In an increasingly interconnected world, law is no longer the preserve of single jurisdictions as legal issues are no respecters of national borders. A SOAS Law degree addresses this need by providing our students with an educational experience that equips you with a distinctive set of skills far beyond what is offered by most traditional Law Schools.
The SOAS Law programme aims to produce highly skilled, civic minded and critically engaged graduates, who can effectively contribute to their communities and societies through the knowledge and skills gained on this course.
- SOAS is unique as the only higher education institution in the UK specialising in the study of Asian, Middle East and North African (MENA) and Sub-Saharan African regions
- This programme will immerse you in the legal traditions and practices of a number of global regions, which will give you a critical understanding of the role of law in the world today
- we specialise in key topics including international and transnational law, human rights, transnational commercial law, environmental law, comparative law and socio-legal method
- in common with other law schools, the degree program will result in our students obtaining a Qualifying Law Degree (QLD), allowing you to pursue a career in legal practice should you wish to do so
- we are specialists in the delivery of more than forty African and Asian languages. Your command of a language will set you apart from graduates of other universities
- you will be able to flexibly structure your programme using our Open Options modules to take advantage of the expertise of our other departments, including the opportunity to learn a regional language
Apply now via UCAS or visit our upcoming Open Day.
Find out more about how to apply.
Find out more on our Law department page.
Applicants who already hold a Level 6 qualification (or equivalent) may be eligible to apply for entry onto the Senior Status LLB, a two year QLD. For more information please visit our Senior Status LLB page.
Year 2 entry to the LLB
We will consider applications for transfer direct to the second year of the SOAS LLB from students who are currently studying the first year of LLB programmes at other English or Welsh universities. These applications must be made through UCAS.
Applicants are generally required to meet our standard high school entrance requirements but those who have taken the LNAT test and performed well and/or are working towards at least 2.1 level in their current LLB studies may also be considered. Each case will be considered by the admissions team on an individual basis taking into account all aspects of the application including the personal statement and reference which must be from the current university. The personal stement should include the motivation for transferring.
Students on the University of London External Programme must pass all four papers of the Intermediate examination of the LLB degree. These papers must all be taken on one occasion, and candidates must obtain a total of at least 200 marks overall. Candidates who meet this criterion are not guaranteed admission to the School, as the School considers the whole UCAS application, not just examination results
Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings
Start of programme: September
Mode of Attendance: Full-time
- Applicants with standard qualifications (such as A levels, International Baccalaureate or other High School qualifications considered equivalent to A levels) are not required to take the Law National Aptitude Test (LNAT), but the School of Law will consider making lower offers (eg AAA, AAB, ABB or 37, 36, 35 in International Baccalaureate) to candidates who do so and perform promisingly in that Test.
SOAS accepts students from a wide variety of backgrounds, as well as mature applicants and those with non-standard qualifications. Among these applicants those with Access to Law qualifications and SOAS Intermediate Certificate Course students are preferred.
- Interview Policy: We also encourage applicants with non-standard qualifications (including Access to Higher Education Diploma and Foundation Courses) all of whom are required to take the LNAT. We also encourage students taking the SOAS Foundation Courses at IFCELS to apply. Students offering level 3 BTEC qualifications either on their own or in combination will be required to take the LNAT.
Candidates with non-standard qualifications may be invited for interview.
- A Levels:
- A*AA - AAB
- 37 (6/6/6)
View alternative entry requirements
Access to HE: Minimum of 30 Level 3 Credits at Distinction (with LNAT)
Scottish Highers: AAAAA
Scottish Advanced Highers: AAA
Irish LC: 360 points from 5 Higher level subjects at grade C1 or above
Advanced Placement: 4 5 5 (Two semesters - UCAS Group A) plus US HSGD with GPA 3.0
Euro Bacc: 85%
French Bacc: 15/20
German Abitur: 1.5
Italy DES: 85/100
Austria Mat: 1.5
Polish Mat: Overall 80% including 3 extended level subjects
- 4 years
Students take 120 credits per year composed of core and optional modules, which allows for students to design their own intellectual journey while maintaining a strong grasp of the fundamentals.
In Year 1 students are introduced to the core elements and principles of the English legal system, and provided with the key analytical skills necessary for undertaking a demanding law degree program. During this first-year students’ will also be introduced to elements of legal principles and practice from other countries.
In the second and fourth years our students will be even more fully immersed in the distinctively SOAS program. Our students can choose from a wide array of optional courses that draw on the unique research expertise of our staff. The emphasis we place on choice, and research-led teaching, will allow our students to pursue a number of distinct specialisms as their degree progresses, but whichever path they choose to focus on the courses they study will all be imbued with that distinctive SOAS dimension, that stresses critical engagement and understanding of the role of law in the world at large.
In the third year students study Law or Language modules in a partner university abroad. Those enrolled on a named pathways will choose from partner universities for the pathway.
Students must pass All modules in Year 1 to progress to Year 2
Choose a module(s) from List of Modules below to the value of 30 credits
Students must take up to 30 credits of either language or non-language compulsory modules of the BA Southeast Asian Studies programme Year 1 or Year 2 or other modules ascertained from year to year.
Students study Law or Language modules in a partner university abroad. Those enrolled on a named pathways will choose from partner universities for the pathway.
Choose a module(s) from List of Year 4 Options below to the value of 30 credits
Choose related Language or Non-Language open option modules to the value of 30 credits
Choose a module(s) at another University of London (UoL) if not taught at SOAS to the value of 30 credits
Choose a module(s) from List of Year 4 Options below to the value of 60 credits
List of Modules (subject to availability)
List of Year 2 Optional Modules
List of Year 4 Optional Modules
Up to one 30-credit level 5 or level 6 LLB module in Law taught at another University of London Law School - King’s College, LSE, QMUL, UCL and Birkbeck - subject to approval and provided that a similar module is not taught at SOAS.
The information on the programme page reflects the intended programme structure against the given academic session. If you are a current student you can find structure information on the previous year link at the top of the page or through your Department. Please read the important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules.
Teaching and Learning
Teaching & Learning
Modules are taught through a combination of lectures and tutorials, usually two hours lecture and one hour tutorial a week. Sometimes, one follows the other in a three-hour bloc. Sometimes, the tutorial is at a different time or on a different day than the lecture.
Tutorials are sessions in which students are expected to present reports and take a lead in discussions.
Depending on the size of the class, some intermediate and final year modules are less strictly divided between a formal lecture and a tutorial discussion, and instead, the topic is briefly introduced by the lecturer, followed by a seminar discussion.
All full-time undergraduate programmes consist of 120 credits per year, in modules of 30 or 15 credits. They are taught over 10 or 20 weeks. The programme structure shows which modules are compulsory and which optional.
As a rough guide, 1 credit equals approximately 10 hours of work. Most of this will be independent study (see Approaches to teaching and learning at SOAS). It will also include class time, which may include lectures, seminars and other classes. Some subjects, such as learning a language, have more class time than others. In the Department of Law, many undergraduate modules have a weekly two hour lecture or seminar. Some modules may also had an additional hour of smaller group classes weekly or fortnightly.
More information is on the page for each module.
The Independent Study Project (ISP)
This can be taken by final-year students only. Like the Special Subject dissertation, its aim is to provide an opportunity for students to conduct original historical research on their own initiative, to engage in in-depth analysis of particular subjects and to use a range of primary historical sources. It involves no formal classes and is assessed by a single 10,000-word dissertation (including notes but excluding bibliography).
SOAS Library is one of the world's most important academic libraries for the study of Africa, Asia and the Middle East, attracting scholars from all over the world. The Library houses over 1.2 million volumes, together with significant archival holdings, special collections and a growing network of electronic resources.
The degree structure provides students with a qualifying law degree for the purposes of both the Solicitors Regulation Authority and Bar Standards Board and exempts students from the academic stage of legal training.
Skills gained include:
- specialist knowledge of comparative law, human rights, environmental law and international law
- the ability to think laterally and employ critical reasoning
- analytical skills
- problem-solving skills
- the ability to formulate sound arguments
- ability to interpret and explain complex information clearly
- communication and presentation skills
SOAS Law graduates have gone on to pursue careers directly related to law, or used their skills and expertise to take up professional and management careers in both the private and public sectors. The Law degree programmes have also enabled graduates to continue in the field of research either at SOAS or other institutions.
Find out more about Law Graduate Destinations
Graduates have gone on to work for a range of organisations including:
- Allen & Overy
- Clifford Chance
- Baker McKenzie
- United Nations
- Lloyds Banking Group
- Gibson Young Solicitors
- Liberty UK
- Slaughter and May
- CMS Cameron McKenna
Types of roles that graduates have gone on to do include:
- Trainee Solicitor
- Finance Manager
- Legal Researcher
- Financial Analyst
- Procurement Manager
- Tax Consultant
- Business Developer
- Recruitment Consultant
A Student's Perspective
SOAS has a wonderful environment that encourages you to learn everywhere you go and from everyone you meet. There are always events and lectures taking place, covering social, cultural and academic interests. No matter how niche your interests may be, there is something for everyone to get involved with!