The University of Bristol Law School
How highly is the University of Bristol Law School rated?
The Law School is committed to excellence and innovation in teaching, and to ensuring that law students’ learning experience is both stimulating and challenging. In recognition of these high standards, the Law School was awarded a rating of ‘Excellent’ in its most recent Teaching Quality Assessment. In the most recent assessment of research, the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, the Law School was confirmed to be among the very best law schools in the UK in terms of research capacity and performance. In the most recent subject rankings published by the Time Higher Education (THE) on 1 January 2015, which take account of both REF GPA and number and proportion of staff entered from among those eligible, Law School comes 5th after LSE, Cambridge, UCL and Oxford. From a student perspective, studying law at the University of Bristol means being taught by a range of able academics working at the cutting edge of their research fields, bringing world-class legal expertise directly into the classroom.
How many students are admitted each year?
We admit over 250 home (EU/UK) students and over 100 overseas (non-EU) students each year. At the end of the first year, approximately 30 students transfer to the Law with Study in Continental Europe course, ten students onto the Law with Study Abroad course and three students spend a year in Japan. We admit around 13 students on to the Law and French/German degree courses.
All admissions related information is available under policies, procedures and regulations for undergraduate students.
Course structure, teaching, and assessment
How long is the course?
Course duration for each LLB can be found on their respective prospectus.
How will I be taught and assessed?
With the exception of Introduction to Law, all law units are taught across the whole academic year (October-June). Law units are taught through a combination of lectures (50 minutes), tutorials (50 minutes) and/or seminars (100 minutes).
The Law School uses a mixture of examinations and coursework (extended essays). Every final year LLB student must complete a Final Year Research Project.
How much work will I have to do?
In total, students are expected to spend at least 40 hours per week on their studies.
Will I receive feedback on written work?
Yes. All units provide the opportunity to submit a practice essay and/or to take a mock examination. Your tutors will provide you with written feedback on your performance in these exercises.
Will I have the opportunity to study optional units?
Yes. Most students have the opportunity to study optional units during their second and final years. The Course Catalogue has comprehensive information on both mandatory and optional units for each LLB, including which options can be chosen in certain years of study.
How are degrees classified?
The classification of degrees is determined on the basis of units taken in the second and final years, and also, in some cases, the year abroad. Degrees are classified in the following way:
- 1st – 70% or above
- 2.1 – 60%-69%
- 2.2 – 50%-59%
- 3 – 40%-49%
- Fail – 39% or below.
Is there student representation in decision making in the Law School?
Yes. Students have the opportunity to express their views through the Staff-Student Liaison Committee. The Staff-Student Liaison Committee meets five times a year giving student representatives the opportunity to raise concerns that can be addressed swiftly during the academic year.
Study abroad/in continental Europe
How do the Law and French/Law and German degree courses differ from the Law with Study in Continental Europe course?
All three degree courses offer the opportunity for students to study Law courses abroad at one of our partner universities. The difference is primarily in the units studied during the three years at Bristol. Students on the Law with Study in Continental Europe course study law during the three years in Bristol. Students on the Law and French and Law and German degree courses study both Law and French/German language and literature.
What will I study during my year abroad?
Students will spend their third year studying law at a European university in the case of the Law with Study in Continental Europe degree and at a non-European university in the case of the Law with Study Abroad degree.
Progression and future opportunities
Does a Law degree allow me to practice as a lawyer/solicitor?
All the degrees offered by the Law School are ‘qualifying law degrees’. This means that our students are exempt from the academic stage of professional legal training. For more information on professional training, please contact the Bar Standards Board if you are interested in becoming a barrister, or the Solicitors Regulation Authority if you are interested in becoming a solicitor.
The route to qualifying as a solicitor is changing, with the Solicitors Regulation Authority introducing a new Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQE) for applicants studying law from 2020 onwards. Read more about the new route to qualification and how this may affect you in the future.
The majority of our graduates go on to have legal careers, mainly based in the City of London. However, a significant minority of our graduates choose alternative careers, for example, in government, academia or management.
Does a Law degree from Bristol allow me to practice in another country?
All the degrees offered by the Law School are recognised by the Law Society and the Bar Council as ‘qualifying law degrees’ for practice in England and Wales. If you wish to practice in another jurisdiction, you should contact the regulatory body for that jurisdiction.
Do all law graduates from Bristol become lawyers?
The majority of our graduates go on to have legal careers, mainly based the City of London. However, a significant minority of our graduates choose alternative careers, for example, in government, academia, accountancy, banking, insurance, management consultancy, retail management, health and welfare, computing, teaching and so on.
Do you have a fast-track Law degree?
The Law School offers a two-year conversion course intended for non-law graduates or law graduates from other countries who wish to acquire a thorough grounding in English Law. This conversion course is a postgraduate law degree. For more information, please consult our section on postgraduate taught degrees.
Fees and Funding
What facilities are available for disabled students?
The Law School welcomes applications from students with disabilities. We are committed to providing realistic information and meeting students’ needs wherever possible. For further information see Disability Services.