Can't get enough - UCL or KCL


beicon

As requested by some other applicants that have been admitted to both UCL and KCL, let's try to discuss here why choose one over the other... I plan to go to UCL. It is better ranked (in Law and overall) and in my country it seems to enjoy of a slightly greater reputation. Moreover, I've been to London and I was disappointed at KCL's law building (at least from the outside), whilst UCL left me a better impression... but I must admit that KCL's location within London beats UCL's...

As requested by some other applicants that have been admitted to both UCL and KCL, let's try to discuss here why choose one over the other... I plan to go to UCL. It is better ranked (in Law and overall) and in my country it seems to enjoy of a slightly greater reputation. Moreover, I've been to London and I was disappointed at KCL's law building (at least from the outside), whilst UCL left me a better impression... but I must admit that KCL's location within London beats UCL's...
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Churchill

I have offers from UCL, Durham, Nottingham, Warwick and Birmingham.

I am still waiting to hear from LSE and KCL.

Beicon, I was interested to note that you believe UCL has a better reputation than KCL in your country. Which country are you from? I ask because I have always been told that whilst UCL has a better reputation in the UK, KCL is considered more prestigious in Europe and Asia.

I have offers from UCL, Durham, Nottingham, Warwick and Birmingham.

I am still waiting to hear from LSE and KCL.

Beicon, I was interested to note that you believe UCL has a better reputation than KCL in your country. Which country are you from? I ask because I have always been told that whilst UCL has a better reputation in the UK, KCL is considered more prestigious in Europe and Asia.
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beicon

I'm from Brazil... and out of all the people to whom I've talked they said UCL... but look, it is only a slight difference...

I'm from Brazil... and out of all the people to whom I've talked they said UCL... but look, it is only a slight difference...
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ru2

Thanks for opening this thread! I understand that UCL enjoys a better "overall" reputation than KCL, but as far as law goes, it depends on who you ask. That said, I am leaning towards KCL as its faculty for commercial law and IP seem stronger. Also, UCL offers external programs where apparently you can obtain the same qualification, whereas KCL does not, hence preserving the value of the certificate.

Thanks for opening this thread! I understand that UCL enjoys a better "overall" reputation than KCL, but as far as law goes, it depends on who you ask. That said, I am leaning towards KCL as its faculty for commercial law and IP seem stronger. Also, UCL offers external programs where apparently you can obtain the same qualification, whereas KCL does not, hence preserving the value of the certificate.
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Kerfuffle

Moreover, I've been to London and I was disappointed at KCL's law building (at least from the outside), whilst UCL left me a better impression... but I must admit that KCL's location within London beats UCL's...


KCL is campaigning to take over the east wing of Somerset House (I believe originally they were trying to get the New wing). If they get this, they'll undoubtedly have one of the most impressive law school locations in the country. Peronsally, I like the locations of LSE and QMUL's law schools (in Lincoln's Inn Fields), while I find UCL's law school a little grim and tucked away.

<blockquote>Moreover, I've been to London and I was disappointed at KCL's law building (at least from the outside), whilst UCL left me a better impression... but I must admit that KCL's location within London beats UCL's...</blockquote>

KCL is campaigning to take over the east wing of Somerset House (I believe originally they were trying to get the New wing). If they get this, they'll undoubtedly have one of the most impressive law school locations in the country. Peronsally, I like the locations of LSE and QMUL's law schools (in Lincoln's Inn Fields), while I find UCL's law school a little grim and tucked away.
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Churchill

I have received an unconditional offer from KCL today. So now I am only waiting to hear from LSE. I'm not sure which one I'll choose yet. The biggest difficulty for me is cost. Course fees in London are far higher than at other Unis like Durham or Nottingham, and accommodation for the year is going to be around £6,000. Day-to-day living allowances will be quite a lot as well. I'm just considering whether the extra £6,000 or so to study in London will be worth it, when I could go to Durham, whose reputation is probably just as good as London in the UK. Anybody in the same predicament?

I have received an unconditional offer from KCL today. So now I am only waiting to hear from LSE. I'm not sure which one I'll choose yet. The biggest difficulty for me is cost. Course fees in London are far higher than at other Unis like Durham or Nottingham, and accommodation for the year is going to be around £6,000. Day-to-day living allowances will be quite a lot as well. I'm just considering whether the extra £6,000 or so to study in London will be worth it, when I could go to Durham, whose reputation is probably just as good as London in the UK. Anybody in the same predicament?
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Magiur

@ GeorgeP

Congrats to the offers!!! Can you state when did you apply to KCL and Nottingham? I applied to KCL and LSE on 5th November and my status says still "received and beeing processed" respectivly "under consideration".

If I had the choice, I would prefer London, even if Nottingham is a great Uni, because money is not an issue for me!


@ GeorgeP

Congrats to the offers!!! Can you state when did you apply to KCL and Nottingham? I applied to KCL and LSE on 5th November and my status says still "received and beeing processed" respectivly "under consideration".

If I had the choice, I would prefer London, even if Nottingham is a great Uni, because money is not an issue for me!
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Churchill

Thanks! KCL and UCL received my completed applications on 12th November. LSE on 20th November. I received a reply from UCL after just 2 weeks. I think things are quicker for me though as I'm UK based. Good luck with your applications!!

Thanks! KCL and UCL received my completed applications on 12th November. LSE on 20th November. I received a reply from UCL after just 2 weeks. I think things are quicker for me though as I'm UK based. Good luck with your applications!!
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Judy Law

I have received an unconditional offer from KCL today. So now I am only waiting to hear from LSE. I'm not sure which one I'll choose yet. The biggest difficulty for me is cost. Course fees in London are far higher than at other Unis like Durham or Nottingham, and accommodation for the year is going to be around £6,000. Day-to-day living allowances will be quite a lot as well. I'm just considering whether the extra £6,000 or so to study in London will be worth it, when I could go to Durham, whose reputation is probably just as good as London in the UK. Anybody in the same predicament?


Hi George P,

In fact Nottingham and Durham are excellent unis indeed. Both are well known in the UK and if you are planning to stay there... ,
In my case money is an issue as well, however in my country those unis arent as well know as LSE, KCL and UCL. So as I am already making a huge investment, I wannna do the best possible course. In my case the extra money ll be worth it. For the same reaosn I am carefully analysing modules offered by KCL and UCL and their professors.
Maybe you should consider your plans for the future.

<blockquote>I have received an unconditional offer from KCL today. So now I am only waiting to hear from LSE. I'm not sure which one I'll choose yet. The biggest difficulty for me is cost. Course fees in London are far higher than at other Unis like Durham or Nottingham, and accommodation for the year is going to be around £6,000. Day-to-day living allowances will be quite a lot as well. I'm just considering whether the extra £6,000 or so to study in London will be worth it, when I could go to Durham, whose reputation is probably just as good as London in the UK. Anybody in the same predicament?</blockquote>

Hi George P,

In fact Nottingham and Durham are excellent unis indeed. Both are well known in the UK and if you are planning to stay there... ,
In my case money is an issue as well, however in my country those unis arent as well know as LSE, KCL and UCL. So as I am already making a huge investment, I wannna do the best possible course. In my case the extra money ll be worth it. For the same reaosn I am carefully analysing modules offered by KCL and UCL and their professors.
Maybe you should consider your plans for the future.
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beicon

My decision is based solely on reputation... and I'm not saying it's the right thing to do. If I were to actually choose based on what I want, I'd probably take up the Aberdeen offer given that I'm not too fond of the idea of moving to London. Don't get me wrong, I loved London when I went there a few weeks ago, but it's just too crowed for me... My sponsors have forbiden me to accept Aberdeen's offer and said that I'd either go to London or they wouldn't help me pay for the course. Anyhow, if you've got the chance to choose, you should focus on: location, modules, teachers and reputation (both overall and specific in the fiel that you will concentrate on).

My decision is based solely on reputation... and I'm not saying it's the right thing to do. If I were to actually choose based on what I want, I'd probably take up the Aberdeen offer given that I'm not too fond of the idea of moving to London. Don't get me wrong, I loved London when I went there a few weeks ago, but it's just too crowed for me... My sponsors have forbiden me to accept Aberdeen's offer and said that I'd either go to London or they wouldn't help me pay for the course. Anyhow, if you've got the chance to choose, you should focus on: location, modules, teachers and reputation (both overall and specific in the fiel that you will concentrate on).
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legalalien

for what it's worth, every one I've spoken to about my LLM applications (a selection of folk from magic circle / large city firms, NY firms in London, and a couple of academics) has assumed that I would be applying to LSE / UCL, as they (rightly or wrongly) don't really rate the other London universities. I think that's a fair representation of the perception of most senior people in UK firms - and I guess "perception is reality" if you're planning to apply for jobs at UK /NY firms in London. If you're not, then it's less of an issue.

Interestingly I was told by one NY firm partner that they thought UCL was better than LSE, which is interesting as a number of posts indicate that LSE is seen as better in the US.

Although London is more expensive, I suspect there's more chance of getting part time work here, if that's an option.

for what it's worth, every one I've spoken to about my LLM applications (a selection of folk from magic circle / large city firms, NY firms in London, and a couple of academics) has assumed that I would be applying to LSE / UCL, as they (rightly or wrongly) don't really rate the other London universities. I think that's a fair representation of the perception of most senior people in UK firms - and I guess "perception is reality" if you're planning to apply for jobs at UK /NY firms in London. If you're not, then it's less of an issue.

Interestingly I was told by one NY firm partner that they thought UCL was better than LSE, which is interesting as a number of posts indicate that LSE is seen as better in the US.

Although London is more expensive, I suspect there's more chance of getting part time work here, if that's an option.
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Judy Law

Thanks for your contribution legalalien.. It was really useful!

Thanks for your contribution legalalien.. It was really useful!
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lextra

In terms of international reputation (generally, but particularly true in North America):

1. LSE
2. UCL
3. KCL

There is little separating LSE and UCL in the UK; most firms will consider these universities' reputations as equal. KCL is an excellent university - outstanding in certain areas - but it lacks international visibility and the law department is not generally seen as one of its 'star' departments. Admissions standards are also supposedly more demanding at both undergraduate and graduate levels at LSE than they are at KCL - this is with the caveat that a university may (somewhat inexplicably) reject some applicants who end up getting into higher ranked universities, so admissions standards are only useful for general observations.

For certain areas of law where a university is regarded as having a strength, the ranking above may be disrupted. I would say the above holds true for a 'generalist' LLM, but the picture is much murkier when it comes to specialisms. Experts in the field may be aware of these strengths (particularly in a UK context; I am not sure how far this holds true internationally) and a savvy applicant might be able to use these to support a convincing argument for their choice of university & course of study. It would show that an applicant had made their choices very carefully, which is generally a good trait in lawyers (when they are not obsessing over brand name :P)

My $0.02, hope some of it may be of use.

In terms of international reputation (generally, but particularly true in North America):

1. LSE
2. UCL
3. KCL

There is little separating LSE and UCL in the UK; most firms will consider these universities' reputations as equal. KCL is an excellent university - outstanding in certain areas - but it lacks international visibility and the law department is not generally seen as one of its 'star' departments. Admissions standards are also supposedly more demanding at both undergraduate and graduate levels at LSE than they are at KCL - this is with the caveat that a university may (somewhat inexplicably) reject some applicants who end up getting into higher ranked universities, so admissions standards are only useful for general observations.

For certain areas of law where a university is regarded as having a strength, the ranking above may be disrupted. I would say the above holds true for a 'generalist' LLM, but the picture is much murkier when it comes to specialisms. Experts in the field may be aware of these strengths (particularly in a UK context; I am not sure how far this holds true internationally) and a savvy applicant might be able to use these to support a convincing argument for their choice of university & course of study. It would show that an applicant had made their choices very carefully, which is generally a good trait in lawyers (when they are not obsessing over brand name :P)

My $0.02, hope some of it may be of use.
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legalalien

Just by way of a gloss to my earlier post - I recently spoke to a senior IP partner at a top UK firm, and her view was that in the IP field, what matters for an LLM is who taught you. She suggested QMUL/Westfield as being the best pick of the UoL schools, from a non-contentious IP perspective.

Just by way of a gloss to my earlier post - I recently spoke to a senior IP partner at a top UK firm, and her view was that in the IP field, what matters for an LLM is who taught you. She suggested QMUL/Westfield as being the best pick of the UoL schools, from a non-contentious IP perspective.
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reet

Can anybody suggest which one will be better for Commercial Arbitration module. Pros and Cons...Point of View backed up with evidence and facts...all are welcome

Can anybody suggest which one will be better for Commercial Arbitration module. Pros and Cons...Point of View backed up with evidence and facts...all are welcome
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MAB79

for what it's worth, every one I've spoken to about my LLM applications (a selection of folk from magic circle / large city firms, NY firms in London, and a couple of academics) has assumed that I would be applying to LSE / UCL, as they (rightly or wrongly) don't really rate the other London universities. I think that's a fair representation of the perception of most senior people in UK firms - and I guess "perception is reality" if you're planning to apply for jobs at UK /NY firms in London. If you're not, then it's less of an issue.

Interestingly I was told by one NY firm partner that they thought UCL was better than LSE, which is interesting as a number of posts indicate that LSE is seen as better in the US.

Although London is more expensive, I suspect there's more chance of getting part time work here, if that's an option.


I once was thinking the same way...but today, after having a lot of work experience, I changed my opinion. Do not listen to rankings, but to your personal goals and interests! Long-term, it does not matter at all, where you have earned your LL.M. degree!

<blockquote>for what it's worth, every one I've spoken to about my LLM applications (a selection of folk from magic circle / large city firms, NY firms in London, and a couple of academics) has assumed that I would be applying to LSE / UCL, as they (rightly or wrongly) don't really rate the other London universities. I think that's a fair representation of the perception of most senior people in UK firms - and I guess "perception is reality" if you're planning to apply for jobs at UK /NY firms in London. If you're not, then it's less of an issue.

Interestingly I was told by one NY firm partner that they thought UCL was better than LSE, which is interesting as a number of posts indicate that LSE is seen as better in the US.

Although London is more expensive, I suspect there's more chance of getting part time work here, if that's an option.</blockquote>

I once was thinking the same way...but today, after having a lot of work experience, I changed my opinion. Do not listen to rankings, but to your personal goals and interests! Long-term, it does not matter at all, where you have earned your LL.M. degree!
quote
lextra


I once was thinking the same way...but today, after having a lot of work experience, I changed my opinion. Do not listen to rankings, but to your personal goals and interests! Long-term, it does not matter at all, where you have earned your LL.M. degree!


Are you kidding? It matters a great deal. It can be the difference between walking into a career based on not much more than the strength of a name on a bit of paper (though most people at top-tier universities will also have good work experience) or battling it out through work experience. Your university doesn't, in most circumstances, dictate whether or not you will succeed, but it can certainly make it a whole lot easier for you.

This is without prejudice to my earlier comments re: strengths of departments - I reiterate that it may be a good move to go somewhere with a reputation for excellence in a particular area over 'higher ranked' universities if they lack the specialism.

Of course if you have lots of money to throw around pursuing interests which don't necessarily add value or increase your employability, more power to you, that's a fortunate position to be in. For most people this isn't the case and it makes complete sense to consider the value an LLM will add in terms of increasing expertise, making connections & demonstrating academic excellence. I think it is irresponsible to tell people that university name doesn't matter when for some careers it matters immensely. Note that I'm not saying this is a good thing.

<blockquote>
I once was thinking the same way...but today, after having a lot of work experience, I changed my opinion. Do not listen to rankings, but to your personal goals and interests! Long-term, it does not matter at all, where you have earned your LL.M. degree!</blockquote>

Are you kidding? It matters a great deal. It can be the difference between walking into a career based on not much more than the strength of a name on a bit of paper (though most people at top-tier universities will also have good work experience) or battling it out through work experience. Your university doesn't, in most circumstances, dictate whether or not you will succeed, but it can certainly make it a whole lot easier for you.

This is without prejudice to my earlier comments re: strengths of departments - I reiterate that it may be a good move to go somewhere with a reputation for excellence in a particular area over 'higher ranked' universities if they lack the specialism.

Of course if you have lots of money to throw around pursuing interests which don't necessarily add value or increase your employability, more power to you, that's a fortunate position to be in. For most people this isn't the case and it makes complete sense to consider the value an LLM will add in terms of increasing expertise, making connections & demonstrating academic excellence. I think it is irresponsible to tell people that university name doesn't matter when for some careers it matters immensely. Note that I'm not saying this is a good thing.
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lextra

...and not to be trollish, but looking at the names of the universities you have applied to kind of proves my point. I suppose it's very easy to say that brand name doesn't matter if you're only considering comparable, powerful brands. Maybe you were being sarcastic?

...and not to be trollish, but looking at the names of the universities you have applied to kind of proves my point. I suppose it's very easy to say that brand name doesn't matter if you're only considering comparable, powerful brands. Maybe you were being sarcastic?
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MAB79

No, I'm not sarcastic.

I decided to apply to those Unis because of the cities I'd like to live in and not because of the name. Of course it is kind of important that you are in a good law school, but as a matter of fact: The topic of this thread is: UCL or Kings? And to be honestly, I do not think that you will have a bad career if you chose the one that better suits you.

And do not forget: I am from Switzerland and since only 15% of all citizens are allowed to study at a Uni, it does not matter which school you attend but the final distinction.

Further, I really think that in long-term, it is more important that you chose a school that suits you better personally than just pick one due to any ranking. Rankings often are not objectiv.

Last, I know many good lawyers that have graduated from top schools and are unhappy with their lives. But I do not know many lawyers that did not graduate with fancy names and are very happy and for sure have a good life! But I do concur that if you really wish to work in a top tier law firm, you need the name. I work in one and I had to cancel christmas because I had to work...fun it was!

No, I'm not sarcastic.

I decided to apply to those Unis because of the cities I'd like to live in and not because of the name. Of course it is kind of important that you are in a good law school, but as a matter of fact: The topic of this thread is: UCL or Kings? And to be honestly, I do not think that you will have a bad career if you chose the one that better suits you.

And do not forget: I am from Switzerland and since only 15% of all citizens are allowed to study at a Uni, it does not matter which school you attend but the final distinction.

Further, I really think that in long-term, it is more important that you chose a school that suits you better personally than just pick one due to any ranking. Rankings often are not objectiv.

Last, I know many good lawyers that have graduated from top schools and are unhappy with their lives. But I do not know many lawyers that did not graduate with fancy names and are very happy and for sure have a good life! But I do concur that if you really wish to work in a top tier law firm, you need the name. I work in one and I had to cancel christmas because I had to work...fun it was!
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Hey Guys,

If you have work experience as a lawyer I don't think it really matters what university you pick.

I'm currently doing the LLM at UCL. I also have very good friends doing the LLM at KCL and QMUL. We're all doing commercial specialisations and we've all worked as lawyers for big firms back in our home countries.

Pick the university that suits you and what you want to study. I picked UCL because I could easily pick 4 courses I really wanted to do and that complemented my work experience. My friends at KCL and QMUL undertook a very similar exercise when deciding where they wanted to go. We're all thoroughly enjoying our courses as a result.

At the end of the day, its your marks, your personality and your experience that's going to get you a job. The name and rank of the university is usually a very small factor.

Hope that helps.

Hey Guys,

If you have work experience as a lawyer I don't think it really matters what university you pick.

I'm currently doing the LLM at UCL. I also have very good friends doing the LLM at KCL and QMUL. We're all doing commercial specialisations and we've all worked as lawyers for big firms back in our home countries.

Pick the university that suits you and what you want to study. I picked UCL because I could easily pick 4 courses I really wanted to do and that complemented my work experience. My friends at KCL and QMUL undertook a very similar exercise when deciding where they wanted to go. We're all thoroughly enjoying our courses as a result.

At the end of the day, its your marks, your personality and your experience that's going to get you a job. The name and rank of the university is usually a very small factor.

Hope that helps.
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