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Computer and Communications Law

Master of Laws ( 1 year Full-time / 2 years Part-time )

Overview

The importance of communication and information in modern society has grown exponentially in recent times. The LLM in Computer and Communication Law programme allows students the opportunity to gain expertise in the legal regimes governing the supply and use of computer and communications technology. Through the examination of the complex issues concerning national and international law and policy relating to computer and communications technology student will learn to analyse how computer and communications technology has affected the application of traditional legal principles.

Read about the cloud computing legal research project at Queen Mary.

Your fellow students will come from the UK and more than 80 other countries, each able to draw on prior academic and in many cases professional experiences from different jurisdictions to enrich discussion and debate in class.

Distance Learning

We also offer an LLM in Computer and Communications Law by Distance Learning.

Why study your LLM in Computer and Communications Law at Queen Mary?

The School of Law has consistently been ranked in the top 10 law schools in the UK for the quality of our research and teaching, and many of our internationally recognised staff act as advisers to governments, industry and NGOs, both nationally and internationally.

The Postgraduate Law Centre is based in Lincoln’s Inn Fields, Holborn, the legal district of London, close to law firms, chambers and the Royal Courts of Justice.

  • There is a very high rate of employment of our students within six months of graduation.
  • We have dedicated law careers advisers who organise events and internship opportunities with top UK and international law firms.
  • Many of our internationally recognised staff act as advisers to governments, industry, regulatory authorities and NGOs, both nationally and internationally.
  • We offer a Critical Thinking and Writing in Law programme designed to improve your writing and research in law skills.
  • You will be able to take part in networking and social events run by the Queen Mary Postgraduate Law Society and upon graduating join our extensive alumni network.


Facilities


You will have access to facilities and equipment at the Postgraduate School of Law Centre in Lincoln's Inn Fields, which comprises workstations, wireless internet access, projectors and a common room. You will also have access to the Lock-keeper's Cottage Graduate Centre at the Mile End campus.

As well as housing the Law Library and a European Documentation Centre, the Queen Mary Library at Mile End provides access to all the main British, European and international textbooks, law reports and periodicals and also offers one of the best commercial law collections in the country. Through the University of London College network, students have access to an unrivalled range of electronic law journals and databases.

In addition, Queen Mary provides free access to extensive online databases and collections including: Lexis, Nexis, Westlaw, Justis, Eur-lex, Hein-Online, Business Source Complete, Index to Legal Periodicals, International Court of Justice Reports, Kluwer Arbitration, Oxford Scholarship Online (Law), Reports of Patent, Design and Trademark Cases, UK Statute law database and United Nations Treaty Collection.

 

In addition to the Queen Mary Library and the British Library, postgraduate students are able to access the well-stocked law library at the University of London’s Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (IALS). The Institute, located at Russell Square, a few minutes’ walk from Lincoln’s Inn Fields, is one of the major law libraries worldwide. You will also have access to the University of London Library at Senate House.

Structure

The Master of Laws (LLM) is available to study full-time for one year or part-time for two years.

Each of the LLM programmes follows a common format: you will take 135 credits worth of taught modules (examined in May-June) and thereafter you work on a 15,000-word dissertation worth 45 credits (submitted mid August).

What differs from programme to programme is the range of modules that you are required to choose from. If you wish to take an unrestricted range of modules and any approved dissertation topic you should apply for the Master of Laws.


Induction and choosing your modules


We run a two-week induction period that includes an overview of the programme and module selection, dissertation and research skills. In the second week you will have the chance to try out the different modules within your programme before you make your final choice. Full details of the induction programme will be made available online by September each year.

LLM Year Planner


The LLM Year Planner gives you an idea of the structure of the programme and key periods for assessment and exams.

Full-time


Undertaking a masters programme is a serious commitment, with weekly contact hours being in addition to numerous hours of independent learning and research needed to progress at the required level. When coursework or examination deadlines are approaching independent learning hours may need to increase significantly. Please contact the course convenor for precise information on the number of contact hours per week for this programme.


Part-time


The part-time LLM is essentially aimed at legal practitioners working full-time in the UK. You will attend the same modules and follow the same teaching timetable as full-time students.

The part-time programme is, however, spread over two academic years.

In year one, you will normally complete 90 credits of taught modules. In year two, you will normally take a further 45 credits of taught modules and submit the compulsory 15,000-word dissertation (45 credits). This can of course be changed if necessary, as the dissertation can actually be done in either year. However we would always advise part-time students to take 90 credits of taught modules in their first year if they are timetabled in a convenient slot.

Although not recommended, it is possible for part-time students, who are having difficulties in finding taught modules that fit in with their work timetable, to submit two dissertations – one per year. This would then enable you to take one taught module per year.


For more information:

Visit the School of Law website.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

If you can't find the information you are looking for on these pages, take a look at our LLM Frequently Asked Questions.

Modules:

To specialise in this area, you must select 90 credits of modules from this list and do your compulsory dissertation in the field of Computer and Communications Law (45 credits). The additional 45 credits of taught modules can be in this area or can be unrelated and therefore selected from the full list of LLM available modules.

All modules are 45 credits unless otherwise stated below.

Note: Not all of the modules listed will be available in any one year. Any modules not available in the forthcoming academic session will be marked as soon as this information is confirmed by teaching academics.

Entry requirements

Law graduates

The usual qualification for entry to the LLM programme is a degree in law, or a degree with a substantial law content, of at least 2.1 honours (or equivalent). Law graduates with 2.2 honours who also have other legal qualifications and/or substantial professional legal experience may also qualify.

Non-law graduates

Non-law graduates with a minimum second class honours degree, that have also obtained a Merit (or 60 per cent) in the Common Professional Examination (CPE) or Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) recognised by the UK professional bodies, may also qualify. Non-law graduates may also be considered on the basis of exceptional professional experience (of at least five years) in a legal area or an area directly related to their programme of study.
 
In all cases, a full online application is required in order for a fair assessment and decision to be made. Each application is considered on its merits and on sight of full application documents.
 
A full and detailed CV is required for all applications and is particularly relevant where professional experience needs to be considered.

International applicants

Students from outside of the UK help form a global community here at Queen Mary. For detailed country specific entry requirements please visit the International section of our website. If your first language is not English, you must provide evidence of your English language proficiency. Find details on our English language entry requirements webpage.

If you do not meet language or scholarly requirements it might be possible for you to undertake foundation or pre-sessional programmes that will prepare you for the masters programme.

For more information, please contact the Admissions Office.

If you are unable to find the information you require, please contact the Admissions Office for assistance.

How to apply - one LLM programme only

You may only apply for one of the School of Law’s LLM London programmes at a time. This restriction does not include the LLM Law and Economics programme or the LLM in Paris programme,  which you may still apply for. You are permitted to apply for a maximum of two Queen Mary taught postgraduate programmes, so you may still apply for a further non-LLM London programme should you wish.

If you apply for one of the LLM London programmes, then later decide you would prefer to attend a different LLM specialism, please contact the Admissions Office Law Team at admissionsteamc@qmul.ac.uk - prior to enrolment - to request a manual change of LLM programme. Do not submit a new application.

Learning and teaching

As a student at Queen Mary, you will play an active part in your acquisition of skills and knowledge. Teaching is by a mixture of formal lectures and small group seminars. The seminars are designed to generate informed discussion around set topics, and may involve student presentations and group exercises as well as open discussion. We take pride in the close and friendly working relationship we have with our students. You will have a team of advisers to support you, including the LLM and Research Directors, your dissertation supervisor and tutors and your module convenors.


Where will my lectures and seminars be held?


Teaching is based at the School of Law's postgraduate centre in Lincoln's Inn Fields (nearest Underground station: Holborn). Depending on the courses you take, you may also have classes at the Mile End Campus (nearest Underground stations: Mile End and Stepney Green) or the University of London's Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (nearest Underground stations: Russell Square, Euston and Euston Square) or Charterhouse Square (nearest underground station: Barbican).

The sample LLM teaching timetable will give you some idea of the different locations used for teaching. This is a sample only and venues and times/days can change from year to year. The LLM teaching timetable is given to students during the induction period (after enrolment).


Independent Study


For every hour spent in classes you will be expected to complete further hours of independent study. Your individual study time could be spent preparing for, or following up on formal study sessions; reading; producing written work; completing projects; and revising for examinations.

The direction of your individual study will be guided by the formal study sessions you attend, along with your reading lists and assignments. However, we expect you to demonstrate an active role in your own learning by reading widely and expanding your own knowledge, understanding and critical ability.

Independent study will foster in you the ability to identify your own learning needs and determine which areas you need to focus on to become proficient in your subject area. This is an important transferable skill and will help to prepare you for the transition to working life.


Assessment


You will be assessed by a mixture of formal examinations and coursework in the three taught modules, followed by more self-directed work on your 15,000-word dissertation.


Dissertation


You will also complete a dissertation of 15,000-words.

 

Teachers contributing to this programme include:


 

Fees

Tuition fees for Home and EU students

2014 entry
Full time £12,600

Tuition fees for International students

2014 entry
Full time £18,000

Funding

There are a number of sources of funding available for Masters students.

These include a significant package of competitive Queen Mary bursaries and scholarships in a range of subject areas, as well as external sources of funding.

School of Law scholarships

The School of Law offers a range of scholarships for Law Masters programmes each year. Full details are made available on the law funding page from October – November each year.

Queen Mary bursaries and scholarships

We offer a range of bursaries and scholarships for Masters students including competitive scholarships, bursaries and awards, some of which are for applicants studying specific subjects.

Read more about funding a masters

Alternative sources of funding

Home/EU students can apply for a range of other funding, such as Professional and Career Development Loans, and Employer Sponsorship, depending on their circumstances and the specific programme of study.

Overseas students may be eligible to apply for a range of external scholarships and we also provide information about relevant funding providers in your home country.

Detailed information about postgraduate funding options is available in our Postgraduate Funding Guide (pdf).

Read more about funding a masters.

Tel: +44 (0)20 7882 5079
email bursaries@qmul.ac.uk

Other financial help on offer at Queen Mary

We offer one to one specialist support on all financial and welfare issues through our Advice and Counselling Service, which you can access as soon as you have applied for a place at Queen Mary.

Our Advice and Counselling Service also has lots of Student Advice Guides on all aspects of finance including:

Tel: +44 (0)20 7882 8717

Graduate Employment

Profiles

Elisa Kohlhase, Samoa

Elisa Kohlhase

LLM in Computer and Communications Law, Commonwealth scholar 2013

After graduating from the University of Otago (New Zealand) in 2001, I worked as a solicitor at O’Malley & Black, a general rural practice in South Otago.

In 2004, I returned home to Samoa to take up a position as Assistant Legal Counsel at SamoaTel Limited, the state-owned telecommunications monopoly. At the time, I had no knowledge of telecommunications law or the industry and so I spent the next few years learning as much as I could from managers and engineers to customer service and technicians. Competition was introduced into the sector in 2006; something which was both new and exciting. In 2009, I left SamoaTel to join the team at the Office of the Regulator, the regulator for telecommunications, broadcasting, postal and more recently electricity; where I am currently employed.

Postgraduate study was never a priority primarily because I am a mother of three and financial constraints did not allow for the same. However, as a small island nation with an emerging telecommunications market, Samoa has a real need to develop capacity in this area. Telecommunications law and regulation is an ever expanding field and you find that there is always something new to learn about. This of course means smaller, less developed nations like those in the South Pacific are always playing ‘catch-up’.

Last year, my husband encouraged me to apply for one of the Commonwealth Scholarship Awards when it was advertised and I was fortunate enough to be granted one of the scholarships offered. I chose to come to Queen Mary because of the modules offered. I wanted to do something that would be relevant and applicable when I returned to Samoa. The three modules I chose to take – Telecommunications, Cyberspace and Media Law – provide a well-rounded program which will provide me with necessary skills to assist in the further development of the ICT sector (particularly in the area of policy and associated laws) in my home country.


Olugbemi Oduntan, Nigeria

Olugbemi Oduntan

LLM in Computer and Communications Law - CCLS/UNILAG Scholarship Winner 2013

After graduating from the University of Lagos and the Nigerian Law School, and consequent call to the Nigerian Bar, I have had about two years of intensive transactional and litigation practice experience before deciding to seek an advanced degree. My decision to pursue an LLM was influenced by a desire to build necessary capacity in our ever-evolving world. To aid the choice of institution, premium was placed on the quality of teaching and the practical experience available.

It soon became clear that Queen Mary University of London was the institution that ticked all the boxes – and more. With its rising global profile, perfect combination of seasoned professors with magnificent facilities and strategic location in London – a city at the heart of international commercial and legal activities – the University provides countless academic and social opportunities hard to come by, harder within a span of one year. The CCLS scholarship award provided the final impetus that hastened my decision.

For me, the experience at Queen Mary has been splendid! The academic and administrative support available is outstanding. Opportunities for social and professional development are enormous. I currently serve as a Student Representative on the Student-Staff Liaison Committee of the LLM Programme; I am actively involved in the Media Group of the Postgraduate Law Society and I was recently appointed a Student Adviser in the award-winning Queen Mary Legal Advice Centre where students provide free legal and regulatory advisory services to early-stage, start-up companies, primarily in the Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) sector.

These engagements align with my choice of specialisation and future ambition. In fact, my chosen modules are focused on electronic commerce, communications and technology laws which are of particular relevance to Nigeria as an emerging economy and because of the dearth of local knowledge base in those areas.

I am therefore confident that this LLM serves to enhance my capabilities with a world-class education and equip me with skills needed to succeed in my chosen career path.


Marcel Campbell, UK

Marcel Campbell

Distance Learning LLM in Computer and Communications Law 2012-13

Director, Information Security, Thomson Reuters Corporation, New York

My background is as a technologist. Over the last decade a myriad of regulations that pertain to the use of information have become central to designing an effective solution. The course helped me better understand the rules, their intent and to apply them in practise. I particularly enjoyed the Privacy and Data Protection, Media Law and Internet Content Regulations modules, which were topical at the time and spurred many interesting debates with tutors and other students. Technology is used very effectively to deliver content and enable collaboration on the course. I strongly recommend this course for both Technologists and Legal practitioners.


Temitope Lawal, Nigeria

Temitope Lawal

LLM in Computer and Communications Law 2012-13

Winner of the University of Lagos/CCLS Scholarship

Upon graduating from the University of Lagos in 2010, I immediately proceeded to the Nigerian Law School and subsequently got called to the Bar in 2012. Prior to coming to Queen Mary, I did my one-year compulsory national service in a city corporate / commercial law firm.

My choice of Computer and Communications Law was borne out of my sheer desire to learn more about legal issues pertaining to the effective regulation of the telecommunications and media sectors from a global perspective. Having this in mind, I ventured out in search of a university that offered an LLM programme in this area. I found Queen Mary, University of London to be one of the few schools that had it. This, coupled with recommendations from one of my professors (an alumnus of Queen Mary) sealed up my choice of Queen Mary. Furthermore, the ranking of the School of Law as one of the best in the UK by different rating bodies and its recent admission into the Russell Group contributed immensely to my opting for Queen Mary, University of London.

Studying at the Centre for Commercial Law Studies (CCLS) has been an invaluable experience. Apart from having the privilege of been taught by some of the world’s most renowned lecturers in the area of telecommunications, media and e-commerce law, I also had the rare opportunity of getting to meet people from diverse cultures, backgrounds and nationalities.

I hope to do an internship in an international organization immediately after my programme in order to put into practice the knowledge and skills I have been able to garner from studying at this world class educational institution known as Queen Mary, University of London.


Melanie Hadeli, Indonesia

Melanie Hadeli

LLM in Computer and Communications Law 2011-12

Before coming to Queen Mary, I was working as a lawyer for the past six years, focusing on Information, Communication and Technologies practice areas. I chose to study in the UK as it has an advanced law system and a good education system. Completing LLM study in the UK will enhance my professional profile in respect of my future career. 

I selected Queen Mary, because whilst most LLM programmes in UK provide specialisms in Intellectual Property Law, Queen Mary offers the specialisation in Computer and Communications law which was exactly the programme I wanted to pursue. I also found the specific modules of Telecommunications Law and Computer Law offered in this programme are distinguished and very specialised as compared to other universities in UK which offer a similar specialisation. In addition, Queen Mary is a prominent university and has been consistently ranked as a top university in the UK. When it comes to IT law, I believe QMUL is the best place to study it in the UK.

I enjoy all the practical issues covered in the modules. The experiences of the lecturers as practitioners in the related field addressing the issues makes it more interesting as it reflects the practical approach which cannot be obtained from text books. The practitioner guest lecturers are undoubtedly a good source in giving practical insight to the issue, not only from a law perspective but also from commercial viewpoint.

With regards to the transition from undergraduate and postgraduate studies, given the considerably wide gap between UK and Indonesia regarding education and legal systems, I may say the transition is not that easy to make, but still manageable. In my opinion, work experience in the related field before undergoing postgraduate study, to some extent, is helpful for this transition.


Jessica Lavery, Ireland and Canada

Jessica Lavery

LLM in Computer and Communications Law, 2009-2010

“I attended secondary school in Canada, and completed my undergraduate legal education (BCL) in Ireland in 2009. I decided to study my LLM at Queen Mary because of the wide range of specialisations and courses offered. The modules I have taken (Computer Law, Communications Law and Privacy Law) have been excellent; the lecturers are experts in their fields, and are very approachable and helpful. The Centre for Commercial Law Studies (CCLS), where all of my lectures took place, is centrally located, so it's easy to reach whether you're staying in student halls or private accommodation elsewhere in London. London itself is a great place to study, and an exciting place to live. I would definitely recommend Queen Mary to anyone considering postgraduate study in law, particularly in the IT field. I would say that my LLM definitely helped with finding my current role, since the modules I took were Privacy and Information Law, Telecoms Law and Computer Law. I'm working full time as a Corporate Privacy Analyst with Research In Motion (BlackBerry) based in Slough.”


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