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 Paul Mitchell Other Teachers: Professor Eric Barendt


This module examines the protection of reputation and privacy offered by English law, with particular focus on how those protections affect the media. It mainly consists of a critical and selectively comparative analysis of the torts of defamation and invasion of privacy.

Students completing this module will acquire a critical understanding appreciation of

  1. the development of the principles of defamation through case law;
  2. the significance and aims of statutory reform of defamation;
  3. the principles governing the law of defamation in its application to the Internet;
  4. the creation and development of the action for misuse of private information;
  5. the nature and influence of the European Court of Human Rights’ jurisprudence on matters of libel and privacy.


  • Libel (including jurisdiction)
  • Privacy

Background Reading (optional):

  • E Barendt, L Hitchens, R Craufurd-Smith and J Bosland, Media Law: Text Cases and Materials (2013). [This will be the course textbook.]
  • P Mitchell, The Making of the Modern Law of Defamation (Hart, 2005)

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: 10 x two-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: Public Law , Human Rights Law
Final Assessment: 2-hour unseen written examination (closed book)
Practice Assessment: Opportunity for feedback on one optional 1,500 word practice essay

This page was last updated on 22 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.