Undergraduate as well as graduate Law programs are offered by Law schools and by law faculties in universities around the world. Law studies feature a wide range of concentrations and can suit almost any prospective student.
There are many different higher education institutions specialized in law around the world. Although the details vary by country, most fall into one of several categories, such as:
Many universities around the world offer LLB, LLM, MBA in Law, PhD in Law programs, as well as Law courses. It is common for students to specialize in a field within the law discipline such as Business Law, International Law, Environmental Law, Finance Law, Criminal Law, Tax Law, etc.
Potential students may also want to consider studying abroad, particularly if they are interested in highly specialized fields of law. Students are increasingly studying across borders for all levels of tertiary education (college or university-level studies). According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Institute for Statistics (UIS), the number of students studying abroad is approaching 4 million per year, nearly double the 2 million studying abroad in 2000. Students from East Asia and the Pacific make up 28 percent of this total, while students from North America and Europe account for about 15 percent. The countries that send the most students abroad are China, India and the Republic of Korea. About 6 percent of students from Central Asia and about 5 percent of students from sub-Saharan Africa study abroad, making students from those regions the most mobile in the world. The current top destinations for international students are the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, France, Germany and Japan.
Many students are also enrolled in online or distance learning graduate-level programs taught in countries other than their country of residence. These students are not included in the UIS numbers, so the total number of international students is somewhat higher, likely more than 4 million.
Students may want to consider studying law abroad for a variety of reasons, including:
- Being able to select from the world’s top law programs. In addition, some law specializations are only available in a handful of countries, or the best programs are available in only certain regions.
- Studying in a different culture. Students pursuing an LLM, MBA in LAW, PhDs in Law or law courses related to a specific region of the world should consider a program taught in that region to obtain a full cultural immersion and better understanding of their field of study. In addition, students planning careers in international law will gain invaluable experience from living in another culture.
- Increased language skills if the program is taught in a different language than the student’s native tongue. In addition, although many international LLB, LLM, and PhD programs are now taught in English, students may have the opportunity to increase their language skills through extra studies or assimilation with the local population.
Students considering pursuing a law degree may want to consider the following factors when deciding whether to study at a university in their home country or abroad:
In addition, online and distance learning law programs offer great flexibility.
- The cost of the program, including living expenses. Some countries offer inexpensive or even free tuition, but high living expenses may offset those savings. However, many countries and individual universities offer scholarships and other types of financial aid, and some of these are targeted at international students. Countries also vary widely regarding how much international students are allowed to work, and some countries do not allow international students to work at all. Health insurance costs also vary widely from one country to another.
- The quality of the education gained, relative to the expense and intangible factors of studying abroad, such as cultural immersion and language skills. Although all accredited masters of law meet a high level of standards, teaching methods vary widely across different schools, programs and cultures. In addition, some students may find that they learn less when studying in a non-native language.
- Language skills required. Students not proficient in the language of instruction for a particular course of study may need to spend an additional year or so gaining that proficiency. Sometimes the students can gain this proficiency through studies in their native country, but in other cases they may need to spend additional time abroad.
- Type of law studies offered, such as part-time versus full-time, online and distance learning. Most countries require international students residing in the country on a student visa to study on a full-time basis. However, students already living in another country on a work permit may be able to pursue law studies on a part-time basis.
Take the time now to check out law faculties and law schools from around the world. If you already know what you’re looking for, you can click directly to that country or to specific programs. Or take some time to browse and read about the exciting law programs available worldwide.