Our Department of Law and Criminology and Department of Politics, International Relations and Philosophy have excellent reputations for research and teaching, and for engaging with policy makers in the legal profession and government, public bodies, journalists and other opinion formers.
This degree is for anyone looking to start a career in the law or in public affairs. You will gain an extensive knowledge of the foundations and content of the law of England and Wales and learn about the latest developments in both law and politics.
The degree covers all the elements required to achieve an LLB. You will explore topics such as the English Legal System, Public Law, Criminal Law and European Union Law. Politics modules include Introduction to Politics and Government and a wide range of more specialist second- and specialist final-year modules in policy, democratic practice and political theory.
- Understand the key features of English and European law.
- Develop key legal research and communication skills.
- Examine governments, party politics and political behaviour throughout the world.
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 Politics:
This module will introduce you to the academic study of politics and to the ‘real world’ of contemporary politics. As a foundational course, it will give you all the essential tools to understand the nature of politics and analyse the way different political systems work. You will be introduced to key concepts such as politics, power, rights, ideologies, democracy and representation, and will learn about the different actors, institutions and processes that make up politics today.
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.
- Criminal Law
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.
There are a number of optional course modules available during your degree studies. The following is a selection of optional course modules that are likely to be available. Please note that although the College will keep changes to a minimum, new modules may be offered or existing modules may be withdrawn, for example, in response to a change in staff. Applicants will be informed if any significant changes need to be made.Year 1
Optional modules in Politics may include:
In this module you will analyse the contemporary politics of the European Union and its institutions, amid the challenges of the triple crisis of economics, migration and Brexit. You will learn about the political history of European integration after 1949 and the contemporary theory of European integration. The first term will begin with an introduction to the European Union as a political system followed by an overview of the European Union's historical development. The second term will focus on contestation of the European Union and the theories that underpin this, in order to explain how the EU developed and the challenges that it faces. Topics will include Euroscepticism, party politics, public opinion, Brexit and EU-UK relations, and European Parliament elections. The theory sessions comprise of federalism, neo-functionalism, liberal intergovernmentalism and the new institutionalisms.
I in this module you will develop an understanding of contemporary British politics. You will look at the ways in which British government has evolved, how it continues to operate, and why it operates in the way it does. You will consider the causes and consequences of major political change in Britain and examine the underlying assumptions upon which theoretical disputes in political science are based.
In this module you will develop an understanding of some of the key concepts in political theory today. You will look at political obligation, civil disobedience, democracy, citizenship, equality, global justice, human rights, and freedom and toleration. You will consider important theorists including Berlin Rawls, Nozick, Sandel, Okin and Pettit, examining the recent major theoretical perspectives in the context of contemporary politics.
In this module you will develop an understanding of the themes, arguments, and interpretations of major political thinkers from the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. You will look at the works of Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Kant, Mill, Marx and Nietzsche and consider how the ideas articulated by these thinkers continue to underpin contemporary debates about the nature of freedom, human rights, value pluralism, popular sovereignty, state legitimacy, and the modern condition. You will also examine how study of these thinkers illuminates contemporary debates even where these debates no longer make reference to them.
In this module you will develop an understanding of how citizens, politicians and the media interact across Western democracies during both electoral and governing periods. You will look at the production and consumption of political news, consider election campaigns and their effects, and examine contemporary debates in political communication, including ethical issues.
In this module you will develop an understanding of the most important features of the history of the development of the non-West. You will look at the distinctive political dynamics characterising the contemporary non-West and consider the thoughts of prominent non-Western political thinkers.
Optional modules in Law may include:
- Law Dissertation
- Company Law
- Medical Law
- Advocacy and Court Practice
- Law of Evidence
- International and Comparative Human Rights Law
- Public International Law
- Family Law
- Intellectual Property Law
Optional modules in Politics may include:
In this module you will develop an understanding of regulation in the European Union, including delivery of policy and administration. You will look at how the world's largest market operates, with a focus on EU public policy, including de-regulation, re-regulation, budgets and spending. You will examine the concept of the single market, the Euro and its crisis, justice, home affairs and counter-terrorism, the EU budget, agriculture, regional development, and social and environmental policies.
- Radical Political Theory
- Young People's Politics
- Leadership, Power and the British Prime Minister
- Visual Politics
- American Political Development
- The Politics of Russia and Eastern Europe
- The Politics of International Development
- Issues in Democratic Theory
- Political Theories of Freedom
Party leaders, and their public image, are increasingly considered important for a party’s electoral success, for the smooth running of government and for regime legitimacy. Perhaps the most important variable for successful politicians is their ability to effectively communicate and connect with their audiences. This module will first, show you the techniques most frequently used my politicians, communicators and speechwriters to effectively deliver their messages in different contexts and settings. Next, you will analyse how these techniques have been used by the greatest leaders in the word to justify their regimes. By the end of the module you will be able to evaluate leadership styles during and after elections and design communication strategies that will deliver political messages effectively.
This module examines both the domestic and international politics of the environment. The first part of the module consists of defining the environmental problems faced globally, highlighting similarities and differences to other issues. This part also identifies the key actors, interests, and institutions that are necessary to understand the politics of climate change. The second part of the module focuses on three varieties of theories of environmental politics: collective action problems, distributional politics, and ideational conflict. The third part then examines a variety of topics in environmental politics, building upon the analytical approaches outlined in the first two parts of the course. The chosen topics allow for both understanding how politics shapes environmental outcomes, for example through international agreements, as well as how climate change and the environment affects political outcomes, for example by fostering political conflict.
This final-year half module offers students the opportunity to obtain an in-depth knowledge and understanding of the British parliament and its place in British democracy. It will help you to evaluate the work and role of Parliament and parliamentarians, appreciate ongoing debates about contemporary legislative practice, and engage critically with previous academic scholarship in this area. It will also help you to develop you own awareness and experience of conducting research.
This module is designed to introduce advanced undergraduates to the major themes of contemporary Latin American politics and, consequently, democracy and political development. Although the module does not assume that you already have knowledge of the region, you are expected to be familiar with basic concepts of comparative political analysis. While the module stresses the political aspects of the developmental process, its objective is to show the linkages between economic, social, cultural, and political variables--both at national and international levels.
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.
This module examines the contemporary literature on gender and politics, with a particular focus on women’s participation and representation in British politics. It introduces you to feminist theories of representation, debates over women’s interests, and feminist institutionalism. It applies these frameworks to consider why the number of women in our parliaments might matter and what difference – symbolic, substantive and affective – sex and gender make to elected political institutions, the policy process, political outcomes, and healthy democracies.
The politics of South Asia – India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh - are central to understanding some of the themes at the core of modern politics: poverty and development, security and warfare, migration and transnationalism, decolonisation and postcolonialism, the international economy and globalisation. This module deals with the social and political development of these countries since independence from British rule in 1947. We will analyse issues including caste politics, the role of religious violence and the place of women in politics and society. Sources will come from a range of disciplines – politics and IR, history, sociology, anthropology, novels and films. We will study regional cooperation and conflict including the troubled relationship between India and Pakistan over Kashmir and their nuclear status. By the end of the module you will have a specialised understanding of the major social, economic and political developments in the region.
Teaching & assessment
We use a variety of methods of assessment.
These might include an essay about a controversial issue, an advisory question where students have to apply the law to a particular scenario or a critical analysis of a recently published piece of research. Some modules involve oral presentations.
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 in April or May.
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.
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 6.0.
- 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.
For international students who do not meet the direct entry requirements, the International Study Centre offers the following pathway programmes:
● International Foundation Year - for progression to the first year of an undergraduate degree.
● International Year One - for progression to the second year of an undergraduate degree. You can join the International Year One in January 2021 and progress to degree study in September 2021.
Your future career
Upon completion of the course you will have acquired:
- A sound and extensive knowledge of the law of England and Wales
- A rigorous grounding in the fundamental doctrines and principles underpinning the common law
- A critical understanding of modern legal developments
- A knowledge and understanding of contemporary government and key political concepts
- An awareness of the major political and policy challenges facing governments and citizens.
A Law 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 academic and policy contexts.
Our graduates have entered into a range of professional careers including:
- Police, Prison and Probation Officers
- Social Worker
- Adult Guidance Worker
- Further Education Lecturer
- Housing Manager
- Local Government Officer
- Social Researcher
- Youth Worker.
Organisations employing our law graduates include John Lewis Partnership, BAA, Reed and Panasonic.
Fees & funding
Home (UK) students tuition fee per year*: £9,250
EU and International students tuition fee per year**: £17,700
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 2020/21, the fee will be £9,250 for that year. The fee for UK undergraduates starting in 2021/22 has not yet been confirmed.
**The Government has confirmed that EU nationals starting a degree in 2020/21 will pay the same fee as UK students for the duration of their course. For EU nationals starting a degree in 2021/22, the UK Government has recently confirmed that you will not be eligible to pay the same fees as UK students, nor be eligible for funding from the Student Loans Company. This means you will be classified as an international student. At Royal Holloway, we wish to support those students affected by this change in status through this transition. For eligible EU students starting their course with us in September 2021, we will award a fee reduction scholarship which brings your fee into line with the fee paid by UK students. This will apply for the duration of your course.
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. Fees shown above are for 2020/21 and are displayed for indicative purposes only.
***These estimated costs relate to studying this particular degree programme at Royal Holloway. Costs, such as accommodation, food, books and other learning materials and printing etc., have not been included.