Law and Politics (LLB)
Cardiff Law School is committed to providing an outstanding teaching and learning experience that is underpinned by excellent research activity.
This degree programme is an opportunity to study both Law and Politics within an interdisciplinary environment.
The LLB Law and Politics programme is both challenging and stimulating, enabling you to build the skills required for a career in law or a wide range of professions. In addition to the foundation modules constituting the academic stage of training that is necessary to become a solicitor or barrister in England and Wales, known as the ‘Qualifying Law Degree’, we offer a wide selection of optional study areas which cover traditional and contemporary legal subjects.
Our degree enables you to complete the academic stage of training to become a barrister or solicitor and to proceed directly to the vocational stages of training for the legal profession in England and Wales: the Bar Professional Training Course or Legal Practice Course. We are the only Russell Group University to offer both of these courses, meaning that you have the option to stay with us in Cardiff to complete your entire legal education. The Legal Practice Course has consistently received the Solicitors’ Regulation Authority/Law Society’s highest rating.
The field of Politics allows students to explore how parliaments and governments function and evaluate political ideas such as power, freedom, democracy, conflict, legitimacy or accountability.
We are committed to developing your employability, with our dedicated Careers Consultant on hand two days a week in the Law building. We offer a wide range of extra-curricular activities, some unique to Cardiff University, which equip our students with a competitive edge over other law graduates.
Pro Bono Schemes
We work in partnership with lawyers, charities and voluntary organisations to give our students the opportunity to practise and extend their skills.
Our two most established schemes are our Innocence Project (the first in the UK to have a conviction overturned by the Court of Appeal) and our NHS Continuing Healthcare Scheme, which is unique to Cardiff.
Both initiatives have won or been shortlisted for prestigious national awards and help by assisting members of the community and vulnerable groups with matters for which there is in reality no legal aid. You can also apply for a place on our scheme with the Welsh Rugby Union, where we advise amateur rugby clubs on legal issues.
The application process for each of our schemes is different and we cannot guarantee that students will secure a place on the scheme of their choice, or on any of our schemes. Our portfolio is regularly reviewed and what we offer is subject to change.
Our students are encouraged to enter annual mooting competitions. These competitions give you an opportunity to present legal issues before a judge, against an opposing counsel.
Mooting is a great skill to be able to add to your CV and provides an invaluable experience of public speaking in a formal setting.
Client interviewing competition
Our students are encouraged to take part in an annual client interviewing competition, which has Sir Geoffrey Bindman QC as its President.
You will gain crucial experience interviewing and counselling in a simulated setting and will be assessed against specific criteria that include interpersonal skills and your ability to handle legal problems.
|Next intake||September 2017|
|Studying in Welsh||Up to 67% of this course is available through the medium of Welsh. Please contact the Admissions tutor for more information|
Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA)
This degree meets the academic stage of the Solicitors Regulation Authority and the Bar Standards Board.
|Typical places available||The school typically has 550 places available|
|Typical applications received||The school typically receives 3000 applicants|
|Typical A level offer||A-level grades AAA-AAB or AABB-ABBB. There are no specific subject requirements. It is not necessary to have A-level Law and we do not require students to sit the LNAT test. However, A-levels must include a minimum of two traditional academic subjects. Please see our Admissions and Selection criteria for more information. General Studies is not accepted.|
|Typical Welsh Baccalaureate offer||Grades AAB from a combination of 2 A-levels and the Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma Core.|
|Typical International Baccalaureate offer||35 points, including 6, 6, and 5 at higher level.|
|Other qualifications||Applications from those offering alternative qualifications are welcome. Specific admissions and selection criteria for this degree programme can be found online. Detailed alternative entry requirements are available for this course|
This is a three-year, full-time course, consisting of 120 credits a year. The final degree classification that you are awarded is based on the grades you achieve in the modules that you take in years two and three.
During the course of your degree, you will be able to take the Foundations of Legal Knowledge modules that constitute the Qualifying Law Degree.
In your second year you will have the opportunity to apply for a work placement which will be carried out in the third year of your LLB Law degree. The full-time, salaried placements will be open to you via a competitive application process which aims to replicate the graduate recruitment processes you will encounter after leaving university. During your placement, you will undertake legal practice as paralegals, and will be performing graduate level roles. You will develop both key practitioner skills such as case management, legal research and legal writing in addition to generic employability skills such as time management, team working and commercial awareness. Placements will be located in Cardiff and will count for 10% of degree classification.
The modules shown are an example of the typical curriculum and will be reviewed prior to the 2017/18 academic year. The final modules will be published by July 2017.
Academic years consist of two semesters. You are required to pursue modules to the value of 120 credits in each year of your studies.
You will take four compulsory 20 credit Law modules and two optional 20 credit modules in Politics in year one, providing you with a solid base for the next two years of your degree programme.
|Module title||Module code||Credits|
|Introduction to European Integration||PL9198||20 credits|
|Introduction to Political Thought||PL9196||20 credits|
|Y Da, Drwg a'r Gwleidyddol - The Good, the Bad and the Political||PL9193||20 credits|
|Introduction to Government||PL9199||20 credits|
|Introduction to Political Science||PL9194||20 credits|
|Introduction to International Relations||PL9195||20 credits|
|Introduction to Globalisation||PL9197||20 credits|
You will take 120 credits in total, 80 of which are to be chosen from the list of optional law modules available. Remaining modules will be taken from the list of options in Politics.
This list is kept under review on an annual basis in light of factors such as staff resources and student demand. The final honours classification is based on the assessments taken in years two and three.
In year three, between 60 and 80 credits will be chosen from Law modules and the remaining 40-60 credits will be chosen from Politics options.
How will I be taught?
We offer a supportive learning environment, where you are enabled to acquire a range of skills and a wealth of specialist knowledge. Our courses foster intellectual skills, such as critical thinking, close analysis, evaluating evidence, constructing arguments, using theory and the effective deployment of language in writing and in debate. We also help you gain experience in team working, independent research and time management.
You will be taught both by lecture and seminar. Lectures provide an overview of the key concepts and frameworks for a topic, equipping you to carry out independent research for the seminars and to develop your own ideas. Seminars provide an opportunity for you to explore the ideas outlined in the lectures.
Seminars usually consist of about 15 students and the seminar leader (a member of the teaching team). Seminars may take various formats, including plenary group discussion, small-group work and student-led presentations.
You will practise and develop legal, intellectual and presentational skills by participating in diverse learning activities, such as solving legal problems, small-group discussions, debates, moots, oral presentations, independent research tasks and written assignments. You will also enhance your team-working skills.
How will I be supported?
You will have access through the Learning Central website to relevant multimedia material, presentations, lecture handouts, bibliographies, further links, electronic exercises and discussion circles.
The University offers a range of services including the Careers Service, the Counselling Service, the Disability and Dyslexia Service, the Student Support Service, and excellent libraries and resource centres.
An extensive programme of careers lectures and workshops is delivered within the School of Law and Politics and a Law Careers Consultant is available.
A range of staff are available to provide further support, including an academic support tutor, a pro-bono scheme co-ordinator and specialist law librarians.
We will provide you with frequent feedback on your work. This comes in a variety of formats including oral feedback during tutorials, personalised feedback on written work, feedback lectures, generic written feedback and feedback on tutorial performance
How will I be assessed?
Modules are assessed through examination or coursework or by a combination of the two. The format of coursework varies encompassing standard essays, extended essays, portfolios of work produced across a whole academic year and written solutions to legal problems. Examinations take place in January or in the summer. Coursework is submitted on designated dates during the academic year.
Throughout your studies you will complete various pieces of work which do not count towards your final module mark but are designed to help you to achieve the learning outcomes for your modules and to prepare for your examinations and coursework. This work might be written or oral and may be submitted formally to a tutor or presented during tutorials or seminars. This work will normally be done during your independent study time.
Feedback on this work is given frequently and in a wide variety of formats and is intended to help you identify strengths and weaknesses in your learning, as well as give indications of how you might improve in your performance in examinations and coursework.
The optional final-year dissertation provides you with the opportunity to investigate a specific topic of interest to you in depth and to acquire detailed knowledge about a particular field of study, to use your initiative in the collection and presentation of material and present a clear, cogent argument and draw appropriate conclusions.
What skills will I practise and develop?
A law degree develops your ability to organise facts and ideas in a systematic way, identifying relevant information and evaluating these to formulate advice for a client or a legal argument.
You will also:
- enhance your ability to argue in an objective, reasoned, professional manner, with due regard to authority and acceptable citation methods
- develop your ability to undertake independent learning and effectively manage your time
- enhance your team-working skills, contributing constructively and reliably
- develop your communication skills, both orally and in writing
- learn how to use subject specific electronic sources, databases and the Virtual Learning Environment to gather evidence and to research legal questions
- grasp complex issues with confidence
- ask the right questions of complex texts
- have an imaginative appreciation of different views and options and analyse these critically
- identify and apply relevant data
- develop practical research skills
- propose imaginative solutions of your own that are rooted in evidence
- communicate clearly, concisely and persuasively in writing and speech
- work to deadlines and priorities, managing a range of tasks at the same time
- learn from constructive criticism and incorporate its insights
- work as part of a team, developing a collaborative approach to problem-solving
- use IT programmes and digital media, where appropriate
- take responsibility for your own learning programme and professional development
Cardiff Law School Pro Bono Unit – Law in the Real World
We are committed to extending extracurricular opportunities to our students, helping to enhance their CVs in a competitive graduate job market. We work in partnership with lawyers, charities and voluntary organisations to give students the opportunity to practise and extend their skills.
Pro Bono is the term that lawyers use for free legal advice. We run several Pro Bono schemes and provide advice to members of the community on different legal issues.
Our Innocence Project works with long-term prisoners maintaining their innocence of serious crimes such as murder, serious assault and sexual offences. The aim is to prevent miscarriages of justice in which an individual could have been wrongfully convicted.
In 2014, ours was the first Innocence Project in the UK to have a conviction overturned by the Court of Appeal.
Students work under the supervision of qualified barristers, investigating the cases and submitting them to the Criminal Cases Review Commission.
NHS Continuing Healthcare Scheme
Under this scheme, we address the issue of NHS Continuing Health Care funding. This is an increasing problem nationwide which affects a vulnerable section of the community, predominantly those suffering from Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia. Such individuals may find themselves in nursing homes, paying their fees privately, where arguably they are entitled to have the cost of their care met in full by the NHS.
Students are trained in this niche area of law, and are allocated work in 'firms' of six students. They are supervised by legal professionals from Hugh James solicitors in Cardiff, and work involves client interviews, letter writing, and research.
Welsh Rugby Union Project
Working in partnership with the Welsh Rugby Union, students provide a free legal advice service to Welsh rugby clubs below the Principality Premiership. Legal issues faced by clubs include employment of staff, maintenance of the grounds, health and safety and much more.
The scheme is supported and underwritten by Hugh James solicitors, and Civitas barristers' chambers. Students also work collaboratively to produce information leaflets covering legal issues that clubs face.
Hafal Appropriate Adult Scheme
Hafal is Wales' leading mental health charity. Hafal train students to work as 'Appropriate Adults', to support vulnerable adults being interviewed at a police station having been arrested. Once trained, students volunteer to be on a rota to be called into police stations across South Wales.
The Personal Support Unit
The Personal Support Unit (PSU) supports litigants in person, witnesses, victims, their family members and supporters. It provides free, confidential, independent, non-legal support to clients, to help them through the court process. The PSU trains students to assist litigants at the Civil Justice Centre in Cardiff.
In 2013/14, 96% of the School's graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduation.
Students who have chosen to work immediately following their degree have obtained roles as negotiators, paralegals, remortgage handlers and lawyers with law firms such as Hugh James Solicitors, Admiral Law, Eversheds LLP and NHS Wales Legal and Risk Services.
A law degree doesn’t restrict graduates to careers within the legal profession. Each year a number of law graduates enter professions as diverse as finance, sales and marketing, digital communications and recruitment.
Key Information Sets (KIS) make it easy for prospective students to compare information about full or part time undergraduate courses, and are available on the Unistats website.