LL408E      Half Unit
Comparative Constitutional Law

This information is for the 2021/22 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Jo Murkens NAB7.31


This course is available on the Executive LLM. This course is not available as an outside option.

Available to Executive LLM students only. This course will be offered on the Executive LLM during the four year degree period. The Department of Law will not offer all Executive LLM courses every year, although some of the more popular courses may be offered in each year, or more than once each year. Please note that whilst it is the Department of Law's intention to offer all Executive LLM courses, its ability to do so will depend on the availability of the staff member in question. For more information please refer to the Department of Law website.

Course content

Comparative Constitutional Law is a rejuvenated discipline that attracts a broad range of interdisciplinary interest in the formation, design, and operation of constitutions. This course examines the central issues across a range of jurisdictions and from a variety of perspectives. Part I discusses various approaches to the study of CCL as well as the migration of constitutional ideas and related notions of constitutional borrowing and legal transplants. Part II deals with key constitutional concepts, such as fundamental law, constitutional change, the rule of law, as well as an introduction to the constitution of the United Kingdom, which are discussed from a historical and comparative perspective. Part III deals with constitutional design, a classic as well as topical area of comparative law. As well as offering a critique of mainstream liberal thought that idealises constitutions as normative constraints on politics, these sessions examine whether formal constitutions in divided and authoritarian societies facilitate democratisation and political change or whether they undermine democracy and entrench the rulers. The study of law, like the study of all social phenomea, is always comparative - and inevitably fragmented. This objective of the course is to study comparative constitutional law comprehensively, critically, and contextually (historical, conceptual, regional). This approach enables the student to branch out independently into related areas and topics.


24-26 hours of contact time.

Formative coursework

Students will have the option of producing a formative exam question of 2000 words to be delivered one month from the end of the module’s teaching session by email.

Indicative reading

There is no set book for this course. All materials will be made available in advance on Moodle.


Assessment path 1
Essay (100%, 8000 words).

Assessment path 2
Take-home assessment (100%).

Course selection videos

Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.

Important information in response to COVID-19

Please note that during 2021/22 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the differing needs of students in attendance on campus and those who might be studying online. For example, this may involve changes to the mode of teaching delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.

Key facts

Department: Law

Total students 2020/21: Unavailable

Average class size 2020/21: Unavailable

Controlled access 2020/21: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Communication
  • Specialist skills