No other graduate programme compares with this one. The BCL and the MJur (for students from a civil law background), are the only graduate law degrees in the world that are taught through tutorials, as well as seminars and lectures. If you are wondering why we don’t have an LLM in Oxford, this is the reason. You will simply have closer contact with your teachers in the BCL or MJur, than you would have in an LLM, anywhere in the world.
That is important for two reasons. First, it is worthwhile spending time with our Faculty. We have the largest and strongest community of legal scholars of any university in the United Kingdom. Oxford attracts the finest scholars from around the world, just as it attracts outstanding students from around the world. It is rather good to have their direct response to the work that you do, as you pursue an advanced training in the law.
The second value in the distinctive teaching programme for the BCL and MJur is, I must tell you, that it will make you work harder than you would on an LLM. The challenge of submitting their own work to a teacher who knows the subject is a spur to our students. It takes them deeper into the difficulties of a legal problem, than if they were only listening to a discussion of it. And then, in the tutorial, the discussion of their work with the tutor and with other students gives them an opportunity to discover what more can be achieved. If you come for the BCL or MJur you will find yourself in a group of gifted students, who learn to do more than they realized that they could do. It makes Oxford a great place to teach and to study.For practitioners and academics alike, Oxford’s Bachelor of Civil Law (BCL) degree is the most highly regarded taught masters-level qualification in the common law world.
The Oxford Magister Juris (MJur) was introduced in 1991 to serve outstanding law students from noncommon law backgrounds. It is a counterpart to the BCL and shares all of its courses.
The BCL and MJur are full-time programmes, running from late-September to mid-July. Only those with outstanding first law degrees are admitted. Students are expected to analyse complex material critically and to consider it from different perspectives. Attention to legal puzzles is often combined with discussion of underlying policy problems, and students are expected to make their own contribution to the debate.
In the seminars and tutorials which form part of both courses, students are likely to find colleagues from a range of jurisdictions and backgrounds. This diversity among contributors also helps to stimulate variety and depth in discussions.