Why this course?
French is a major international language. It is the first language of more than 100 million people across the world, while more than 60 million people speak French as a second language.
Studying with us will give you the chance to become a fluent linguist and, with our year abroad programme, an opportunity to experience living, working and/or studying in another country.
There are a number of ways you can study Law at Strathclyde, one such way being the BA degree in combination with another subject. Please note that studying Law within the BA degree will not qualify you for entry to the legal profession. For professional qualifications in Law students follow the LLB programme.
Law is concerned with the study of the obligations, duties and rights which every member of society has in relation to one another and to the State.
The study of Law is regarded not as purely vocational, but part of a broader education.
Our BA degrees in Humanities & Social Sciences are initially broad-based. In Year 1, you'll study three subjects, including your chosen subject(s).
What you'll study
Two streams are offered in first-year: one for students with Higher French or an equivalent qualification and another for those without. Students in both classes study contemporary French language and aspects of the country’s culture and society.
Years 2 & 3
You’ll continue to develop your reading, writing, speaking and listening skills. In cultural classes, you’ll learn more about the history and politics of France and French-speaking countries through literature and film.
In your final year, you’ll concentrate on translation, written and oral language and interpreting. Cultural classes – reflecting the research expertise of our staff – are currently offered in areas such as the occupation and how it is reflected in film.
In your final year, you’ll build on your project work from previous years and write a dissertation.
This is a central highlight of the course and a major formative experience for students not just in terms of language but on many different levels, personal as well as professional.
The Stevenson Exchange Scholarship is a competitive award which offers students funding towards a project they wish to undertake while on their year abroad. Staff select and interview several candidates for this each year. Our students usually do well in this competition; in 2013, one student secured £1,800 toward his project, and in 2014 three students were successful with awards up to £1,750.
In third year, students of French 3b - along with those in Italian and Spanish 3b - undertake a semester-long project. Students research a topic of their choice linked to French culture and produce a 20-minute presentation, a reflective report and a poster. The posters are displayed at an exhibition for two weeks in April and the student who designs the best poster in each language will receive a prize.
What you'll study
The first-year class, Introduction to Law & Legal Obligations, introduces you to the laws of contract and delict, which are the essential building blocks of most other areas of law, to the court systems and judicial decision-making, and to the law-making process in the UK.
Years 2, 3 & 4
You select classes according to your interests from a wide range of options, including Human Rights, Environmental Law, Criminal Law, Public International Law, and Law, Film & Popular Culture.
Students take two combined classes: French 1A (semester 1), French 1B (semester 2). These courses are mainly organised around a linguistic progression towards level B1 in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. There is a regular input of cultural background which takes the form of three lectures in semester 1 and two in semester 2 covering the following topics:
- The Making of Modern France
- France in a Global Context
- Understanding the French Republic
- French Identities
- Contemporary French Society
In addition, there is an introductory lecture in semester 2 entitled ‘What is translation about?’
Law & Society
This course considers everything from the theory of why and how someone is held responsible for criminal actions, to many specific crimes, including murder, the less serious crimes of personal violence, crimes of dishonesty, breach of the peace and attempting to pervert the course of justice.
This class engages with some challenging problems faced by law within contemporary society. It introduces students to some aspects of the social, political, and ethical conditions in which law operates. It deals with the interaction of law with justice, politics, morals and equality. The course will examine the role and challenges of law in times of social change. The course is structured around three key themes:
- legal reasoning
- law & politics
- law & social change
Voluntary Obligations: Contract & Promises
The aims of this class are to:
- provide students with a basic knowledge of the history, structure and institutions of the Scottish legal system
- provide students with the skills required to find, interpret and analyse the law applicable in Scotland, from all their various sources
- introduce students to competing conceptions of law
- introduce students to legal reasoning
Public Law 1
While the most obvious aim of this course is to familiarise students with Scottish contract law and voluntary obligations, this aim may be divided into a number of sub-aims. They are as follows:
- to place voluntary obligations within the general framework of Scots Law
- to place the Scots law of voluntary obligations within its European context
- to analyse and explain how contracts and promises are formed
- to analyse and explain how voluntary obligations may be vitiated and on what grounds their validity may be challenged
- to analyse and explain the substance of contracts and how the inclusion and exclusion of rights and liabilities is circumscribed by law
- to analyse and explain how contracts break down or otherwise come to an end and the remedies available when they do
Following on from the introduction to the constitution – its key actors, institutions and their functions – in Public Law 1, students taking Public Law 2 will build upon that knowledge here: first by focusing on the ways in which legal (judicial review) and quasi-legal (tribunals, public inquiries, ombudsmen) bodies supervise the exercise of constitutional and administrative decision making; secondly, by a detailed analysis of the political and legal mechanisms which exist for the protection of fundamental rights and freedoms. As such, Public Law 2 is concerned with the abuse of power, and the ways and means by which power can be limited and held to account – whether that is the power of a golf club to suspend an unruly member, the power of a local authority to order the compulsory purchase of privately owned property, or the power of the Prime Minister to wage war.
Students take two language classes as in Year 1. The language courses are based on a series of classes.
Le Monde du Travail
La France et L'Europe
Cultural focus: time (35 hour week, RTT and ‘ponts’, paternity/maternity leave, …) & ‘human resources’ (hierarchical organisation, discrimination, unions, relocation,…)
Linguistic focus: the negation, asking questions, using pronouns.
Immigration & Nationalité
Cultural focus: the origins of the European ideal, Europe and the EU viewed from France.
Linguistic focus: subjunctive mood.
Les Femmes en Politique
Cultural focus: a historical view of immigration in France and a look at the specificity of the French ‘integration’ system.
Linguistic focus: the system of tenses in French (concentrating on past tenses).
Cultural focus: a further look (after first year) at French politics, concentrating on topical issues.
Linguistic focus: modal verbs.
Cultural focus: decentralisation, importance of regions in France.
Linguistic focus: the passive voice.
Cultural focus: the French economy (role of the state, …), marketing à la française
Linguistic focus: equivalent of –ing in French.
In addition, students specialising in French take the French Culture and History 2 class. This class focuses on the Occupation and French Colonialism/Decolonisation. The historical context for each topic is first set, and documents from the two periods studied, before discussion moves on to the cultural domain, via analysis of the following texts and films:
- Au Revoir les Enfants (film, Malle)
- Stupeur et Tremblements (text, Nothomb)
- L'Étranger (text, Camus)
- Le Samourai (film, Melville)
- Anthology of historical texts relating to the Second World War
- Anthology of historical texts relating to French Colonialism/Immigration
Public Law 2
Following on from Public Law 1, Public Law 2 aims to consolidate knowledge and understanding of constitutional and administrative law. Students taking this class will require to have taken Public Law 1 in the first year. It'll build upon knowledge of the key concepts and institutions of the UK constitution. As a second year class, its rationale is to give students the opportunity to progress from an understanding of the constitution to an understanding of the role of the law in the constitutional control of public power. This course encourages students to adopt an evaluative and critical stance towards ongoing constitutional developments. The course will focus on control of administrative action, both by the judiciary and by ombudsmen. The protection of individual rights will be a key feature, focusing on judicial protection but also encompassing the role of human rights institutions in the UK and Scotland. The future control of public power will be discussed, including topical debates concerning constitutional reform in this area.
Family law concerns the control which the law exerts over domestic relationships and families; it affects everyone to a greater or lesser degree.
- the legal status of children, parental responsibilities and rights and the upbringing of children - including issues in adoption and fostering, local authority care and the Children's Hearing system
- legal consequences of marriage/civil partnership
- divorce - including what happens to the family and its financial consequences
- unmarried domestic relations, opposite-sex and same-sex
Involuntary Obligations: Delict & Unjustified Enrichment
Commercial law is a second year compulsory subject on the LLB (and LML) degree. The class provides students with an understanding of commercial law in a Scottish context. It partially meets the commercial law subject requirements and related skills outcomes of the Law Society of Scotland and the Faculty of Advocates (albeit that some of the commercial professional topics, eg sale of goods and insurance law, are dealt with by other courses).
Building on the knowledge acquired by students in first year, the general academic objective of the course is to examine the basic principles and rules concerning core aspects of commercial law, including the main principles of agency, partnership and company law, the law relating to various methods of payment (including consumer credit and bills of exchange) the rules governing the ways in which creditors can ‘secure’ repayment of a debt (eg through taking personal guarantees from third parties for repayment of the debt, or by establishing rights in security over debtor property); the basic principles of diligence; the consequences of both corporate and individual debtor inability to repay debts (corporate insolvency and personal bankruptcy respectively).
While the focus of the class is on ‘a black letter’ analysis of relevant statutory and common law in the broad commercial area, in order to aid understanding of relevant principles, the class also examines the policy rationales underlying the current law and recent and projected reforms in this area.
Property Trusts & Succession
The design of this class is primarily aimed at enhancing students’ ability to read cases, deal with case law and apply the techniques of case-analysis and common law development.
The student will acquire an in-depth and up to date knowledge and understanding, from both a legal and a social perspective, of the rules of law governing involuntary obligations, that is to say the law of delict and the law of unjustified enrichment.
Students will acquire the ability to apply the rules of law to particular fact situations in order to provide definitive answers to the problems exposed in these situations.
Students will develop critical and reasoning skills, giving them the ability to make and present personal and informed judgments on the rules of law and their application within the domestic legal system.
The general rationale of this class is to provide students with a contemporary understanding of the law of property, trusts and succession in Scotland, and to meet Law Society of Scotland requirements in this subject-area.
The EU law class focuses on the constitutional and institutional order of the EU as well as on the internal market. To this end, the class looks at the European integration process, the EU institutions, EU competences, the decision-making process within the EU, the principles underpinning the EU legal order and the principles governing the internal market.
Students take two language classes (as in previous years).
Les Nouvelles Façons de Consommer
Cultural focus: a historical review of slavery and a look at modern forms of slavery.
Linguistic focus: reinforcement work on subjunctive mood, passive voice and negative forms.
Le Système Éducatif
Cultural focus: the impact of consumerism on the environment.
Linguistic focus: adjectives and comparative, hypothesis, conditional mood.
L’Année à l’Étranger
Cultural focus: a look at current issues in the French education system.
Linguistic focus: reported speech, imperative mood, a further look at pronouns.
Cultural focus: practical module aiming at preparing students for the year abroad.
There is also a French Studies 3 class: Freedom and Identity in France and the Francophone world. This class is based on the study of the following texts and films as examples of the treatment of the class’s twin themes:
- Milou en mai (film, Malle)
- Poverty (various texts)
- The Dreyfus Affair (various historical texts)
- Monsieur Klein (film, Losey)
- Rue des Boutiques Obscures (text, Modiano)
- National Identity in the Third Republic (various historical texts)
The main focus of the course is on providing an overview of how the handling and proving of facts works in law and how this interacts with the law of evidence. The emphasis is on understanding and application, rather than the learning of the specific details of legal rules.
The course has three general academic aims:
- to introduce students to theoretical and practical issues relating to the use and proof of facts in the Scottish legal system
- introduce students to the central concepts, rules and principles of the Scots law of Evidence
- give students an understanding of the interrelationship between the theory, practice and law relating to the use and proof of facts in the Scottish legal system
Elective classesLaw, Film & Popular Culture
This class develops general concerns with the nature and function of law which are key elements in the wide-ranging theoretical, non-subject specific (or meta-law) classes taught within the Law School – Law and Society, Sociology of Law, Legal Theory and Criminology.
The main aim of this class is to introduce students to the major theoretical ideas and values of law, and to debates about those ideas and values, thereby enhancing their understanding of law in general.
The class explores relationships between law and morality, law and society and between law and power. In doing so, the course also explores what we mean by law, morality and power. The course requires students to work on their own and make an oral presentation and trains then in concise thinking.
International Private Law
The aim of the class is to introduce the student to the law of landlord and tenant, and to concepts of housing need and market allocation of housing resources and the different ways in which such concepts are interpreted and operated in modern Britain. The method of teaching and assessing the class is designed to enhance learning, academic and transferable skills.
This class aims to provide students with an understanding of the problems inherent in situations involving a foreign element and the basic concepts and principles of Scots international private law. More particularly, attention will be given to the rules which establish when the Scottish court has jurisdiction in any case involving a foreign element. The class will also determine the applicable law in cases involving international elements heard before a Scottish court and the rules on recognition and enforcement of judgments in certain contexts.
The International private law rules in relation to:
- divorce & nullity
- parent & child
- insolvency & succession
Tutorials for this class take place on Saturday mornings.
This class is not recommended for Erasmus exchange students.
Most industrialised countries, and the European Union now have elaborate laws, rules and procedures for ensuring the maintenance of a competitive economy. This course looks at how the competition laws of the United Kingdom and the European Union affect how business operates in Britain.
If you're contemplating a career in business, or are simply a consumer, some knowledge of competition is useful. If you're a student of industrial economics, or of marketing, some knowledge of competition law is a wise precaution. Moreover there are considerably more job opportunities in this area, whether as an economic adviser, legal practitioner or in-house lawyer advising on effective compliance.
Ethics & Justice
Although we are all equal in the law, some are treated more equally than others. This module examines the nature of discrimination and some of the reasons for it, and the history of the law which tries to prohibit it and promote equality. The class looks in depth at the Equality Act 2010 and relevant case law. It covers the protected characteristics, direct and indirect discrimination, harassment, victimisation and disability discrimination, including the duty to make reasonable adjustments. As well as individual anti-discrimination law in employment and goods and services, the class examines preventive and pro-active measures, including positive action and the public equality duty and the arguments around their nature.
Assessment consists of a group presentation on an approved topic of your choice and a piece of coursework requiring problem solving skills and analysis of law and policy.
The Ethics and Justice class aims to introduce students to the world of work by bridging the gap between theory and practice, and by providing them with the intellectual and practical tools to deal with the personal and practical dimensions of law in a competent, ethical and socially responsible manner.
The class will help to develop students’ legal, intellectual and practical skills, and provide them with an opportunity to reflect on the effectiveness and ethics of what they do and how this fits in with problems of access to justice. It will also enhance student understanding of the social and economic context in which legal rules operate.
This class is only open to Law Clinic students with case experience.
Crime & Punishment
The extensive uptake of new digital information technologies and particularly, the internet, has resulted in expanding our legal universe, with new laws being created, the application of older laws being challenged and reconfigured and, unavoidably, new legal challenges arising due to conflicts of regulatory decisions with technological advances.
The aim of the class is to address the basic issues arising from the advent of the internet and related digital technologies and familiarise students with important legal developments that have taken place in the last 20 years.
Human Rights Law
This class encourages students to think constructively and critically about contemporary issues in the field of criminology. It also focuses on contemporary responses to crime in the fields of punishment, imprisonment and penal policy, with reference to developments in Scotland and beyond.
This class deals with the questions, what are those 'basic' or 'fundamental' rights and freedoms to which every individual is entitled in a democratic society, and how to protect them against possible violations.
The class focuses on a selection of the most prominent human rights which have resulted in considerable amounts of litigation. You'll consider the right to life, right not to be tortured, freedom of expression, children’s rights and issues regarding terrorism.
Banking Law & Finance
This class aims to provide students with an understanding of employment law in a UK and EU-wide context and to introduce students to the sources, principles and main features of employment law.
You'll learn about key employment protection provisions and the major collective provisions of employment law in the UK, including the legal position of the contract of employment, the status of employee, the law and practice of unfair dismissal, discrimination law and working time regulations.
The class will focus on practical employment law involving practitioners, an Employment Judge and an Employment Tribunal visit.
Intellectual Property Law
This course is concerned with the legal relationship of banker and customer and the services offered by bankers in the community. It examines the financial instruments employed in financing trading and other transactions and is especially concerned with the law and practice of lending, both secured and unsecured.
Public International Law
Intellectual property is integral to all our daily lives, whether it is the music we listen to, the news we read, or chair we sit on, as well as providing the resources necessary to produce new medicines, and the superabundance of brand marketing to which we are routinely subjected.
The class will study the law of patents, trademarks (registered and unregistered), copyright, and moral rights, and the law of confidence (which includes trade secrets). Both the substantive law, and the underlying policy behind providing exclusive rights for this type of property will be examined.
Local Government Law
Interested in what is going on in Syria? Concerned about what may or may not be going on in North Korea? Pondering why troops are still in Afghanistan? Then public international law might be the class for you.
The class explores the relationships between states as among themselves and with international institutions. As well as giving an overall view of the area, we'll also look at specific incidents which have arisen and which have been dominated by international law, and which in turn have made huge contributions to the area.
The syllabus looks at sources including treaties and customary law, statehood, the collective use of force, state responsibility and terrorism, the International Criminal Court and the International Court of Justice.
This class is evening teaching only.
In Scotland, local government employs around 250,000 people. Every council has its own legal department and nearly 10% of practising solicitors in Scotland are employed by local authorities. It is essential that lawyers in private practice have knowledge of how local government works.
The course will cover a selection of the following topics:
- what local government is and what does it does
- the constitutional position of local government
- the structure of Scottish local government and its statutory framework
- elections to and membership of a local authority
- rights, duties, liabilities and restrictions of councillors
- the councillors’ Code of Conduct and registration of interests
- the powers of local government; the ultra vires rule; community planning; the power of wellbeing; publicity powers
- byelaws, management rules and private Acts of Parliament
- how councils work; the political dimension
- external controls on local government; the courts; the ombudsman, the Standards Commission, the Accounts Commission
- a brief guide to local government finance
This is the year abroad, spent either studying at a foreign university or working as a language assistant or on a work placement. This year is compulsory to gain entry into Honours.
The language course is based on a series of thematic dossiers dealing with current issues in France and the Francophone world. The focus of the class is on reinforcing and developing key professional language skills, such as translation into English, translation into French, liaison interpreting, and 'exposé' (formal oral presentation).
Students in Joint Honours French will additionally have one or more French Studies 4 classes. Everyone will take the Core Class, Images of Women, which considers the changing portrayal of women over the centuries, using the following texts as the basis of discussion:
- Madame Bovary (novel, Flaubert)
- Fatale (novel, Manchette)
- L’événement (Ernaux, novel)
- Women in the Paris Commune of 1871 (various historical documents)
Joint Honours students not writing a dissertation in French will take these two further classes:
- The Occupation and its portrayal in French films
- France since 1945
Our assessment methods include:
- written exams, including translations
- writing for a specific purpose
Continuous assessment ranges from online grammar tests to group projects, while oral/aural tests are performed throughout the course. Students write a dissertation in their final year.
Our assessment methods include:
- multiple choice exams
- problem-based and critical analysis essays
- group work
- case studies
- reflective diaries
Learning & teaching
We focus on the four important language skills:
We make great use of technology in the classroom – interactive lectures and digital language laboratories – and outside, through the use of web-based learning and streamed French television.
In later years you will perform presentations, write reports and interpret into English, which prepares you for potential future careers.
Scholars from French universities visit regularly to give guest lectures and lead workshops, at both undergraduate and postgraduate level.
Our teaching aims to help students develop knowledge and understanding of the principles, nature and development of law and legal institutions in Scotland and in other jurisdictions. The programme is delivered by leading academics through a combination of lectures, seminars, workshops and webcasts.
Required subjects are indicated following minimum accepted grades.
1st sitting: AAAA
2nd sitting: AAAAB
- Higher English B, plus one from the list below
- Maths/Lifeskills Maths National 5 C or equivalent
- Classical Studies
- Modern Studies
- Religious Moral & Philosophical Studies
We recognise a wide range of Highers, however, your profile must reflect a good grounding in essay-based subjects.
Year 1 entry:
Minimum entry requirement: BBB (GCSE English Language B or English Literature B, GCSE Maths C)
Typical entry requirement: ABB (GCSE English Language B or English Literature B, GCSE Maths C)
Year 2 entry:
Minimum entry requirement: ABB (two core subjects at AB)
Typical entry requirement: AAA (two core subjects required)
36 (Maths SL5)
Year 1 entry:
HNC Social Sciences: A in Graded Unit; Maths National 5 C or equivalent
Irish Leaving Certificate
Subjects and grades as for Highers.
It is important to take care over your personal statement. We look for information about your academic and career interests, and your range of skills, abilities, and relevant experience. Your personal statement should show evidence you have a strong awareness and interest in the subject you are applying to.
Deferred entry normally not accepted.
Applicants with Highers
Due to the high level of competition for the number of available places, it is unlikely that Conditional Offers will be made to anyone attaining less than ABB at the first sitting of Highers.
Second-year entry for A Level/Advanced Higher candidates is possible with AA/AB in the two subjects you are planning to study.
Admission to Honours
All students will be admitted as potential Honours students. Students may exit with a Bachelor of Arts degree at the end of Year 3 of the programme if they have accumulated at least 360 credits and satisfied the appropriate specialisation requirements. For admission to the final year of the Honours course, a student must have achieved an approved standard of performance.
We want to increase opportunities for people from every background. Strathclyde selects our students based on merit, potential and the ability to benefit from the education we offer. We look for more than just your grades. We consider the circumstances of your education and will make lower offers to certain applicants as a result.
Find out if you can benefit from this type of offer.
Find out entry requirements for your country.
Degree preparation course for international students
We offer international students (non EU/UK) who do not meet the entry requirements for
an undergraduate degree at Strathclyde the option of completing an Undergraduate Foundation year programme at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre.
Upon successful completion, you will be able to progress to this degree course at the
University of Strathclyde.
Fees & funding
How much will my course cost?
All fees quoted are for full-time courses and per academic year unless stated otherwise.
Rest of UK
Assuming no change in Rest of UK fees policy over the period, the total amount payable by undergraduate students will be capped. For students commencing study in 2017/18, this is capped at £27,750 (with the exception of the MPharm and Integrated Masters courses); MPharm students pay £9,250 for each of the four years. Students studying on Integrated Masters degree programmes pay an additional £9,250 for the Masters year with the exception of those undertaking a full-year industrial placement where a separate placement fee will apply.
University preparation programme fees
International students can find out more about the costs and payments of studying a university preparation programme at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre.
Course materials & costs
The majority of course materials are available to students via Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). Students can print course materials at their own expense.
The cost of course texts does not normally exceed £30 per academic year. Key language texts are used over 2 or 3 years of study. Multiple copies are also available in the University Library.
Studying abroad is an integral part of the degree course in Modern Languages - and usually takes place in Year 4. Students who choose to study in France, Spain or Italy are eligible for an Erasmus and grant to help minimise the extra costs of living abroad. This however, is not a full maintenance grant.
Typically, students will receive around £3,000 for a full academic year of study abroad. Students are required to meet travel, accommodation and extra living costs. These costs will vary dependent on the country of study. An estimated extra spend of £1,000 should be budgeted.
A range of scholarships are available for students of French, Spanish and Italian - and awarded on a competitive basis.
Students who work as English language assistants will receive a monthly stipend. In the case of France, this amounts approximately to 964.88 Euros per month gross (800 Euros net after social security deductions). Similar stipends are paid in Spain and Italy.
Course materials & costs
Recommended text for first year Law module 'Law & Society' M9113 costs £30.
Please note: All fees shown are annual and may be subject to an increase each year. Find out more about fees.
How can I fund my studies?
Students from Scotland and the EU
If you're a Scottish or EU student, you may be able to apply to the Student Award Agency Scotland (SAAS) to have your tuition fees paid by the Scottish government. Scottish students may also be eligible for a bursary and loan to help cover living costs while at University.
For more information on funding your studies have a look at our University Funding page.
Students from England, Wales & Northern Ireland
We have a generous package of bursaries on offer for students from England, Northern Ireland and Wales
You don’t need to make a separate application for these. When your place is confirmed at Strathclyde, we’ll assess your eligibility.
Have a look at our scholarship search for any more funding opportunities.
International Students (Non UK, EEA)
We have a number of scholarships available to international students. Take a look at our scholarship search to find out more.
We have a wide range of scholarships available. Have a look at our scholarship search to find a scholarship.