Why study law in the UK

01 July 2021
An international student sat in the University of Aberdeen library

The law and legal system are central to our society and how it functions. By studying law, you gain an extensive knowledge of one of the world’s most crucial institutions.

It’s not surprising, then, that law is one of the most popular subjects to study. According to HESA data, over 26,000 international students chose to study law-related subjects in the UK during the 2019/20 academic year. But why else should you study the subject, and why study law in the UK?

Why study law?

Develop an in-depth knowledge

An undergraduate law degree will offer modules that cover various areas of law, so you can graduate with everything you need to know for a successful career.

For example, on the University of Aberdeen’s LLB Law degree, you will study modules around:

  • Criminal law
  • Property law
  • Family law
  • Legal theory
  • Civil liberties.

You can progress to a range of undergraduate law degrees, including LLB Law, from the Undergraduate Foundation Programme in Humanities, Law & Social Science, a pathway programme designed for international students, taught at the University of Aberdeen International Study Centre.

A postgraduate law degree, or LLM, is a fantastic opportunity for you to focus your studies on the area you most enjoy. This will allow you to gain a more in-depth knowledge of your chosen speciality, something a potential employer will appreciate. You can progress to an engaging Masters degree at the University of Aberdeen from the Pre-Masters in Business & Law at the International Study Centre.

Transferable skills

As well as the necessary subject knowledge you learn by studying law, you’ll also have the opportunity to develop useful skills that can be used throughout your professional and personal life. These include:

  • Communication and presentation skills
  • Teamwork and collaboration
  • Research and critical analysis
  • Meeting deadlines
  • Long-form writing.

A multitude of career paths

Following on from a law degree, you can take on challenges in the various fields of law. There are plenty of options within law such as pro bono services, consultation and advice, or solicitors. Alternatively, law experts are needed in many other sectors, like media, politics, or in business and commerce.

High salaries and financial stability

There are lots of career paths to choose from, and most of them will be well paid. For example, according to The Lawyer Portal, trainee solicitors can expect to start at a salary of £19,000, though larger firms could pay nearly three times that amount. Other paralegal roles will pay graduates up to £25,000. If you choose to gain further qualifications, your salary will only increase to reflect your new specialism.

Law experts will always be necessary, so you can also expect job security as another perk of your chosen career path.

Further study opportunities

Alongside an undergraduate and postgraduate qualification, to progress to certain fields of law you will need to take on further study. Fortunately, there are clear paths to career success. Once you decide on an area of law you would like to specialise in, you will need to complete the correct exam. For example, to become a lawyer you would need to complete the Solicitors Qualifying Examination.

Benefits of studying law in the UK

The reasons to study law are clear, but why should you choose to study law in the UK, specifically?

The UK law system

By studying a law degree in the UK, you will learn about the law system used not only across Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland, but many other countries across the world.

The UK is where common law originated, and now a third of the world’s population live in countries that use common law as the basis for their justice system.

The University of Aberdeen has taught law since 1495 and, since then, has continued to evolve and develop its teaching to ensure students receive a top-quality education. Today, the University is ranked 9th in the UK for law by The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021.

The University of Aberdeen is also well regarded for its focus on employability. The University’s Law School is ranked among the UK top five for graduate prospects (THE World University Rankings).

Globally recognised

The University of Aberdeen has been ranked among the top 180 world universities (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2021), so you can be sure your degree will be recognised around the world.

Law firms based in the UK and globally will see the value in completing a degree at an established British institution, giving you an edge in the job market.

Develop your English skills

Choosing to study abroad in the UK is a fantastic way to improve your English language abilities. While you’re here with us in Aberdeen, you will be taught and assessed in English, and encouraged to communicate in English while you’re in the International Study Centre.

Once you progress to the University, your classmates and peers will be a mix of international and domestic students. The University of Aberdeen is proud to have students of 130 different nationalities on campus. Sharing classes and social spaces with native English speakers is a great opportunity to develop your English language and put what you learn during lectures and seminars into real-world practice.

What is the difference between studying law in Scotland and England?

While common law is used and recognised across the UK, there are differences between the nations of the UK: Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Scots law, the system in Scotland, is a mixed system that contains civil and common law elements. Differences can be seen across many areas of law, including property and criminal law.

Both LLB Law and LLB Law (with English Law) are available as a progression degree from the Undergraduate Foundation Programme in Humanities, Law & Social Science at the University of Aberdeen International Study Centre. This means that whether you want to build a career in Scotland, England or globally, there is a degree programme at a top-ranking UK University to suit you.

How to study law abroad in Scotland

If you want to study law in Scotland, the University of Aberdeen is a fantastic choice. Consistently ranked among the top 10 UK law schools, Aberdeen is renowned for its exceptional teaching-quality, and graduate employability.

At the International Study Centre, we offer pathway programmes to both undergraduate and postgraduate law degrees at Aberdeen. These programmes are ideal for international students who need to further develop their English language and academic knowledge before studying at the University of Aberdeen.

On our programmes, you will study a blend of subject-specific and English language modules, all designed to help you succeed in your degree at the University. After you’ve successfully completed the programme, you will be ready to progress to the University of Aberdeen with the confidence to succeed.

By studying law at the International Study Centre, you will be a part of an international community from day one and be supported by our dedicated staff as you begin your study abroad journey in Scotland.

Learn more about the Undergraduate Foundation Programme and our Pre-Masters programme on our website.

Read student stories

If you would like to hear from our student ambassadors, read our blog post. Maka and Fatima reflected on their first term with us.

An international student in the law library at the University of Aberdeen

Being a lawyer enables you to maybe help people in different capacities. It expands your horizons in terms of opportunities.

Israr from Pakistan
Studies LLB Law