School of Law

Undergraduate study

Students laughing at the University of Essex

Giving you the tools for social change

Our School of Law pushes boundaries and challenges existing laws and policies in the pursuit of justice.

Whether you’re interested in becoming a solicitor, barrister, property conveyancer, or an advocate for human rights, if the rule of law and justice is something you care about, a career in the legal profession could be for you.

When you study an undergraduate law degree at Essex, you can choose from a variety of courses and modules which combine in-depth knowledge in law with other areas including finance, politics, human rights, criminology, economics, business, and philosophy, giving you the opportunity to pursue a career in a variety of roles.

As a law student at Essex, you’ll join an exciting and diverse community of students and staff from a wide range of backgrounds and cultures. You’ll be taught by expert academics who are prominent scholars in human rights, public law, business law, criminal justice, health law, technology law, and socio-legal studies, who actively advise and act on behalf of governments, NGOs, national and regional human rights bodies and international organisations all over the world.

Our undergraduate degrees are rigorous, intense, and intellectually stimulating, so you can be confident that whichever path your future leads you down, an Essex law degree will prepare you for it.

Want to join us in October 2021? Find out how to apply.

Explore our undergraduate courses
Why choose us?
  • Essex is ranked 13th for Law in the UK in THE World University Rankings (2021)
  • 85% of our law students are in employment or further study (Graduate Outcomes 2020)
  • Gain practical experience with our Essex Law Clinic and Human Rights Clinic

Undergraduate study

There are many benefits of studying a law degree in preparation for your legal career. There are many more as to why Essex should be your choice. At Essex, your education is underpinned by our commitment to justice, our interdisciplinary approach to learning, and our ethos of being more daring, and experimental.

Throughout your undergraduate degree, you’ll study a wide range of areas related to law. And, with the range of courses and modules available for you to choose from, you’ll also have the chance to explore the law that interests you. This means that you have the opportunity to follow a specific pathway, for example, corporate law or human rights law, or a broader pathway where you can explore different areas within law, for example, a combination of politics, criminology and the environment.

You’ll be able to benefit from exciting opportunities including working in our Law Clinic, participating in research projects within our internationally recognised Human Rights Centre, and through study abroad and placements. These experiences will give you a deeper understanding of how laws can influence human behaviour and the development of society at large. It will also prepare you for becoming an active contributor to our rapidly developing world.

After you've completed your degree, you'll have developed the necessary skills to carve out an impressive legal career and help shape the future of society. Whether it's working in politics, charities, or property and international trade, or taking the next steps into a career as a solicitor or barrister, there is an enormous range of opportunities in a diverse range of industries for a law graduate.

 

Explore undergraduate courses Explore law careers

Is an undergraduate law degree for me?

If one of the following statements describe you, an undergraduate law degree could be right for you:

  • You're passionate about justice and human rights.
  • You thrive in a debate or enjoy negotiating whilst considering different views.
  • You're interested in UK and French constitutional law.
  • You would like to learn about equity and trusts, and the international business environment.
  • You have a curious mind and are keen to learn more about political philosophy, analysing moral and legal ethics and justice.
  • Criminal liability, government power and policing and punishment are areas that interest you.
  • A career in commercial law, international trade law or contract law would suit you.
  • You're interested in politics and would like to learn more about environmental law, copyright and trademark law and concepts in political science.
  • You want a career in the legal profession and want to have the benefits and experience that a degree can provide you with.
  • You want to learn from leading academics in law and human rights.
  • You'd like to study law but already have a degree and are looking for a comprehensive training in law over a concentrated two-year period.
  • Access to flexible study is important to you (part-time and full-time available).
  • You want to benefit from strong links, double-degrees and partnerships with other top-ranking higher education institutions all over the world, including Canada, France, and South-East Asia.
  • You'd like to experience both academic learning and real-life work experience.
  • You'd like to integrate your undergraduate and masters study.

 

Browse our undergraduate courses

Which courses would be best suited to me?

There are a huge variety of courses available, from our flagship LLB Law, to combined law courses with business, criminology, finance, politicshuman rights, and philosophy. You can also study English and French Law, an integrated masters, or, if you've already got a degree and want to transition into law, you could consider our two-year Law (Senior Status) degree,

We would encourage you to browse through our courses and explore the module options. It’s a great way to see which areas of law spark your interest and will help you narrow down which course is right for you. Our careers page has lots of useful information on the future for law graduates too, and the routes to professional qualifications if you're interested in becoming a solicitor, barrister or a licensed conveyancer for example.

If you have any questions, please do contact our friendly and supportive professional services team as they would love to hear from you.

You could also have a browse of the research taking place within our School and gain an insight into the variety of research and practice our academics, and your lecturers are involved in.

I’d like to become a solicitor or barrister but I’m not sure on the process?

How to become a solicitor

For 2020/21 entry, our LLB degrees are recognised by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) as a qualifying law degree (QLD) which is the academic stage required in order to become a solicitor. The training requirement of the solicitor’s profession is currently under review with the SRA planning reforms to the process for qualifying as a solicitor which are due to take effect from 2021. However, any student who commences a QLD before these changes take effect will be able to then complete their solicitor training under the existing framework.

How to become a barrister

The Bar Standards Board (BSB) regulates training to become a barrister. New qualification rules are currently being introduced (between 2019-21). The new framework for qualifying to become a barrister will continue to require an undergraduate law degree (or an undergraduate degree in a different subject area followed by a Graduate Diploma in Law). The requirements for the academic stage of training are set by the BSB. Our LLB degrees meet these requirements and, therefore, meet the academic component of training to become a barrister.

 

Learn more about professional qualifications Explore undergraduate courses

I've found my ideal course, how do I apply?

Applying to Essex couldn't be easier or more straight forward. For all the information you need to know about applying for your degree, what to include in your application, information for EU and international students, and guidance for applicants relating to COVID-19, this can be found on our dedicated webpage amongst a wealth of further resources to help get you started. Want an insight into what it's like to study here? Watch our talks, tasters and webinars.

 

How to apply Apply via UCAS

Law Degree Transfer Programme

Are you a student at one of our partner institutions? You're are able to come to Essex as part of the Law Degree Transfer Programme.

Abena Agyemang Prempeh
Abena Prempah - LLB LAW

Since graduating from Essex, Abena has volunteered as a wellbeing ambassador, and also completed an internship in a legal firm in Ghana.

Read her story

Which opportunities will I receive as a law student?

Join student societies

 

There are lots of exciting student-led societies for you to get involved with at Essex. Joining a society is a great opportunity for you to network, make friends, improve your communication skills, social skills, public speaking, negotiation, and research skills. It also gives you the opportunity to participate in events, including career inspired events and inspiring talks from our alumni. Our student societies are a huge part of our culture at Essex and are an integral part of our Essex family.

Societies include:

 

Explore all student societies

Study abroad and placements

Study abroad

Many of our undergraduate courses offer a study abroad option allowing you to spend a year at a partner university across the world, including in Europe, the United States, Australia, Hong Kong and Canada. Study abroad takes place in the third year of your degree before returning to Essex for your fourth year.

You will also have the opportunity to study a double-degree in countries including Canada, France, and South-East Asia. Although many of our partner universities teach in English, study abroad can also be an ideal opportunity to enhance existing language skills in addition to immersing yourself in a new cultural environment.

As well as being a fantastic experience, study abroad enhances your employability and widens your opportunities after graduation. A period of study abroad on your CV tells employers that you are mature, adaptable, organised and independent. 

Learn more about studying abroad, and if you have any questions about how this is affected by COVID-19, you can read our FAQs.

 

Learn more about studying abroad

Placements

You can choose to include a placement year in your degree, which is an excellent idea if you're looking to gain real-life experience as part of your degree. It will also help you make industry contacts, and get an idea about the type of career that may interest you after you graduate.

If you would prefer to take on a shorter placement, rather than a full a year, the University's Student Development Team can help you find out about other work experience, internships and volunteering opportunities available.

 

Learn more about placements

Join in our events

You're encouraged to attend our weekly programme of Law and Human Rights Centre seminars which are a great opportunity to hear first hand from professionals in the legal sector, and will help to expand your knowledge of wider debates in legal research and practice.

 

Browse our upcoming law and human rights events

Preparation for life after graduation

Our courses equip you with many skills that employers are looking for and enable you to progress into a variety of legal professions. You can gain a head-start in your career and choose our work-based learning module at a law firm or a local council in your third year, but, places are in high demand! Firms will expect to see your tenacity and your aptitude, but that's what working in the legal world is all about, right?

At Essex, you will also have access to the Careers Service. The Careers Service offers you the chance to develop your employability through unique experiences and opportunities such as helping you to find placements and internships, and opportunities like the Big Essex Award. We recommend getting up to scratch with all the additional ways we, at Essex, can support your development.

 

Explore opportunities from the Careers Services
Zina Younes, smiling, sitting outside with a red brick house behind
“I knew I was going to benefit greatly from the wisdom and experience of my lecturers who have lived up to my expectations and inspired me continuously through their passion, dedication and accomplishments.”
Zina Younes LLB Law with Human Rights, 2020
Get in touch
Get in touch
Nikos Vogiatzis Undergraduate Recruitment Lead
School of Law
Undergraduate Student Administrators Law Education team
School of Law