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: 30 credits (12 ECTS)
Module Convenor:
Professor Rick Rawlings
Other Teachers:
Dr Tom Hickman


Adopting England and Wales as its ‘home’ jurisdiction, this module focuses on judicial review broadly defined. It thus looks not only at the common law but also at particular aspects of European Union Law and (in the language of the Human Rights Act 1998) of ‘Convention Rights’. The module further considers the interplay (or not) of these different sources of jurisdiction.

The module naturally involves careful consideration of the constitutional role of the judiciary, a familiar topic of debate in many jurisdictions. Attention is paid both to the broad historical dynamics and to cutting-edge developments in the case law. As well as to UK lawyers, the module should be of interest to students from many other jurisdictions both around the common law ‘globe’ and elsewhere.


The course content changes from year to year to reflect contemporary developments. The following is a provisional outline (particular seminar topics may be added or subtracted):


  1. Introduction and definition
  2. Functions of judicial review: ‘a multi-streamed jurisdiction’
  3. Common law perspective - ultra vires and the challenge of ‘common law constitutionalism’
  4. The EU connection
  5. ‘Convention rights’ - Strasbourg and the domestic courts

  7. Justiciability and deference
  8. Procedural review – adjudicative-style constraints
  9. Procedural review and Article 6 ECHR
  10. Procedural review – reason-giving and consultation
  11. Legitimate Expectation
  12. Process review: the common law ‘umbrella’
  13. Substantive review (I) – ‘Wednesbury unreasonableness’
  14. Substantive review (II) –Proportionality-testing
  15. Equality and judicial review 15. A reformation of judicial review?


  16. Rule of law mechanics: standing, intervention and disclosure
  17. Application for Judicial Review procedure: statistical perspective
  18. Remedies and impact
  19. Striking back?
  20. Revision

Background Reading (optional):

A very good introductory book in terms of judicial review is:

P Cane, Administrative Law (Oxford University Press, 5th edn, 2011)

Module reading lists and other module materials will be provided via online module pages, once students have made their module selections upon enrolment in September.

Delivery and enrolment
Lectures/Seminars: 20 x 2-hour seminars
Tutorials: None
Previous module enrolments: Medium – 16-50 students
Who may enrol: LLM students
Prerequisities: None
Barred module combinations: None
Core Module for LLM specialism: Litigation and Dispute Resolution, Public Law
Final Assessment: 3-hour unseen written examination
Practice Assessment: Opportunity for feedback on one optional practice essay per term
Other Information

Course Books:

You will need to buy:

P. Craig, Administrative Law, 7th edn, Sweet & Maxwell, 2012

You will also need regular access to:

C. Harlow and R. Rawlings, Law and Administration, 3rd edn, Cambridge University Press 2009

This page was last updated on 8 July, 2014


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.