University of Bristol


MSc Socio-Legal Studies


Wills Memorial Building, Queen's Road

Second Floor, Union Building, Queen's Road, Clifton

Bristol, England

United Kingdom

Program Information

Degrees Offered:

MSc Socio-Legal Studies

Format: Campus

Program Description:

This programme develops your knowledge and understanding of interdisciplinary approaches to the study of law and legal phenomena. It provides a sound research training for students wishing to proceed to a PhD or a career in socio-legal research through the study of different research methodologies across the social sciences and law. You will pursue independent, in-depth study in socio-legal studies, engaging in lively debates in a thriving research culture across social sciences and law.

A range of units is offered, suitable for graduates from any discipline who have an interest in the way law works (or fails to work) in society. Methods of assessment may include essays, presentations and/or written examinations, depending on the optional subject(s) chosen, together with the dissertation.

Programme structure

Core units

Three units in the School of Sociology, Politics and International Studies:

  • Philosophy and Research Design in the Social Sciences
  • Introduction to Qualitative Research Methods in the Social Sciences
  • Introduction to Quantitative Research Methods in the Social Sciences

Two units in the Law School:

  • Advanced Legal and Socio-legal Research Methods
  • Social and Legal Theory

Optional units

You will take optional subjects up to a value of 30 credit points, chosen from across most of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Law and beyond. Units designed especially for the MSc offered by the School of Sociology, Politics and International Studies are usually worth 20 credit points each. Units in the Law School are taken along alongside LLM students, and are each worth 30 credit points. 


The dissertation accounts for 60 credit points. It should build on the optional units and develop the approaches taken in the core units. You will be expected to demonstrate an ability to:

  • frame a research question and use an appropriate methodology in response to that question;
  • organise discussion and select material pertinent to the topic;
  • show appropriate higher-level knowledge and understanding of the background context.

International Student Requirements:

IELTS English language 7.0 overall, minimum 6.5 in all bands or equivalent

Facts & Figures

Out State Tuition (per year): 14,600 GBP

Classification: Higher Education Institution (Not Carnegie Classified)

Locale: Midsize City

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