
You will consider copyright protection and its basic tenants alongside the defences and exceptions that allow society to benefit. Following this, you will look at the impact of the Internet and the ability to infringe upon copyright at an unprecedented level.
We will also cover the basics of patent law protection, along with issues relating to the ownership of patents by employers. And you will undertake an in-depth study of the current UK and international policies relating to bio-technology patents.
What is Islamic Politics? This module seeks to introduce you to some of the key debates surrounding the nature and character of political Islam in the historical and contemporary context. While the core inquiry is a political one the module is interdisciplinary in nature. Islamic Politics draws on a variety of related disciplines such as anthropology, contemporary international relations, history, sociology, and religion to construct a cohesive representation of Islam in the political context. As such, we engage with debates surrounding its historical roots, its core political ideology, its relationship to violence, its compatibility with democracy, its representation in the media, the place of Muslim communities in non-Islamic polities and the prospects and possibilities surrounding engagement with radical Islam. In terms of area study focus we cover the greater Middle Eastern region. It is a module designed as much for students with little or no background in Islamic Politics, as it is for students who have already had some grounding.
To what extent does English law accommodate religious belief and practice? How has the law interacted with religion historically? What is the current interplay between law and religion? And how does the UK model of religious accommodation compare with those adopted in European jurisdictions?
Religion in the 21st century continues to attract and engage the attention of the government, parliament and the courts - as it has done throughout English legal history. Law and Religion, an engaging, policy-significant and popular module, will tackle the central questions outlines above and introduce you to the laws that regulate religion and belief in the UK.
Typically the module covers the following topics:
The module focuses on two very pertinent topics in the area of religion and law: the application of Islamic law in the UK, and religious tribunals in the UK. We will draw on our research as we discuss issues that are high on the agenda of policy makers and are part of current media discussion.
This module will assess the legal and practical issues surrounding responses to massive violations of human rights, before the political and moral issues involved in using national and international courts will be discussed. The imposition of truth commissions as well as other techniques of ‘transitional justice’ to respond to massive human rights violations will be critically analysed in order to deduce the success of such responses.
This skills-based, employability-enhancing module enables Politics students to use their existing comprehension of politics to engage effectively with different lay audiences including, in particular, prospective employers and Sixth Form pupils participating in Lancaster University’s Politics/IR outreach, widening participation and recruitment programme. The practical nature of the sessions and the divergent nature of the assignments gives you the opportunity to enhance your employability and your CV by providing valuable experiences throughout the term. The work of some of our students may also be included in online resources for schools, this may include the use and implementation of role-play scenario outlines and presentations created in this module.
Culture is, perhaps, the most contentious and prominent feature of contemporary political debate. Whether it be religious schism and ethnic conflict, migration, controversy regarding bodily integrity, justifications for development policy and overseas aid or debate over the nature of wellbeing, the issue of cultural diversity looms large. The aim of this module is to provide you with the conceptual, analytical and normative resources to understand and assess the politics of cultural diversity. In essence, the module grapples with the question of whether, and in which ways, we can make judgements about culture.
This module examines the changing character of war and security in a time of rapid and disruptive technological and geopolitical change. The module combines analysis of contemporary policy documents with the interdisciplinary insights of intellectuals that have examined how war has changed in the modern age. In this module you are introduced to a range of concepts that are currently significant in the policy debates about the future of war – concepts such as ambiguous war, the gray zone, the third offset strategy and the three block war. While the module is grounded in broader debates from social and political thought about war and modernity, it explores a range of evolving and inter-related case studies that are central to understanding how war is changing: cybersecurity/artificial intelligence; cities and urban war; drones and the future of robotics; climate change and ecological insecurity. Each year we try to bring a guest lecturer from the Ministry of Defence or the FCO to discuss questions relevant to the course – and to discuss how the course can be relevant to a broad range of careers.
The module aims to provide you with an in-depth knowledge of the different facets of contemporary Asian conflicts and how international organisations such as the UN, and how Western and Asian governments have attempted to deal with these challenges in recent times. Conceptually, the module will examine the principles of state failure; terrorism, ‘New Wars’, the New Security Agenda, Islamism, nationalism and sub nationalism, international conflict prevention; peace keeping and global governance. Empirically, the module will focus on conflict zones in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Indian Kashmir, the Indian northeast, Chinese Xinjiang and Tibet. Thus, the aim of this module is to provide you with an overview of the security of a region which is now of tremendous global importance.
We set our fees on an annual basis and the 2023/24 entry fees have not yet been set.
As a guide, our fees in 2022/23 were:
At Lancaster, we believe that funding concerns should not stop any student with the talent to thrive.
We offer a range of scholarships and bursaries to help cover the cost of tuition fees and/or living expenses.
There may be extra costs related to your course for items such as books, stationery, printing, photocopying, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits. Following graduation, you may need to pay a subscription to a professional body for some chosen careers.
Specific additional costs for studying at Lancaster are listed below.
Lancaster is proud to be one of only a handful of UK universities to have a collegiate system. Every student belongs to a college, and all students pay a small college membership fee which supports the running of college events and activities.
For students starting in 2022, the fee is £40 for undergraduates and research students and £15 for students on one-year courses. Fees for students starting in 2023 have not yet been set.
To support your studies, you will also require access to a computer, along with reliable internet access. You will be able to access a range of software and services from a Windows, Mac, Chromebook or Linux device. For certain degree programmes, you may need a specific device, or we may provide you with a laptop and appropriate software - details of which will be available on relevant programme pages. A dedicated IT support helpdesk is available in the event of any problems.
The University provides limited financial support to assist students who do not have the required IT equipment or broadband support in place.
In addition to travel and accommodation costs, while you are studying abroad, you will need to have a passport and, depending on the country, there may be other costs such as travel documents (e.g. VISA or work permit) and any tests and vaccines that are required at the time of travel. Some countries may require proof of funds.
In addition to possible commuting costs during your placement, you may need to buy clothing that is suitable for your workplace and you may have accommodation costs. Depending on the employer and your job, you may have other costs such as copies of personal documents required by your employer for example.
Fees are set by the UK Government annually, and subsequent years' fees may be subject to increases. For international applicants starting in 2022, any annual increase will be capped at 4% of the previous year's fee.
The information on this site relates primarily to 2023/2024 entry to the University and every effort has been taken to ensure the information is correct at the time of publication.
The University will use all reasonable effort to deliver the courses as described, but the University reserves the right to make changes to advertised courses. In exceptional circumstances that are beyond the University’s reasonable control (Force Majeure Events), we may need to amend the programmes and provision advertised. In this event, the University will take reasonable steps to minimise the disruption to your studies. If a course is withdrawn or if there are any fundamental changes to your course, we will give you reasonable notice and you will be entitled to request that you are considered for an alternative course or withdraw your application. You are advised to revisit our website for up-to-date course information before you submit your application.
More information on limits to the University’s liability can be found in our legal information.
We believe in the importance of a strong and productive partnership between our students and staff. In order to ensure your time at Lancaster is a positive experience we have worked with the Students’ Union to articulate this relationship and the standards to which the University and its students aspire. View our Charter and other policies.