With a sharp focus on international and commercial law as well as important growth areas in the legal services industry, the Master of Laws (LLM) is designed to ensure Deakin Law School (DLS) graduates have the skills and knowledge to successfully find employment within a changing legal landscape.
Dean of Law, Professor Sandeep Gopalan says that as a result of technology and globalisation the legal job market is changing, meaning that law courses must adapt to equip students for new opportunities as they arise.
‘As more countries open up their markets and liberalise their economies, there is a need for a greater number of highly trained lawyers to facilitate transactions and mitigate risk. Australian-trained lawyers also have increased opportunities in new markets because of recent free-trade agreements with major markets like China, Japan and Korea,’ he says.
Units within the LLM have been designed to produce graduates with a skill-set that fulfils this changing demand and encompass topics such as international law and relationships between states and financial services with an international focus.
In accordance with all degrees offered at DLS, there will be a strong experiential component ensuring that students are work-ready and have the skills employers are calling for.
DLS is working to build relationships with legal firms in emerging markets, so that internships and secondments can be offered as part of the course. Professor Gopalan believes it is important for DLS to become ‘more engaged with law firms to help employment aspirations’.
In addition to its international focus, the LLM covers areas in which demand for legal services is likely to increase. Course units also cover growth industries, such as IT and health services and areas where regulatory activity is high, including financial services, natural resources, dispute resolution and human rights.
International students, who do not have access to advanced law degrees in their own country, will be able to obtain the skills they need to succeed in senior positions in their home country.
DLS alumnus Justice Gunaratne says that the skills she gained while studying Deakin’s previous Master of Laws degree, are valuable in her role as a Judge of the Court of Appeal in Sri Lanka.
‘The international focus of my degree was a definite advantage of studying at Deakin. The knowledge I gained via units such as International Commercial Arbitration and International Law continues to positively contribute towards my work today.’
The eight credit point course can be completed in one year on a full-time basis and the first cohort will commence studies in Trimester 2 this year.