LLM International Commercial Law

Graduate Taught (level 9 nfq, credits 90)

With the enormous growth in international commerce over the last few decades knowledge of international commercial law has become an essential element of legal practice in all major law firms. The programme is also especially relevant to those seeking opportunities in the commercial world. Members of staff in the Sutherland School of Law have engaged in major research in this area spanning the full range of international commercial law from the World Trade Organisation through competition law in the domestic, European and international contexts to the issues arising out of the complexities of regulation.


  • To understand and think critically about various facets of International Commercial Law;
  • To apply their knowledge and understanding of International Commercial Law to real and hypothetical factual situations;
  • To conduct independent research and write coherent, well-structured papers. 

Careers & Employability

The LLM in International Commercial Law is highly regarded by employers and has been the basis for many successful careers across the world. It is particularly useful for students wishing to practise with specialist corporate law firms or wishing to work as an in-house legal adviser. Potential employers include A&L Goodbody, Matheson, William Fry and Arthur Cox.

Several UCD careers events are held throughout the year, including dedicated law careers fairs which are attended by top employers. For specific careers advice, the UCD Sutherland School of Law has a dedicated careers advisor on its academic faculty.

Curricular information is subject to change

Full Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

Part Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. No

The Sutherland School of Law offers a wide range of modules for the Masters programmes. Modules of especial interest to those undertaking this programme include:


EU Competition Law builds on your prior knowledge of EU constitutional and EU economic law by critically examining how EU competition law governs particular actions of private market actors. It considers the rationale behind EU competition law and how this area of law fits in to the EU's economic order and philosophy. It goes on to explore and critique the substantive and institutional dimensions of TFEU Articles 101 (governing, amongst other things, cartels between firms) and 102 (governing abuses of dominant market positions). This module additionally considers the relationship between national and EU competition law, as well as the institutions active in enforcing EU competition law at national and EU levels. 

Corporate Governance will cover both the legal and regulatory environment and the informational and market infrastructures which apply in Ireland and the wider EU. The objective of this module is to develop an understanding of the development of corporate governance and its importance to companies and their stakeholders. It seeks to provide a framework for analysing how regulations impact on corporate decision-making, ethics and planning. The module will investigate the processes of supervision and control within companies and determine what the primary aims of those processes should be. It will examine the regulations and norms which seek to ensure that directors act in the interests of shareholders or wider stakeholder groups as appropriate. It will examine both the theory and the reality of shareholder democracy. Throughout the module, consideration will be given to the important question of determining the appropriate form of regulation to achieve the desired aims of corporate governance.

International Commercial Arbitration is a  study of the domestic and international law and practice of commercial arbitration.The course will cover: The Arbitration Agreement: form; scope and effect; the proper law of the arbitration agreement; giving effect to the agreement to arbitrate; litigating the subject matter of an agreement to arbitrate; staying litigation pending arbitration; frustration, repudiation and abandonment of arbitration agreements. The Arbitrator: appointment, replacement, removal; duties and powers; immunity from suit; ethical obligations and considerations. The Arbitral Proceedings: procedure and evidence; the ICC and other institutional rules of procedure; the proper law of the proceedings; the proper law of the dispute; separability and arbitrability of disputes; equity clauses and the lex mercatoria. The case stated. The award: formal and substantive requirements; reliefs and remedies; costs and interest. Challenges to an arbitral award: domestic and foreign awards; the Geneva and New York Conventions. Arbitration of international investment disputes; the ICSID system and rules. State involvement in arbitration. The UNCITRAL model law and the reform of arbitration law.


The Comparative International and European Law (CIEL) programme is an exchange programme for registered full-time LLM students. The programme includes joint thesis supervision with academic colleagues at both the home and host institution. Upon successful completion students are awarded the CIEL certificate in addition to their LLM award.


Maastricht University (Courses through English: English as first language or an overall score of score 6.5 in IELTS)

Universität Mannheim (Courses through German: German as first language, Leaving Certificate B2 or equivalent)

Universitat Pompeu Fabra (Courses through English: English as first language or an overall score of score 6.5 in IELTS)

Université Toulouse 1 Capitole (Courses through French: French as first language, Leaving Certificate B2 or equivalent)

University of Antwerp (Courses through English: English as first language or an overall score of score 6.5 in IELTS)

University of Zagreb (Courses through English: English as first language or an overall score of score 6.5 in IELTS)


Students admitted to LLM programmes holding a 2:1 in their undergraduate Law degree and relevant language results are eligible to apply in late September/Early October when they have begun their programme. Spaces are allocated on a competitive basis. Open to September start students only.​


LLM Exchange to the University of Melbourne

Sutherland School of Law will offer one full-time registered LLM, September start, student the opportunity to spend Semester Two of their full-time LLM programme in the University of Melbourne. This is open only to students admitted to an LLM programme holding a high 2:1 in their undergraduate Law degree. Allocation will be based on academic performance to date and interview. Application to this will open in October.

Additional Notes for Applicants:

  • Please note that the Part Time programme has the same timetable as the full time programme but is held over 2 years rather than 1 year.
  • January start full time students will be expected to submit a dissertation title as soon as they have registered for the programme, January, and will have to submit a proposal and poster within the first  weeks of their first  semester.
  • There will be dissertation seminars in weeks 1-4 on Tuesdays and Wednesdays 11-1pm (Jan-May term)

NEW Double Degree Masters in Law with University Western Australia located in beautiful Perth


This 1+1 Double Degree consists of two separate awards: a UCD SSoL  one-year taught Masters Degree  followed by a UWA Law School one year taught Masters Degree.


The UCD SSoL degree will be from one of the following programmes


● LLM General,


● LLM International Commercial Law,


● LLM in Criminology & Criminal Justice,


● LLM in IP and IT Law,


● LLM in International Human Rights,


● LLM European Law and Public Affairs,


● MSc Criminology and Criminal Justice,


● MSc International Law and Business AND




The UWA Law School one year taught Masters Degree can be taken in one of the following fields:


● Master of International Commercial Law,


● Master of International Law,


● Master of Taxation Law,


● Master of Law, Policy and Government,


● Master of Commercial and Resources Law, and


● Master of Mining and Energy Law. 


More details on the UWA programmes available






The academic calendar at UWA extends from February to June (Semester 1) and July to November (Semester 2). So the first entrants from UCD will take place in February 2020


Students transferring from UCD will be required to meet normal overseas admission standards before being admitted to the UWA Masters programme i.e. the equivalent of a Weighted Average Mark of 60% overall in the first year of their UCD Masters study


Each student shall pay the full annual fees for the programme to the institution they are studying at for the year of payment.


         Each year, UWA may award full or partial tuition fee scholarships to the best qualified UCD candidates who commence the UWA Masters programme. The number of these full or partial scholarships and eligibility for them may be determined by UWA in accordance with the number of students entering the programme and/or their academic performance.


It is expected that these will be as follows:


-    For Students with a UWA WAM equivalent of 70% (UCD GPA of 3.08) or greater a fee waiver of $A5,000 per annum.


-    For Students with a UWA WAM equivalent of 75% (UCD GPA of 3.38) or greater a fee waiver of $A8,000 per annum.


-    For Students with a UWA WAM equivalent of 80% (UCD GPA of 3.68) or greater a fee waiver of $A10,000 per annum.



The programme gives students, who already hold an undergraduate degree in law or have practised law for a significant period, a deeper understanding of international commercial law. Graduates acquire knowledge, understanding and skills that are particularly useful for those wishing to practise with specialist corporate law firm or wishing to work as an in-house legal adviser.

Students are challenged to understand and think critically about various facets of international commercial law, in its broader social and political context. The understanding thereby acquired is also relevant to their contribution as citizens in an increasingly wide range of areas.

We strive for a learning environment that encourages students to work individually or as part of a team, so they can develop their own and others' leadership, teamwork and communication skill, with a special emphasis on the applicability of these in the actual practice of international commercial law.

To these ends, the programme makes intensive use of teaching, learning and assessment approaches such as small-group teaching, in-class presentations (individual and group), problem-based learning and academic writing. A 30 credit dissertation on a topic devised by the student, or a group project devised by the project partner, is an integral part of the programme.

  • apply their knowledge and understanding of international commercial law and their problem-solving abilities in diverse environments.
  • demonstrate specialised knowledge and understanding of International Commercial Law.
  • have the intellectual toolkit required to research and write a major dissertation.
  • integrate source material from a variety of disciplinary areas to reach reasoned decisions about the relative status of competing claims to knowledge.
  • unpack complex legal arguments and to render intelligible to a non-specialist audience, key disciplinary insights.
  • use knowledge of substantive law to critique arguments as to whether and how the law in this field is in need of reform.

LLM International Commercial Law FT (B453) Full Time
EU          fee per year - € 11500
nonEU    fee per year - € 22600

LLM International Commercial Law PT (B454) Part Time
EU          fee per year - € 5340
nonEU    fee per year - € 11300

LLM International Commercial Law (B455) Full Time
EU          fee per year - € 11500
nonEU    fee per year - € 22600

LLM International Commercial Law (B456) Part Time
EU          fee per year - € 5340
nonEU    fee per year - € 11300

***Fees are subject to change

Undergraduates who are eligible for government SUSI funding should note that their fees for graduate study may also be covered under the scheme. To check your eligibility please see the SUSI eligibility indicator tool available at this weblink

Further information about SUSI grants and funding is available at this weblink.

Tuition fee information is available on the UCD Fees website. Please note that UCD offers a number of graduate scholarships for full-time, self-funding international students, holding an offer of a place on a UCD graduate degree programme. For further information please see International Scholarships  (Non-EU Students). 

We also offer scholarships for EU applicants. All applicants who apply before May 31st will be included. Further details at http://www.ucd.ie/law/study/scholarships/

Degree Requirements

  • Applicants must hold a Law degree, or an inter-disciplinary degree in which law was a major component. Applicants must have achieved at least an upper second class honours or equivalent.
  • Applicants holding a Graduate Diploma in Law (60 ECTS Credits) may be considered but will normally be admitted only where they can show an exceptionally strong performance in both their undergraduate degree and diploma.
  • Exemption from these requirements may be given to those with significant, relevant, practical experience or those with a graduate qualification at Masters level or higher in a relevant discipline. Such applicants should state clearly in their application why they feel their qualifications/experiences are appropriate for admission to the programme.
  • These are the minimum entry requirements – additional criteria may be requested for some programmes 

English Language Requirements

  • Applicants whose first language is not English must submit satisfactory evidence of competence in written and spoken English, i.e. overall IELTS 6.5 (including a minimum of 6.5 in the reading and writing parts and no part below 6.0) or 90 in the TOEFL iBT (with a minimum of 22 (reading) and 24 (writing) and no part below 20.) The test results must be less than 2 years old.
  • The School encourages all applicants whose first language is not English to attend the pre-sessional English programme offered by the UCD Applied Language Centre, details of which are available at www.ucd.ie/alc.
  •  Students meeting the programme’s academic entry requirements but not the  English language requirements, may enter the programme upon  successful completion of UCD’s Pre-Sessional or International Pre-Master’s Pathway programmes. Please see the following link for further information http://www.ucd.ie/alc/programmes/pathways/ 
  •  International applicants should visit the UCD International Office website (www.ucd.ie/international) for information regarding our campus, location of UCD, visa information, registration and orientation.

Letter of recommendation

Graduate Profile
Armaury Le Menn,
Legal Counsel at Subsea 7, Paris

The priority for me was to apply to a commercial law LLM in a Common Law country. When I looked at UCD’s offering and the prospect of living in Dublin I did not hesitate to apply. UCD is a green campus in Dublin where you can be the best of yourself and meet interesting and diverse people. Joining the UCD Mountaineering club, just one of the many societies, was an opportunity to meet people outside of my speciality. I studied in Toulouse and Paris, France as well as Berge in Norway before coming to Ireland and the UCD campus is by far the best of the universities I attended. I have chosen to become an in-house lawyer and I work for Subsea 7, a multinational company serving the offshore energy market. My LLM at UCD definitely helped me to get the internship which led to the job I have today and to prepare me for a career internationally.

The following entry routes are available:

LLM International Commercial Law Jan FT (B455)
1 Years
Full Time
LLM International Commercial Law Jan PT (B456)
2 Years
Part Time
LLM International Commercial Law FT (B453)
1 Years
Full Time
LLM International Commercial Law PT (B454)
2 Years
Part Time

* Courses will remain open until such time as all places have been filled, therefore early application is advised