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: Prof Richard Moorhead Other Teachers: Prof Richard Susskind
Intercollegiate teaching: No
Teaching Method: 20 x two-hour seminars
Who may enrol: LLM students, SIL students, other UCL Masters students
Prerequisites: None
Barred module combinations: None
Core module for specialism: International Commercial Law, Litigation and Dispute Resolution
Practice Assessment: Written work, group and tutor feedback on written work and class presentation, discussion in class
Assessment method for Masters students: 1x 3,000 word coursework essay (50%), Portfolio of 3 x 1,000 word pieces (50%)
Assessment method for SIL students: 3,000 word coursework essay
Module Overview

Module summary

The premise of this course is that you cannot fully understand the justice system without understanding how legal services are delivered within it. Global, commercial and political pressures are reshaping legal services. Innovation is challenging received wisdoms about the delivery of law and the professional status of lawyers. This course will examine the provision of legal services from the perspectives of theory, commerce and innovation. It will challenge students to evaluate lawyers, legal service reform and legal service delivery against normative frameworks: are legal services of appropriate quality; do they deliver access to justice; are they ethical?

The course will be led by Richard Moorhead and with contributions from Richard Susskind, the world renowned expert on law and information technology. We expect to involve innovators from the legal professions and the legal services industry in some classes.

Module syllabus

  1. Theories of Professionalism: commercial and regulatory perspectives
  2. The regulation of professional monopolies
  3. Theories of the firm – is big law under pressure?
  4. The behavioural impact of fees – can the profession put its clients first?
  5. Innovations in funding: ethics and public policy
  6. Adversarialism, proportionality and access to justice
  7. Quality, competition and professionalism
  8. International dynamics: globalisation, competition and regulation
  9. Legal creativity: value creation or rent seeking?
  10. Public interest tensions in creative lawyering
  11. Professional ideology: competitive or cooperative lawyers: the case for negotiation
  12. Alternative dispute resolution: mediation and beyond
  13. Theories of Innovation
  14. How England and Wales have stimulated innovation
  15. The potentialities of technology
  16. Innovation through automation
  17. Big data and the world of law
  18. Commoditisation, Professionalism and AI
  19. Project Presentations I
  20. Project Presentations II

Recommended materials

There is no set text for this module

Preliminary reading

Richard Susskind (2009) The End of Lawyers?: Rethinking the Nature of Legal Services (Oxford: OUP)

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.