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Legal and Political Theory MA

This MA provides students with key analytical skills to study the ethical dimensions of public policy. The programme, drawing on three areas of excellence at UCL, is a unique mix of politics, law and philosophy, centred on the normative evaluation of public policy at both the domestic and international levels.

Key Information

Modes and duration

  • Full-time: 1 year
  • Part-time: 2 years

Tuition Fees (2015/16)

UK/EU:
£9,835 (FT) £4,890 (PT)
Overseas:
£17,250 (FT) £8,755 (PT)

Application deadlines

All applicants:
31 July 2015

Entry Requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a political theory or related discipline from a UK university, a GPA 3.3 or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

The English language level for this programme is: Advanced

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:

Degree Information

The programme explores the moral quality of the decisions citizens and professionals take, and the justice of the legal and political structures within which they operate. Students develop the ability to analyse important modern political theories, and justify their position on issues concerning the relationship between politics, law and society.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of two core modules (60 credits), optional modules (60 credits) and a research dissertation (60 credits).

Core Modules

  • Meanings of Liberty: Applied Methods in Political Theory (30)
  • Seminars in Political Theory/Colloquium in Legal Philosophy and Peer-Assisted Learning Sessions (30)

Options

  • Choose modules worth a total of 45 credits from the following:
  • Contemporary Political Philosophy I: Authority, Obligation & Democracy (15)
  • Contemporary Political Philosophy II: Social Justice and Equality (15)
  • Equality, Justice and Difference (15)
  • Republicanism and Liberalism (15)
  • Global Ethics (15)
  • Global Justice and Human Rights in an International Order (15)
  • Jeremy Bentham and the Utilitarian Tradition I (15)
  • Jeremy Bentham and the Utilitarian Tradition I and II (30)
  • Jurispudence and Legal Theory I & II (30)
  • Public Ethics

  • CHOOSE A FURTHER 15-CREDIT MODULE FROM A LIST AVAILABLE AT:
  • www.ucl.ac.uk/spp/teaching/masters/ma-legal-and-political-theory
  • The following are suggestions:
  • Gendering the Study of Politics: Theory and Practice (15),
    Conflict Resolution and Post-War Development (15),
    Terrorism (15),
    War, Peace and Human Rights (15)

Dissertation/report

All MA students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 10,000 words.

Teaching and Learning

Teaching for all courses takes the form of seminars where time is dedicated both to introducing knowledge and materials, and allowing students to test their understanding, knowledge and evaluative skills, through discussion, criticism and debate. Assessment is primarily through long essays, course work and the dissertation.

Further information on modules and degree structure available on the department web site Legal and Political Theory MA

Funding

Past students on the programme have been awarded prestigious scholarships such as AHRC and UCL graduate studentships.

More scholarships are listed on the scholarships website

Careers

This MA provides an excellent foundation for further research in political theory, or a wide variety of careers in this field.

First destinations of recent graduates include:

  • UK Parliament: Researcher for MP
  • Nacro: Resettlement Plus Helpline Information Officer
  • Medway Council: Political Assistant
  • English Speaking Union: Publicity Officer
  • London Sustainable Business Forum: Research
  • Vault Europe: Business Journalist
  • Centre Forum: Research Intern
  • Stephen Rimmer and Co Solicitors: Trainee Solicitor
  • Legal & Constituency Ltd: Underwriter
  • City University: Graduate Diploma in Law

Top career destinations for this degree

  • Team Assistant, Goldman Sachs (2010)
  • Legal Researcher, TLC Solicitors (2010)
  • Research and Policy Assistant, Centre Point (2011)
  • Web Strategist, Yahoo (2011)
  • Project Assistant, Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (2011)

Employability

Students of the MA in Legal and Political Theory acquire advanced analytical transferable skills exposure to cutting-edge legal and philosophical work - problem-solving, logical skills, combined with deep understanding of challenges of contemporary world - as a result our students have excellent record of employability in top professions - law, consultacy, politics, journalism and academic careers.

Why study this degree at UCL?

UCL Political Science is recognised as a centre of excellence in the field and offers a uniquely stimulating environment for the study of Legal and Political Theory.

Weekly interactive seminars offer students an unrivalled opportunity to meet and engage with some of the leading figures in the field.

The Legal and Political Theory MA benefits from the interdisciplinary research culture of the School of Public Policy, as well as from the participation of UCL Philosophy and UCL Laws.

Student / staff ratios › 29 staff › 378 taught students › 37 research students

Department: Political Science

Application and next steps

Applications

Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

Who can apply?

The programme is suitable for students with a background in Law, Philosophy, Economics, History, or European Studies, who wish to develop their understanding of major issues in legal and political theory, for further research or a career in this field.

Application deadlines

All applicants
2015-07-31

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:
  • why you want to study Legal and Political Theory at graduate level
  • why you want to study Legal and Political Theory at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • if you have NOT formally studied Political Theory before, how does your personal, academic and professional background meets the challenges of this programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.

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