About Keele Law School
Keele Law School is a diverse, outward-looking and critical law school. We are home to a community of leading scholars and inspirational teachers who provide students with an innovative and empowering legal education. Our graduates go on to a broad range of careers both within and outside the legal profession.
Keele University is known internationally for adopting a critical approach to legal education and social justice. Our critical approach regards law not as a set of impartial and neutral rules but as a system that is socially and politically determined. This vision is central to our ethos as a Law School. Our students learn about legal rules, techniques and institutions. They are also trained to think about law's influence on the distribution of resources, power and inequality among various groups in society. This involves, for instance, examining law's intersection with gender, sexuality, class or race.
At Keele, Law is taught reflectively and its foundations are not taken as self-evident. A critical legal education challenges conventional wisdom and the status quo. Our students think about who stands to gain and who stands to lose from specific doctrines and decisions. They also think about the gap between law 'in the books' and law 'in action'. Keele students gain critical insight into law's concrete operation through a range of opportunities, including street law, community legal outreach and clinical legal education, all of which reflect Keele's progressive ethos and long-standing commitment to social justice.
A critical approach to legal education is not just intellectually appealing. The ability to think about law critically, inquisitively and creatively is also a key graduate attribute known to be sought by employers, who increasingly recognise that applied skills and critical thinking are just as important as technical knowledge. Our approach to legal education helps Keele graduates to stand out from the crowd. With the full range of research, communication, and practical legal skills, our students are able to build diverse careers in the legal professions and many other sectors, including the civil service, the police force, public policy, non-governmental organisations, business or academia.
True to the University’s founding ethos – ‘the pursuit of truth in the company of friends’ – Keele School of Law is a close-knit community of staff, students and alumni. Our students learn in a collegial and supportive environment which encourages their intellectual, personal and professional development.
As a medium-sized law school, we are able to offer smaller class sizes, more opportunity for staff-student interaction, and a higher level of personal support. We view our students as individuals, not numbers, and are highly invested in their success.
All students are assigned a personal tutor who provides individualised advice on academic and pastoral matters throughout their degree. They are also supported by our bespoke in-house Senior Practitioner in Law, Student Education and Learning Enhancement Manager, and Student Learning Development Fellow. At every level, our curriculum is enriched by a wide array of opportunities to develop employability skills, gain work experience, or join our student-led societies.
You will be taught by outstanding teachers who are leading academics and international experts in their field, often in small groups conducive to critical and deeper learning. Keele is a pioneer in inter-disciplinary education and we have a long-standing reputation for teaching innovation and excellence.
Our teaching is research-led, which means that our lecturers teach what they love and love teaching it. A significant number of colleagues have received Keele teaching awards and fellowships of the Higher Education Academy, including Principal Fellowships, the highest level of recognition granted by the HEA.
Our excellence in teaching is regularly recognized through national prizes and accolades, including:
- Law Lecturer of the Year 2012 (LawCareers.net in association with Law Society)
- Law Teacher of the Year 2014 finalist (Oxford University Press Law)
- Law Teacher of the Year 2017 finalist (Oxford University Press Law)
- Routledge/ALT Teaching Law with Technologies Prize 2018
Keele Law School is an internationally recognized centre for legal research. Our research is cutting-edge, socially relevant and draws on a wide range of socio-legal, theoretical and doctrinal approaches. In the last REF (Research Excellence Framework), the School was ranked 21st in the country for research intensity and 15th for world-leading research impact, recognising the significant contribution our research makes to legal thinking and some of the most pressing challenges facing society today.
Research is at the heart of everything we do, including our teaching. We have a vibrant research community which explores contemporary issues across all fields of law but also, uniquely in the country, philosophical and applied Ethics. Our researchers contribute to policy debates both in the UK and internationally on issues as diverse as penal governance, data protection and digital surveillance, religion and intolerance, end-of-life and reproductive ethics, international responses to pandemics, queer jurisprudence, disability rights, mortgage and business lease regulation, or climate security.
The Law School hosts seven research clusters, all representing particular areas of strengths: social justice and human rights; international and European law; healthcare law and bioethics; professions, practice and legal education; private law theory and practice; gender, sexuality and the law; ageing and social care.
Keele offers an impressive range of opportunities for professional development, helping our graduates to prepare for life after university.
Each year, we hold a series of career-focused activities, including our annual Law Fair, drawing on our extensive links with the profession and employers regionally, nationally and internationally. Our students develop a range of professional skills through activities such as mooting, client interviewing and negotiating. We provide work experience, networking and mentoring opportunities.
These include placements with the Crown Prosecution Service, the Citizen’s Advice Bureau, and law firms, as well as the Community Legal Outreach project and the Keele Legal Advice Clinics in commercial and family law.
Our in-house Senior Practitioner in Law offers specialist professional advice alongside our dedicated Careers and Employability centre.
Click here to find out more about the range of activities we offer to enhance our graduates’ knowledge, skills, confidence and employability.
PEAK is an essential and highly distinctive part of the School of Law. It comprises a team of internationally recognised academics researching a wide range of topics in applied and professional ethics, including reproductive ethics, public health ethics and research ethics.
PEAK was one of the first providers of training for research ethics committees in the UK and Ireland and has one of the UK’s longest running programmes in Medical Ethics and Law. It hosts the annual Royal Institute of Philosophy Lecture Series on Health Care Ethics and Law. Click here to find out more.
The Law School is conveniently located in the main Chancellor’s Building, right at the heart of campus.
The School is fully integrated, with all professional and teaching staff offices located in the same wing of the building, alongside dedicated student spaces and our Moot Room, a model courtroom used for extra-curricular mooting activities. The Law Library in the main University library is open 24h and supported by a specialist Law Librarian. As well as a substantial collection of law books and periodicals, the Library includes an extensive range of electronic resources and online legal databases. Click here to find out more about our facilities.
Keele is diverse and international. Staff and students come from all over the world, which makes attending Law School here an incredibly enriching experience. As well as learning from a variety of legal perspectives, students have the opportunity to study modern languages as part of their degree, thus improving their career prospects on graduation. Keele also has partnerships with Universities in Europe, Asia, Australia, Canada, South Africa and the USA, giving our undergraduates opportunities to study abroad for a year. The School of Law regularly organises international field trips to major legal institutions such as the EU in Brussels or the UN in Geneva.
As part of our work towards better inclusion and diversity, the Keele Law School prepared an application and was successful in its submission to the Equality Challenge Unit for an Athena SWAN Bronze Award. Click here for more information about our commitment to advancing equality in academia.