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:
Dr Ronan McCrea
Intercollegiate teaching: No
Teaching Method: 10 x two-hour seminars
Who may enrol: LLM students
Prerequisites: None
Barred module combinations: This module cannot be combined with LAWSG146.
Core module for specialism: Comparative Law, Public Law, Human Rights Law
Practice Assessment: To be confirmed
Assessment method for LLM students: 3,000 word coursework essay
Module Overview

Module summary

This module will examine the main issues arising in context of the contemporary relationship between religion, the individual, the law and the state. The module will involve comparative analysis of the principle patterns of regulating such relationships. It will also address the major debates around the relationship between theories of egalitarian liberal democracy and secularism. This analysis will focus on theoretical debates around the admissibility of religious arguments in lawmaking, the complicated relationship between freedom of and freedom from religion and the role of religion in non-discrimination law.

Module syllabus

1. Key Concepts.

2. Freedom of Religion

3. Freedom from Religion

4. The Secular State

5. Religion in the Political Arena

6. Blasphemy and Free Speech

7. Religion, Culture and State

8. Immigration

9. Comparative Analysis of Church/State Arrangements in Europe

10. Revision Session

Recommended materials

There is no set text. Various journal articles and book chapters will be assigned for each seminar and posted in Moodle (virtual learning environment).

Preliminary reading

Mark Lilla, The Stillborn God, (New York, Knopf, 2007).

Juergen Habermas, ‘Religion in the public sphere’. European Journal of Philosophy, 14/1, 2006:1-25

Richard Rorty, 1994 “Religion as Conversation-Stopper.” Common Knowledge 3:1 (Spring), 1–6.

Michael Perry, Religious arguments in public political debate, (1996) 29 Loyola Law Review 1411

Nicholas Hatzis, Personal religious beliefs in the workplace: How not to define indirect discrimination (2011) 74 Modern Law Review 287

Ronan McCrea, Religion and the Public Order of the European Union (Oxford and New York, Oxford University Press, 2010) chapters 6 and 7

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.