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    Hello!
    I would like to hear opinions from you guys. I'm now looking to study LL.M. at a university either in the UK or in the Netherlands. I have finished my degree from Bristol. I want to get an academic job at a university in Asia afterwards so I am having a hard time choosing a university. I know that eventually it's me who need to decide which university I would go to but I'm now very confused and would like to hear pros and cons so that I can make an informed choice. To help you with my questions, these are my thoughts about the choices...

    Bristol

    - I love everything about Bristol. The law school is fantastic, so is the city itself. (I love medium-size city = good for social life but also not too busy = the reason why I chose Bristol for my undergrad degree in the first place)
    - According to QS 2016 Bristol is 37th overall, 49th for Law (better than Dutch unis I have applied for)
    - I do not have to adapt to new culture. I know Bristol very well.
    - I want a change. I want to feel inspired and my motivation has dropped noticeably in my final year (also due to personal problem). I need some excitement to keep my motivation to work going (i.e. new city, new people etc)
    - Also, the course is assessment-based (77% for each modules are exam-based and this is for the whole academic year) I feel like I'm better with coursework

    Netherlands

    - I fell in love with the Netherlands and I want to live/ study there at least once in my life.
    - I applied to 3 universities in the Netherlands. Groningen, Maastricht and Erasmus
    - Groningen (QS 2016 = 100th for World Rank, 101-150 for Law but more established)
    - Maastricht (169th for World Rank, 60th for Law, innovative, new, and famous for their EU law) and
    - Erasmus Rotterdam (126th for World Rank ,54th for Law, internationally recognised)
    - In the Netherlands, students can focus on one subject in each block and more choices as to the methods of assessment.
    - I need to find accommodation myself and I've heard that some students did not have good experience with their landlord.
    - Need some time to adapt with new culture.

    Please bear in mind that I am an international student in the UK. I have no problem with the tuition fee as I am sponsored and I want to study in Economic-related LLM programme. (e.g. EU law )

    Thank you for having read this far. If you have any opinions please comment below. Would love to hear from any of you
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    Rankings are generally not important, the course and it's content are but in Asia (specifically your country), rankings may be important so you may want to think about whether it is and factor that in to your decision. Also will Brexit affect the exposure and experience you get of EU law? It's good that you're thinking about assessment and what works for you because ultimately it's the degree mark you end up with that will be on your CV. Finally you need to think about how much you want change vs how much you want to stay in the UK.
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    I've just finished an LLM in Public International Law at Utrecht University and will be going into academia as a PhD student and graduate teaching assistant back home in the UK.

    Depends on the specific subfield of law but when talking about law schools in the Netherlands it is always Leiden this and Leiden that with Utrecht and Amsterdam a close second and third. It is because Leiden and Utrecht are the two of the oldest and most established with excellent alumni.

    I wanted to reply to you because you said you do better in coursework. The Netherlands have many many exams on their LLMs. They still operate on the system that you probably had on your LLB that there has to be some balance between assignments and exams like 50:50 or 40:60 at least. LLMs in the UK generally aren't like that are assessed by all essays. The academic calendar here works that you get two modules per block and there are 4 blocks. You'll have 3 8 week blocks of teaching and then the last block will be the thesis. This means the assignments can be quick fire and the modules sometimes not the level of depth I expected. Also the actually grading is wildly different at different universities here. Leiden and Maastricht grade notoriously low (I've heard horror stories of like half a class failing a module at Leiden on one of their LLMs) whereas Utrecht have a higher grade curve in the law school. Not sure about Amsterdam. I'm not ashamed to say that getting *** laude (UK distinction) is easier at Utrecht. I'm afraid I don't know what the marking is like at Rotterdam or Groningen.

    That being said there are bonuses. I've had opportunities here that I wouldn't have had if I did my LLM in the UK. I've covered more ground because of the number of modules and been able to pick and choose more. We had some varied assignments too like mooting modules where we did written and oral pleadings. I did a mooting competition in humanitarian law which is my favourite. I serve as an editor of a peer reviewed journal at Utrecht and Utrecht paid for me to go to Croatia on a course related to my future PhD project. These are all things that we don't really have access to in the UK, or at least less access to.

    Regardless of formal rankings it is reputation that matters more. Leiden, Utrecht, Amsterdam (UvA), and Maastricht degrees are largely regarded to be as good as at least Russell Group in the UK with Leiden and Utrecht roughly the same as a UK top ten uni. My Utrecht LLM managed to land me a funded PhD place so I can't complain and it must have been well regarded. I would say Groningen has a better international reputation than Erasmus from what I've heard. Groningen have a really good EU department.

    I would discourage you from staying at Bristol for your LLM. Going elsewhere will massively improve your network for academia and shove you out of your comfort zone which is good for improving skills. From what I've seen on the CVs of people who stayed for LLMs where they did their LLBs they kind of exhausted all the extracurricular opportunities early on and then had a little less on their CV than someone who went elsewhere and got thrown into new things.
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    (Original post by alleycat393)
    Rankings are generally not important, the course and it's content are but in Asia (specifically your country), rankings may be important so you may want to think about whether it is and factor that in to your decision. Also will Brexit affect the exposure and experience you get of EU law? It's good that you're thinking about assessment and what works for you because ultimately it's the degree mark you end up with that will be on your CV. Finally you need to think about how much you want change vs how much you want to stay in the UK.
    I'm currently studying in Beijing as an international student and can contribute to this debate by saying UK universities are held in FAR higher esteem than the Netherlands. That is not to say Bristol is the best place for you, but I think on the comparative a UK Russell Group wins on reputation against Dutch universities
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    (Original post by Magnus Taylor)
    I'm currently studying in Beijing as an international student and can contribute to this debate by saying UK universities are held in FAR higher esteem than the Netherlands. That is not to say Bristol is the best place for you, but I think on the comparative a UK Russell Group wins on reputation against Dutch universities
    I think you want to quote the OP rather than me.
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    (Original post by alleycat393)
    I think you want to quote the OP rather than me.
    Haha I probably should have but I guess OP will see it and it linked to your point on Asia. Dui bu qi
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    The Hague Academy of International Law offers an Advanced Course on International Criminal Law.

    Could be interesting.

    Institute of Advanced Legal Studies of the University of London offers an LL.M. in International Corporatr Government, Financial Regulation and Economic Law with elective on Comparative European Banking and Securities Regulation, International Economic Law and Organisation.

    IALS also offers an LL.M. in Advanced Legislative Studies with which you can chose the EU direction. which at it's core is EU legislative studies 1 and 2, 'Legislating for EU membership and accession', 'Theories of European Integration'.

    Off the cuff.. possibly MSc Public Policy and Human Development with the United Nations University in Maastricht?

    Graduate Institute in Geneva?

    University of Kent has a campus in Brussels and has masters in the European Union and International Law.
 
 
 
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