LLB Full Form (Bachelor of Laws)
The full form of LLB is “Legum Baccalaureus” in Latin, popularly known as “Bachelor of Laws” in English. It is an undergraduate degree in law, and it forms the foundation for anyone who aspires to become a legal professional. It covers essential subjects like constitutional law, criminal law, civil law, and property law, among others.
An LLB program typically lasts for 3-5 years, depending on the country and the specific curriculum. In most countries, the course duration is three years. However, in some places, like the United Kingdom and India, a five-year integrated course is also available. These integrated courses combine a pre-law degree, such as Bachelor of Arts (BA) or Bachelor of Science (BSc), with the LLB.
LLM Full Form (Master of Laws)
The full form of LLM is “Legum Magister” in Latin, popularly known as “Master of Laws” in English. It is a postgraduate degree in law, designed for individuals who have already completed their LLB and wish to specialize in a particular area of law or gain a deeper understanding of the legal system.
An LLM program generally takes 1-2 years to complete, depending on the institution and the specific curriculum. It allows students to focus on a specialized area of law, such as intellectual property law, international law, or human rights law, among others.
Differences between LLB and LLM
A. Educational Level
The most apparent difference between LLB and LLM is the educational level. LLB is an undergraduate degree, while LLM is a postgraduate degree. This means that an LLB is the first step towards becoming a legal professional, whereas an LLM builds upon the knowledge gained during the LLB program.
B. Course Duration
As mentioned earlier, LLB programs usually take 3-5 years to complete, while LLM programs typically last for 1-2 years.
The LLB program provides a broad understanding of law, covering various essential subjects. In contrast, LLM programs allow students to specialize in a specific area of law, depending on their interests and career goals.
D. Career Prospects
While both LLB and LLM graduates can pursue careers as legal professionals, LLM degree holders often have access to specialized and more advanced job opportunities. For instance, those with an LLM in International Law may find work in international organizations, NGOs, or government agencies.
Admission Process for LLB and LLM
For LLB programs:
- For 5-year integrated LLB courses (such as BA LLB, BBA LLB, or BSc LLB), applicants must have completed their higher secondary education (10+2) or an equivalent qualification with a minimum percentage (usually 45-50%) as prescribed by the respective institution.
- For 3-year LLB programs, applicants must have completed their bachelor’s degree in any discipline from a recognized university with a minimum percentage (usually 45-50%) as prescribed by the respective institution.
For LLM programs:
- Applicants must have completed their LLB or an equivalent law degree from a recognized university with a minimum percentage (usually 50-55%) as prescribed by the respective institution.
Several entrance exams are conducted for admission to LLB and LLM programs in India. Some of the most common exams include:
- Common Law Admission Test (CLAT): CLAT is a national-level entrance exam for admission to undergraduate and postgraduate law programs at 22 National Law Universities (NLUs) and several other law colleges across India.
- All India Law Entrance Test (AILET): AILET is conducted by the National Law University, Delhi, for admission to its LLB and LLM programs.
- Law School Admission Test – India (LSAT India): LSAT India is a standardized test designed for admission to law programs at several law colleges in India, including private institutions and some NLUs.
- State-specific entrance exams: Some states conduct their entrance exams for admission to law programs in state-affiliated colleges, such as Maharashtra Common Entrance Test (MH CET Law) and Telangana State Law Common Entrance Test (TS LAWCET).
Pursuing a career in law can be an enriching and fulfilling experience. To embark on this journey, it is essential to understand the different degrees available and their respective purposes. This article aims to clarify the full forms of LLB and LLM, their course structures, and the differences between them. Let’s begin with the basics!
Top Law Colleges for LLB and LLM
India has numerous prestigious law colleges that offer excellent LLB and LLM programs. Here is a list of the top colleges in India for pursuing LLB and LLM degrees:
1. National Law School of India University (NLSIU), Bengaluru
NLSIU is one of the most prestigious law colleges in India. It offers a 5-year integrated BA, LLB (Hons.) program and an LLM program with various specializations like Intellectual Property Rights, Business Laws, Human Rights, and Environmental Laws.
2. National Law University (NLU), Delhi
NLU Delhi is known for its high-quality legal education and research. The university offers a 5-year integrated BA, LLB (Hons.) program and an LLM program with multiple specializations such as Constitutional Law, Intellectual Property Law, and International Law.
3. NALSAR University of Law, Hyderabad
NALSAR is a renowned law college in India, offering a 5-year integrated BA, LLB (Hons.) program and a one-year LLM program with different specializations, including Corporate and Commercial Law, International Law and Organization, Legal Philosophy, and Criminal Law.
4. National Law University (NLU), Jodhpur
NLU Jodhpur is known for its innovative teaching methods and state-of-the-art infrastructure. It offers a 5-year integrated BBA, LLB (Hons.) program and an LLM program in multiple specializations, such as Corporate Laws, Intellectual Property Rights, International Trade Law, and Banking and Finance.
5. West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences (NUJS), Kolkata
NUJS is one of India’s leading law colleges, offering a 5-year integrated BA, LLB (Hons.) program and an LLM program with several specializations, including Business Laws, Constitutional Law, and International Law.
6. Symbiosis Law School (SLS), Pune
SLS Pune is a premier law college in India, offering a 5-year integrated BA, LLB (Hons.) program and a one-year LLM program with various specializations, such as Business and Corporate Law, Innovation, Technology, and Intellectual Property Law, and Human Rights Law.
7. Gujarat National Law University (GNLU), Gandhinagar
GNLU is a another prominent law college in India, providing a 5-year integrated BA, LLB (Hons.) program and a one-year LLM program with multiple specializations, including Constitutional and Administrative Law, Corporate and Commercial Law, Intellectual Property Law, and International and Comparative Law.
8. Hidayatullah National Law University (HNLU), Raipur
HNLU is known for its exceptional faculty and modern infrastructure. It offers a 5-year integrated BA, LLB (Hons.) program and an LLM program with several specializations, such as Corporate Law, Intellectual Property Rights, and Environmental Law.
9. Faculty of Law, University of Delhi, Delhi
The Faculty of Law at the University of Delhi is one of the oldest and most prestigious law colleges in India. It offers a 3-year LLB program and a 2-year LLM program with various specializations, including Corporate Laws, Criminal Laws, and Constitutional Laws.
10. Rajiv Gandhi School of Intellectual Property Law (RGSOIPL), IIT Kharagpur
RGSOIPL, a part of IIT Kharagpur, is a unique law college that offers a 3-year LLB program with a specialization in Intellectual Property Rights and a one-year LLM program with various specializations, including Intellectual Property Law, Corporate Law, and Commercial Law.
These top law colleges in India provide high-quality legal education, fostering future legal professionals
FAQs about LLB and LLM
1. Can I practice law with an LLM degree without having an LLB?
No, you generally need to have an LLB or equivalent law degree to practice law. The LLM is a postgraduate degree that builds upon the foundational knowledge gained during the LLB program.
2. Are there any online LLB or LLM programs available?
Yes, several universities and institutions offer online or distance learning options for LLB and LLM programs. However, it is essential to ensure that the program you choose is accredited and recognized by the relevant legal authorities in your country.
3. Can I pursue an LLM degree immediately after completing my LLB?
Yes, you can pursue an LLM degree immediately after completing your LLB or equivalent law degree. Some students choose to gain work experience before pursuing an LLM, while others prefer to continue their education without any breaks.
4. Is it necessary to specialize in a specific area of law during the LLM program?
The primary purpose of an LLM program is to allow students to specialize in a particular area of law. However, some institutions may offer a general LLM program that provides a broader understanding of various legal subjects.
5. What are some potential career options for LLM degree holders?
LLM graduates can work in various sectors, such as law firms, corporate legal departments, international organizations, NGOs, government agencies, or academia, depending on their area of specialization.
Both LLB and LLM degrees are essential milestones in the journey of becoming a legal professional. While the LLB provides a solid foundation in law, the LLM allows for specialization and advanced career prospects. Understanding the full forms, course structures, and differences between these degrees can help aspiring lawyers make informed decisions about their education and future careers.