Diploma in Legal Studies

  • Overview
  • Course Content
  • Structure
  • Career Opportunities
  • Fees
  • Next Steps


Legal Studies  

Click here to view provisional 2020 timetable.

Legal Studies is a one year Diploma programme designed for those wishing to obtain foundation knowledge of the core principles of Irish Law, perhaps with a view to pursuing a career in the legal field. The Diploma is geared towards students from non-legal backgrounds, together with individuals working in the legal field who have no prior formal legal education.

Programme Aims and Objectives

The course will provide an introduction to the core aspects of Irish law and the legal system, as recognised by the legal profession. It is intended to provide an understanding of Constitutional Law principles, Contract, Tort, Criminal and Company Law issues and the law as it relates to property in Ireland. Students will study the law from a practical perspective and classes will be based on theory combined with problem solving situations. Students may also wish to study a further two modules in order to be awarded the Advanced Diploma in Legal Studies.


Each module has a 100% exam with students required to answer 5 out of 8 questions on topics discussed in class.

Programme Content

Constitutional Law

Over the course of this module, students will cover the following topics: separation of powers, constitutional interpretation, judicial review, constitutional rights, the Attorney General & Auditor General, Ireland as a nation, state and people, the constitutional relevance of foreign international law and the important constitutional role of the Irish president.

Criminal Law

This module provides students with a comprehensive understanding of Irish Criminal Law. Over the course of nine lectures students examine the nature and definition of a crime, the burden and standard of proof applicable in criminal trials, rules of evidence and the defences available to an accused person. The course also explores the jurisdiction of the criminal courts in Ireland and examines the different types of crimes which exist including; fatal, non-fatal, sexual, property and public order offences.

Company Law

The purpose of Company Law is to familiarise students with the law governing the operation of companies. The students will explore the formal requirements of incorporating a limited liability company, and the effect of incorporation. They will examine the the various categories of securities held by a company, as well as the role of various officers, including directors and shareholders, in the management and day-to-day running of the company. Finally, the students will consider the various ways a company can come to an end. 

Property Law

The aim of this module is to provide students with an understanding of the various methods of ownership of property. It examines such areas as tenures, estates and equitable interests. The module also reviews the limitations of the Landlord and Tenant Acts and the Succession Acts and discusses the formal requirements of wills and the effect of intestacy (where no will is made).

Tort Law

This module aims to provide an examination of the fundamental elements of Tort Law. Torts are civil wrongs, or actions by one person that cause damage to another, for which a remedy can be obtained, usually in the form of compensation. The module explains the nature and function of torts and then examines the requirements of certain individual torts, including negligence, occupiers’ liability, liability for defective products, trespass, defamation, nuisance, passing off and liability for animals and fire. The module also discusses the remedies available to a litigant who has suffered damage and the possible defences that can be relied upon by the wrongdoer.

Torts are concerned with civil wrongs whereby one party causes damage to another party. The module explains the nature and function of torts and then examines certain torts in detail, including negligence, product liability, trespass, defamation, nuisance and liability for animals and fire. The module also discusses the remedies available to a litigant who has suffered damage and the possible defences that can be claimed by the wrongdoer.

Contract Law

This module is aimed at providing students with a fundamental knowledge of how to create a legally binding contract, the formal requirements of a contract, the various factors that can vitiate consent in a contract, and how a contract can be lawfully discharged as well as the remedies available for breach of contract.


The lecturing team consists of a team of staff that combine both academic qualifications with substantial practical legal experience, and this practical perspective is reflected in the delivery of the modules. A wide range of teaching techniques include lectures and class interaction, and case studies will form an integral part of the course. Students who wish to complete the Advanced Diploma in Legal Studies can complete an additional two modules following completion of the Legal Studies diploma, and students can apply for these modules separately if they wish to continue their studies.

Career Progression  Opportunities

This programme will be of benefit to anybody seeking to further or even begin their legal education. Some graduates from the programme have used it as a starting point to gain further formal legal qualifications.. Other graduates have used the qualification to improve their employment opportunities, either for career advancement in a current role or for a career change to a role involving greater legal elements. The core legal skills and understanding gained from the programme will be beneficial to any person seeking further education in this area.  

Student Profile

Students on the programme are those who want an introduction to law or to formal legal education and come from various different backgrounds. A number of students are employees of legal firms who wanted to obtain a legal qualification in order to advance their employment opportunities. Others are members of the Gardaí seeking career advancement. Some are employee with legal aid boards or involved in citizens advice organisations. Other students are simply interested in using the course to add to their CV and show an understanding of the Irish legal system with a qualification to support it. 


The fee for the Diploma in Legal Studies is €2,000. This is inclusive of tuition, registration, exam fees and DBS library membership. View all DBS Evening Diploma Fees here.

Visit Us

Open days are a great way to help you make your decision about your course of interest. The open day will give you the opportunity to receive one on one advice and direction from leading academics in your chosen subject area, meet current students and also have your questions answered on entry requirements, student support and the admissions process. Find out when our next Open Event is taking place. The Admissions Office is located in our Aungier Street campus and you are welcome to visit the college to speak with a member of our admissions team from Monday to Fridays, 8:45am – 5:15pm. Alternatively, you can contact us by email.

DBS Student Facilities

DBS Diploma students can also avail of a wide range of facilities to assist them in every aspect of their studies, please see below for more details.

• Online Notes System (DBS Moodle)- is an eLearning system designed to provide you with a range of course material which will enhance and support your learning experience within DBS. 
• DBS Library Aungier Street- the Library provides a programme of classes in the areas of Library resources, essay writing skills, avoiding plagiarism and referencing to assist you in your studies.  
• DBS Careers and Appointment Service- which provides a range of services for Diploma students such as career advice and workshops in CV writing and interview skills. 
• Subsidised Parking- DBS provides subsidised parking arrangements for students, which provides easy access to all main public transport routes in and out of the city centre. 
• Subsidised Student Canteen- Diploma students can avail of the Student Canteen which is open in the evenings and offers a wide variety of choices on its menu.

  • Law
  • Business & Management
  • Professional Evening Diplomas
  • Part-Time

Course overview


Awarding Body:
Institute of Commercial Management
Schedule: 2 evenings per week, 6.15-9.30pm
Intake: September & March
Duration: 1 year Part-time

Contact Us

We are now accepting applications for programmes taking place in 2020. Contact our admissions team for more information

Email: admissions@dbs.ie
Phone: 01 417 7500
Opening times:
Monday to Friday
8:45am to 5:15pm