International Commercial Law LLM

  • For Entry: January | September
  • Duration: 12 months
  • School: Social Sciences
  • Study Mode: Full Time

The LLM in International Commercial Law covers the core issues relevant to the resolution of commercial disputes together with contractual principles.

This course will will provide you with the skills and knowledge needed to thrive in the area of corporate law with subjects specifically pertaining to e-commerce, intellectual property, contracts and more.

Why study this course at Dundee?

The International Commercial modules that we offer will provide you with a detailed understanding of core issues relevant to the resolution of commercial disputes and an appreciation of contractual principles.

Central to this are the courses in International Business Transactions, Problems in International Commercial Litigation and International Dispute Resolution. These modules are complemented by the comparative contract law course, Principles of International Contract Law.

International Commercial modules

The modules we offer will provide you with a detailed understanding of core issues relevant to the resolution of commercial disputes and an appreciation of contractual principles.

What is so good about this course?

In the Times Good University Guide 2012 Dundee Law School was placed 7th in the United Kingdom law school rankings, and we were ranked 1st in Scotland in the 2011 National Student Survey (NSS).

In the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise Dundee Law School was one of only two law schools in the United Kingdom to achieve a 100% international standard classification, with half of our submissions being graded internationally excellent or world leading. Our commitment on is to provide high quality instruction, with a focus on matters of practical relevance, to prepare students for a successful legal career, whether at home or abroad.

We offer all new students an induction programme at the start of each semester, to ensure that all students have the necessary understanding of the UK and European legal systems as well as core principles of public and private law.

We seek to integrate all LLM students into the life of the Law School, and invite you to all guest lectures and seminars. We also have an annual reading party to a beautiful country house location, where you are joined by senior staff and can work on academic skills and dissertation preparation.

Who should study this course?

This course is designed for individuals with a background in law, i.e. a good honours degree in law (acquired or anticipated to have by the expected start date), or in exceptional circumstances non-law graduates with a considerable amount of relevant legal experience.

How you will be taught

Students are taught through a mix of lectures, seminar discussions and tutorials.

What you will study

Core modules


Principles of Corporate Law

Module Convenor: Dr. Bo Xie

This module will give students an understanding of the development of UK company law in an international commercial context. The sources, principles and rules of UK company law will be reviewed; thereafter consideration will be given to the role played by shareholders and directors in running and controlling the company in the UK company law context. There will in addition be an analysis of the differing interests of stakeholders in UK companies and finally, and most importantly, the impact of, and changes to company law which have been generated as a result of the UK Company Law Reform Act 2006 will be considered in detail.

This module will be of interest to students who wish to work in the area of UK and/or international corporate law.


Module Reading List

Competition Law

Module Convenor: Stephen Dnes 

This module aims to introduce students to competition law and policy from an international business law perspective. Main topics will include (i) cartels and restrictive agreements; (ii) abuse of dominance / monopolization, with a particular focus on recent technology cases, and (iii) the review of mergers and acquisitions under competition laws. It thus seeks to provide a solid foundation in the competition law issues most likely to be encountered in practice, enforcement, and further legal research.

The primary focus of the course will be on the competition laws of the UK and the EU, but because of the increasingly global context of competition law practice, comparisons will also be drawn with other important jurisdictions from an international business law perspective, including China and the United States.   The course will seek to explore the theoretical context of competition policy, notably related economic theory, to reflect the significant role underlying theory has come to play in shaping the development of competition law. However, no prior knowledge of economics is expected and the emphasis will be on a practical understanding of the issues from a primarily legal perspective.


Corporate Governance

Module Convenor: Professor Alice Belcher

This module will give students an understanding of corporate governance issues. The module addresses the following: distribution of power within companies; methods of regulating governance; governance systems across the world; auditors and internal control; the meaning and importance of good governance. This module will be of interest to students who wish to work in the area of corporate governance in the UK or internationally.


Module Reading List

International Taxation Law

Module Convenor: Ms. Yvonne Evans

This module will give students an understanding of several key aspects of international taxation law. The module will address both issues of tax jurisdiction for individuals and corporations, issues arising in the taxation of cross-border transactions (particularly e-commerce), causes and methods of relieving double taxation, double taxation treaties, transfer pricing and profit shifting, as well as international tax avoidance.

Taxation is of great importance to lawyers dealing with business transactions, and this module will be of interest to students who wish to work in the area of commercial law.


Intellectual Property Law

Module Convener: Mr. Stuart R. Cross

This module will give students an understanding of the key constituent legal regimes which comprise the general area of intellectual property law in the United Kingdom. The module focuses on the statutory and common law regimes in the United Kingdom which regulate and control copyright, patents, trademarks, and design rights. While the focus is on the United Kingdom legal regimes the module also deals with intellectual property issues in a digital environment and the significant role of the European Union in shaping and influencing intellectual property rules and principles in the United Kingdom.

This module will be of interest to students who wish to work in the area of intellectual property law or generally in commercial law in the European Union.


Candidates for this programme must take at least two of the following modules:


International Business Transactions I

Module Convenors: Ms Aude Fiorini

This module will give students an understanding of the core issues relevant to international contractual litigation in a European and international context. This module will address both issues of jurisdiction (where cross-border contractual cases may be litigated), of choice of law (which law governs an international contract) as well as that of movement of judgments across jurisdictions (the extent to which contractual judgments may be recognised and enforced abroad).

This module will be of interest to students who wish to work in the area of international commercial litigation.


Module Reading List

Principles of International E-Commerce

Module Convenor: Mr Stuart R. Cross

This module will give students an introduction to and an overview of the main concepts and legal issues associated with the law relating to E-Commerce and e-commerce transactions centred on the United Kingdom. It also considers cross border and conflict of law issues associated with such transactions.

This module will be of interest to students who wish to work in the broad area of commercial law or specifically in the area of E-Commerce.


Module Reading List

Principles of International Contract Law

Private International Law (Common Law Perspectives)

Module Convenors: Professor Peter McEleavy and Ms Aude Fiorini

This module will give students an understanding of the core issues relevant to international commercial litigation in a common law context. By way of contrast, consideration will also be given to the differing approaches to jurisdiction in civil and commercial law matters as employed in common law and civil law legal systems. Topics covered will include tag jurisdiction, subject matter jurisdiction, long arm jurisdiction, the doctrines of forum non conveniens and lis alibi pendens. The role of anti-suit injunctions will be analysed as will the different approaches to the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgements in the UK, US and EU. Finally there will be an evaluation of the Hague Judgments Project and the resultant 2005 Choice of Court Convention.


Module Reading List

International Insolvency Law

Module Convenors: Mr. Ross MacDonald and Ms Aude Fiorini

The aim of this course is to examine current problems and trends in the law of corporate insolvency, with particular reference to cross-border transactions and international harmonisation. Attention focuses on European Union regimes but with comparison to developments elsewhere such as the USA, the People’s Republic of China, and UNCITRAL. Topics include choice of insolvency regime (important for multinational companies), creditor protection mechanisms, and corporate rescue.

International Dispute Resolution 

Module Convener: Professor Robin Churchill

The aim of this module is to examine the various means by which international disputes, particularly of a commercial or economic character, may be resolved. It deals with mechanisms and institutions for resolving disputes between two or more States (including cases brought by States on behalf of corporate bodies) and disputes between corporate bodies and States. It does not deal with the resolution of disputes where both parties to the dispute are corporate bodies. Topics to be covered include the bringing of claims by States in respect of injury to their nationals; dispute resolution by diplomatic and judicial means (including arbitration); and dispute resolution procedures under the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes, the World Trade Organization and North American Free Trade Agreement.


How you will be assessed

Substantive modules: continuous assessment plus end of semester examinations in December and March/April. Compulsory dissertation: 12-15,000 words.

Dundee graduates have reached the highest levels of success in the profession as senior partners, Queen's Counsel, judges and front bench politicians.

Dundee graduates have reached the highest levels of success in the profession as senior partners, Queen's Counsel, judges and front bench politicians.

We have close links with employers and we offer programmes to support and develop the employability of our students. Our good reputation throughout the profession and close links to employers help Dundee graduates find employment.

The Law School runs an annual Law Fair which attracts law firms and employers from around the UK and further afield. Law firms also regularly visit the law school on an individual basis for recruitment purposes.

While many students study law in order to qualify to practise, the skills acquired in a law degree are also attractive to many prospective employers in professions such as:

  • the Police
  • Banking
  • Journalism
  • Management
  • Civil service

Find out more about legal careers from our Careers Service.

Chika Okwuosah

"The teaching staff here are fantastic and committed to providing assistance to students within and outside the school environment. I was able to perform excellently in my projects due to the amount of encouragement and support provided by teaching staff whenever I required their support and advice."

Chika Okwuosah

Yao Xiao

"The city of Dundee is very pretty and the people are welcoming and polite. It is surrounded by beautiful countryside and there is lots to explore inside and outside of the city especially with St Andrews so closely located. The university facilities are excellent especially the library which is a comfortable place to spend time studying. All in all I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at the university and am looking forward to my final semester here."

Yao Xiao

Year of Entry: 2016

Applicants must have, or expect to receive in the anticipated year of entry, a good honours degree in law, of at least upper second class or equivalent. Exceptionally, non-law graduates with relevant legal experience may be considered. "If you are concerned that your qualifications do not meet our normal expectation then please contact us.

EU and International students

For entry requirements tailored to your home country visit the Your Country pages.

English Language Requirement

IELTS Overall 6.5
Listening 6.0
Reading 6.0
Writing 6.0
Speaking 6.0

Please check our English language requirements page for details of equivalent grades from other test providers, and information about the University of Dundee English language courses.


English Language Programmes

We offer Pre-Sessional programmes throughout the year and Foundation Programme(s) for both undergraduate and postgraduate students which start at the beginning of the academic year.

These programmes are all designed to prepare you for university study in the UK when you have not yet met the language requirements for direct entry onto a degree programme. Successful completion of these programmes guarantees progression to various degrees at the University of Dundee as long as you hold a relevant offer.

The 30 week (one Academic Year) Foundation Programme(s) allow applicants who

  • have not met our typical academic entry requirements
  • and require additional English Language support by up to 1.0 IELTS

to gain the necessary qualifications to enter the University of Dundee degree programmes in the following year.

The 10 week Pre-Sessional programme provides additional English Language tuition for students who do not meet our minimum English Language requirements by up to 1.0 IELTS.

The 5 week Pre-Sessional programme provides specialist English Language tuition for students who are 0.5 IELTS below the requirement for their degree programme.

There have been many changes to the arrangements for funding students entering higher education in recent years, yet a degree from the University of Dundee, with its high rate of employment success, remains a cost-effective option.

The fees you pay will depend on your fee status. Your fee status is determined by us using the information you provide on your application. Find out more about fee status.

Fee statusFees for students starting 2016/17
Scottish, Rest of UK and EU students £4,500 per year of study
See our scholarships for UK/EU applicants
Overseas students (non-EU) £12,950 per year of study
See our scholarships for international applicants

Please read the Postgraduate "How to Apply" section for information on how to upload relevant documents to UKPASS before proceeding with your application.

Apply online via UKPASS

Course Contact

Professor Peter McEleavy
Dundee Law School
+44 (0)1382 384452