The information on this page was provided by the law school.
Official Guide to Canadian JD ProgramsPost Office Box 1700, STN CSC, Victoria, BC V8W 2Y2, Canada
We acknowledge and respect the lək̓ʷəŋən peoples on whose traditional territory the university stands and the Songhees, Esquimalt and W̱SÁNEĆ peoples whose historical relationships with the land continue to this day.
UVic Law is one of Canada's leading law schools, known for the strength of our academic program, approach to experiential learning and our commitment to community engagement and social justice. UVic Law is academically rigorous, animated by a spirit of inquiry and committed to the law in action. The Faculty has special strengths in indigenous law, environmental law, constitutional law, international law, criminal law, legal theory, and economic regulation. Our research units explore the foundation of law: the Indigenous Law Research Unit, Environmental Law Centre, Consortium on Democratic Constitutionalism, Centre for Asia-Pacific initiatives, National consortium for Indigenous Economic Development and Access to Justice Centre for Excellence.
All of our work - from faculty members' research, to our graduate programs, to the training of JD students - is shaped by our belief that the law must speak to all members of society, including those in marginalized communities. Through our research, teaching and clinical programs we're changing the legal landscape to advance equality and diversity in our communities, across Canada and abroad. Within the Faculty of Law at UVic we promote substantive equality for all members of the Faculty of Law community; ensure that the processes and criteria of admission and recruitment to the Faculty of Law reflect fully the Faculty’s commitment to equity, diversity, fairness and respect; establish and maintain an institutional environment that is safe, inclusive, welcoming and supportive to all individuals especially those from historically disadvantaged groups; provide all members of the Faculty of Law community with the opportunity to participate fully and equally in the life of the community and work to remove systemic barriers to their equal participation and success; promote respect for groups that have suffered and continue to suffer systemic discrimination; ensure that graduates of the Faculty of Law understand the diversity of Canadian society and the important contributions made by historically disadvantaged groups to Canadian life; promote respect for Indigenous cultures and ways of learning; and, work with the legal profession in British Columbia and throughout Canada to secure these objectives in legal education, and in the profession and the practice of law. Additionally, our JD students benefit from one of the best financial aid programs and some of the lowest tuition rates in the country.
We are global in scope, with strong links to transnational institutions, Asian legal systems, the European Union, Australia, New Zealand and Indigenous people worldwide. We are a constituent partner in the Centre for Asia-Pacific initiatives, which undertakes conferences, workshops, and research initiatives on Asian law, organizes student internships, and maintains close links with leading Asian law schools. We have active exchange programs with leading law schools worldwide.
The heart of any law school is its students. Ours are amazing, and they continually inspire us. We have diverse, engaged, and critical students from across Canada and around the world. They are intellectually vibrant and bring with them an extraordinary breadth of experience. Student life here is exciting and our graduates are changing the world!
Our professors are leaders in their fields, stimulating scholars, critically engaged; setting the agenda for the law of the future. Faculty and staff provide strong student support. Our ground-breaking Amicus program combines academic, cultural, and counselling assistance- a model for programs across the country. We are, in short, dedicated to each student's success. That dedication, together with our collaborative and community-engaged learning environment, sets us apart.
The JD Program
UVic is situated in the territory of the Songhees, Esquimalt and W̱SÁNEĆ peoples and sits on the site of an old lək̓ʷəŋən village. Respect for the land's traditional stewards has inspired us to become leaders in environmental law, Indigenous law issues and public policy initiatives.
We are committed to teaching law within its wider social, political, historical and economic contexts. Our outstanding professors and exceptional students come together to create a vibrant learning experience that is based on collaboration and civic responsibility. You'll find an environment that is academically rigorous, progressive, intellectually challenging and personally enriching.
Our curriculum builds a strong base of legal knowledge in first year while allowing you to shape your own program of study to suit your individual interests in second and third year. Through our many clinical programs and co-op program you’ll get practical, hands-on experience in a legal environment. Through our research, teaching and clinical programs, we’re changing the legal landscape to advance equality and diversity in our communities, in Canada and abroad.
We are proud of our collaborative, inclusive and accessible learning environment. Our small class sizes allow us to build a community and form relationships that continue throughout law school and beyond. One of our greatest strengths is the variety of social, cultural, ethnic and educational backgrounds of our students. At UVic, you will learn in an atmosphere of diversity and openness.
UVic Law has developed a student support program that is now a model for universities across the country. The Amicus program is a unique UVic Law student support initiative that plays an active role in engaging, advising and supporting you during your law school journey. These services are in place to provide you with financial, academic, cultural and personal support. Our commitment to equity is supported by programs and policies that ensure a safe and open environment for all students.
We are a world leader in Indigenous legal education and we recognize the urgent need within the Canadian legal community for a broader understanding of Indigenous legal issues.
We invite prospective students to apply under our Indigenous admissions category. Through our Amicus program we offer academic and cultural support as a complement to the support provided by UVic's First Peoples House.
We have a constantly growing range of courses dedicated to Indigenous law and legal issues, as well as opportunities to get involved with the Indigenous Law Students Association, Aboriginal Cultural Awareness Camp and the National Kawaskimhon Aboriginal Moot.
Clinics and CO-OP: Engaged with Communities, Engaged with the Law in Action
Our clinical programs are the most extensive in the country:
- The Law Centre (est. 1977), serves almost 2000 clients annually in criminal law, family law, administrative law and human rights. The Law Centre clinical term program emphasizes experiential learning. You will learn about and practice legal skills that include interviewing, fact investigation, counseling and negotiation, as well as how to conduct all aspects of a trial in the Provincial Court. You will also participate in seminars dealing with professional responsibility, criminal law, corrections law, family law, welfare law, residential tenancy law and wills. You are expected to appear in court frequently and also conduct hearings before administrative tribunals. You also participate in public legal education programs, outreach clinics in hospitals and correctional facilities and seminars. Seminars focus on social welfare legislation and topics of practical interest such as stress management, time management and file management.
- The Environmental Law Clinic (est. 1993), acts for grassroots community organizations, First Nations and NGOs throughout BC and beyond. The Environmental Law Centre (ELC) is a non-profit organization that works in partnership with UVic Law to deliver the ELC Clinic, Canada's first academic clinical program in public interest environmental law. The ELC provides a rich and meaningful learning experience for law students to assist communities across BC with public interest environmental problems. Under the supervision of senior environmental lawyers, students provide legal assistance to community organizations, conservation groups and First Nations. Together, ELC students and staff contribute thousands of hours of free legal services each year in helping clients to understand and respond to complex environmental challenges.
- The Business Law Clinic (est. 1998), serves small businesses, start-ups, charities and non-profits.
It is staffed by upper-year UVic Law students who have a demonstrated interest in providing business law services to the community. Through their studies and extracurricular activities at UVic Law, these students have clearly expressed an interest in corporate law and small business operations and in helping British Columbia's entrepreneurs achieve their business goals.
UVic Law's Business Law Clinic course (LAW 349) gives students an opportunity to develop their legal skills and understand the lawyer's role in facilitating business transactions for clients, all within a clinical context. They also learn about client interviewing, problem-solving, legal research, legal analysis and ethical issues.
We offer the only Common Law Co-op Program in Canada.
- More than half our students gain professional experience in paid placements across Canada and internationally in law firms, governments, NGOs, private companies and administrative tribunals.
- Co-op students have the opportunity to work for a diverse range of legal employers, including government, law firms, and non-profit organizations. Students can obtain Co-op experience throughout Canada and in various international locations. In recent years, co-op students have worked in Bangkok, India, Kuala Lumpur, Myanmar, New Zealand, and the Philippines.
- Co-op students alternate study terms with full-time, paid work assignments, gain practical experience and make valuable connections within the legal community. The co-op program, helps students explore potential career options before graduating. The program is open to all law students.
Joint Degree Program in Canadian Common Law and Indigenous Legal Orders (JD/JID)
Our joint degree program in Canadian Common Law (JD) and Indigenous Legal Orders (JID) is the first program of its kind in the world. In the JD/JID program, you’ll develop the skills you need to practice with Indigenous legal orders, within Canadian common law and at the interface between them.
The JID/JD blends land-based learning, with stories, language, common law case-analysis and statutory interpretation over a 4-year period.
You’ll graduate this four-year program with two professional degrees: a Juris Doctor (JD) and a Juris Indigenarum Doctor (JID). You'll be well-positioned to practice law at a local, national and international level.
The land is your classroom
In your first and second year, you'll examine constitutional, criminal, and property law, as well as contracts and torts through a transsystemic lens—comparing common law with one or more Indigenous legal traditions.
You'll spend a full term in each of your third and fourth years immersed in community-led field schools. Under close academic supervision, you'll observe the ways in which Indigenous legal processes are being applied today, and work with the community on law-related projects.
Additional upper year courses will examine the legal traditions and language of the Coast Salish region, legal ethics, and transsystemic study of administrative law and business associations.
Why the JD/JID?
The JD/JID is a four-year program combining classroom learning with field studies conducted in collaboration with Indigenous communities. You’ll graduate with two professional degrees—the full content of UVic’s common law degree combined with the skills you need to work productively with Indigenous legal orders.
You’ll study Canadian law, Indigenous legal traditions, governance, environment and a range of other areas. You’ll also attend field schools where you’ll learn from community experts and work with the community on law-related projects. Through these, you will explore the diversity of Indigenous legal traditions and observe first-hand the ways Indigenous legal processes are being used today.
The JD/JID program builds upon our longstanding commitment to and international reputation in Indigenous law and Indigenous legal education. It is made possible by our treasured relationships with:
- the Songhees and Esquimalt peoples, on whose lands the University of Victoria is located
- the W̱SÁNEĆ people, who have longstanding connections to this land
- Indigenous peoples from coast to coast to coast and around the world
Our graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills to adapt to the ever-changing field of Indigenous law and the impact those changes have on many facets of Canadian society. They enter the workforce as informed citizens with a strong understanding and appreciation of the many diverse legal traditions that comprise our systems of justice.
Juris Doctor & Master of Public Administration Double Degree (JD & MPA)
The Faculty of Law and the School of Public Administration offer the JD+MPA Co-op/Thesis Option (On Campus), for students wishing to pursue double degrees concurrently. Students who apply and are accepted into both the Faculty of Law JD and the School of Public Administration MPA Co-op/Thesis Option (On Campus) may earn both degrees concurrently with modified requirements for each. Undertaken separately, the two degrees normally require five years of study, whereas the double degree may be completed in four years.
Students in the JD/JID joint degree program are not eligible to enroll in the JD+MPA double degree program.
The first year of the double degree program is devoted entirely to the first-year law curriculum. The second year of the program requires the completion of the required core public administration courses offered in the fall and summer terms. In consultation with the Graduate Adviser, these courses can be completed in combination with law courses, if scheduling permits. MPA courses take priority in the second year. The remaining two years entail the completion of all other law and public administration course requirements. Students may reduce the time in the program by enrolling in some MPA courses during the third Summer Term. Alternatively, students may participate in the MPA Co-operative Education program.
UVic Law participates in a wide range of moots and competitions throughout Canada, with several teams successfully advancing to the international level in recent years. These challenging events allow students to practice their burgeoning legal skills in judged competitions against other law schools in exciting and instructive forums. Academic credit is awarded for participation in some of these events.
The competitive moot program gives upper-year law students the unique opportunity to work in collaboration with other students and under the supervision of a faculty member or a practicing lawyer to build their written and oral legal advocacy skills
UVic Law speaks directly to local communities, but we are also international in our outlook. Our professors have links worldwide, with particular connections to the UK, Belgium, China, Australia, France, Ghana, India, New Zealand and the United States. We have leading experts in European Union law, international arbitration law, international human rights, public international law, transnational law, international taxation, global corruption and the law of the arctic and oceans.
We offer various academic exchanges that provide UVic students with exciting opportunities to study abroad. Students may spend academic terms studying at top law schools located in Hong Kong, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand and several European countries. Exchange terms enable students to learn about different legal systems and prepare for the increasingly globalized legal environment. They also make for some of the best memories of law school!
Indigenous Initiatives: Law 388A (Indigenous Law: Research, Method, and Practice)
UVic is situated in the territory of the Coast and Straits Salish people and sits on the site of an old lək̓ʷəŋən village. Respect for the land's traditional stewards has inspired us to become leaders in Indigenous legal issues, environmental law, and public policy initiatives.
We aim to equip our students with the knowledge and skills to adapt to the ever-changing field of Indigenous law and the impact those changes will have on so many facets of Canadian society. We strive to have our students enter the workforce as informed citizens with a strong cultural understanding and appreciation of the many different legal traditions that comprise our systems of justice.
Recent landmark rulings by the Supreme Court of Canada serve as strong reminders to the legal community that Indigenous issues will be increasingly salient. As educators, we must reflect these anticipated trends in our university course offerings, programs and research initiatives.
Law 388A introduces students to critical ways of working with Indigenous law; its conceptualization and theorization, research, practice and application, and critical issues.
This is a summer intensive course offered for credit and non-credit.
Local Area & Attractions
With the mildest climate in Canada, the university is located minutes from beaches and parks that you can enjoy year-round. Victoria is a beautiful city with a vibrant urban culture and downtown is only a short distance from the university campus. Explore everything Victoria, BC has to offer!
Campus Virtual Tour
If you can’t visit us in person, take our virtual tour to see the natural beauty of the UVic campus from wherever you are in the world.
Tour the UVic Law Fraser Building (Virtual)
A fun online tour of the UVic Fraser Building done by our Law Student Society (LSS) President to virtually welcome our incoming first year law students in September 2020!
Centre for Athletics, Recreation and Special Abilities (CARSA)
CARSA houses the UVic Vikes athletics and recreation programs in state-of-the-art facilities, as well as offices, labs and a machine shop for CanAssist, which develops customized technologies, programs and services for people living with disabilities. CARSA strengthens UVic's mission to attract high achieving students and to develop wide-ranging and inclusive recreational programs that enhance campus life. The health and wellness of the on- and off-campus community is of increasing importance and CARSA will keep pace with the athletics and recreational needs of current and potential students, faculty, staff and community members.
Law Student Society (LSS)
Animal Justice Club
Animal Justice’s mandate is to raise awareness about the field of animal law and to enhance legal protections for animals in Canada through education, advocacy and activism.
Appeal Law Review
Appeal Publishing Society, led by a group of upper-year students and with contributions from across the Faculty of Law’s student body, oversees the publication of the school’s student-run law journal and the production of the Stare Indecisis podcast. The Society is committed to showcasing primarily student work and aims to publish articles, case commentaries and book reviews, as well as podcast content, that offers insightful commentary on Canadian and comparative law. The Society also hosts review sessions and events open to the entire student body.
Black Law Students Association (BLSA)
The University of Victoria Black Law Student Association chapter has a goal of establishing a community of Black law students, and working towards increased diversity in law schools and combatting anti-black racism.
Business Law Association (BLA)
The BLA provides a forum for law students to explore interesting areas and opportunities in Business Law and connect students with Business Law firms and showcase some of the areas of law that they operate in
Canadian Association for Refugee Lawyers (CARL)
The UVic Law Student Chapter of CARL aims to increase awareness of pressing issues in Refugee Law, engage students in advocacy and research projects with CARL, and expose students to the career area of Refugee Law.
Coalition for Indigenous Perspectives on Animals and Plants
The objective of this coalition is to create space for meaningful dialogue that opens up the floor to Indigenous perspectives respecting animals and plants. Members of the coalition have been involved with a mixture of Indigenous law and may include: the Environmental Law Club, the Animal Justice Club, the Indigenous Law Students Association, and the Animals in Society Research Initiative. We hope to contribute to the law school by hosting Indigenous and Ally speakers and volunteering directly for communities on issues that affect animals and plants.
Criminal Law Club
Fostering interest in criminal law practice by organizing educational and experiential opportunities for students.
Environmental Law Club
To promote awareness of environmental sustainability and conservation issues to the student body and general public through organizing events, publishing newsletters, hosting discussions/workshops and attending conferences.
FemLaw is a community of law students who strive towards substantive equality by using an intersectional feminist lens. We recognize the impact of societal discrimination on self-identified women and people experiencing gender-based discrimination. In addition to providing a safe and supportive space where members can engage in dialogue, FemLaw hosts feminism-oriented events, advocates against inequity and engages in outreach. Some of our successful recurring events include our contribution to the national Law Needs Feminism Because campaign and the Women in Law Panel.
First Generation Network (FGN)
The First Generation Network seeks to reduce barriers for law students who are first in their family to attend post-secondary. Last year was the first year UVic had a chapter, and this year we will be working to promote the club and host more events aimed at first-generation students but also opportunities which benefit everyone at UVic Law.
Intellectual Property/Information Technology Club (IPIT)
The Intellectual Property Law Club (IPIT) aims to keep the Faculty and student body up to date on the ever-changing world of intellectual property law and show how technology can change the practice and tackle access to justice issues.
Labour Law Club
The club’s mandate is to promote interest in labour law, as a subject of study, discussion and practice. We aim to hold member meetings to discuss issues in labour law and obstacles facing the labour movement, and host labour lawyers, activists and organizers for talks and discussions open to the whole school. We also aim to organize a tour of labour law (and related practices) firm/organizations in Vancouver to facilitate UVic Students’ connections to this practice.
Level is a Canadian charitable organization that levels barriers to justice by disrupting prejudice, building empathy and advancing human rights. Level’s Campus Chapter Program motivates tomorrow’s lawyers, leaders and change-makers to champion social justice causes and make positive contributions to their communities. Focused on an annual theme, students across the country organize community events, inform their peers, and host conferences.
OUTLaws is a club for LGBTQA students in Canadian law schools. We organize on-campus events and advocate for queer legal issues.
Pan-Asian Law Society (PALS)
PALS aims to educate members about legal, business, and socio-political issues in Asia, and provide social legal forums in which students and lawyers with similar interests can interact, network, and seek mentoring. It also seeks to raise awareness surrounding the issues facing lawyers and law students currently practicing or studying law in BC in relation to that area of the world. Members will also be informed of career paths and opportunities, both for those wishing to work in Asia and those seeking opportunities in Canada. The club is open to members of all backgrounds.
Philosophy of Law Club
The Philosophy of Law Club is an inclusive space to engage with topics that intersect the studies of philosophy and law.
Racialized Law Students Collective
The Racialized Law Students Collective’s mandate is to create a space for racialized law students to come together and address/discuss issues they face and celebrate diversity and promote inclusion using anti-racist and anti-oppressive approaches.
The Runnymede Society – UVic Student Chapter
The Runnymede Society is an initiative of the Canadian Constitution Foundation, a non-partisan think-tank focused on advancing the constitutional interests of all Canadians. The Runnymede Society is in essence CCF’s project to engage with current law students in developing original thinking and enabling open debates on contemporary issues of constitutional law such as the Charter, civil liberties, and the rule of law, etc.
Sports and Entertainment Law Students Association (SELSA)
SELSA aims to supplement the Faculty’s education on the sports and entertainment legal fields and inform the student body of possible career paths in each field.
UVic Law Rugby Club
The UVic Law Rugby Club’s chief responsibility is to uphold the 34-year tradition of playing a friendly, collegial match against the UBC law school. In this pursuit it provides an incredible opportunity for team-building, camaraderie and physical activity to UVic law students through games and other events.
UVic Law Wellness Club
The Wellness Clubs hosts events for the Faculty of Law addressing mental health in academic and the legal profession, as well as preventative-wellness concepts and events.
A group of students who are passionate about legal innovation, justice technology and technology policy dedicated to exploring and building solutions to issues at the intersection of law and tech.
South Asian Law Student’s Association (SALSA)
SALSA Aims to provide a space for South Asian students to discuss their unique experiences navigating law while providing professional and social opportunities, such as cultural events and connecting with the South Asian Bar Association.
University of Victoria Students' Society (UVSS)
MISSION VISION VALUES
Our mission is to be a leader in providing high-quality accessible services, advocacy and events that enhance the student experience, and to build a campus community that embodies our values.
Our vision is to see full student engagement in our core components of advocacy, events, services, businesses and society governance.
Our values are what we stand for. They underlie everything that we do and guide how we make decisions, perform our work and work with each other. These values are the primary driving forces behind all that we do:
We take our responsibility to ensure the long-term stability and health of your students’ society very seriously. To us this means ensuring participatory democracy and transparent decision-making, being prudent and judicious with your student fees, and being accountable for our actions.
We recognize the urgency of the climate crisis and are committed to doing our part. We work to reduce the environmental impact of UVSS operations and support sustainable initiatives that are relevant to students. We strive to be climate justice leaders that set an example for our members, UVic, and the greater community. We recognize that the climate crisis intersects with existing structures of oppression and acknowledge anti-racism and decolonial work as essential components of climate justice.
Service to students is why we exist. Our student-centered approach drives us to provide services that are high-quality, relevant, and meaningful to students. We provide essential services to all members of the UVSS: The extended health and dental plan, the U-PASS, Peer Support Centre, and the Food Bank and Free Store.
Our campus resides on the unceded and unsurrendered land of the lək̓ʷəŋən people, including the Esquimalt, Songhees, and W̱SÁNEĆ peoples. We are committed to holding our institutions accountable to reconciliation and decolonization by challenging systems and practices that oppress Indigenous peoples. We aim to elevate Indigenous voices and perspectives by confronting colonial norms and frameworks. We will continually educate our members, create open dialogue, and take action to dismantle colonial systems. We aim to elevate all First Nation, Inuit and Metis peoples – including but not limited to women, girls and queer/Two-Spirit folks – that continue to experience ongoing systems of oppression that inter-lock with and originate from colonialism, such as racism, sexism, homoantagonism, transantagonism, ableism, and others.
We aim to be a leader not just among student societies, but among non-profits – and we pursue this goal through excellence. To us that means driving innovation, promoting a learning culture, investing in our people, and by taking a compassionate approach to everything that we do.
Whether we are advocating for student issues or putting the profits from our businesses back into services for students, the UVSS works every day to ensure no person is left behind. Promoting social justice means supporting, uplifting and providing services to students and student-led organizations on campus that centre issues of equity; this includes, but is not limited to, confronting racism, sexism, transphobia, homophobia, ableism, colonialism, and all other discriminations and/or systems of oppression. We work with campus and community partners to raise awareness and empower students to create change.
We value fun in everything that we do. To us that means creativity, passion, spirit, lightheartedness, and not being institutional. Campus should be a fun place to be and students should feel excited and engaged about the work their students’ society does.
Off- Campus Housing
Most law students live off-campus. Popular neighborhoods are Fernwood, Royal Oak, Gordon Head, James Bay, Fairfield and Downtown. Finding a place on or near a bus route is good if you will not have a vehicle with you. UVic is a bike friendly campus (more information here: https://www.uvic.ca/sustainability/topics/transportation/cycling/index.php)
Places to check
Off-Campus Housing List maintained by Campus Housing Office - http://www.uvic.ca/residence/future-residents/off-campus/index.php
Used Victoria - http://www.usedvictoria.com/classifieds/real-estate-rentals
Craig’s List - https://victoria.craigslist.ca/
Oodle Listings in Victoria: http://canada.oodle.com/regions/victoria/
Used.ca (under "Real Estate & Businesses"): http://www.usedvictoria.com/
Property Management Companies in Victoria who manage several apartment buildings
Brown Brothers - https://www.brownbros.com/
Proline Property Managers - http://www.prolinemanagement.com/
Duttons Property Management - http://duttons.com/
Pemberton Holmes - http://www.pembertonholmes.com/
Newport Property Management - http://www.newportrentals.ca/
David Burr Property Management - http://davidburr.com/
Housing Assistance Company
SANPRA – Provide one-on-one help finding accommodation in Victoria. There is a fee for their services. www.sanpra.ca
Residence Services is the place to apply for on-campus housing.
JD students are classified as undergraduate students. However, for the purposes of on-campus housing applications only, law students are considered graduate students. If you apply for on-campus housing, you would submit a graduate application for on-campus housing. You would have access to apartment and cluster housing.
Career Placement and Bar Passage
The UVic Law Careers Office (LCO) is staffed by professionals who are dedicated to ensuring that UVic Law students achieve their short and long-term career goals. The LCO aims to utilize students’ past employment and volunteer experience, interests, goals, and aspirations to help them begin their legal careers.
The LCO provides career services to students, including those in both the JD and JD/JID program, and to alumni. These services include the following:
- one-on-one career counseling;
- access to job postings;
- resume and cover letter review;
- mock interviews;
- lunchtime information sessions;
- networking events; and
- guidance through formal recruitment processes.
The LCO also works closely with the UVic Law Co-op program. The Law Co-op Program helps students determine their desired career path by allowing them to alternate study terms with exciting full-time paid legal work for a variety of legal employers in Canada and overseas.
UVic Law graduates have found great success in a wide variety of employment opportunities including government, all sizes and kinds of law firms, non-profit organizations, industry, clerkships, and non-practicing positions. As the JD/JID program grows, the LCO also works closely with students to continue to develop the breadth of opportunities and new areas of practice available to graduates.
Tuition and Aid
|Expected Cost of Attendance||
Incoming and currently enrolled University of Victoria (UVic) Law students are eligible for a number of awards made available through contributions from donors as well as from the Faculty's operating budget. Every year we award numerous awards and scholarships based on academic merit, as well as other accomplishments such as leadership and community service. Awards range in value and our most prestigious entrance award is $10,000, renewable over three years.
Additionally, the UVic Faculty of Law is pleased to offer a variety of programs to offset the tuition expenses, living expenses, and emergency expenses of students. In an average year, the Faculty of Law awards approximately $350,000 in bursaries to both our incoming and current students. Typically, law students receive a similar amount from the general University’s bursary fund. Between the two bursary programs, we are generally able to meet 100% of students’ financial need, as we calculate it. For students with extraordinary or emergency expenses, the Faculty of Law maintains a variety of assistance programs made possible by generous donations from alumni and community members and organizations.
Admission Decisions: Beyond the Numbers
The Law (JD) program that our Faculty offers is a post-degree professional program. As such, students must complete an undergraduate degree or three years leading towards that degree at an accredited institution prior to commencing law school.
It does not matter what major you pursue for your undergraduate degree. We accept students each year from a wide variety of programs, everything from fine arts to computer engineering. The largest group of our applicants comes from traditional arts degree programs such as political science or history. However, we do not discriminate between applicants on the basis of the degree program or majors they have completed.
Your grade point average (GPA) is far more important than the degree field you have chosen. Admission to law school is very competitive and GPA is one of the primary criteria we use to evaluate applicants, so it is important that you maintain an excellent GPA in your university studies. We recommend that students take a degree program they are passionate about, because if you are passionate about a subject, you are much more likely to do well in that subject.
Other than achieving high grades, it is important that you develop excellent time management, study habits and exam writing skills during your undergraduate degree. I also encourage students to include courses in their program that will develop their research, writing and analytical skills, all of which are essential for success in law school.
In addition to the academic requirement, you must write the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT). For information about the LSAT, including study guides and future test dates, please visit the Law School Admission Council (LSAC) website at www.lsac.org. We consider LSATS that are up to five years old. The last LSAT we will consider for September entry is the January sitting of the year for which you are applying to enter law school.
We admit a relatively small first-year class to the Juris Doctor (JD) program each fall and strive to ensure that the student body is representative of all peoples living in Canada. The number of applications we receive exceeds the number of spaces available for each program.
We have three first year admission categories: Regular, Discretionary and Indigenous.
- Regular: Admission decisions are primarily determined by an applicant’s pre-law academic record and Law School Admission Test (LSAT) score. An applicant’s personal statement may also be considered. If you are competitive in the first round of assessment (GPA & LSAT calculation ONLY), then you will be made an offer of admission right away. If you fall within the competitive range, but do not meet the cut-off, your file will be forwarded to the Admissions Committee for a holistic review of your application and personal statement.
Discretionary: To qualify within this category applicants must be able to provide evidence that their academic achievements have been significantly delayed, interrupted or adversely affected by:
- a medical condition or disability (physical, sensory, learning, addiction, mental illness, or similar condition or disability); or
- family or similar responsibilities and the consequent need to attend to these responsibilities or to maintain employment; or
- social, historic, political, economic or other factors
The Admissions Committee considers Discretionary applicants in a holistic manner, evaluating their academic achievements (GPA and LSAT score) and non-academic achievements in light of the reasons they have applied in the category, as well as in comparison to the rest of the Discretionary applicant pool. To be included in the shortlisted pool for this category, applicants must meet the criteria for inclusion in the category and their files must show evidence of potential to succeed in law school.
Indigenous: Applicants are required to show a demonstrated connection or lack of connection with an Indigenous community or communities. We tend to interpret community fairly broadly because many Indigenous people may not have a direct connection to their community due to colonization. Connection to community may be demonstrated by being an active member of an Indigenous student organization at your post-secondary institutions, by working or volunteering at an aboriginal community organization such as a church or friendship Centre, by working for an Indigenous-owned business, by coaching or playing on an Indigenous sports team, by participating in traditional cultural and spiritual events, etc. If you have not had an on-going connection to an Indigenous community, the Admissions committee would like to know why this connection has not been possible thus far in your life and any steps you are undertaking to establish connections with Indigenous communities.
The application period opens September 1 and ends January 15. However, applicants are strongly encouraged to submit applications as early as possible.
All admissions to the Faculty of Law are at the discretion of the Admissions Committee.
Upper year admission information is available online at https://www.uvic.ca/law/admissions/upperyearstudents/index.php.
Please feel free to contact the Admissions Office at firstname.lastname@example.org should you have any questions.