LLM Programme

The taught modules offered on the LLM programme vary from year to year. Please check the full list of taught modules list for details of modules running in specific academic years. We make every effort to ensure that every module will be offered, but modules are subject to change and cancellation. You are therefore advised to check this site regularly for further updates throughout the year preceding entry to the LLM programme.

Credit value: 15 credits (6 ECTS)

Module Convenor:
Professor Jane Holder

Intercollegiate teaching: No
Teaching Method: 10 x two-hour seminars
Who may enrol: LLM students
Prerequisites: None
Barred module combinations: None
Core module for specialism: Environmental Law and Policy
Practice Assessment: To be confirmed
Assessment method for LLM students: 3,000 word coursework essay
Module Overview

Module summary

This module examines the legal and policy dynamics of environmental regulation and critically assesses the role that law and policy has to play in achieving sustainability and environmental justice. During the module we will: (a) identify the main tensions and challenges in law to achieve sustainability and environmental justice; (b) ascertain the key policy principles that underlie legal responses to particular kinds of sustainability and environmental justice issues, in particular precaution; and (c) develop a good working knowledge of several of the following: the Water Framework Directive, the Habitats Directive, the EIA Directive, CROW 2000, the Commons Act 2006 and the Sustainable Communities Act 2007.

By the end of the module you will: (a) be familiar with the main sources of law relating to environmental protection, sustainability and environmental justice; (b) have an appreciation of the relationship between environmental law and the policy objectives that it seeks to implement; and (c) gain the capacity to evaluate particular legal provisions in relation to underlying policy goals, for example sustainable development.

Module syllabus

  • Sustainability, Environmental Justice and Environmental Law
  • Ecological Foundations of environmental law
  • The Tragedy of the Commons
  • Tracing Sustainable Development
  • Dimensions of Environmental Justice
  • Relating Inter and Intra-generational Justice: Climate Justice
  • Ecological Justice: Wild Law and Gaia theories
  • Deep Ecology, Social Ecology and Ecofeminism
  • Human Rights and Ecological Rights
  • Sustainable communities, planning and the law
  • Presentations

Recommended materials

No specific text covers the syllabus. Instead, selected materials will be available via an online reading list.

Preliminary reading

J. Agyeman, Sustainable Communities and the Challenge of Environmental Justice (NYUP, 2005) which explores the argument that there is considerable theoretical and practical compatibility between sustainability and environmental justice.

Other information: N/A
Prizes for this module: There are currently no prizes available for this module.


The application process for the 2014-15 academic session, for entry in September 2014, is now closed.

Information regarding applications for September 2015 will be updated on the website in September 2014.

IMPORTANT NOTICE : Updated 28 May 2014

The Home Office issued an update about the acceptance of ETS tests (including TOEFL). They have now confirmed that Higher Education students applying for a Tier 4 visa may use a TOEFL test taken after 17 April, if a Higher Education Institution is willing to use its academic discretion. For those students entering in September 2014, UCL will continue to accept the TOEFL even if it was taken after 17 April. However, if an applicant still needs to book a test then we recommend that they take an alternative test to TOEFL. Those who have already arranged to take a different test following the previous advice from the Home Office, we encourage you to go ahead with taking the alternative test.

The TOEFL test will continue to be accepted for 2014 entrants who have been asked to take an English language qualification as part of their offer condition, and do not need to apply for a visa to study in the UK.