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The LLM in Drafting Legislation, Regulation, and Policy offers a unique opportunity to drafters, legal officers, policy makers and those interested in the process of law-making and in drafting to study the legislative environment and legislation as a tool for regulation. 

This programme is based at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (IALS), a member institute of the School of Advanced Study, University of London. 

The programme aims to promote an understanding of the principles of legislative studies and an in-depth awareness of what constitutes legislative quality and how this can be achieved. Legislative drafting is often perceived as a technical skill that one learns on the job. The view of the Institute’s Sir William Dale Centre for Legislative Studies is that legislative drafting is a practical discipline requiring awareness of the theoretical principles of drafting along with experience on the job. Legislative drafting has evolved to become the bedrock of political, economic and social transformation. It is still, however, relatively unexplored as an academic discipline. The LLM examines issues related to the policy process, the legislative process and the drafting process.

The programme is not prescriptive and allows you to naturalize your knowledge and apply it in your own national environment. Capped class numbers allow individualized tuition. Alumni are usually employed by governments and international organizations. 

This course is also available to study via distance learning from anywhere in the world.

Contact us

If you have specific questions about this degree, please contact us or make an enquiry.

How will this course benefit me?

The LLM is designed to meet your needs if you are seeking a career in legislative drafting or already working as a legislative drafter, or if you want a career in, or are already working for, organizations that produce different types of draft normative acts. Many of our students are mid-career drafters employed by government (for example, by AG Chambers, the Ministry of Justice, or other ministries). We also have students who work for or aim to work for NGOs that propose normative acts to governments.

Degree overview

The LLM in Drafting Legislation, Regulation, and Policy (formerly Advanced Legislative Studies) has been offered by the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies with considerable success since 2004. The programme can be studied at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies in London or by distance learning from a location anywhere in the world.

Students based in London can undertake the LLM on either a full- or part-time basis. Students based elsewhere, or students who cannot follow the taught programme in London, must undertake the two-year, part-time distance learning programme.

Modules and structure

The programme offers two options: the Common Law Direction and the EU Direction, each consisting of six compulsory modules and a dissertation of 15,000 words.

The Common Law direction includes Comparative Legislative Studies 1 and 2, Legislative Drafting 1 and 2, Themes in Legislative Studies, and a 15,000-word dissertation.

The EU Direction includes the Jean Monnet Module ‘Legislating for EU Membership and Accession’ 1 and 2, the Jean Monnet module ‘Theories of European Integration’, and a 15,000-word dissertation.

Part-time students take four modules in the first year of study and two modules and the dissertation in the second year of study.

The Common Law direction core modules

  • LLM Research Methods Training
  • Comparative Legislative Studies 1 and 2
  • Legislative Drafting 1 and 2

The EU direction core modules

  • LLM Research Methods Training
  • The Jean Monnet Module ‘Legislating for EU Membership and Accession’ 1 and 2
  • The Jean Monnet module ‘Theories of European Integration’

Option modules

  • The Theory and Practice of Regulation 
  • Themes in Legislative Studies


Please note that we are currently reviewing the structure and content of this programme and may introduce some additions and enhancements.

Lecturing and teaching

If you study for the LLM on campus in London you will participate in lectures, seminars, and face-to-face discussions with tutors and other students. If you study by distance learning, you will receive access to extensive materials delivered online and by email and participate in online discussions with tutors and other students.

You will be expected to undertake private reading and independent research and you will benefit from individual tuition and support. All students are assigned a personal dissertation supervisor. 

Students undertaking the course by distance learning are required to attend a week-long intensive residential induction in London. This gives students a chance to meet the tutors and other students and to start their studies with the maximum level of support.

About the institute

The Institute of Advanced Legal Studies was founded in 1947. It was conceived and is funded as a national academic institution, attached to the University of London, serving all universities through its national legal research library. Its function is to promote, facilitate and disseminate the results of advanced study and research in the discipline of law, for the benefit of persons and institutions in the UK and abroad.

The institute is engaged in a broad range of activities in the promotion and support of legal research in its widest sense. IALS serves its various constituencies of researchers, nationally and locally, both at Charles Clore House on Russell Square in Bloomsbury, featuring its national legal research library, through its digital free-to-internet resources, and through its outreach activities around the country. The Institute has an inclusive approach to legal studies embracing the theoretical basis of law, the sources and documentation of the law, and the direct impact of law on human lives.

Entry requirements

The normal minimum entrance requirement is a First or Upper Second Class Honours degree from a university in the UK, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard (for example a grade-point-average of 3.0 or higher).

We will consider applications from candidates who do not meet the formal academic requirements but who offer alternative qualifications and/or relevant experience. Applicants are not required to have a law degree nor a professional qualification in law. 

English is the language of instruction and applicants are required to demonstrate an appropriate level of proficiency.

Find out more about our entry requirements

How to apply

You can apply online via our online applications system.

Apply (on campus)

Apply (distance learning)

For more information on how to apply, click here.

Fees, funding and scholarships

Find out more about tuition fees here.

The School of Advanced Study has a range of funding opportunities for home, EU and international applicants. Find out more about funding opportunities here. If you're applying for funding, you may be subject to an application deadline.

Careers and further study

This course is designed to enhance your knowledge of legislative drafting, enabling you to progress within your legislative career, or make the move into a specialised legislative role. Many of our students are mid-career drafters employed by government, looking for the next step in their career. We also have students who aim to work for NGOs that propose normative acts to governments.

This course is also a good choice for students who are looking to complete a PhD in Law. After completing the LLM in Drafting Legislation, Regulation, and Policy, students can apply to study our PhD in Law, based at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies. Find out more about our PhD in Law here. 

What our students say

The course was interesting and enjoyable, the style of teaching was fantastic. The tutors were cordial, friendly and they were of great assistance. The excellent support from the tutors made my study experience smooth and glitch free. 

Since graduating from this course, I have received two promotions to the position that I am in now. The course has helped my career immensely.

-Michael Habila Duada, 2018
Read full student story >> 


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