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Law is a stimulating degree that sharpens your thinking and your powers of persuasion while giving you extensive legal knowledge. The European Legal Studies programme gives valuable added depth and a European dimension to your degree, as well as offering an unforgettable experience in another country, without any requirement to learn another language.
At Kent, we have one of the top law schools in the UK. Kent Law School is renowned for its world-leading research and its distinctive ‘critical approach’ that places law within the wider context of society. This creates an exciting environment in which to gain your Qualifying Law Degree.
Our degree programme
Students on the European Legal Studies degree spend their first two years at Kent, their third year at one of our European partner universities, and the fourth year back at Kent. During your year abroad you are taught entirely in English.
You study the detail of the law, as well as its history. You analyse judgments and legal developments while taking into account the political, ethical and social dimensions of the law. This ‘critical approach’ enhances what is already a fascinating subject. It helps you to fully understand the law and there are many chances to discuss and debate its role in society.
Teaching is via lectures, small group seminars and case studies. Our popular mooting programme gives you the chance to practise your skills in a simulated courtroom, with a lecturer acting as the ‘judge’.
Kent Law School has a supportive environment and your lecturers have office hours where they provide guidance on a one-to-one basis. We also provide:
- the Skills Hub offering tailored guidance, five days a week in term time
- a law librarian to guide you in the use of online and printed resources.
If you are interested in developing your skills in a modern European language, we also offer the following three-year programmes:
In addition to the European Legal Studies programme, we also offer English and French Law, which includes a year at one of our partner universities in France, where teaching is in French.
Alternatively, you can study for a year in Asia or Canada on our International Legal Studies with a Year Abroad programme. Teaching on this programme is in English.
Kent Law Clinic is based within our new, purpose-built building. It is ideal for developing your practical skills and has a replica courtroom for mooting.
Our academic resources are extensive. You have access to a wide range of materials, including:
- collections of legislation and case law in UK, European and international law
- Lawlinks, our award-winning gateway to online legal resources
- major legal databases that are used on a daily basis in the legal profession
- audio recordings of your lectures.
There are plenty of activities related to your studies, including:
- Kent Student Law Society for aspiring solicitors
- Kent Temple Law Society for those intending to go to the Bar
- Kent Critical Law Society
- Kent Canadian Law Society
- Nigerian Law Society
- European Law Students’ Association (ELSA) Kent.
Kent Student Law Society and Kent Temple Law Society arrange events that are attended by members of the legal profession, many of them Kent alumni. They include QCs, judges, barristers, solicitors and members of the Bar Council and Law Society.
In previous years, events have included the:
- Kent Law Fair
- Kent Law Ball
- Temple Dinner.
Kent Critical Law Society has also put on events where students, academics and practitioners can debate topical – and often controversial – legal issues.
We have approximately 100 legal professionals registered on our Professional Mentoring Scheme, and leading law firms visit the campus to attend the annual Kent Law Fair, offer mock interviews, or run workshops.
We regularly hold careers talks given by practising lawyers (many of whom are Kent alumni) and host guest lectures given by some of the leading legal figures of our time.
Law at Kent was ranked 14th in The Times Good University Guide 2017 and 15th in The Guardian University Guide 2017. In the National Student Survey 2016, 91% of Law students at Kent were satisfied with the overall quality of their course.
For graduate prospects, Law at Kent was ranked 5th in The Guardian University Guide 2017. Of Law students who graduated from Kent in 2015, 94% were in work or further study within six months (DLHE).
The course structure below gives a flavour of the modules that will be available to you and provides details of the content of this programme. This listing is based on the current curriculum and may change year to year in response to new curriculum developments and innovation.
Please note that the first-year modules listed for this degree are compulsory. Contact us for more detail about the exact composition of this programme of study.
Going abroad as part of your degree is an amazing experience and a chance to develop personally, academically and professionally. You experience a different culture, gain a new academic perspective, establish international contacts and enhance your employability.
Students on a four-year degree programme spend a year between Stages 2 and 3 at one of our partner universities in Europe. For a full list, please see Go Abroad. Places are subject to availability, language and degree programme.
You are expected to adhere to any academic progression requirements in Stages 1 and 2 to proceed to the Year Abroad. If the requirement is not met, you will be transferred to the equivalent three-year programme. The Year Abroad is assessed on a pass/fail basis and will not count towards your final degree classification.
Students normally take the equivalent of 120 Kent credits worth of modules during their year abroad (which is 60 European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) credits under the EU's ERASMUS arrangements). Accordingly, students are required to undertake the equivalent amount of studies during their year abroad as at Kent. The majority of modules taken during the year abroad should be Law modules.
Teaching and assessment
Kent Law School emphasises research-led teaching which means that the modules taught are at the leading edge of new legal and policy developments. You are taught by as many of our leading researchers as possible. We also have one of the best student-to-staff ratios in the country, which allows small, weekly seminar-group teaching in all of our core modules, where you are actively encouraged to take part.
Most modules are assessed by end-of-year examinations and continuous assessment, the ratio varying from module to module, with Kent encouraging and supporting the development of research and written skills. Some modules include an optional research-based dissertation that counts for 45% or, in some cases, 100% of the final mark.
Assessment can also incorporate assessment through oral presentation and argument, often in the style of legal practice (such as mooting), and client-based work and reflection through our Law Clinic.
The programme aims to:
- attract and meet the needs of those contemplating a career in the legal professions or those motivated primarily by an intellectual interest in English law, and the desire to understand the workings of another jurisdiction while pursuing courses with a European, international or comparative dimension
- widen participation in higher education by offering a variety of entry routes
- provide students with a grounding in English law and the opportunity to acquire an understanding of other legal systems
- encourage an interest in European culture and knowledge of a relevant European language
- provide knowledge and understanding of the principal institutions and procedures of the English legal system
- provide knowledge of the major concepts and principles of English law, the law of the European Union, and the European Convention on Human Rights
- develop a critical awareness of law in its comparative, historical, socio-economic and political contexts, and introduce a range of different theoretical approaches to the study of law
- offer a range of modules covering the foundations of legal knowledge, as defined by the Law Society and the Bar Council, which will enable students who successfully complete them to obtain exemption from the initial or academic stage of training for entry into the legal professions
- offer students an opportunity to study Law in a Dutch, Danish or Norwegian law faculty (Amsterdam, Maastricht, Copenhagen or Bergen) where they will obtain a diploma depending upon their individual ability
- provide teaching informed by current research and scholarship, which requires students to engage with aspects of work at the frontiers of knowledge
- offer the opportunity to acquire direct experience of legal practice and critically reflect on it through participation in the University Law Clinic
- enable students to manage their own learning and carry out independent research
- develop critical, analytical, functional, comparative and problem-solving skills
- develop personal, communication, research and other key skills appropriate for employment in the legal professions and other fields.
Knowledge and understanding
You gain knowledge and understanding of:
- the English legal system, including its institutions, procedures and sources of law
- the law of the European Union and the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR)
- the concepts, principles and rules of a range of English legal subjects, including an in-depth knowledge of some areas of law and, depending on options, the law of the EU, the ECHR, international law and comparative law
- the concepts, principles and rules of Public Law, the Law of Obligations and specialised areas of law as studied in a Dutch, Danish or Norwegian Law faculty
- the relationship between law and the historical, linguistic, socio-economic and political contexts in which it operates
- theoretical, comparative and critical perspectives which can be applied to the study of law.
You gain the intellectual abilities to:
- effectively apply knowledge to analyse complex issues
- recognise and rank items and issues in terms of their relevance and importance
- collect and synthesise information from a variety of English, European and international sources
- formulate and sustain a complex argument and support it with appropriate evidence
- recognise potential alternative solutions to problems and make a reasoned choice between them
- independently acquire knowledge and understanding
- demonstrate independent thought and critically challenge received understandings and conclusions
- reflect constructively on your own learning processes.
You gain subject-specific skills in the following:
- application and problem solving: recognise the legal issues arising in a factual situation of limited complexity in English, European, Comparative and International law; identify and apply the case and statute law relevant to it; provide an informed, reasoned opinion on the possible legal actions arising from it, and their likelihood of success
- Sources, research and evaluation: identify the legal and related issues to be researched; locate and use primary and secondary legal and other relevant sources; conduct independent legal research using a range of resources, paper and electronic; critically evaluate an area of law both doctrinally and in terms of its socio-economic and other consequences; function in both the English and the broader milieu of European, Comparative and International law.
You gain transferable skills in the following:
- communication and literacy: use, both orally and in writing, the English language in relation to legal matters and generally, with care, accuracy and effectiveness; engage constructively and effectively in arguments and discussions of complex matters in English law and European, International and Comparative law; give a clear and coherent presentation on a topic using appropriate supporting materials; read complex legal and non-legal materials; employ the correct legal terminology and methods of citation and referencing for legal and other academic materials and produce work in appropriate formats
- teamwork, numeracy and IT: work collaboratively in groups to achieve defined tasks, respond to different points of view and negotiate outcomes; present and evaluate information in a numerical or statistical form; word-process documents and use a range of electronic databases and other information sources.
The University has an excellent employment record, with Kent Law School graduates commanding some of the highest starting salaries in the UK. Law graduates can go into a variety of careers, including:
- solicitor or barrister in a private practice
- company lawyer
- legal work within government
- legal work within the charity and NGO sector
- non-legal careers, such as banking, finance and management.
Help finding a job
Kent Law School has an active careers programme – leading law firms and prominent members of the legal profession visit the University to meet our students. We also work with employers to create work placement opportunities for our students.
The Law School's dedicated Employability and Careers Development Officer can give you advice on how to:
- apply for jobs
- write a good CV
- perform well in interviews.
You also have access to the University's friendly Careers and Employability Service.
Our award-winning Kent Law Clinic gives local people access to free legal advice and representation. As a student, this gives you the chance to work on real cases under the guidance of qualified lawyers. You take on clients and sometimes have the chance to act as the client’s advocate in court or at a legal tribunal.
Our approach to law helps you to develop:
- a detailed knowledge of the law
- sophisticated legal research and writing skills
- practical skills in mediation, negotiation and interviewing clients.
You gain intellectual, analytical and practical skills that are vital to lawyers but also useful in many other professions. These include the ability to:
- think critically
- communicate your ideas and opinions
- manage your time effectively
- work independently or as part of a team.
You can also gain extra skills by signing up for one of our Kent Extra activities, such as learning a language or volunteering.
This programme leads to a Qualifying Law Degree (QLD). A QLD is recognised by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and the Bar Standards Board as satisfying the first (or ‘Academic’) stage of training required to qualify as a solicitor or barrister in England and Wales.
Please note: the legal education required by solicitors and barristers in England and Wales is currently under independent review. This may impact upon the role of your law degree as part of your professional training process. More information is available from the Solicitors Regulation Authority and the Bar Standards Board.
For graduate prospects, Law at Kent was ranked 5th in The Guardian University Guide 2017. Of Law students who graduated from Kent in 2015, 94% were in work or further study within six months (DLHE).
According to Which? University (2017), the average starting salary for graduates of this degree is ‘high’ at £20,000.
The University will consider applications from students offering a wide range of qualifications. Students offering alternative qualifications should contact us for further advice.
It is not possible to offer places to all students who meet this typical offer/minimum requirement.
New GCSE grades
If you’ve taken exams under the new GCSE grading system, please see our conversion table to convert your GCSE grades.
|Typical offer/minimum requirement
|Access to HE Diploma
The University will not necessarily make conditional offers to all Access candidates but will continue to assess them on an individual basis.
If we make you an offer, you will need to obtain/pass the overall Access to Higher Education Diploma and may also be required to obtain a proportion of the total level 3 credits and/or credits in particular subjects at merit grade or above
|BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma (formerly BTEC National Diploma)
The University will consider applicants holding BTEC National Diploma and Extended National Diploma Qualifications (QCF; NQF; OCR) on a case-by-case basis. Please contact us for further advice on your individual circumstances.
34 points overall or 17 points at HL
The University welcomes applications from international students. Our international recruitment team can guide you on entry requirements. See our International Student website for further information about entry requirements for your country.
If you need to increase your level of qualification ready for undergraduate study, we offer a number of International Foundation Programmes.
Meet our staff in your country
For more advise about applying to Kent, you can meet our staff at a range of international events.
English Language Requirements
Please see our English language entry requirements web page.
Please note that if you are required to meet an English language condition, we offer a number of 'pre-sessional' courses in English for Academic Purposes. You attend these courses before starting your degree programme.
General entry requirements
Please also see our general entry requirements.
The 2017/18 tuition fees for this programme are:
For details of when and how to pay fees and charges, please see our Student Finance Guide.
UK/EU fee paying students
The Government has announced changes to allow undergraduate tuition fees to rise in line with inflation from 2017/18.
In accordance with changes announced by the UK Government, we are increasing our 2017/18 regulated full-time tuition fees for new and returning UK/EU fee paying undergraduates from £9,000 to £9,250. The equivalent part-time fees for these courses will also rise from £4,500 to £4,625. This was subject to us satisfying the Government's Teaching Excellence Framework and the access regulator's requirements. This fee will ensure the continued provision of high-quality education.
For students continuing on this programme, fees will increase year on year by no more than RPI + 3% in each academic year of study except where regulated.*
The University will assess your fee status as part of the application process. If you are uncertain about your fee status you may wish to seek advice from UKCISA before applying.
Fees for Year Abroad/Industry
As a guide only, UK/EU/International students on an approved year abroad for the full 2017/18 academic year pay an annual fee of £1,350 to Kent for that year. Students studying abroad for less than one academic year will pay full fees according to their fee status.
Please note that for 2017/18 entrants the University will increase the standard year in industry fee for home/EU/international students to £1,350.
General additional costs
Kent offers generous financial support schemes to assist eligible undergraduate students during their studies. See our funding page for more details.
You may be eligible for government finance to help pay for the costs of studying. See the Government's student finance website.
The Government has confirmed that EU students applying for university places in the 2017 to 2018 academic year will still have access to student funding support for the duration of their course.
Scholarships are available for excellence in academic performance, sport and music and are awarded on merit. For further information on the range of awards available and to make an application see our scholarships website.
The Kent Scholarship for Academic Excellence
At Kent we recognise, encourage and reward excellence. We have created the Kent Scholarship for Academic Excellence. The scholarship will be awarded to any applicant who achieves a minimum of AAA over three A levels, or the equivalent qualifications (including BTEC and IB) as specified on our scholarships pages.
The scholarship is also extended to those who achieve AAB at A level (or specified equivalents) where one of the subjects is either Mathematics or a Modern Foreign Language. Please review the eligibility criteria.