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UCL, LSE OR KCL for law?

I only want to apply for 1 London university. Are there any law students from either one of these universities that can say why they chose their uni?
Reply 1
they're all extremely competitive for law and typically applicants will choose to apply for more than one of them. all three are excellent for law.
Original post by kwakraon
I only want to apply for 1 London university. Are there any law students from either one of these universities that can say why they chose their uni?

I go to LSE. Socially, its definitely a hit or miss so if having the typical uni social life is something you highly value, UCL is much better but KCL is also decently social. In terms of teaching, all 3 are pretty much on par. If having a typical super social uni experience is not a major consideration, you're best off applying strategically. If you're a non-contextual home student, it can actually be quite hard to get into UCL and KCL in particular. In the past KCL has had an LNAT cut-off score of 30+ for non-contextual home students, which makes it super hard to get in. UCL also tend to favour contextual/international applicants and sometimes seem to hand out offers arbitrarily. LSE heavily considers the personal statement, so if writing is your strength then this may be your best bet. Having strong supercurriculars in your statement (e.g. law work experience, essay competitions etc) will be looked on favourably in the personal statement. LSE still expects a high LNAT score (most students got a score of 27+) but a score of 30+ isn't required as it unofficially has been for non-contextual KCL applicants.
Original post by poppy2022

I go to LSE. Socially, its definitely a hit or miss so if having the typical uni social life is something you highly value, UCL is much better but KCL is also decently social. In terms of teaching, all 3 are pretty much on par. If having a typical super social uni experience is not a major consideration, you're best off applying strategically. If you're a non-contextual home student, it can actually be quite hard to get into UCL and KCL in particular. In the past KCL has had an LNAT cut-off score of 30+ for non-contextual home students, which makes it super hard to get in. UCL also tend to favour contextual/international applicants and sometimes seem to hand out offers arbitrarily. LSE heavily considers the personal statement, so if writing is your strength then this may be your best bet. Having strong supercurriculars in your statement (e.g. law work experience, essay competitions etc) will be looked on favourably in the personal statement. LSE still expects a high LNAT score (most students got a score of 27+) but a score of 30+ isn't required as it unofficially has been for non-contextual KCL applicants.


Very informative and in-depth analysis 👍🏻 thanks 🙏🏻 I'm choosing between them and I think I might go with LSE. How's the work opportunity for u so far? I'm more concerned with academic standard and job prospect rather than social life.
Reply 4
There's often a general student perception that KCL is a little behind UCL and LSE in general. Perception or reality or a combination does result in LSE attracting the highest average entrant grades of the 3 universities for all subjects as a whole (195). UCL has 190 and KCL 171.
Yet in world rankings, for all subjects as a whole, UCL is ahead but next it's KCL and LSE is just one place behind KCL.
For Law, The Complete University Guide says that, of the 3 universities, average grades achieved by recent entrants have been highest at KCL (93%, same as Oxford), followed by LSE (92%, same as Cambridge), then UCL (91%, 5% ahead of the next university, Durham).
For research quality in Law, UCL is top (91%). LSE is in joint 8th place on 85%. KCL is in joint 19th position on 83%. Unfortunately, this doesn't tell us research intensity in Law - what percentage of staff in the dept are doing research. If there's just 1 great person doing any kind of a research at a university, it's going to unfairly make that university look better than a place that actually has even greater researchers but also some slightly worse researchers that results in the average quality % reducing. For the universities as a whole, across all subjects, UCL has the highest research intensity of the 3 universities (0.72), then KCL (0.69), then LSE (0.65).
For graduate prospects, 82% of UCL Law graduates went on to do something related to Law. For LSE it's 77%. For KCL, it's 76%.
I have a sense that LSE is for specialists but might not provide the most rounded, enjoyable, student experience.
UCL has approx 52.6% international students. LSE has approx 51.3% international students. KCL has approx 39.1% international students. These stats don't necessarily imply anything about the quality of the entrants but English might not be the language that some of them have most mastered and the qualifications they have might not be directly comparable to A-Levels.
Given that KCL is generally underrated by the general student compared to the others, yet has not only attracted Law students who achieve a slightly higher average grades but it's likely that more of their Law students are proficiently fluent in English, I do feel that KCL is probably genuinely the best of those for Law for most undergraduates, then UCL, then LSE.
(edited 1 month ago)
LSE is the most prestigious of the three internationally.
Original post by ImmortalSnail20
Very informative and in-depth analysis 👍🏻 thanks 🙏🏻 I'm choosing between them and I think I might go with LSE. How's the work opportunity for u so far? I'm more concerned with academic standard and job prospect rather than social life.
There are plently of career opportunities at LSE although many are heavily geared towards commercial law (think magic circle, £££). However, if there's another area of law that you're interested in, you'll usually be able to find events/talks geared towards that too. As a friend said once, there is no better place to find out what you want to do in the future than at LSE. Another thing about LSE is that because it's so career-focused and students are always looking for the next work experience opportunity, it naturally compels you to also apply to stuff and think seriously about your career. The student body are also all very talented (think international competition winners, overachievers, impressive extracurriculars) This may be off-putting for some as there are obviously limited work experience opportunities available so an element of competition and rejection is inevitable. However, there really isn't any better university to help you with entering the corporate world than LSE (even compared to Oxbridge as the focus there tends to be more on academics than careers).

Obviously, LSE is very, very hard to get into. Therefore, I just want to say that while there are many benefits to being there, there are also many downsides. Many people here (including myself) aren't very satisfied with the lack of community feel, the competitiveness, the intensity, the cliquey/fake social scene etc. While career prospects are very important, you'd be surprised to hear that employers don't care as much about the LSE label as you might think. Having visited 6 different top law firms (3 magic circle firms, the rest silver circle firms) they all said the same thing: it's really down to the applicant and their strengths. Many hardly look at the university that the applicant attends, once again confirmed by graduate recruitment teams at the firms. Yes, there are likely to be more talented people at the top universities, but they're being hired for being talented people, not simply because they go to LSE/Oxbridge etc. Therefore, regardless of where you go, if you're good enough, you have just as much of a chance if you take the initiative to seek these opportunities. Places like LSE just highlight these opportunities to you. Anyway, another long message but my point is that please don't idolise LSE or any of the other universities that you apply to. I made this mistake and soon realised that reality never matches up with the dreamed-up version.

Also, if you want me to review a draft of your personal statement, PM me and I can send you my Instagram. Good luck!
(edited 1 month ago)
Original post by poppy2022
There are plently of career opportunities at LSE although many are heavily geared towards commercial law (think magic circle, £££). However, if there's another area of law that you're interested in, you'll usually be able to find events/talks geared towards that too. As a friend said once, there is no better place to find out what you want to do in the future than at LSE. Another thing about LSE is that because it's so career-focused and students are always looking for the next work experience opportunity, it naturally compels you to also apply to stuff and think seriously about your career. The student body are also all very talented (think international competition winners, overachievers, impressive extracurriculars) This may be off-putting for some as there are obviously limited work experience opportunities available so an element of competition and rejection is inevitable. However, there really isn't any better university to help you with entering the corporate world than LSE (even compared to Oxbridge as the focus there tends to be more on academics than careers).

Obviously, LSE is very, very hard to get into. Therefore, I just want to say that while there are many benefits to being there, there are also many downsides. Many people here (including myself) aren't very satisfied with the lack of community feel, the competitiveness, the intensity, the cliquey/fake social scene etc. While career prospects are very important, you'd be surprised to hear that employers don't care as much about the LSE label as you might think. Having visited 6 different top law firms (3 magic circle firms, the rest silver circle firms) they all said the same thing: it's really down to the applicant and their strengths. Many hardly look at the university that the applicant attends, once again confirmed by graduate recruitment teams at the firms. Yes, there are likely to be more talented people at the top universities, but they're being hired for being talented people, not simply because they go to LSE/Oxbridge etc. Therefore, regardless of where you go, if you're good enough, you have just as much of a chance if you take the initiative to seek these opportunities. Places like LSE just highlight these opportunities to you. Anyway, another long message but my point is that please don't idolise LSE or any of the other universities that you apply to. I made this mistake and soon realised that reality never matches up with the dreamed-up version.

Also, if you want me to review a draft of your personal statement, PM me and I can send you my Instagram. Good luck!


This is extremely well put - it’s the quality of the candidate that is paramount when law firms are hiring.
Original post by poppy2022
There are plently of career opportunities at LSE although many are heavily geared towards commercial law (think magic circle, £££). However, if there's another area of law that you're interested in, you'll usually be able to find events/talks geared towards that too. As a friend said once, there is no better place to find out what you want to do in the future than at LSE. Another thing about LSE is that because it's so career-focused and students are always looking for the next work experience opportunity, it naturally compels you to also apply to stuff and think seriously about your career. The student body are also all very talented (think international competition winners, overachievers, impressive extracurriculars) This may be off-putting for some as there are obviously limited work experience opportunities available so an element of competition and rejection is inevitable. However, there really isn't any better university to help you with entering the corporate world than LSE (even compared to Oxbridge as the focus there tends to be more on academics than careers).

Obviously, LSE is very, very hard to get into. Therefore, I just want to say that while there are many benefits to being there, there are also many downsides. Many people here (including myself) aren't very satisfied with the lack of community feel, the competitiveness, the intensity, the cliquey/fake social scene etc. While career prospects are very important, you'd be surprised to hear that employers don't care as much about the LSE label as you might think. Having visited 6 different top law firms (3 magic circle firms, the rest silver circle firms) they all said the same thing: it's really down to the applicant and their strengths. Many hardly look at the university that the applicant attends, once again confirmed by graduate recruitment teams at the firms. Yes, there are likely to be more talented people at the top universities, but they're being hired for being talented people, not simply because they go to LSE/Oxbridge etc. Therefore, regardless of where you go, if you're good enough, you have just as much of a chance if you take the initiative to seek these opportunities. Places like LSE just highlight these opportunities to you. Anyway, another long message but my point is that please don't idolise LSE or any of the other universities that you apply to. I made this mistake and soon realised that reality never matches up with the dreamed-up version.

Also, if you want me to review a draft of your personal statement, PM me and I can send you my Instagram. Good luck!


hi I’m not OP but could you review my personal statement pls
Original post by shush12389
hi I’m not OP but could you review my personal statement pls
Send me a PM
Original post by Picnicl
There's often a general student perception that KCL is a little behind UCL and LSE in general. Perception or reality or a combination does result in LSE attracting the highest average entrant grades of the 3 universities for all subjects as a whole (195). UCL has 190 and KCL 171.
Yet in world rankings, for all subjects as a whole, UCL is ahead but next it's KCL and LSE is just one place behind KCL.
For Law, The Complete University Guide says that, of the 3 universities, average grades achieved by recent entrants have been highest at KCL (93%, same as Oxford), followed by LSE (92%, same as Cambridge), then UCL (91%, 5% ahead of the next university, Durham).
For research quality in Law, UCL is top (91%). LSE is in joint 8th place on 85%. KCL is in joint 19th position on 83%. Unfortunately, this doesn't tell us research intensity in Law - what percentage of staff in the dept are doing research. If there's just 1 great person doing any kind of a research at a university, it's going to unfairly make that university look better than a place that actually has even greater researchers but also some slightly worse researchers that results in the average quality % reducing. For the universities as a whole, across all subjects, UCL has the highest research intensity of the 3 universities (0.72), then KCL (0.69), then LSE (0.65).
For graduate prospects, 82% of UCL Law graduates went on to do something related to Law. For LSE it's 77%. For KCL, it's 76%.
I have a sense that LSE is for specialists but might not provide the most rounded, enjoyable, student experience.
UCL has approx 52.6% international students. LSE has approx 51.3% international students. KCL has approx 39.1% international students. These stats don't necessarily imply anything about the quality of the entrants but English might not be the language that some of them have most mastered and the qualifications they have might not be directly comparable to A-Levels.
Given that KCL is generally underrated by the general student compared to the others, yet has not only attracted Law students who achieve a slightly higher average grades but it's likely that more of their Law students are proficiently fluent in English, I do feel that KCL is probably genuinely the best of those for Law for most undergraduates, then UCL, then LSE.
This response highlights the flaws of looking at league tables and stats. As someone who goes to LSE and has friends at the other two universities, the stats mentioned in this post don't adequately reflect the experience of actually being at these universities. The first thing to point out is that LSE is the most international of the three universities, with around 70% coming from outside of the UK. KCL is the second-most international, while UCL definitely has the most typical British university feel of the three both in terms of the culture and where the students are from. In turn, LSE being the most international explains why less go into a path directly related to Law. Some will go on to work for their parents' companies back in their home country, while other international students who plan to stay in the UK will find it harder to get a job compared to British citizens as they have to be good enough for the employer to want to pay for their visa. Ultimately, both LSE and UCL have an equal reputation amongst UK law firms (although KCL isn't far behind) but LSE undoubtedly has the best reputation internationally. Secondly, the idea that the international students at these universities aren't able to speak proper English is nonsense, especially for a subject like Law where written ability is crucial. Virtually all of the international students went to international schools in their home country (while some boarded in the UK) where they would have been taught in English for years, often by English or American teachers. Most also did A Levels or the IB in their country, also in English. They also have to pass a special English language test to gain admission. This doesn't change the fact that the international students tend to stick to others from their own country as opposed to integrating, but they very much can adequately communicate in English.

Additionally, the reason why LSE is lowest in world rankings is primarily because they only teach social sciences, while the other universities also teach STEM subjects. As I said before, LSE has the best world reputation by far, hence why it attracts so many international students.

Lastly, I'd be interested to see where the statistics about KCL students having the highest A Level grades came from, as the LSE student body tend to have attained notoriously high grades with a very significant proportion having attained all A*s or equivalent. Although I will note that it can be very very hard to get a first at LSE, which may be something to consider if you want to have plenty of time to have fun and socialise during university. Unfortunately, it's almost impossible to maintain the typical wild university social life regularly while also achieving a first. LSE students tend to only have time to properly socialise/go out around once or twice a week.
Original post by poppy2022
Original post by Picnicl
There's often a general student perception that KCL is a little behind UCL and LSE in general. Perception or reality or a combination does result in LSE attracting the highest average entrant grades of the 3 universities for all subjects as a whole (195). UCL has 190 and KCL 171.
Yet in world rankings, for all subjects as a whole, UCL is ahead but next it's KCL and LSE is just one place behind KCL.
For Law, The Complete University Guide says that, of the 3 universities, average grades achieved by recent entrants have been highest at KCL (93%, same as Oxford), followed by LSE (92%, same as Cambridge), then UCL (91%, 5% ahead of the next university, Durham).
For research quality in Law, UCL is top (91%). LSE is in joint 8th place on 85%. KCL is in joint 19th position on 83%. Unfortunately, this doesn't tell us research intensity in Law - what percentage of staff in the dept are doing research. If there's just 1 great person doing any kind of a research at a university, it's going to unfairly make that university look better than a place that actually has even greater researchers but also some slightly worse researchers that results in the average quality % reducing. For the universities as a whole, across all subjects, UCL has the highest research intensity of the 3 universities (0.72), then KCL (0.69), then LSE (0.65).
For graduate prospects, 82% of UCL Law graduates went on to do something related to Law. For LSE it's 77%. For KCL, it's 76%.
I have a sense that LSE is for specialists but might not provide the most rounded, enjoyable, student experience.
UCL has approx 52.6% international students. LSE has approx 51.3% international students. KCL has approx 39.1% international students. These stats don't necessarily imply anything about the quality of the entrants but English might not be the language that some of them have most mastered and the qualifications they have might not be directly comparable to A-Levels.
Given that KCL is generally underrated by the general student compared to the others, yet has not only attracted Law students who achieve a slightly higher average grades but it's likely that more of their Law students are proficiently fluent in English, I do feel that KCL is probably genuinely the best of those for Law for most undergraduates, then UCL, then LSE.
This response highlights the flaws of looking at league tables and stats. As someone who goes to LSE and has friends at the other two universities, the stats mentioned in this post don't adequately reflect the experience of actually being at these universities. The first thing to point out is that LSE is the most international of the three universities, with around 70% coming from outside of the UK. KCL is the second-most international, while UCL definitely has the most typical British university feel of the three both in terms of the culture and where the students are from. In turn, LSE being the most international explains why less go into a path directly related to Law. Some will go on to work for their parents' companies back in their home country, while other international students who plan to stay in the UK will find it harder to get a job compared to British citizens as they have to be good enough for the employer to want to pay for their visa. Ultimately, both LSE and UCL have an equal reputation amongst UK law firms (although KCL isn't far behind) but LSE undoubtedly has the best reputation internationally. Secondly, the idea that the international students at these universities aren't able to speak proper English is nonsense, especially for a subject like Law where written ability is crucial. Virtually all of the international students went to international schools in their home country (while some boarded in the UK) where they would have been taught in English for years, often by English or American teachers. Most also did A Levels or the IB in their country, also in English. They also have to pass a special English language test to gain admission. This doesn't change the fact that the international students tend to stick to others from their own country as opposed to integrating, but they very much can adequately communicate in English.

Additionally, the reason why LSE is lowest in world rankings is primarily because they only teach social sciences, while the other universities also teach STEM subjects. As I said before, LSE has the best world reputation by far, hence why it attracts so many international students.

Lastly, I'd be interested to see where the statistics about KCL students having the highest A Level grades came from, as the LSE student body tend to have attained notoriously high grades with a very significant proportion having attained all A*s or equivalent. Although I will note that it can be very very hard to get a first at LSE, which may be something to consider if you want to have plenty of time to have fun and socialise during university. Unfortunately, it's almost impossible to maintain the typical wild university social life regularly while also achieving a first. LSE students tend to only have time to properly socialise/go out around once or twice a week.


This is a very accurate post. I went to the LSE 30 years ago when their grade requirements for law were BBB (!), which was lower than either UCL or Kings but it had by far and away the best reputation internationally. A significant number of students from my cohort have had highly successful legal careers in the UK and internationally.
Original post by poppy2022
This response highlights the flaws of looking at league tables and stats. As someone who goes to LSE and has friends at the other two universities, the stats mentioned in this post don't adequately reflect the experience of actually being at these universities. The first thing to point out is that LSE is the most international of the three universities, with around 70% coming from outside of the UK. KCL is the second-most international, while UCL definitely has the most typical British university feel of the three both in terms of the culture and where the students are from. In turn, LSE being the most international explains why less go into a path directly related to Law. Some will go on to work for their parents' companies back in their home country, while other international students who plan to stay in the UK will find it harder to get a job compared to British citizens as they have to be good enough for the employer to want to pay for their visa. Ultimately, both LSE and UCL have an equal reputation amongst UK law firms (although KCL isn't far behind) but LSE undoubtedly has the best reputation internationally. Secondly, the idea that the international students at these universities aren't able to speak proper English is nonsense, especially for a subject like Law where written ability is crucial. Virtually all of the international students went to international schools in their home country (while some boarded in the UK) where they would have been taught in English for years, often by English or American teachers. Most also did A Levels or the IB in their country, also in English. They also have to pass a special English language test to gain admission. This doesn't change the fact that the international students tend to stick to others from their own country as opposed to integrating, but they very much can adequately communicate in English.

Additionally, the reason why LSE is lowest in world rankings is primarily because they only teach social sciences, while the other universities also teach STEM subjects. As I said before, LSE has the best world reputation by far, hence why it attracts so many international students.

Lastly, I'd be interested to see where the statistics about KCL students having the highest A Level grades came from, as the LSE student body tend to have attained notoriously high grades with a very significant proportion having attained all A*s or equivalent. Although I will note that it can be very very hard to get a first at LSE, which may be something to consider if you want to have plenty of time to have fun and socialise during university. Unfortunately, it's almost impossible to maintain the typical wild university social life regularly while also achieving a first. LSE students tend to only have time to properly socialise/go out around once or twice a week.
It is The Complete University Guide that claims that about average grades of entrants. However The Guardian (who necessarily likes to more trust them, with their reputation for inaccuracies?) claims LSE (203), UCL (197), then KCL (196) for average grades achieved by entrants for Law. Intuition might say The Guardian's more likely to be right on this particular one but intuition can be wrong. Ultimately, Law is a very competitive degree to be accepted on to at any of those London universities so it can come down to personal preference which people prefer regardless of if they got A* or A.
(edited 1 month ago)

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