Law

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Law

1. Staff Expertise

In the last UK wide Research Excellence Framework in 2014, 65% of Law staff research publications were either world leading or internationally excellent, 30% were recognised internationally and 5% were recognised nationally. Our research impact case studies, which showcase the impact that our research has outside academia, were found to provide evidence of very considerable or considerable impact in terms of reach and significance in relation to law-making and policy-making. You will, therefore, be taught in small classes by expert staff who produce top research including major academic books, articles in leading academic journals and funded research reports, as well as student textbooks. 

Our law staff are also involved with a number of professional bodies, including the Law Society of Scotland, the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Scotland and the Chartered Institute of Bankers. Many of us retain strong links with the legal profession and as some of our staff are qualified solicitors or barristers, we can use that experience to enhance the curriculum.

All of this contributes to high quality learning and teaching which is very important to us.  Stirling students regularly nominate law staff for teaching awards in the annual student led Recognising Achievement in Teaching Excellence (RATE) awards and law staff won the Excellence in Teaching award for Arts and Humanities in 2014, 2015 and 2016. In 2013, we also won the RATE award for Championing Career Development.

“I would pick the University of Stirling to study my course any time over other universities in Scotland. The teaching staff are just fantastic! They have been there for me through good times and bad. The fact that the lecturers/tutors can engage with us individually is also very helpful, as we, as students, feel more confident and motivated with our course. The feedback given for all our coursework is very good. The lecturers/tutors have all been very friendly and helpful whenever we needed them. The course has been taught very well.”

National Student Survey 2015

2. Student Experience

We scored an 89% satisfaction rate in the National Student Survey 2015 and are keen for our law students to get as much out of the University experience as they can - here are some of the things that our current students are involved with:

Student Law Society

We have a well-established Student Law Society which organises social events, mooting, buddying and charity fundraising. The highlight of the social calendar for law students is the Law Ball which is held each spring.

Mooting Competitions

We encourage our students to take part in mooting to develop legal skills. In the past, we have sent teams to the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition which is the world's largest legal debating competition, with participants from over 550 law schools in more than 80 countries. We are developing our mooting programme and aim to compete in the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot in the future.

Internationalisation and Study Abroad

Our students study law in its national, European and international contexts. We have developed a number of opportunities for law students to study abroad for one semester and have links with Universities in Europe, Australia and the USA.  Find out more at the Study Abroad page.

3. Excellent job prospects

96% of Stirling graduates in 2013/14 were in employment or further education within six months of graduation. We help to prepare our law graduates for the workplace in a number of ways, including:

Law Advisory Panel: Our degrees are designed with employability in mind and we consult our Law Advisory Panel of employers to review and comment on what we are doing.

Stirling Law School Events and Publications: we run annual ‘Careers in Law’ seminars, Mini Law Fairs and   organise workshops on interviews, CVs, internships, placements and psychometric testing with the University’s Career Development Centre. We issue weekly newsletters to all law students which includes a ‘Focus on Careers’ section and publish a range of guides including ‘Getting a Traineeship’ and ‘Developing your Career and CV.’

Work Placement Module: The Stirling Law School runs a work placement Honours option in conjunction with the Career Development Centre which offers students a unique chance to experience working in a law environment and receive training and careers guidance within the degree.  Our students gave us great feedback on this module -

“It is definitely the most useful module I have done during my university life and would recommend as many students as possible do it. It has taught me so many new things and made me think and do so many things which I hope will benefit me in the future”.

4. Career options

Law is a high status degree.

The LLB is the first step towards qualification as a solicitor or advocate in Scotland. Our LLB is accredited by both Law Society of Scotland and the Faculty of Advocates and you can learn more about the routes to qualification and the further study you will need to undertake to do so on their websites. However, many LLB graduates go on to different careers altogether, including compliance, business management and recruitment.

BA graduates have a wide range of career options open to them too, including banking, business, retail and more. To qualify as a solicitor or advocate, BA graduates would need to go on to do the Accelerated Graduate LLB followed by further study.

Have a look at our Graduate Skills and Careers page for more inspiration  

 The Faculty of Advocates logo. 

5. Transferable Skills

A Stirling law degree will equip you with skills sought after by employers:

  • Communication
  • Analysis
  • Problem solving
  • Teamwork
  • Time management and Initiative
  • Project management

6. An outward facing Law School

An international perspective

  •  United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Implementation Project (CRC-IP): Professor Elaine Sutherland established this project in 2012 to explore the implementation of the Convention in its international and comparative contexts. Three colloquia have taken place thus far as part of this venture, the first on articles 12 (participation rights of the child: University of Auckland, New Zealand, 2013), the second on article 6 (child’s right to life, survival and development: University of Stellenbosch, South Africa, 2014) and the third on article 3 (primacy of the child's best interests: Edinburgh, Scotland, 2015). A book is forthcoming.
  • Election to International Human Rights Committee: Dr Ioana Cismas, a lecturer in the Law School has been elected to the International Human Rights Law Committee of the International Law Association (ILA). The membership of this Committee includes a current judge of the European Court of Human Rights, a justice of the Supreme Court of Bangladesh, former members of the UN Human Rights Committee, a former UN Special Rapporteur on torture, as well as senior academics and practitioners (http://www.ila-hq.org/en/committees/index.cfm/cid/1027/member/1)
  • International Congress of Brazilian Judges’ Association 2016: The Law School is hosting over 180 judges from Brazil in June as part of their International Congress 2016.  Speakers at the event include Lady Scott (Supreme Courts of Scotland), Professor Gavin Little (University of Stirling), Dr Rowan Cruft (University of Stirling) and Ms Lorna Richardson (University of Edinburgh).

Public engagement

Dr Oles Andriychuk, a lecturer in the School whose current research is funded by the British Academy/Leverhulme Grant Schemes is also currently working on the creation of a series of audio interviews with leading experts in the field of EU competition law, economics and policy. The podcasts will address the most topical aspects of the development in European antitrust. Over 70 conversations are already recorded and processed. The podcasts will be available on all major platforms free of charge and we will provide links in due course.

Research Networks and Interdisciplinarity

Professor Gavin Little secured funding from the Royal Society of Edinburgh to develop a research network on "Connecting with a low-carbon Scotland", involving humanities scholars from a number of Universities, as well as organisations such as Creative Scotland, the Crichton Carbon Centre and Creative Carbon Scotland. The first panels have met in what promises to be an exciting project. For more information visit, http://www.stir.ac.uk/cehp/projects/connectingwithalow-carbonscotland/.

Learning and Teaching

Tikus Little and Lorraine Wilson, Programme Directors are presenting at the QAA Enhancement Themes Conference in June 2016 on “Holistic transition: the journey from new student to confident graduate”.  This presentation will cover the transition ‘staging posts’ integrated into overall programme design within the LLB and BA Law programmes at the University of Stirling which are intended to help our students develop into confident graduates with the graduate attributes required for the 21st century. This follows on from a presentation by Alison Green, Associate Dean for Learning and Teaching at last year’s conference on the “Final Year Conference” introduced in 2014.

Information on our programmes 

TPG programmes

PhD information or contact Dr Hong-Lin Yu at h.l.yu@stir.ac.uk, RPG Director for Law.

Current students

Information for current students

Current students can find detailed information about the advising system and module choices, together with a copy of the Divisional Handbook on the Law and Philosophy Student Information Module on Succeed.

We also hold a series of events throughout the year to keep you informed about progression through your degree and issue weekly newsletters covering news, events and careers advice, all of which are published on the Law and Philosophy Student Information Module on Succeed.

Module Choices

You can find full details of our modules in the Law and Philosophy Divisional Handbook on Succeed but for a summary of the modules available, please follow the correct links - 

Student Advisory Scheme

All students have access to an Adviser of Studies who can give you guidance on your programme and give you advice or put you in touch with specialist support services if you have an academic or personal problem.

                                                                  Law - Advisory Team 2013/14
BA Law/Business Law and Combined degrees Lorraine Wilson
LLB Programmes Tikus Little
LLM Programmes Professor Fraser Davidson
Disability Officer  Lorraine Wilson

 

Student Law Society

The Student Law Society was set up at Stirling University in September 2008, and in the past three years alone the society has grown to the size of over 100 members! The Student Law Society organises a range of events for all law students throughout the year, from mooting competitions to the glamorous Law Ball. We also help to support new students with our Buddying scheme to provide support to students, whilst working hard with the Law School to keep students in the loop, especially on careers.

Another major annual event is the Douglas Vick Mooting Competition, open to student members in all years. This is a great opportunity to get involved in some advocacy experience, as well as extending your knowledge of the law and improving your debating skills.

There will also be a number of people invited from both within and out with the Law School to judge each moot, not to mention that there will be a great prize offered to the winning mooters at the end of the year.

Applications for mooting are open throughout September and the Competition begins in October.

News

Stirling Student Law Society Visit to Scottish ParliamentFebruary Scottish parliament visit

Students from the University's Student Law Society organised the first of their “Law in Action” events by visiting the Scottish Parliament in early February. The students enjoyed a tour of the Parliament before meeting  with a member of the Devolution (Further Powers) Committee to hear more about the work of the Committee. The trip was both enjoyable and enlightening: more events to take students to see law in action are planned.


For more info about the Law Society in general, please feel free to visit the Facebook page which will be updated with upcoming events throughout the year, or by contacting the Law and Philosophy Divisional Office.

Research

The Law School has a strong reputation for excellence in research:  staff are committed to producing high quality publications, which impact on legal scholarship and outside academia. Students benefit directly from that expertise in teaching at undergraduate and postgraduate levels and in PhD supervision. The grade point average measuring the overall quality of the Law School’s research outputs in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) was ranked first for law in Scotland (the REF is the official UK-wide system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions, and it takes place approximately every five years).

The Stirling Law School seeks to foster excellent legal research by staff without any prescription as to subject area or methodology and to encourage and support colleagues to develop their scholarship to the very best of their abilities. Research by staff therefore is both socio-legal and doctrinal, and a range of different methodologies and philosophies are utilised. Much of the work which is done is library-based, although a number of colleagues conduct (mainly qualitative) empirical research. Our aim is to maximise research quality, impact beyond academia and funding. Research is centred around a number of clusters, reflecting staff expertise: Private Law, Environmental and Energy Law, Public Law, Competition Law, Intellectual Property and Legal Philosophy. 


Our staff research and publish in a number of areas, including:

  • Arbitration
  • Child Law
  • Commercial Law
  • Competition Law
  • Employment Law
  • Energy Law
  • Environmental Law
  • European Law
  • Evidence
  • Family Law
  • Human Rights
  • Intellectual Property
  • International Law
  • Jurisprudence
  • Law and Religion
  • Legal and Political Philosophy
  • Public Law
  • Sports Law
  • Transitional Justice

Law staff are also involved in a number of research networks and groups including:

  • Alexander Von Humboldt Research Excellence Network
  • American Society of International Law Transitional Justice and Rule of Law Interest Group
  • Association for Competition Law
  • Centre for Environment, Heritage and Policy
  • College Sports Research Institute
  • European Society of International Law Interest Group on International Human Rights Law
  • Family Law Academic Network Scotland
  • International Society of Family Law
  • Law & Religion Network
  • Scottish Centre for Criminal Justice Research.
  • Scottish Centre for Legal Research Methods
  • Scottish Institute for Policing Research
  • Stirling Environment and Energy Network
  • UN Convention on the Rights of the Child Implementation Project
  • University Association for Contemporary European Studies

The grade point average measuring the overall quality of the Law School’s research outputs in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) was ranked first for law in Scotland (the REF is the official UK-wide system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions, and it takes place approximately every five years).

Study Abroad

Study abroad opportunities are a great way of ensuring a life-enhancing experience during your time at university. They provide opportunities to meet people from all over the world and to learn about life in other countries in a way that would be impossible if you were just passing through as a tourist. I should also say that they look great on your CV and enhance your employment opportunities; but while all that is true, it is too big a commitment just to do it in the hope of impressing employers. 

The University has worked hard to create Study Abroad opportunities the world over, and I would encourage you to start exploring those as soon as you start your studies if you are at all interested. However, in addition to these schemes offered by the Study Abroad office, law students have their own opportunities too – it is one of Stirling Law School’s strong selling points: every year we have a handful of LLB and BA students who are lucky enough to secure places in Australia, the US and elsewhere, but the University-wide schemes are incredibly competitive, not all of our partners offer opportunities for law students, and not everybody wants to go to the other side of the world so we have created additional partnerships that allow law students to study at our partner institutions in several EU member states. Please be aware that selection for these opportunities is a competitive process and your academic performance is an important factor in selection. If you want to go, you need to aim high in all your subjects as well as thinking about which place would be best for you.

We have two places available at each university for the second semester of your third year; if demand exceeds supply we will try to set up new ones, but do bear in mind that if they are over-subscribed decisions will be made on the basis of your supporting statement and your academic performance.

Our ERASMUS exchange partners are:

The Faculty of Law Martin Luther University, Halle, Germany

The School of Law, Catholic University of Lyon, France

The School of Law, Aalborg University, Denmark

The School of Law, Ljubljana University, Slovenia

The Department of Law and Government, Dublin City University, Ireland

The School of Law, Nicosia University, Cyprus

Do have a look at their websites, peruse the other documents on our portal (especially the application form and the ppt slides) and email (dam4@stir.ac.uk) or come and see me in Pathfoot A91 if you are interested in any or all of them.

Dr David McArdle
School of Law Study Abroad Coordinator

Taught Postgraduates

The Stirling LLMs are designed as multi-disciplinary degrees, aiming to put law in its social, business and environmental context. We offer a number of options at taught postgraduate level and you can find out more about each programme by clicking on the links below or contacting the programme director:

Environmental Policy and Governance (LLM) - Programme Director - Tikus Little (t.a.little@stir.ac.uk)

The LLM/MSc in Environmental Policy and Governance is a one-year programme which combines the study of different fields with an interdisciplinary perspective offering a greater understanding of local, national and international environmental policies and governance. The environment is one of the most controversial policy debates in modern times. As the course is multi-disciplinary, it addresses the economic, scientific, political and legal challenges facing society and the environment and provides graduates with broad-based yet specialised knowledge and understanding. Accordingly, graduates will be equipped with a distinctive and integrated appreciation of the relevant issues which will significantly enhance their employability. If you would like further information, please do not hesitate to contact the Programme Director, Dr Belen Olmos Giupponi: m.b.olmosgiupponi@stir.ac.uk.

International Energy Law and Policy (LLM) - Programme Director - Dr Ioana Cismas (t.a.little@stir.ac.uk)

This programme is central to the university’s innovative approach to research in energy, the environment and climate change.

We welcome interest from students with legal backgrounds and those from other disciplines with an interest in energy. Energy and climate change are inter-disciplinary topics and as such you will have the opportunity to study across disciplines. You will take core law courses and also have study options from law, history, politics, management and environmental sciences.

On completion of this programme, you will be ready and able to contribute solutions to many of the problems created by climate change and the specialist knowledge you acquire in international energy law and policy will be invaluable in building a long-term career in this important field.

A limited number of funded places are provided on this programme by the Scottish Funding Council. Funding will cover the full cost of tuition fees.  Please see here - http://www.stir.ac.uk/scholarships/general/scottish-funding-council-masters-scholarships.html - for further information or in the case of queries, please contact: graduate.admissions@stir.ac.uk

Accelerated Graduate LLB - Programme Director - Mrs Tikus Little (t.a.little@stir.ac.uk)

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