Duration: 3 years full time
UCAS code: M1V5
Institution code: R72
Law with Philosophy (LLB)
Our Department of Law and Criminology and Department of Politics, International Relations and Philosophy within the School of Law and Social Sciences have excellent reputations for research and teaching.
This degree is aimed at you if you wish to study the disciplines of law and philosophy and develop a critical awareness of key moral and ethical issues relating to the law. It also demonstrates how philosophical though and methods can be applied in the analysis of key legal issues.
The degree covers all the elements required to achieve an LLB whilst offering flexibility and freedom for you to choose philosophical subjects that are of interest to you. You’ll explore topics such as the English Legal System, Law of Contract, Public Law, Human Rights and Jurisprudence whilst being able to choose modules relating to philosophy such as Empiricism and Rationalism and Aesthetics. In your first year you will study a number of core modules covering both law and philosophy whilst your second and third years will provide you with the opportunity to choose a number of optional modules tailored to your interests.
Upon completion of the course you will have acquired:
- Qualifying law degree
- An understanding of the key features of English and European law
- Key legal research and communication skills
- Key critical thinking skills to analyse and understand what informs central philosophical traditions
For students starting their LLB degree after 21 September 2021, the Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE) is the new way to qualify as a solicitor in England and Wales. Doing the SQE provides more flexibility in how you train to become a solicitor and we have secured an agreement for our students with a provider of the training needed after your degree, subject to terms and conditions. For students wishing to qualify as a barrister, the Common Protocol on legal education agreed between the Solicitors Regulatory Authority and the Bar Standards Board recognises Royal Holloway as a qualifying law degree provider, which means that on successful completion of this course you will have fulfilled the academic stage of training to become a barrister.
- Understand the key features of English and European law.
- Develop key legal research and communication skills.
From time to time, we make changes to our courses to improve the student and learning experience. If we make a significant change to your chosen course, we’ll let you know as soon as possible.
Core ModulesYear 1
You will take the following modules in Law:
Constitutions establish and control the powers of the state and regulate the relationship between the state and its citizens. This module examines the UK’s uncodified constitution, primarily considering the main characteristics of the British system of government, including the division of powers between the legislature, executive, and judiciary and between Westminster and the devolved regions; key constitutional concepts and their associated challenges, including Parliamentary sovereignty, conventions, the rule of law, and human rights protection before and after the Human Rights Act 1998; and how administrative law, particularly judicial review, controls the actions of the government and public authorities.
Contracts form the legal basis of commercial transactions. This module examines the legalities regarding the formation of contracts, the capacity to contract and the performance of legal obligations as well as remedies for breach of contract. In particular, you will examine the following areas: introduction to contract; invitation to treat; offer and acceptance; consideration; Promissory Estoppel; intentions to create legal relations; implied terms; express terms; exemption clauses; unfair contract terms; mistakes; types of misrepresentation; misrepresentation and remedies; duress; undue influence; frustration and force majeure; breach of contract and remedies; and third-party rights.
This module serves as an intensive introduction to the fundamentals of the legal system and legal study. It explores elements of the historical, philosophical and social context of the English Legal Systems, including issues of law, morality and justice. Additionally, various sources of law, including at national and international level, and through treaties, statute and case law will also be studied.
This module focuses on employability by involving students in practical skills sessions such as mooting, client interviewing, and negotiation. It is designed to develop core professional competencies that are required by the legal and non-legal professions.
You will take the following modules in Philosophy:
The ‘new philosophy’ of the seventeenth century set the modern philosophical agenda by asking fundamental questions concerning knowledge and understanding and the relation between science and other human endeavours, which subsequently became central to the European Enlightenment. This module aims to familiarise you with the origins of empiricist and rationalist/idealist thought, focussing on the work of Descartes and Locke. The module will enable you to develop your close reading skills, and will give you the opportunity to see how arguments are developed across the length of philosophical texts.
Knowledge is often thought to be the highest achievement of rational creatures, the thing that distinguishes us from other animals and is the basis of our ability to predict and control our environment. Beginning with the most Platonic of questions—‘what is knowledge?’—this course introduces you to basic topics in contemporary epistemology. Among the questions it goes on to address are: why is knowledge valuable?; how do we acquire knowledge and how do we pass it on to others?; how do we become better knowers?; is there such a thing as collective knowledge?; do animals have knowledge?; is there such a thing as knowledge at all?
You will take the following modules in Law:
This module examines the various types of interests which can exist in land, including the rights and duties under these interests, how they can be protected against third parties acquiring other interests in the land, and how they can be transferred. In particular, you will examine fundamental concepts; contracts relating to land; adverse possession; leases and licences; mortgages; co-ownership and the family home; freehold covenants; easements; and protection of interests in land (both registered and unregistered).
This module provides you with an introduction to the law of tort, focusing on general principles of tort liability in the law governing reputation and misuse of private information, negligence, intentional interference with the person and the law of nuisance. Specifically, you will develop an understanding in the following areas: the function and purpose of the law of tort; an introduction to the law of negligence and its importance in the law of tort; an examination of the duty of care and its breach including how is it manifests in specific torts such as employers liability, vicarious liability, occupiers liability, economic loss and psychiatric injury; an examination of the remaining aspects of negligence such as causation and remoteness; general defences; defamation and misuse of private information; trespass to the person including harassment; and finally, interference with property rights and enjoyment in the form of nuisance and the rule in Rylands v Fletcher.
In this module you will develop an understanding of the general nature of criminal law and learn how to apply the general principles of criminal liability, including the liability of accomplices. You will look at the elements of an offence and the various requirements for actus reus and mens rea, considering how they apply to various offences against the person or property. You will examine selected principal offences against the person, including fatal and non-fatal offences involving physical violence such as assaults and those involving sexual violence. You will also asses selected principal property offences, including theft, burglary, robbery and deception, and the inchoate offences and the liability of accomplices.
You will choose two modules in Philosophy from several options. These options include, but are not restricted to:
The module looks at key texts by Immanuel Kant which are the foundation of Modern European Philosophy. These texts raise questions concerning the status of human knowledge and the nature and justification of human action that have concerned philosophers ever since. The module considers Kant's Critique of Pure Reason. The core theme of the module is how philosophy responds to the situation in which it can no longer rely on theological support for its claims about truth and morality. This raises questions about the nature of the human subject that are evident in the conjunction of the massive success of the modern natural sciences with an abiding worry as to whether sceptical objections to establishing true knowledge can be overcome. Kant sees these issues in terms of 'transcendental philosophy' establishing the limits of knowledge by seeing what the necessary conditions of knowledge are.
In this module you will develop an understanding of how the rationalist and empiricist traditions in philosophy influence contemporary thought in the philosophy of mind. You will look at the continuing relevance of the mind-body problem to the question of what it is to be a human being and consider the connections between the analytic and European traditions in philosophy with respect to language, subjectivity, and the phenomenology of experience. You will also examine the importance of consciousness to contemporary debates in philosophy, psychology and cognitive science.
- Introduction to European Philosophy 2: The Critique of Idealism
- Varieties of Scepticism
This module will explore the central developments in modern philosophy occurring between the foundation of modern empiricism and rationalism by Locke and Descartes in the 17th century, and the emergence of Kant’s philosophical system in the late 18th century. The module will look at three of the key figures from the two traditions, exploring the key theories they expound, and the arguments used to support these theories. The figures covered will depend on the research specialisms of the module convenor, but a typical syllabus would involve reading works by Spinoza, Leibniz, and Hume. Looking at these philosophers over a number of weeks will allow you to develop your close reading skills, and to see how the arguments put forward by these philosophers work together to produce a systematic metaphysical worldview.
There has been a sharp revival of interest in fundamental questions relating to knowledge in recent years. These include the status of testimonial knowledge; the extent to which possession of knowledge requires one or more virtues; the suggestion that knowledge can be a group rather than an individual achievement; the idea that it is unjust to place people in positions where they cannot acquire knowledge that might empower them; the relationship between knowing how to do something and that something is the case; the role of bias, discrimination and presupposition. Building on the first year module on epistemology, this module focusses on one or more of these and investigates them in depth.
We will draw on issues in philosophy of science and ethics to understand and attempt to solve conceptual problems arising in medicine and the biomedical sciences. Among other things, we will consider what a disease is, whether we own our bodies (and body parts), what is involved in informed consent, and what is properly involved in decision-making in medicine.
You will take the following modules in Law:
This module examines the role of the European Union (EU) in the free movement of peoples, goods, services and capital. You will explore the legal enforcement of treaties on which the Union is based, with a consideration of both national and international systems. You will examine these treaties and the various EU institutions created under them (and incorporated into domestic law), examining their legal and policy-making powers. In particular, you will look at the laws and functions of the EU Institutions including the European Commission, the European Parliament, the European Council and the Court of Justice of the EU, and explore how free movement works across national borders and how the law of the EU is enforced.
In this module you will examine equity and its relationship with the common law. You will explore the concept of a trust and the laws associated with governing the creation and administration of trusts. You will explore the development of equity historically and explain how purpose trusts operate. You will look at how charitable trusts are created and consider the duties of trustees. You will consider the nature and scope of fiduciary obligations and consider when those obligations might be breached and the consequences of such. You will also consider particular types of trusts, including secret trusts, resulting and constructive trusts.
You will choose from several module options in Law. These options include, but are not restricted to:
- Law Dissertation
- Company Law
- Medical Law
- Advocacy and Court Practice
- Intellectual Property Law
- Asylum and Immigration
You will choose from several module options in Philosophy. These options include, but are not restricted to:
- Varieties of Scepticism
- Philosophy and the Arts
- Feminist Philosophy
German idealism sets itself the task of satisfying three main aims: systematizing Kant’s philosophy by finding necessary premises for its conclusions; providing a rigorous demonstration of the laws of thought; and ensuring that satisfying these aims satisfies the third aim of proving that reason is not the product of a purposeless, mechanistic world, but is itself an absolutely free purposive activity. This module investigates Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit as an attempt to satisfy these aims. We will explore Hegel’s distinctive and influential criticisms of Kant, his development of dialectic as a method of deriving the laws of thought, and his argument that reason is absolutely free. We will pay special attention to his successive, unfolding theses for the essentially self-conscious character of consciousness, the essentially recognitive character of self-consciousness, and the essentially historical character of recognition.
- Pragmatism and World Problems
Issues of free speech are amongst the most contentious in current political debate. The module aims to give you an in depth understanding of the nature, value and limits of freedom of speech, from the perspective of normative political theory. It is not a course in the law of free speech, nor about the free speech situation in any particular country. Though the module touches on both the latter, the aim instead, is to enable you to understand the values, norms and principles at issue in contexts where free speech is promoted, regulated, limited or denied- especially contexts where that choice is contentious. You will be encouraged to look beyond the headlines to explore the rich and varied academic scholarship on free speech, and to offer critical analyses of that scholarship. By the end of the module, you should be able to interrogate your own and others’ intuitive reactions in controversial cases of e.g. hate speech, and to develop a reasoned, nuanced approach to these issues.
See module options above.
Teaching & assessment
We use a variety of methods of teaching and assessment, including:
- Personal tutor in Law
- 75% modules in Law (core modules for qualifying degree) plus 25% modules in Philosophy
- Lectures, seminars, small-group tutorials, workshops, moot practice, fieldtrips, etc
- Diverse assessment methods from essays and exams to multiple choice questions, reports, reflective logs and oral presentations
- Emphasis on continuous feedback both orally and in writing
Assessment is both summative and formative, and you will be provided with detailed comments on essays and other coursework. Many modules also have a written examination.
Progression to the next year is dependent on passing the mandatory modules. The combination of quality and range of assessments helps our students to develop a wide portfolio of skills and learning helps students to achieve excellent degrees.
A Levels: AAB-ABB
- At least five GCSEs at grade A*-C or 9-4 including English and Mathematics.
Where an applicant is taking the EPQ alongside A-levels, the EPQ will be taken into consideration and result in lower A-level grades being required. For students who are from backgrounds or personal circumstances that mean they are generally less likely to go to university, you may be eligible for an alternative lower offer. Follow the link to learn more about our contextual offers.
We accept T-levels for admission to our undergraduate courses, with the following grades regarded as equivalent to our standard A-level requirements:
- AAA* – Distinction (A* on the core and distinction in the occupational specialism)
- AAA – Distinction
- BBB – Merit
- CCC – Pass (C or above on the core)
- DDD – Pass (D or E on the core)
Where a course specifies subject-specific requirements at A-level, T-level applicants are likely to be asked to offer this A-level alongside their T-level studies.
English language requirements
All teaching at Royal Holloway (apart from some language courses) is in English. You will therefore need to have good enough written and spoken English to cope with your studies right from the start.
The scores we require
- IELTS: 6.5 overall. Writing 6.0. Reading 6.0. No other subscore lower than 5.5.
- Pearson Test of English: 61 overall. 54 in writing. 54 in reading. No other subscore lower than 51.
- Trinity College London Integrated Skills in English (ISE): ISE III.
- Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) grade C.
For more information about country-specific entry requirements for your country please visit here.
Undergraduate preparation programme
For international students who do not meet the direct entry requirements, for this undergraduate degree, the Royal Holloway International Study Centre offers an International Foundation Year programme designed to develop your academic and English language skills.
Upon successful completion, you can progress to this degree at Royal Holloway, University of London.
Your future career
A law and philosophy degree at Royal Holloway makes you highly employable in the UK and Internationally. As well as a career in law, the transferable skills gained will form the basis of a career in the criminal justice agencies. You will be equipped with the knowledge, skills and experiences essential to advance your future career or move onto further study and pursue a career in research and evaluation in an academic context.
- Get involved in extra-curricular activities such as mooting, negotiation workshops, interviewing competitions, our student-led law gazette and our Legal Advice Centre
- Meet employers and alumni at our law fairs and networking events
Our graduates have gone on to careers with employers including law firms, the Crown Prosecution Service, the police, the probation service, the prison service and the National Crime Agency.
Law graduates are also working in a variety of organisations, including John Lewis Partnership, BAA, Reed and Panasonic.
Fees, funding & scholarships
Home (UK) students tuition fee per year*: £9,250
EU and international students tuition fee per year**: £18,700
Other essential costs***: TBC
How do I pay for it? Find out more about funding options, including loans, scholarships and bursaries. UK students who have already taken out a tuition fee loan for undergraduate study should check their eligibility for additional funding directly with the relevant awards body.
*The tuition fee for UK undergraduates is controlled by Government regulations. For students starting a degree in the academic year 2022/23, the fee is £9,250 for that year, and is provided here as a guide. The fee for UK undergraduates starting in 2023/24 has not yet been confirmed.
**The UK Government has confirmed that EU nationals are no longer eligible to pay the same fees as UK students, nor be eligible for funding from the Student Loans Company. This means you are classified as an international student. At Royal Holloway, we wish to support a transition for those students affected by this change in status. Please see the fees and funding page for more information.
Fees for international students may increase year-on-year in line with the rate of inflation. The policy at Royal Holloway is that any increases in fees will not exceed 5% for continuing students. For further information see fees and funding and our terms and conditions.
***These estimated costs relate to studying this particular degree at Royal Holloway during the 2021/22 academic year, and are included as a guide. Costs, such as accommodation, food, books and other learning materials and printing etc., have not been included.