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UCC Undergraduate courses

Law & French

Course Fact File
Duration4 years
Teaching ModeFull-time
QualificationsBCL (Hons)
NFQ LevelLevel 8
FeesEU State Student Contribution + Capitation: €3,138 See Fees and Costs for full details.
CAO Points2023: 518
CAO Points Range2023: 518 - 625

Course Outline

BCL (Law and French) allows you to study law and French at the same time in a joint honours degree. You can then become a lawyer with specific linguistic skills.

Over the course of four years, you will take modules in law and French. You will graduate with a degree in both. This means you can progress further towards a career in law, or you can pursue a career in linguistics, translation or teaching.

Most of our graduates combine these two sets of skills and become lawyers with a unique linguistic ability. They often go on to work abroad in international or EU firms and institutions.

The highlight of the degree is Year 3, which you will spend at a prestigious law school in France (Paris X, Lyon III, Strasbourg, Montpellier or Rennes) or Canada (Université de Montréal).

The core legal part of the degree is common to all other law courses in UCC (BCL, BCL International, BCL Clinical and BCL Irish), so you will be part of the larger cohort of students in the Law Department. However, you will have specific classes in French, offered by the French Department, and in French law (within the Law Department).

The 15-20 students who start a BCL (Law and French) degree every year tend to develop a strong sense of identity.

In year 3, you will go abroad to study French or Canadian law entirely through the medium of French. This year is often seen by our students as a life-changing experience, during which they not only practise and improve their linguistic skills and become acquainted with another legal system, but also learn to live independently in a foreign country.

When they return to complete their degree, they have matured and are ready to make judicious module choices in Year 4, in preparation for their professional project, or for further university studies.

The degree is fully compliant with the entry requirements of the Law Society of Ireland and of King’s Inns. In four years, it will provide you with an excellent legal education, and the opportunity to become fluent in French.

Our BCL (Law and French) graduates are much sought after by employers and third-level institutions alike, as their maturity, legal capability and linguistic skills make them lawyers with a very specific edge.

Core Modules in First Year

FR1101 Foundation Course in Written and Oral French (10 credits)
FR1201 Introduction to French Studies (5 credits)
FR1801 Law, Language and Literature (5 credits)
LW1101 Legal Writing and Analysis (5 credits)
LW1104 Foundations of the Legal System (5 credits)
LW1114 Droit institutionnel de l’Union européenne (5 credits)
LW1153 Criminal Law (10 credits)
LW1154 Law of Contract (10 credits)
LW1162 Constitutional Law: Institutions of Government (5 credits) or
LW1164 Dlí Bunreachtúil: Institiúidí an Rialtais (5 credits)

Academic Programme Catalogue

See the Academic Programme Catalogue for the complete and up-to-date content for this course. Note that the modules for all courses are subject to change from year-to-year. For complete descriptions of individual modules, see the Book of Modules.

Course Practicalities

The BCL (Law and French) degree is provided in collaboration with the other law degrees in UCC, and is based on the same core law modules and skills. In addition, besides modules in French through your degree, you will have a vast range of subjects to choose from during your year abroad.

In your final year, you can avail of the large number of choices the Law Department offers to all students.

In terms of study, a combination of tutorials and lectures is used. Navigating between law classes and French classes is described by students as "using both parts of their brains": logic for law and language; creativity for French culture and literature.


Written exams will take place before Christmas and in May. Not all modules will have formal examinations. Many modules use other types of assessment.  French modules are based more on continuous assessment.

During Year 3, you will follow the assessment rules of your host university, either in France or in Canada.

Who teaches this course

The BCL (Law and French) degree course benefits from the input of all staff in the Law Department, as most modules are common to all other law degrees. A broad spectrum of legal experts teach in varied areas of law, including:

  • Contract Law
  • Constitutional Law
  • Criminal Law
  • Company Law
  • EU Law
  • Tort Law
  • International Law
  • Revenue Law
  • Family Law
  • Land Law.

Why Choose This Course

The range of modules on offer meant that I was able to tailor my degree to suit my interests...making the [degree] at UCC unique in Ireland.

James Kneale

Graduate, BCL Law and French

View Student
  • This degree is a joint honours degree: students obtain a fully qualifying Law Degree (BCL) and an honours degree in French
  • It is an opportunity for students to become versatile lawyers and linguists.
  • The year abroad offers a lifechanging experience, with the opportunity to study at a prestigious law school in France or Canada
  • It can include a placement in a European institution, law firm or NGO
  • Graduates are perfectly suited for work in a European or an international environment.

Placement or Study Abroad Information

Year 3 is spent abroad, studying law entirely through the medium of French at prestigious French or Canadian law schools: Paris X, Strasbourg, Rennes, Lyon III, Montpellier, Montréal and Aix-Marseille.

Limited placement opportunities are also available for students in Paris and in Strasbourg.

Students have the opportunity to immerse themselves in their host country and to truly experience the French or Canadian way of life while learning French and law.

Skills and Careers Information

Students in the BCL (Law and French) course are provided with an excellent and internationally renowned education in law and in French.

They acquire critical legal skills thanks to the dedication of all staff members in the Department of Law (through subject areas such as general constitutional law and political institutions, business law, human rights, environmental law), they have the opportunity to become bilingual in French and English, and they learn a great deal about French contemporary and historical culture.

Our current graduates are working in various law firms in Ireland and abroad, as well as in UN and EU institutions.


Leaving Certificate Entry Requirements

At least six subjects must be presented. Minimum grade H3 in French, H5 in one other subject and minimum grade O6/H7 in four other subjects. English and Irish are requirements for all programmes unless the applicant is exempt from Irish

Applicants will need to meet the following minimum entry requirements:

EnglishIrishOther Language
O6/H7 O6/H7 H3 in French
EU/EFTA/UK Qualifications

EU/EFTA/UK applicants presenting an equivalent school-leaving qualification should review the EU/EFTA/UK Applicants page for information on equivalent grades and how to prove their level of English.

Mature Students

To compete through the mature entry route, applicants must be 23 years of age on or before 1 January of the application year and apply online via the CAO by 1 February. The application should include a statement of interest. H3 in Leaving Certificate (or equivalent) French is required (HB3 if presenting a pre-2017 Leaving Certificate).

Admission for mature applicants to this programme is based on the Law Assessment Test and Interview.

Further information on applying as a mature student is available on the Mature Applicants and Mature Student Entry support pages. 


Applicants who meet the required level of distinctions in required subjects can apply for entry to this course using specific QQI FET qualifications. Please review the Programme Requirements on our Information for QQI FET Applicants page for information on related QQI courses, and visit Access UCC’s QQI/FET Entry section for further support. 

Non-EU Applicants

Non-EU applicants are expected to have educational qualifications of a standard equivalent to the Irish Leaving Certificate. In addition, where such applicants are non-native speakers of the English language they must satisfy the university of their competency in the English language.

To verify if you meet the minimum academic and language requirements visit our qualification comparison page and refer to our International Office page for more information.

Fees and Costs

  • Whether you are an EU or Non-EU student will affect the course fees applicable to you. See more information on EU Fees, Non-EU Fees, or Free Fees Status.
  • The State will pay the tuition fees for EU students who are eligible under the Free Fees Scheme. The annual student contribution and capitation fees are payable by the student.
  • See the Fee Schedule to find out the course fee.
  • Check out scholarships that may be available to you.
  • Explore our Nurturing Bright Futures free online course (Module 5) to learn about managing your money as a student and budgeting for university life.

How To Apply

Irish and European (EU/EFTA/UK) Applicants

Apply via the CAO. See the CAO Handbook for useful information on applying through the CAO. 

Mature Applicants 

Apply via the CAO by 1 February. To apply for a place as a mature student, you must be 23 years of age on or before 1 January of the year of entry.

QQI/FET Applicants 

Apply via the CAOSee our QQI/FET Applicants page for information on the Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI) Further Education and Training (FET) application process. 

Non-EU Applicants 

If you are from outside the EU/EFTA/UK, apply online via the UCC Apply portal. See our International Office page for more information. 

For queries regarding course content or timetables please contact