LLM(maritime): How good is Southampton?


Hi, I have been accepted for the Maritime Law LLM at the School of Law, University of Southampton, UK. I am currently studying at the University of Bergen, Norway and I was wondering:

How good is the School of Law in So'ton? As for the maritime law, is it true that it is amongst the best?(Southampton is not in the top tier on any of the rankings...) Are there any sources I can go to besides the Times/Guardian rankings to prove to my future employer that it is a good university?

Thanking you in advance,
K-H
Hi, I have been accepted for the Maritime Law LLM at the School of Law, University of Southampton, UK. I am currently studying at the University of Bergen, Norway and I was wondering:

How good is the School of Law in So'ton? As for the maritime law, is it true that it is amongst the best?(Southampton is not in the top tier on any of the rankings...) Are there any sources I can go to besides the Times/Guardian rankings to prove to my future employer that it is a good university?

Thanking you in advance,
K-H
quote
How good is Southampton? Not very.

If you want a good maritime law course, I think the best one's at UCL.

(Just a personal view).
How good is Southampton? Not very.

If you want a good maritime law course, I think the best one's at UCL.

(Just a personal view).
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bora
My friend, Southampton University is very famous in the boundaries of the City of Southampton! I have been there for a visit before deciding which LLM to go and I was not impressed! They seem to be living in the past and full of themselves. I decided to go to Swansea and I think it was the right decision. I have received personal attention of esteemed academics rather than being taught by inexperienced LLM graduates (with no doctorate) which I understand to be the case in Southampton. Swansea degree enabled me to get a job of my dream and I would recommend it to anyone.
My friend, Southampton University is very famous in the boundaries of the City of Southampton! I have been there for a visit before deciding which LLM to go and I was not impressed! They seem to be living in the past and full of themselves. I decided to go to Swansea and I think it was the right decision. I have received personal attention of esteemed academics rather than being taught by inexperienced LLM graduates (with no doctorate) which I understand to be the case in Southampton. Swansea degree enabled me to get a job of my dream and I would recommend it to anyone.
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forester
Kurt_Hectic,

I have been to Southampton for the LLM in Maritime Law, and throuoghly enjoyed myself. Also, there were about 20 people from the University of Bergen studying various law courses at LLM level.

You will not be taught by LLM graduates, I know having been taught there. A quick look at the School of Law website wil confirm this also

With all respect to 'bora' he/she obviously enjoyed Swansea very much, but do not let his/her opinion cloud what is a very good law school and held in high regard across the shipping world
Kurt_Hectic,

I have been to Southampton for the LLM in Maritime Law, and throuoghly enjoyed myself. Also, there were about 20 people from the University of Bergen studying various law courses at LLM level.

You will not be taught by LLM graduates, I know having been taught there. A quick look at the School of Law website wil confirm this also

With all respect to 'bora' he/she obviously enjoyed Swansea very much, but do not let his/her opinion cloud what is a very good law school and held in high regard across the shipping world
quote
Thanks Forester
Out of curiosity, I took your advise and had a look at Southampton's website. To my surpise, I noticed that Johanna who is teaching in Southampton is actually an LLM graduate without any further qualifications. I also realised that she is not the only LLM graduate teaching there. I can see that both you and 'bora' have enjoyed your LLMs in Southampton and Swansea but 'bora''s comment based on the website about the teaching staff in Southampton seem to be factually correct.
Thanks Forester
Out of curiosity, I took your advise and had a look at Southampton's website. To my surpise, I noticed that Johanna who is teaching in Southampton is actually an LLM graduate without any further qualifications. I also realised that she is not the only LLM graduate teaching there. I can see that both you and 'bora' have enjoyed your LLMs in Southampton and Swansea but 'bora''s comment based on the website about the teaching staff in Southampton seem to be factually correct.
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johannahj
Dear Natalie and all,
Happy to supply the complete facts -- I provide tutorials in Marine Insurance law. Tutorials at Southampton are small group discussion sessions where the students prepare and discuss a set problem under the guidance of the teacher.

The main body of the teaching is provided in the form of lectures. These are provided by a professor, in recent years Yvonne Baatz and Rob Merkin, whose qualifications I think speak for themselves! The structure is similar in all the maritime courses - lectures by a professor or very experienced practitioner - tutorials with either a professor or a more junior teacher - whether a Researcher, a Lecturer or a Senior Lecturer. None of the courses are taught solely or mainly by staff with an LLM and no other qualifications!

I do have an LLM in Maritime Law, followed by three years of full time employment dedicated to research in maritime law (some of my research is intended to lead to a PhD in due course) in addition to my original law degree (from Sweden). The LLM was preceded by two years as a junior judge, three years with the United Nations and three further years of work as a lawyer. My work experience before I did the LLM was not maritime but I would say that being an experienced lawyer has helped me tackle the issues in a better way.

In the old days, an LLB was all that was required to teach and that is how many of those who are now professors started out. These days, the requirements are much more stringent. I do not think Southampton has very different standards from anyone else in selecting its teachers.

Best,
Johanna
Dear Natalie and all,
Happy to supply the complete facts -- I provide tutorials in Marine Insurance law. Tutorials at Southampton are small group discussion sessions where the students prepare and discuss a set problem under the guidance of the teacher.

The main body of the teaching is provided in the form of lectures. These are provided by a professor, in recent years Yvonne Baatz and Rob Merkin, whose qualifications I think speak for themselves! The structure is similar in all the maritime courses - lectures by a professor or very experienced practitioner - tutorials with either a professor or a more junior teacher - whether a Researcher, a Lecturer or a Senior Lecturer. None of the courses are taught solely or mainly by staff with an LLM and no other qualifications!

I do have an LLM in Maritime Law, followed by three years of full time employment dedicated to research in maritime law (some of my research is intended to lead to a PhD in due course) in addition to my original law degree (from Sweden). The LLM was preceded by two years as a junior judge, three years with the United Nations and three further years of work as a lawyer. My work experience before I did the LLM was not maritime but I would say that being an experienced lawyer has helped me tackle the issues in a better way.

In the old days, an LLB was all that was required to teach and that is how many of those who are now professors started out. These days, the requirements are much more stringent. I do not think Southampton has very different standards from anyone else in selecting its teachers.

Best,
Johanna
quote
I agree with evrything you say, and don't think it was fair the way others attempted to impeach your credentials.
For what it's worth, it seems to me that you are eminently qualified.
Besides being in poor taste to question your credentials (especially since you identity is known, and theirs isn't, which at best is unfair and at worst is cowardly), the point that lacking a phd somehow impairs your competatnce is silly.
Law faculties benefit greatly by having a mixture of pure academics (i.e. phd's) as well as experiencved practioners as members. It provides a ice mixture of policy-oriented, academic theory driven anaklysis with real life nuts and bolts practicality.
Let's not forget that law schools are first and foremost professional faculties: the vast majority of graduates will be lawyers, not academics. If anything, the problem of late is the tendency of law faculties to move so strongly toward academia, when, as mentioned, only a fraction of their students will ever enter the ivory tower themselves.
I agree with evrything you say, and don't think it was fair the way others attempted to impeach your credentials.
For what it's worth, it seems to me that you are eminently qualified.
Besides being in poor taste to question your credentials (especially since you identity is known, and theirs isn't, which at best is unfair and at worst is cowardly), the point that lacking a phd somehow impairs your competatnce is silly.
Law faculties benefit greatly by having a mixture of pure academics (i.e. phd's) as well as experiencved practioners as members. It provides a ice mixture of policy-oriented, academic theory driven anaklysis with real life nuts and bolts practicality.
Let's not forget that law schools are first and foremost professional faculties: the vast majority of graduates will be lawyers, not academics. If anything, the problem of late is the tendency of law faculties to move so strongly toward academia, when, as mentioned, only a fraction of their students will ever enter the ivory tower themselves.
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don1425
Off to Swansea this Sept.

Many thanks for the website and its members' discussion who were great help to me through discussion and comments.

Also thanks to Bora for his reply to my email.

Don
Off to Swansea this Sept.

Many thanks for the website and its members' discussion who were great help to me through discussion and comments.

Also thanks to Bora for his reply to my email.

Don


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Southampton is one of the better unis in the UK. It's in the top 25, and generally ranks along with those other unis (Exeter, Bristol, Durham etc) which big law firms consider after Oxbridge and the top London unis such as LSE and UCL. It's an estabished "red brick" and a member of the prestigious Russell Group (to which only about 15 other unis incl. Oxbridge belong).

But that's in general. The LLM itself may not be as well regarded as the LLB is.
Southampton is one of the better unis in the UK. It's in the top 25, and generally ranks along with those other unis (Exeter, Bristol, Durham etc) which big law firms consider after Oxbridge and the top London unis such as LSE and UCL. It's an estabished "red brick" and a member of the prestigious Russell Group (to which only about 15 other unis incl. Oxbridge belong).

But that's in general. The LLM itself may not be as well regarded as the LLB is.
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Yellow
Just in support of Southampton it genuinely has a great reputation for maritime law certainly better than Swansea. I'm sure that lots of things go into peoples decisions as to where they should study but I was really surprised that people had such a negative attitude towards Southampton. I'm arguing that it's great right across the board but in Maritime law it does.
Just in support of Southampton it genuinely has a great reputation for maritime law certainly better than Swansea. I'm sure that lots of things go into peoples decisions as to where they should study but I was really surprised that people had such a negative attitude towards Southampton. I'm arguing that it's great right across the board but in Maritime law it does.
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LucyV
I have been following the exchange of views in this forum as a prospective LLM student for quite long and I couldn't help making a general comment. I find it unethical for a lecturer/teacher or anybody else who is on the payroll of a University to try to publicise his/her institution through this forum which is designed for students who want to hear other students' opinions.
I have been following the exchange of views in this forum as a prospective LLM student for quite long and I couldn't help making a general comment. I find it unethical for a lecturer/teacher or anybody else who is on the payroll of a University to try to publicise his/her institution through this forum which is designed for students who want to hear other students' opinions.
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Yellow
I think that in this case a member of the forum who undertook his or her LLM at one institution chose to name and criticise the credentials of a lecturer at another university which he had chosen not to go to. In that situation (quite apart from defamation issues) I think it is reasonable for the person criticised to point out her qualifications. I didn't feel that if I were making a decision on where to an LLM she said anything that would convince me to go to her university but I did feel that she made some valid points about judging the quality of a course solely on what letters the staff have after their names.
I think that in this case a member of the forum who undertook his or her LLM at one institution chose to name and criticise the credentials of a lecturer at another university which he had chosen not to go to. In that situation (quite apart from defamation issues) I think it is reasonable for the person criticised to point out her qualifications. I didn't feel that if I were making a decision on where to an LLM she said anything that would convince me to go to her university but I did feel that she made some valid points about judging the quality of a course solely on what letters the staff have after their names.
quote
johannahj
Hi all,

Have been away for a bit - thanks to my valiant defenders:-) LucyV, I sort of agree with you that this is a forum for students and did make that very point early on. Universities have plenty of opportunity to publicise themselves and this is not necessarily the right forum for THAT, although there is no reason why general factual information of the sort sometimes provided should not be welcome. Can I also point out that I have not said (and will never say) anything negative about Swansea or any other establishment, in my personal opinion good teachers and researchers deserve due respect, and the first ones who benefit from a bit of healthy competition in education are the students!!

But once I saw the inaccurate postings of bora I could not really let them stand unopposed, it would not be fair on prospective students if they got the idea that they were actually true...

My offer to provide information stands and there are of course all the official channels, starting with the web site, but I think I should gracefully withdraw now...

Best of luck all with your studies!!

Johanna
Hi all,

Have been away for a bit - thanks to my valiant defenders:-) LucyV, I sort of agree with you that this is a forum for students and did make that very point early on. Universities have plenty of opportunity to publicise themselves and this is not necessarily the right forum for THAT, although there is no reason why general factual information of the sort sometimes provided should not be welcome. Can I also point out that I have not said (and will never say) anything negative about Swansea or any other establishment, in my personal opinion good teachers and researchers deserve due respect, and the first ones who benefit from a bit of healthy competition in education are the students!!

But once I saw the inaccurate postings of bora I could not really let them stand unopposed, it would not be fair on prospective students if they got the idea that they were actually true...

My offer to provide information stands and there are of course all the official channels, starting with the web site, but I think I should gracefully withdraw now...

Best of luck all with your studies!!

Johanna
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