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Course length

1 year full-time


Durham City

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Course details

Our LLM in Corporate Law brings together the complex and fast-moving worlds of business and law. The course will equip you with the skills and confidence to play a key role in the management and conduct of companies and corporations, helping to ensure they operate in a legal and correct way against a backdrop of ever-changing business legislation.

You will gain a comprehensive knowledge of both the fundamental and the more advanced areas of corporate law – the latter being studied in-depth from a theoretical research perspective. The course will cover a wide range of topics that are relevant in the ever-evolving corporate landscape such as corporate compliance, mergers and acquisitions and environmental regulation.

The course is presented in taught modules and delivered by a mixture of stimulating lectures and smaller, student-led, dynamic seminar or tutorial groups. You will also be required to research and produce a substantial dissertation in an area of corporate law of your choosing, for which you will receive individual supervision.

The Law School is home to the Durham Institute of Commercial and Corporate Law, and you will be encouraged to join its many activities during your time as a student, while the law library holds an extensive range of corporate law material, to which you will have access as part of your studies.

Nationally and internationally, the corporate law sector is constantly seeking legal experts who will be able to understand the growing complexities of business activity and governance and our LLM in Corporate Law will give you the knowledge and insight to be able to help meet that demand.

Course Structure

Fundamentals of Corporate Law is an introductory module that covers the basics of company and corporate law if you are new to the field. You will gain an understanding of what companies are, their main legal features, the economic role they play, and some of the key regulatory challenges they present through their activities. Those who have previously studied company/corporate law may be granted exemption from this module.

Advanced Issues in Corporate Law allows you to carry out a more in-depth study of the legal issues which corporations generate. The module is selective in terms of the legal issues it addresses but is designed to explore those issues at a deeper, and more theoretical, level.

Applied Research Methods in Law provides specialised knowledge on the latest research methods and skills available in legal studies as well as an advanced understanding of their strengths and weaknesses and of their relevance for different forms of legal research. The module also creates a framework within which you will be able to critically assess potential research topics and, importantly, where you will be able to design, discuss and develop a detailed research proposal of the appropriate standards for your dissertation.

The Dissertation is based on your particular research interest in an area of Corporate Law and can be of one of three lengths – 10,000, 15,000 or 20,000 words. The dissertation is equivalent to 2, 2.5 or 3 modules, depending on word count.

Depending on the dissertation length and prior subject knowledge, you can choose up to 1.5 optional modules (* indicates half modules) which in previous years have included:

  • Comparative Corporate Governance 
  • Competition Law
  • Corporate Compliance* 
  • Corporations in an EU Context 
  • Cross-border Commercial Litigation
  • International and Comparative Corporate Insolvency Law* 
  • International Commercial Dispute Resolution
  • International Tax Law*
  • Introduction to Corporate Governance*
  • Introduction to Corporate Insolvency Law* 
  • Mergers and Acquisitions*
  • Securities Law and Capital Markets 
  • Takeover Regulation in the EU* 
  • US Business Associations 

Your remaining options can be chosen from a wider selection of law modules (* indicates half modules) which in previous years have included:

  • Advanced Issues in Human Rights*
  • Advanced Issues in International Economic Law 
  • Advanced Issues of Intellectual Property Law*
  • Advanced Law of Obligations 
  • China and the International Legal Order*
  • Commercial Fraud*
  • Comparative and Transnational Law* 
  • Consumption Tax Law and Policy*
  • Current Issues in Commercial Law 
  • Current Problems of International Law 
  • Electronic Commerce*
  • Free Speech Problems in International and Comparative Perspective*
  • Frontiers in Biolaw*
  • Fundamental Issues in International Legal Governance* 
  • Fundamentals of International Law*
  • Global Environmental Law*
  • Global Financial Law 
  • Global Institutions 
  • Horizontal Human Rights*
  • International Banking Law 
  • International Counter Terrorism: Theory and Practice* 
  • International Humanitarian Law 
  • International Investment Law*
  • International Perspectives on Law and Gender* 
  • International Protection of Human Rights
  • International Sales Law
  • International Trade Law and Policy
  • Introduction to EU Law*
  • Introduction to Intellectual Property Law*
  • Introduction to International Criminal Justice
  • Law of Oil and Gas Contracts*
  • Law of the Sea 
  • Medical Law and Ethics*
  • Multinational Corporations and Human Rights*
  • Private International Law and China*
  • Protection of Human Rights in Europe 
  • Renewable Energy Law*
  • International Law of Peace and Security 
  • International Perspectives in Cartel Control*
  • The Law of Subsidy and State Aid Control*
  • Current Issues in International Law and Governance*
  • US Corporate Law*
  • Modules offered by another Board of Studies (subject to approval)


You will find the course is both challenging and hugely rewarding with taught modules delivered via a combination of lectures and seminars. Lectures will provide you with a framework for further learning on a range of topics while seminars are smaller-sized classes where you will be given set questions or problems to which you will apply the findings from your preparatory work.

Contact time for each module in total is 15 hours or 30 hours, depending on the modules chosen.

You will also write a dissertation which will be the outcome of your own independent research in an area of interest to you. You will have four one-to-one meetings about the project in an academic year with your supervisor whose area of expertise is the field you have chosen.


The assessment regime is rigorous and carried out through writing tasks with the majority of the modules you will choose assessed through essays of 3,000-6,000 words in length. The core module on applied research methods will be assessed on a proposal you will present for a research topic. Finally, you will present a dissertation on an area of corporate law of interest to you of up to 20,000 words.

Entry requirements

A good 2:1 degree (or its equivalent) in law, or in a degree in which law is a major component.

English language requirements

Fees and funding

Full Time Fees

Tuition fees
Home students £12,750 per year
EU students £26,900 per year
Island students £12,750 per year
International students £26,900 per year

The tuition fees shown are for one complete academic year of full time study, are set according to the academic year of entry, and remain the same throughout the duration of the programme for that cohort (unless otherwise stated).

Please also check costs for colleges and accommodation.

Scholarships and Bursaries

We are committed to supporting the best students irrespective of financial circumstances and are delighted to offer a range of funding opportunities. 

Find out more about Scholarships and Bursaries

Career opportunities

Law School

Our global reputation for legal research and teaching of the highest quality is reflected in the career trajectory of our alumni.

Graduates serve across the full range of legal professions including solicitors, barristers, judges, members of the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeal and as consultants and in government. Others have secured stimulating and rewarding positions in national and international law firms.

We are fully aware of the degree of competition that exists in securing a role in the legal profession and the School provides a range of resources to help alumni stand out as ideal candidates during the recruitment process. This includes detailed information about the steps involved in becoming a solicitor or barrister, visits from law firms and guidance on preparing for interviews and assessment days.

Department information

Law School

Durham Law School is a global leader in the development and framing of law. Led by academics who are experts in their field, we carry out cutting-edge legal research that feeds into our Masters and research qualifications, building knowledge and nurturing the skills needed to help shape law in the future.

The reputation of the School means our legal know-how is respected by parliamentarians and policy makers around the world. Our academics have been called to give evidence in Parliament and have had their research work quoted by courts and international bodies.

International law and questions of global policy and governance are an area of special interest at Durham, but our expertise extends to other areas including criminal law and criminal justice, ethics, human rights, European law, gender and law, Chinese law, Commercial and Corporate law and Global Justice.

The research-led learning environment in the School is one of commitment, innovation and passion for the subject. Our highly respected research groups organise lectures and seminars offer opportunities to hear from eminent scholars and practitioners. Speakers have included judges from the UK Supreme Court, from the European Court of Justice and leading officials from national and international institutions.

For more information visit our department pages.


  • World Top 50 in the QS World University Subject Rankings 2023
  • 6th in The Complete University Guide 2024
  • Top 10 in The Guardian University Guide 2024
  • Top 10 in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2024


For a current list of staff, please see the Law School pages.

Research Excellence Framework

  • 5th in the UK for research environment
  • 100% of our research impact and environment was rated world-leading or internationally excellent


Situated close to a number of academic departments and University services with views of the magnificent Durham Cathedral as well as offering easy access to the historic city, we believe that we have one of the most striking and best-equipped law buildings in the UK.

The Law School is located in the University’s award-winning flagship Palatine Centre, part of a £48.4m sustainable building development.

The School’s facilities are purpose-built and state-of-the-art, featuring a moot court, pro bono room, Harvard-style Hogan Lovells lecture theatre, spacious dedicated work suites and modern wireless and audio-video-enabled research spaces and attractive social areas.


Find out more:

Apply for a postgraduate course (including PGCE International) via our online portal.  

Visit Us

The best way to find out what Durham is really like is to come and see for yourself!

Join a Postgraduate Open Day
  • Date: 01/09/2023 - 31/08/2024
  • Time: 09:00 - 17:00
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Self-Guided Tours
  • Date: 01/09/2023 - 31/08/2024
  • Time: 09:00 - 16:00
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