Law is like an elixir for driven people who value justice. Studying Law and then practising it involves a lot of social responsibility, but the rewards are even bigger.
If you want to advance your legal career, one recipe that will do the trick is pursuing a Master’s degree abroad. And the key ingredient to that recipe is an application that will blow everyone’s mind. Here are 5 elements of a Master’s in Law application that you should always take into account.
1. Decide on the right university for a Master’s in Law
First things first. If you want to study Law abroad, you’ll need to find out which university is best for you. When you make your decision, you should consider the country, the city, the university reputation, tuition fees and if the university has good Law degrees available for international students.
Some international universities that have open applications for Law programmes to which you can apply via our portal right now are:
- The University of Western Australia
- Taylor's University, in Malaysia
- Royal Roads University, in Canada
- Koc University, in Turkey
- University of West London, in the UK
- University of Portsmouth, in the UK
- The University of Law Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Would you rather take an online Law Master's? Here are some good universities offering distance learning law studies:
2. General admission requirements for an L.L.M degree
The general admission requirements for a Master’s degree in Law are holding a relevant Bachelor’s and good English-skills.
What does a relevant Bachelor’s degree mean? It depends. Some universities explicitly require only a Law Bachelor’s. Others are more flexible and accept undergraduate degrees in Social Sciences, Humanities but which included Law courses.
Others yet accept diplomas in Engineering, Natural Sciences, Finances and so on – as long as the Master’s focuses on law practice in that field. Examples of such degrees are: Environmental Law, Financial Law, Medical Law, etc. In fact, universities might prefer that you have a non-law degree in the case of such programmes.
Application documents for Law Masters
Paying attention to the application documents is a key aspect – bureaucracy still matters, and we can’t change that. Most recurrent docs on Law programmes admission pages are:
- University Diploma or recognised Access/Foundation course
- Transcripts (from all the Universities previously attended)
- Copy of passport and/or national ID
- Recent photographs
- GRE Score/GPA Scores
- Language certificates
- CV showing a relevant professional qualification
- Personal Statement
- One academic reference
- A research proposal
These documents might vary depending on the programme and university, so you should always check them carefully on the programme page and start gathering them in advance.
3. Exam requirements for a Master’s in Law
English Language Exams
Good English skills are always a must when doing a Master’s abroad. When it comes to a Law degree you should definitely brush up on your legal slang. Most universities accept the following language exams and minimum scores:
- TOEFL iBT ®: 88
- TOEFL®PBT: 570
- IELTS: 6.5 – 7.0
- C1 Advanced: 180
If you are not quite there yet, you should take a language course and retake the exam before the application. A way out of this is to have finished an English-taught Bachelor’s in Law or to come from an English-speaking country.
The GPA is your Grade Point Average from previous studies. Most Law programmes that require your GPA mention the minimum score of 'B+' (3.33/4.33), especially if you have a pursued a Law degree. Another accepted exam score is the CGPA- Cumulative Grade Point Average which is calculated differently than the GPA. The minimum CGPA score to fit the admission requirements is usually 2.50 (out of 4.00).
4. Special requirements for a Master’s in Law
Previous work experience
International universities place a lot of emphasis on work experience or volunteering in a relevant field. Ideally, you should have about 2 years of relevant professional experience. This could also include research projects.
This experience does not necessarily have to be in the legal sector. For example, for a Human Rights Law Master’s, you might be required to have experience within human rights organisations, whereas for a Commercial Law Masters you might be required experience in the business sector.
Preparation courses and graduate diplomas
If you haven’t graduated from a Law-related Bachelor’s, some universities might require you to have taken a preparation course, so that you are on the same level as the other students.
And if you really want to impress your admission commission and show them your interest in becoming a law expert you can also take some post-grad courses that help you specialise in certain Law areas after a Bachelor’s in Law.
Interviews are a common part of the application to a Master’s in Law, especially if you don’t have a Bachelor’s in Law, but you have legal or relevant work experience. During the interview, you’ll talk about your practical knowledge and experience, about your professional plans and your reasons to apply to that particular graduate degree. If your Master’s is focused on legal research you’ll also have to talk about how your research proposal fits the programme.
You can also check out the Studyportals Scholarship to get some help on financing your studies abroad.