PGDipInternational Trade and Maritime Law
Ideally suited to students working in the shipping industry who want to develop their understanding of how legal claims may arise within the context of international trade practice, this innovative law course delivers a first-class education in international trade, shipping and maritime law, focusing on the interrelationship between theory and commercial expertise.
Specifically designed to meet the demands of the shipping industry, the course delivers essential knowledge of the legal frameworks at the heart of shipping claims, disputes and commercial relationships.
Exploring how marine disputes and liabilities are investigated and managed, you will develop detailed understanding of this complex, specialised branch of the law. You will be equipped to advise on the merits of claims, and to communicate effectively with legal practitioners. You will also develop the professional grounding to apply that knowledge in the practical industry, and the analytical, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills to respond with legal analysis of the challenges arising in the international trade industry.
Led by prominent industry speaker and maritime law academic Susan Hawker, the course team of experienced academics and legal practitioners including:
- Justin Draeger - Director, Mays Browns Solicitors
- Jack Hatcher - Shoreside Law Ltd
- Ruth Hosking - barrister, Quadrant Chambers
- Professor Filippo Lorenzon - Dalian Maritime University (China), and consultant Campbell Johnston Clark
- Ian MacLean - partner, Hill Dickinson LLP
- Andrew Preston - partner, Preston Turnbull LLP
- Professor Baris Soyer - Head of the Institute of International Shipping and Trade Law, Swansea University
This course team will deliver a blend of legal knowledge and commercial expertise – guiding your development of practical real-world knowledge and skills to enhance your current or future career.
With an innovative programme of studies reflecting current and future industry practice, the course is designed to ensure you will emerge with the perfect blend of skills and knowledge base demanded in the shipping industry.
Why choose this course?
This course is for
This course is ideally suited to students working in the shipping industry who want to develop their understanding of how legal claims may arise within the context of international trade practice, and how marine disputes and liabilities are investigated and managed.
Essential for those working in commercial or legal shipping practice, the course focuses on legal knowledge and its interrelationship with commercial practice, which lies at the heart of shipping claims, disputes and organisation of commercial relationships.
What this course leads to
This course will enable those working in the shipping industry to develop their current careers. It will also help those seeking career changes within or wishing to enter the shipping industry
- Handle and manage claims within the P&I Club world
- Assist lawyers
- Work in a legal capacity on maritime disputes and marine casualties
- Work within the general average surveying environment
Meet the team
The course team is directly engaged in the international trade and shipping industry
The University cannot guarantee any particular members of staff will teach specific aspects of the course in the future, but will endeavour to ensure the teaching team maintains their balance of experience and qualifications.
Year one modules
Introduction to English Law
The course is based on English law, which is a common law system of law. About 90% of the world’s trade is concluded on contracts governed by English law, which makes it the most relevant choice of law for the shipping industry.
International Sale of Goods
This module will introduce you to the first part of the legal 'shipping picture' of which the entire course is comprised.
Carriage of Goods by Sea
The module introduces you to the topics of bills of lading and charterparties. These two topics together form the backbone of carriage of goods by sea.
Admiralty and Marine Insurance
This module will introduce students to the 'bigger picture' of the shipping liabilities that surround the international sale and carriage contracts studied in the previous two modules.
Marine Dispute Management
This module rounds off the course with a focus on how claims are brought and the underlying considerations which must be faced in the management of dispute resolution.
This course is assessed by module coursework and a final examination.
As a graduate of this course your knowledge and skills will give you a career advantage in the shipping industry, demonstrating your practical understanding of the legal framework underlying recognition and management of shipping-based claims, as well as being able to advise on how contracts may be drafted to avoid claims arising.
Directly aimed at professionals in the international trade and maritime industry, the course provides professional development for a range of management and claims-handling careers, helping you understand how shipping law practitioners deal with claims and marine investigations.
Learn transferable skills
On completing the course, you will be able to:
- Focus on complex problems.
- Develop persuasive argument.
- Apply reasoned analysis.
- Counter and manage the views of others.
The 2023/24 tuition fees are not yet available. For guidance, the 2021/22 fees were:
- UK, EU (settled status) and Channel Island fees: : £7,995 per year
- International fees: : £7,995 per year
For further information, please visit our tuition fees page.
Extra course costs
While most course costs are covered by your tuition fees, some essential resources and optional extras may need to be paid for separately. These additional costs are listed below. For advice on budgeting and managing your money, please contact email@example.com.
The 2023/24 other costs are not yet available. For guidance, previous other costs have been:
Course fees and fees for booking approved examination centre for the end of year examination.
Optional seminars at the University’s main campus in Southampton will incur transport and hotel costs. While all essential course materials (for example legal cases and relevant articles) are available on the University’s online library resources, several textbooks are highly recommended, with an approximate total cost of about £200-£250.
Solent alumni are eligible for a 20% reduction of tuition fees if returning to study a postgraduate course.Find out more
Bursaries, scholarships and financial support
Solent University offers a range of bursaries and scholarships that provide financial assistance or waive fees for tuition or accommodation. Each bursary or scholarship has specific eligibility criteria. Check out our bursaries and scholarships pages to find out more.
There is no charge to attend graduation, but you will be required to pay for the rental of your academic gown (approximately £45 per graduate, depending on your award). You may also wish to purchase official photography packages, which range in price from £15 to £200+. Graduation is not compulsory, so if you prefer to have your award sent to you, there is no cost. Extra guest tickets will go on sale after results publication and will be sold on a first-come-first-served basis. The cost per ticket is currently £15. Please note, we do not guarantee there will be any extra tickets available to purchase.
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Key entry requirements
Applicants must hold one of the following:
- Honours degree in a relevant maritime subject, such as maritime studies, shipping, maritime business or law, or other appropriate subject and relevant professional qualification and experience.
- Certificate of Competency as Master or Chief Engineer, Class 1 Master Mariner, Class 1 Engineer, STCW Management Level Qualifications, or equivalent, and work experience in the maritime industry to a reasonable level of management responsibility, such as Master, Chief Officer, Chief Engineer, First Engineer or equivalent.
- Higher National Diploma or foundation degree in a maritime/law discipline plus extensive experience and relevant professional qualifications (as above).
- For further information about UK qualifications, please refer to our course entry requirement statement.
Key entry requirements
If you are applying from outside the UK, find information about entry requirements, visas and agents for your country here.
For further information about UK, EU and international qualifications, please refer to our course entry requirement statement.
Note to all international students requiring a visa
All international applicants need to be aware that the English language requirements to attend Solent University, and the English language requirements to obtain a visa from the Home Office, may be different. This means that if you meet the Solent University language requirement to gain a place on the course, you may still have to meet additional requirements to be granted with a visa by the Home Office.
We strongly advise all applicants to visit the Home Office website which outlines all the requirements for a successful visa application and to take a look at this PDF document which outlines both Solent University and Home Office requirements for a number of language tests.
Your application checklist
Applications for postgraduate courses can be made at any time prior to the start of the course. However, we strongly recommend you apply at your earliest convenience.
Please ensure you upload the following mandatory documents with your application:
- Two academic references.
- Certified transcripts of qualifications, including English language proficiency if non-UK student.
- Copy of passport.
- Copy of current visa (if applicable).
- A personal statement.
- Employer sponsor form, where appropriate.
Applicants who do not have English as their first language will be required to demonstrate an approved level of proficiency in the use of the English language. The agreed minimum requirements for this course are:
- IELTS minimum 6.0 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each individual component
- TOEFL IBT minimum 80 with a minimum of 20 in each individual component
- Duolingo English Language Test - 115 overall with minimum of 100 in each component
Qualifications are checked before enrolment, and international students must bring their original certificates or certified copies when coming to study at the University.
Pre-Sessional English programme
The University also offers a pre-sessional English programme for international students who wish to improve their level of English before starting a degree course.
As a distance learning course, you will use our Solent Online Learning (SOL) portal. SOL gives you access to extensive online library resources, course materials, essential readings and other background information, and study support tools.
And as Solent is an Adobe Creative Campus, all students also have free access to Adobe Creative Cloud, which includes the full suite of Adobe professional software, including Photoshop, Illustrator, XD, Premier Pro, and more.
As part of our global alumni community, you can take advantage of a range of benefits.
Whether it's been days or decades since you left us, or you're soon to don your cap and gown, things are constantly changing at Solent. We're always innovating, but we're also immensely proud of our heritage. And that means you.
Research and knowledge exchange
Research doesn't just live in publications and journals - the effects of groundbreaking research can be found everywhere you look. That's why research at Solent has always been firmly rooted in industry needs and real-world application.
Solent University prides itself on carrying out not only pioneering research, but also research that addresses real world problems. We offer opportunities to study for a Master of Philosophy (MPhil) or Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree in a number of areas.
At Solent, we want to help you achieve your best and discover new insights. Whether you're thinking about applying for a PhD, or already underway with your research studies, you'll find useful guidance and information in our research pages.Find out more
Support at Solent
All students at Solent University have access to a range of specialist support services. Whether you are having financial difficulty, need additional help with academic skills or want advice on setting up your own business you'll find that help is always on hand.
Most of our specialist support services are based around the Student Hub, a central space where you can access all of the information and support you may need during your time at University. The Student Hub is the first point of contact if you have any queries relating to your course, including questions about your timetable, options, and assessments and extenuating circumstances.
Solent's learning technologies team are on hand to offer help and guidance with the University's online learning platform, Solent Online Learning (SOL). You can contact the team either by email or via their virtual helpdesk, which is open 10am-4pm on weekdays.Find out more