Search icon

How to apply for an LLM or PhD by Research

How to apply for an LLM or PhD by Research 

1.    Identify a potential supervisor and discuss/develop your research proposal with your supervisor. You can find a list of faculty and their research interests below. Students may wish to consider any scholarship opportunities available (typically advertised in Spring). Alternatively, information on the schedule of fees for research postgraduate students is available from the Fees Office.    

2.    A three to four page research proposal should suffice, identifying a research question, providing a little background, setting out a structure, outlining your methodology, and explaining why the topic is original.

3.    If you have not identified a potential supervisor, complete an Expression of Interest Form and return it with your research proposal and an up-to-date CV (including details of your academic record and any research completed) to Laura Cahillane, Director of Postgraduate Studies ( This information will be circulated to Law School faculty with a view to identifying an appropriate supervisor.

4.    Once your supervisor has approved your research proposal, submit a formal application. Please send your completed application form, your Research Proposal, two references (at least one academic), and transcripts to Laura Cahillane, Director of Postgraduate Studies.  If English is not your first language please indicate the score you achieved if you have completed an English language proficiency test. For more information see the Graduate School English Language Requirements

5.    These documents are forwarded to the Postgraduate Admissions Graduate Office and your application will be considered at the next Postgraduate Research Committee meeting (First Tuesday of every month). If your application is approved, you will receive a letter from the Graduate School inviting you to register. Research students may register at any time of the year although, typically, students register in September/October or January.  



Research Areas

Dr Lydia Bracken

  • Child & Family law
  • European human rights
  • Reproductive law

Dr Laura Cahillane

  • Constitutional law
  • Legal history
  • Judicial politics
  • Comparative law

Dr Gerard Coffey

  • Criminal law, justice & procedure
  • Codification of the criminal law
  • History & development of criminal law
  • The sentencing process
  • International criminal law
  • Judicial review
  • The criminal process

Dr Alan Cusack



  • Criminal process
  • Victimology
  • Disability law
  • Jurisprudence
  • Penology
  • Access to justice

Dr Laura Donnellan

  • Sport and the Law
  • Animals and Sport
  • Animal Welfare
  • EU Law
Dr Sinead Eaton
  • Commercial Law
  • Company Law
  • Corporate Finance
  • Competition Law

Dr Margaret Fitzgerald O’Reilly

  • Criminal justice
  • Criminology
  • Penology
  • The treatment & management of offenders
  • Social & legal exclusion
  • Techniques of punishment
  • Sentencing
  • Crime control policies

Prof. Raymond Friel

  • Commercial law
  • Contract law
  • Antitrust/competition law
  • EU Law
  • Legal education

Eddie Keane

  • Employment law
  • Commercial law
  • Tort law

Prof. Shane Kilcommins

  • Penology
  • Criminology
  • Criminal justice history
  • Criminal procedure
  • Evidence law
  • Legal philosophy
  • Victimology

Dr Susan Leahy

  • Criminal justice with an emphasis on sexual violence & victims of crime
  • Family law with a particular emphasis on domestic abuse & marriage

Dr John Lombard

  • Medical law
  • Bioethics
  • Intellectual property law

Prof. Paul McCutcheon

  • Criminal law, in particular principles of the general part, theories of criminal responsibility, & interdisciplinary approaches
  • Legal theory, approaches to adjudication
  • Sports Law

Dr Kathryn O’Sullivan

  • Family law
  • Property law
  • Succession law

Eoin Quill

  • Tort focusing on the methodology & structure in the analysis of the legal principles governing compensation claims.
  • Civil obligations encompassing contract torts and restitution.

Prof. Sean Redmond

  • Youth crime & youth justice (with emphasis on serious crime and criminal networks)
  • “Wicked” and complex policy problems
  • Programme evaluation
  • Research & evaluation methodologies
  • Governance in public services
  • Practical theory
  • Evidence informed policy-making

Dr Andrea Ryan

  • Comparative criminal justice
  • EU criminal justice
  • Law of evidence
  • Sentencing
  • Criminal law

Jennifer Schweppe

  • Hate crime
  • Reproductive justice
  • Hate studies
  • Hate crime
  • Minoritised communities and the law
  • Abortion and the law
  • Medical consent
  • Criminal procedure

Dr Eimear Spain

  • Health law
  • Criminal law
  • Constitutional law
  • Intellectual property law
  • Law & emotions
  • Administrative law

Dr Una Woods

  • Property law
  • The law of trusts
  • Conveyancing law
  • Succession law
  • Matrimonial property law