22 Best Universities for International Law

This blog post gives concrete information on the best universities for international law. These schools have been ranked the best by ranking platforms and agencies. They were discussed in this article to guide you in making decisions that will facilitate your admission into international law studies.

Legal studies have existed among humans forever, maybe not the studies per se, but legal matters have been in use since the beginning. It is used to protect lives, and properties, and pass judgment on whom or what it may concern.

Well, this is just its basic use and it has, over the years, revolutionized and applied across many disciplines but it hasn’t derailed from its original use case. Today, there is business law, health care law, international law, animal law, criminal law, tax law, environmental law, and others. There are even criminal law courses you can learn online for free as well as family law courses.

International law is a branch of law and an interesting program among students. If you have ever felt like pursuing a degree in international law, this post has been well-detailed to help you with all the information that you may need.

Many schools offer programs in international law but few of them have been ranked as the best at offering this program. We didn’t do this ranking ourselves rather it was done by globally recognized platforms who go through in-depth research and analysis to rank universities either by program, location, etc.

There are a lot of factors used to rate a university’s program or a university itself as the best or among the best. The popular platforms that do these are Times Higher Education (THE), US News & World Report, QS World University Rankings, and Shanghai Ranking.

So, the best universities for international law are ranked by these platforms and we have handpicked them to provide you with more information that can facilitate your admission into these universities.

What is International Law

International law is the set of rules and standards generally recognized as binding between countries to ensure security and peace among different nations. It is also known as public international law and law of nations and it is there to maintain world order and peace. Now when you study international law, you will study and practice the set of rules, agreements, and treaties that are binding countries.

How to Find Best Universities for International Law

Finding the best universities for international law is easy when you have the internet at your fingertips. You can easily make use of one of the search engines like Google to do research on the best universities for international law. Furthermore, you could talk to your college professors or high school teachers about your interest in studying international law. They can help you recommend the best universities to apply to pursue the program and write a good recommendation letter for you.

Requirements to Study International Law Abroad

The following are the general requirements for studying international law;

  1. Students applying as high school graduates should have a minimum of three strong A-level qualifications.
  2. Those who want to study international law at the postgraduate level must have completed a bachelor’s degree or in their final years of completing an undergraduate degree.
  3. All applicants, whether undergraduate or graduate applicants, must possess strong qualifications.
  4. Subjects such as law, economics, English, and history can be required as pre-requisite subjects to take before applying. Also, taking these subjects can strengthen your application.
  5. Applicants from foreign countries whose native language isn’t English will be required to take an English language proficiency test. That is if you are going to another country to study international law
  6. All applicants must submit academic transcripts from previous schools attended.
  7. Different universities in different countries can give an internal test, interview, or both to further assess you. So, be prepared for that
  8. Fill out the application form and pay the application fees, if required.
  9. Possess documents such as CV or resume, ID, health insurance, etc. as it may be required.
  10. Letters of reference, essays, and personal statements should also be in your portfolio if required.

These are the typical requirements to apply for an undergraduate or graduate degree program in any university in the world. However, bear in mind that there could be more or less of these requirements listed here. Therefore, you have to visit the particular website of the university you are interested in and look for the specific requirements or contact the admissions office and get more details. Without further ado, let’s get into these universities.

Best Universities for International Law

The following are the best universities for international law:

  • The University of Oxford
  • Yale University
  • Georgetown University
  • The University of Groningen
  • The University of Cambridge
  • Harvard University
  • New York University (NYU)
  • Columbia University
  • The University of California, Berkeley
  • Tilburg University
  • University of Nottingham
  • Stanford University
  • The University of Glasgow
  • King’s College London
  • Utrecht University
  • The University of Chicago
  • Leiden Law School
  • American University
  • University of Toronto
  • University of Melbourne
  • University of Amsterdam
  • National University of Singapore
  • McGill University
  • University of Bristol
  • Georgetown University Law Center
  • The George Washington University

1.      The University of Oxford

The University of Oxford is a prestigious and globally recognized higher institution in England. It is one of the best universities in the United Kingdom and the world and many of its programs rank among the world’s best. The university is known for offering quality degree programs in a wide range of innovative programs leading to bachelor’s, master’s, doctorate, and other joint degrees.

Through its Faculty of Law, the University of Oxford offers law programs in various fields such as international law, human rights law, environmental law, and legal philosophy. Now, this university has been ranked among the best universities for international law due to the world-class academic teachings and practicality it offers to students in the field.

Its international law program can be taken at the undergraduate level which leads to a BA or at the graduate level which leads to an MSc. There are several international law options available in the Bachelor of Civil Law (BCL) and Magister Juris (MJur) programs. The law faculty also partners with other departments to deliver part-time programs, certificates, postgraduate diplomas, and master of studies (MST) in different fields of international law.

2.      Yale University

Yale University is one of the best universities for international law, a member of the prestigious Ivy League, and one of the world’s best institutions of higher learning. You might have known by now how competitive it is to gain admission into Yale, therefore you need to have an outstanding, competitive qualification to apply for international law.

The Yale Law School is responsible for offering academic programs in different law fields including international law. Through its curricular and extracurricular offerings, students are exposed to an exceptional array of topics, and experiential learning opportunities in which to learn and engage with international law.

Yale offers international law degree programs leading to Juris Doctor (JD), Master of Laws (LL.M), Ph.D., and a joint JD-MBA.

3.      Georgetown University

This is one of the best universities for international law located in Georgetown, Washington, D.C., United States. The university comprises ten undergraduate and graduate schools with the Law School being one of them. The Law School, commonly referred to as Georgetown Law, is the faculty that administers various law programs including the international law program. The international law program at Georgetown Law leads to JD and LL.M and attracts international students into these programs.

4.      The University of Groningen

This is a public research university in the Netherlands offering a prestigious LLB program in International and European Law. It is an undergraduate-level program that takes 36 months to complete (full-time only), it is taught in English, and foreign students are welcome to apply.

The program is designed for students whose aim is to pursue a professional career in an international legal environment. International applicants are mandated to take an English language proficiency test. The tuition fee for students from the Netherlands and other EU/EEA regions is €1,084 per year and €8,916 per year for non-EU/EEA students.

5.      The University of Cambridge

The University of Cambridge is yet another prestigious institution globally recognized for its world-class academic offerings and its achievements and contributions to various fields. It is located in Cambridge, United Kingdom, and is one of the oldest operating institutions of higher learning.

The University of Cambridge has a Faculty of Law that offers a wide range of academic programs in the law field. However, you can only pursue the international law program at the postgraduate level. The faculty offers a one-year Diploma in International Law which can be taken part-time and examined based on supervised research.

6.      Harvard University

Harvard University is really popular, one of the Ivy League’, and the dream school of many high school graduates and bachelor graduates. Its law school, Harvard Law School, is one of the premier law schools in the world and offers a wide range of law programs including a JD, three types of dual degree programs, and a Ph.D. all in International and Comparative Law.

Harvard is a university known all over the world for its academic achievements and contributions to the fields of science, arts, business, etc. It is a very hard school to get into. Aside from being very competitive, the acceptance rate is among the lowest in the world. Therefore, you need to have a good academic standing, write an outstanding essay and statement of purpose, and send in your application early.

7.      New York University (NYU)

The NYU School of Law is the law school of New York University and is ranked among the best universities for international law. The school is designed to prepare students to succeed in every type of future career in a fast-changing, deeply interconnected, and frequently contentious world.

To cover the spectrum of international and global law fields, the faculty offers over 50 courses, seminars, clinics, and other hands-on training annually. The international and global law program leads to a JD, LL.M., and Ph.D. There is also a joint LLM/JSD and executive programs in international law offered by the faculty.

8.      Columbia University

Columbia University is located in New York and is recognized as one of the best universities for international law. Its law faculty, Columbia Law School, offers a wide array of programs in the international legal field as well as a JD with a focus on International Business Law which is just one of the many excellent programs.

Through the International and Comparative Law Program at Columbia Law School, you can enroll in dual-degree programs with universities in Europe, 15 study abroad programs in 11 countries, and interdisciplinary course offerings through Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs.

Furthermore, students also have access to several research facilities relating to their field to strengthen their skills and knowledge of international legal matters.

9.      The University of California, Berkeley

UC Berkeley is a prestigious higher institution in Berkeley California known for its research-intensive and innovative programs. It is ranked by THE, US News & World Report, and QS World University Ranking among the best universities for international law. Through its department, Berkeley Law, the university offers academic degree programs in International and Comparative Law.

The law school offers programs in international and comparative law that lead to JD, LL.M., and Ph.D. degrees. Executive education for organizational leaders and legal practitioners is also offered. The courses are interdisciplinary and are available through other departments in the university.

The school also offers a certification of specialization in international law that students can complete as part of a JD or LL.M. program. Lastly, students have access to resources and cutting-edge facilities that can offer them experiential learning.

10. Tilburg University

Tilburg University is a prestigious university of higher learning in the Netherlands and is ranked among the best universities for international law. The university offers a one-year International Law and Global Governance program that offers an LL.M. The program is taught in the English language.

The curriculum of this LLM program covers three areas of international law: International Law and International Relations, Human Rights and Human Security, and Global Sustainability and Environmental Law. Students are welcome to tailor their specializations to their career needs.

11. University of Nottingham

The University of Nottingham is a public university in England and offers an LLM in International Law. The program has full-time and part-time options which are completed in 12 months and 24 months respectively. The program further has a wide range of modules that you can choose to focus on such as European law, international commercial law, human rights law general public international law, and criminal justice.

Therefore, you can design your LLM in International Law to your interests and career aims. The fee for UK students is £11,050 and £21,000 for international students per year.

12. Stanford University

Stanford is one of the best in delivering quality academic education and it turns out that its International and Global Law program is among the best. The program is offered by Stanford Law School and prepares students to step up to the challenges of world-class legal scholarship and real-world developments.

Students are also taken through the journey of experiential learning to enhance their skills in international legal matters. There are also other opportunities like the foreign exchange program to allow you to immerse yourself in the world, build collaborative skills, and practice on an international scale.

13. The University of Glasgow

The University of Glasgow is a prestigious university in Scotland and last but not least on our list of best universities for international law. The International Law at the University of Glasgow is taught at the postgraduate level and leads to an LLM degree. It is a program ideal for students who want to increase their horizons to an international platform and look beyond domestic legal order.

You can take the program full-time or part-time which is completed in 12 months and 24 months respectively. For UK students enrolled in the part-time option, the fee is £1,112 per 20 credits and for those full-time, the fee is £10,000. The tuition for an international student is £21,650 only for the full-time study option.

14.         King’s College London

King’s College London is an internationally renowned university delivering exceptional education and world-leading research. King’s College London was founded in 1829 but their roots reach back to the 12th century. They are dedicated to driving positive and sustainable change in society and realizing our vision of making the world a better place.  Through their commitment to exceptional education, impactful research, and genuine service to society, we are creating positive change in our communities, both in London and on the world stage.

The Dickson Poon School of Law is one of the oldest law schools in England and is recognized globally as one of the best in the world. Our staff and students are engaged in teaching and research that addresses some of the greatest challenges of our time and we have a diverse student body from around the globe. The School is based in Somerset House East Wing.  The Dickson Poon School of Law is recognized globally as one of the UK’s premier law schools with a community of nearly 900 undergraduate students from around the globe. They also offer international law.

Their teaching is led by internationally respected, leading academics, visiting lecturers, and practitioners from global law firms. The courses we offer are informed by our research expertise and you are encouraged to engage with issues at the cutting edge of your studies, giving you the skills and confidence to engage with complex legal issues and global challenges.

15.         Utrecht University

Utrecht University is a wide-range, international research university of high standing. They have a strong connection to the city of Utrecht and their roots lie deep in the past (1636). Utrecht University researches educates, and communicates the results across disciplines and shares knowledge and insights that lay the foundation for the future. With 7 faculties and over 40,000 students, the school offers 58 bachelor’s programs, and 122 master’s programs and has over 210,000 alumni.

Each faculty consists of a number of departments. Each department coordinates the research and teaching programs of a specific field of science. Scientific staff are appointed at the department level. The Faculty of Law, Economics, and Governance at Utrecht University is a unique combination of three departments: the  Utrecht University School of Law, the Utrecht University School of Economics, and the Utrecht University School of Governance.

These three specializations offer education and conduct research independently as well as jointly. This multidisciplinary approach makes the faculty an outstanding partner for knowledge exchange at a high level. They offer a master’s program in public international law.

16.         The University of Chicago

Since its inception, the University has blurred the lines between traditional disciplines. Students, faculty, and scholars collaborate across fields to solve complex questions and uncover new knowledge. They offer different degree and academic programs across the undergraduate College, four divisions, seven professional schools, and the Graham School of Continuing Liberal and Professional Studies. Their Law School offers different law majors including international and comparative law.

17.         Leiden Law School

Leiden University was founded in 1575 and is one of the leading international research universities in Europe. The University has seven faculties and a campus in both Leiden and The Hague. Leiden Law School is currently housed in two beautifully restored historic buildings located in the old center of Leiden. They also have facilities for teaching and research at Campus Den Haag. Leiden Law School offers intensive education programs that provide tremendous opportunities for talented students. Leiden Law School offers four different Bachelor’s (LLB) programs. These are taught in Dutch and are part of the standard Dutch law curriculum.

The Master of Laws programs are part of the standard Dutch law curriculum and form the required elements for students wishing to qualify for legal practice in the Netherlands. These programs are also accessible to international students. They also offer MSc programs in Criminal Justice and Law and Society. Public International Law is a one-year Master’s specialization at the internationally acclaimed Leiden Law School at Leiden University. The program focuses on the legal framework that governs international relations in an increasingly complex global society.

18·         University of Melbourne

For over 160 years, the University of Melbourne has made distinctive contributions to society and attracted the brightest students and researchers – bringing together the world’s best minds to solve globally significant problems with 52 000+ students, 52% undergraduate 48% graduate (equivalent full-time student load – EFTSL), 470 000+ living alumni, and 41% international students from 150+ nationalities.

Their academics lead to brilliant, globally recognized research, teaching, and collaboration. Their professional, administrative, and support staff create a world-class working environment and enable academics to achieve internationally renowned excellence in research and teaching. The Melbourne Law Masters offers an extensive range of international law subjects. Students can study many fields, including international humanitarian law, international criminal law, international economic law, finance, tax, law and development, or international arbitration.

International legal practitioners and aspiring practitioners, those working, or hoping to work in international agencies or non-government organizations, and those wishing to go on to further study international law will benefit greatly from the specialized knowledge and expertise that this specialization provides. The program’s diversity, with specific or general subjects available in both public and private international law, allows students to specialize in a key area or gain a broader qualification in international law.

19·         University of Amsterdam

The University of Amsterdam is a comprehensive research university with a leading reputation worldwide for teaching and research. The UvA is a top-100 university globally and ranks as one of Europe’s 20 best universities and dates back to 1632 when its predecessor the Athenaeum Illustre was founded to educate the citizens of Amsterdam. They have close links with the city of Amsterdam, through various partnerships and its campuses that form an integral part of the city. They offer a program in Public International Law (International and European Law).

20·         National University of Singapore

The National University of Singapore started out as a modest medical school with 23 students in 1905, founded by a determined group of businessmen led by Tan Jiak Kim, to serve the needs of the local community. Today, more than 100 years on, as Singapore’s flagship university, we continue to be in service of country and society. The National University of Singapore aspires to be a vital community of academics, researchers, staff, students, and alumni working together in a spirit of innovation and enterprise for a better world

With 3 Campuses: Kent Ridge, Bukit Timah and Outram. Comprised of 16 Colleges, faculties, and schools, NUS has a Centre for International Law. CIL works closely with its partner organizations in Singapore: the NUS Law Faculty, Attorney-General’s Chambers Singapore, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Singapore, and the Singapore Maritime Institute. CIL also collaborates with the Rhodes Academy of Oceans Law and Policy; Center for Oceans Law and Policy, University of Virginia; and the Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources and Security (ANCORS), University of Wollongong.

21·         University of Bristol

Bristol is one of the most popular and successful universities in the UK, ranked 55th in the world. The University was the first higher education institution in the UK to admit men and women on an equal basis.  Bristol is at the cutting edge of global research. They have made innovations in areas ranging from cot death prevention to nanotechnology. They aim to equip their students with the knowledge and skills to succeed in their chosen careers in a competitive global market.

They offer an LLM in international law and their LLM programmes are well-respected by leading law firms. This programme explores the pressures that arise from particular areas of international law and international policy, and the role of law in setting the framework for decision-making and as a tool for achieving policy goals. The program also covers issues with private international law through specialist units in International Commercial Litigation, Arbitration, and a range of commercial law units.

22·         The George Washington University

The George Washington University’s academic life is defined by not only its faculty and students’ unique abilities for turning knowledge into action but also for taking full advantage of GW’s vast access to world-class partnerships, policy-research initiatives, and one-of-a-kind learning opportunities. As a leading research university, GW promotes the advancement of human knowledge across disciplines and throughout its 10 schools, 35+ cross-disciplinary research institutes, and expansive system of libraries and, as a result, frequently produces invaluable contributions to policymaking that affect millions of lives worldwide.

The school is accredited by the American Bar Association and is a charter member of the Association of American Law Schools. The law school is located on the GW campus in the downtown neighborhood familiarly known as Foggy Bottom. GW Law offers five academic degrees: The Juris Doctor (JD), The Master of Laws (LLM), The Doctor of Juridical Science (SJD), and The Masters of Studies in IP (MSL-IP). GW Law offers over 50 specialized courses in international and comparative law. The school provides a strong theoretical and practical foundation to future lawyers in the areas of public and private international law, comparative law, and their many domains.


These are the best universities for international law and they are highly competitive institutions to enter with a very low acceptance rate. Therefore you need to have a superb academic performance to be accepted in any of the degrees in international law. Additionally, if you have an outstanding qualification you can be placed on a scholarship that could cover your tuition for the entire duration of your studies.


Is international law good to study?

Studying international law is good as it allows students to develop insights into the global legal system and its influence on both international and national policies.

Where should I study international law?

You can study international law in any of the best universities for international law outlined and discussed in this article.

Which country is best for international law?

The best countries to study international law are the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, and Singapore.

What should I major in for international law?

You may want to major in a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in International studies or a B.A. in International Relations.

Are international lawyers in demand?

Since international law and international lawyers are linked to globalization, this makes them in demand.

What types of international lawyers are there?

There are many different types of international lawyers, they include business attorneys, government-based lawyers, and private practitioners specializing in human rights and immigration laws.

Do international lawyers make good money?

International lawyers make good money with salaries ranging from $110,000 to $131,000 annually.