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Durham Law School

54°46′30″N 1°34′29″W / 54.775082°N 1.574678°W / 54.775082; -1.574678

Durham Law School
Entrance to Durham Law School
TypeLaw school
Parent institution
Durham University
DeanVolker Roeben
Durham University
Palatine Centre
Stockton Road
, ,

Durham Law School is the law school of Durham University in Durham, England. In 2022, Durham Law was ranked 5th in the UK in a league table which averaged the rankings of the Complete University Guide, The Guardian and the Times University League Table. Durham Law School is ranked 42nd in the world for law in the 2023 Times Higher Education ranking[1] and 46th in the world for law by the 2023 QS ranking.

Durham Law School has particular research strengths in the areas of Public Law & Human Rights, Commercial & Corporate Law, EU & International Law and Bio-law with further strengths in Chinese Law and Legal Philosophy.


The school was founded in 1969. It was congratulated on its 50th anniversary in a House of Commons early day motion in 2018.[2]


Durham Law School is housed in the BREEAM excellent-rated Palatine Centre, on Durham University's Lower Mountjoy site. This was named as the most impressive law school building in the world by Best Choice Schools in 2014.[3][4] The building includes a moot court and the 90-seat Harvard-style Hogan Lovells lecture theatre.[5][6]

Academic profile


Undergraduate teaching is delivered through lectures, seminars and small group tutorials. Extra-curricula opportunities include mooting and pro bono legal work.[7]

Durham Law School offers a three-year LLB degree and a four-year LLB with Year Abroad degree.[8] They are both Qualifying Law Degree programmes for the purpose of practicing as a barrister or solicitor in England and Wales. The course includes modules on Chinese law, launched in response to the needs of City firms.[9] The law school also runs a Chinese law summer school – the first in the UK and first in English outside Asia – in a move described by the Times as offering "great career prospects" for Durham Law School graduates beyond what is offered at other UK law schools.[10]

Taught postgraduate LLM degree programmes include a general Master of Laws LLM, LLM in Corporate Law, LLM in European Trade and Commercial Law, LLM in International Trade and Commercial Law, LLM in International Law and Governance, LLM in International Environmental Law and LLM in Medical Law and Ethics.[11]

Research postgraduate degree programmes include a one-year Master of Jurisprudence MJur and PhD in Law.[12]

Reputation and rankings

National rankings
Complete (2025)[13]5
Guardian (2024)[14]6
Times / Sunday Times (2024)[15]6
Global rankings
ARWU (2023)[16]101-150
QS (2025)[17]43
THE (2024)[18]34

In 2015, the Chambers Student triennial survey of which universities law firm trainees had attended ranked Durham third behind Oxford and Cambridge, supplying 7.6 per cent of law trainees in the UK (up from 4th in 2012). The survey also placed Durham second (behind Manchester) in supplying national firms (up from 11th in 2012) and third in supplying US firms in London (up from 5th in 2012).[19][20]


The Palatine Centre, home to Durham Law School

Research centres and groups

Durham Law School supports a range of institutes, centres and groups open to academic staff and law students. These include: the Centre for Chinese Law and Policy (CCLP), the Centre for Criminal Law and Criminal Justice (CCLCJ), the Centre for Ethics and Law in the Life Sciences (Durham CELLS), the Durham European Law Institute (DELI), the Centre for Gender Equal Media (GEM), Gender and Law at Durham (GLAD), the Human Rights Centre (HRC), the Institute of Commercial and Corporate Law (ICCL), Islam, Law and Modernity (ILM) and Law and Global Justice at Durham (LGJ).[21]

Durham's Centre for Chinese Law and Policy is among the largest in Europe.[22]

Major areas of research

Notable people

Notable academics

The following notable individuals are or have been academics of Durham Law School:

Notable alumni






  1. ^ "World University Rankings 2022 by subject: Law". 28 September 2021.
  2. ^ "Early day motion 875 - FIFTIETH ANNIVERSARY OF DURHAM UNIVERSITY'S LAW SCHOOL". UK Parliament.
  3. ^ "Durham Law School – Most Impressive Law School Building in the World - Cundall". Archived from the original on 25 October 2018. Retrieved 24 December 2014.
  4. ^ "The 50 Most Impressive Law School Buildings in the World".
  5. ^ "Durham legal network in London - Professional Networking". Durham Newswire. Retrieved 28 October 2023.
  6. ^ "Palatine Centre, Durham University". WhatsOn Venues. Retrieved 28 October 2023.
  7. ^ "Undergraduate Study". Durham Law School. Retrieved 28 October 2023.
  8. ^ "LLB Law (M101) - Course Information - Durham University". Archived from the original on 2 October 2017.
  9. ^ Jemma Slingo (21 February 2020). "Going global: law school offers Chinese course in response to City demand". The Law Society Gazette.
  10. ^ Baksi, Catherine. "Chinese law offers great career prospects". The Times. Retrieved 1 June 2019.
  11. ^ "Durham Law School : LLM - Durham University". Durham University.
  12. ^ "Durham Law School : PhD/MPhil/MJur - Durham University".
  13. ^ "Complete University Guide 2025". The Complete University Guide. 14 May 2024.
  14. ^ "Guardian University Guide 2024". The Guardian. 9 September 2023.
  15. ^ "Good University Guide 2024". The Times. 15 September 2023.
  16. ^ "Academic Ranking of World Universities 2023". Shanghai Ranking Consultancy. 15 August 2023.
  17. ^ "QS World University Rankings 2025". Quacquarelli Symonds Ltd. 4 June 2024.
  18. ^ "THE World University Rankings 2024". Times Higher Education. 28 September 2023.
  19. ^ "Law firms' preferred universities". Chambers Student. 2015. Retrieved 23 February 2016.
  20. ^ "What counts as a 'good' university if I want to be a solicitor?" (PDF). Chambers Student. December 2012.
  21. ^ "Durham Law School : World-leading Research - Durham University".
  22. ^ "Chinese law centre at Durham University is biggest in Europe". thenorthernecho.
  23. ^ "Centre for Ethics and Law in the Life Sciences - Durham University".
  24. ^ "Durham Law School – Postgraduate Study Opportunities" (PDF).[permanent dead link]
  25. ^ announcement, archived from the original on 21 July 2017, retrieved 25 July 2018
  26. ^ Who's who, Durham University, retrieved 4 March 2011
  27. ^ Judicial Appointments Commission, Judicial Appointments Commission, archived from the original on 25 April 2010, retrieved 4 March 2011
  28. ^ ‘HUGHES, Rt Hon. Sir Anthony (Philip Gilson) ’, Who's Who 2013, A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc, 2013; online edn, Oxford University Press, Dec 2012; online edn, Nov 2012 accessed 5 April 2013
  29. ^ announcement, retrieved 25 July 2018
  30. ^ ‘McFARLANE, Rt Hon. Sir Andrew (Ewart)’, Who's Who 2013, A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc, 2013; online edn, Oxford University Press, Dec 2012; online edn, Nov 2012 accessed 5 April 2013
  31. ^ "Finola O'Farrell, QC" (PDF). Keating Chambers. Archived (PDF) from the original on 20 April 2021.
  32. ^ Burke's Peerage - Preview Family Record
  33. ^ "Nick Gibb Biography". Conservative Party. Archived from the original on 7 June 2009.
  34. ^ "Durham welcomes back law school graduates Sir Robert Buckland KC MP and Huw Merriman MP". Durham University. 26 October 2023.
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Durham Law School
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