Award Type and NFQ level : RESEARCH MASTERS (9)

CAO/PAC code : MH04J (FT), MH05J (PT)

CAO Points :

A Master by Research is a qualification obtained after rigorous and original research that contributes to the state of legal scholarship. Towards that end, the structured research programme offers a framework which facilitates independent research, whilst providing milestones for measuring progress.

Students will be equipped with methodological and analytical tools for advanced research in law through a number of taught modules across the Faculty. These will be supplemented by periodic one-on-one supervision meetings. Students will also have opportunities to actively engage in other aspects of academic writing and publishing during the course of their education. In addition, the Department’s research seminar series offers a constructive forum for presenting and debating research.

September (or other agreed time)

Candidates should ordinarily have a master’s degree in law. Candidates with a 1st class undergraduate degree will be considered in exceptional cases.

Applicants must have a recognised primary degree which is considered equivalent to Irish university primary degree level.

Minimum English language requirements:
Applicants for whom English is not their first language are required to demonstrate their proficiency in English in order to benefit fully from their course of study. For information about English language tests accepted and required scores, please see here. The requirements specified are applicable for both EU and International applicants..

Maynooth University's TOEFL code is 8850

Staff members’ research is broadly in the areas of employment law and policy, EU law, human rights law, constitutional law, property law, criminal law, international law, and legal theory. Detailed information about research interest is available at the following link:

The student must complete a thesis of approx. 30,000 words.  In addition, students will be required to take 10 credits worth of modules over the duration of their programme from the structured PhD programme. 5 of these will be generic/transferable modules offered by the Faculty of Social Sciences, and 5 in subject/specialist modules offered by the School of Law and Criminology.

Course Duration: 2 years Full-time, 3 years Part-time

The skills acquired during the programme of doctoral study will prepare students for a wide range of careers including academia, private industry, and public service.

How to apply

Online application only

PAC Code
MH04J Full-time
MH05J Part-time

The following information should be forwarded to PAC, 1 Courthouse Square, Galway or uploaded to your online application form:

Certified copies of all official transcripts of results for all non-Maynooth University qualifications listed MUST accompany the application. Failure to do so will delay your application being processed. Non-Maynooth University students are asked to provide two academic references and a copy of birth certificate or valid passport.

Applicants are required to submit a research project statement (1,000-2,000 words) outlining the proposed research question, its significance, and the proposed methodology. The statement should include a short, indicative bibliography of works in the field. 

Prior to submitting a formal application, potential candidates should:

a) Identify a member of staff as a potential supervisor and discuss their area of interest, and
b) Submit their research project statement and CV to the proposed supervisor. After receiving provisional approval, a formal application may be made.

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