Admission to the PhD

Admission to the PhD

Applicants to the PhD are admitted on the basis of the quality of their complete application file, with particular attention given to their potential to engage in legal research and scholarship at an advanced level.  Important elements considered by the Admission Committee include, but are not necessarily limited to, overall academic achievement, subject area of interest, research proposal, prior publications and scholarship, professional experience related to the research area of interest and language ability.  

Applicants should further note that the Admissions Committee evaluates research proposals in light of the strength and availability of its Faculty members, as well as library and other resources in the relevant field.


Eligibility for admission

In order to be considered for admission to the doctoral (PhD) program, applicants must have a Master of Laws (LL.M.) or equivalent degree from a Canadian university with a minimum grade point average equivalent to a "B+" (75%) or an equivalent foreign degree with comparable results.  Applicants should note that meeting the minimum standard for admission does not guarantee that admission will be granted.

Applicants who have not studied in French or in English must also provide proof of sufficient aptitude to study at an advanced level in French or in English.


Transfers from the Master of Laws (LL.M.)

Exceptional students enrolled in the LL.M. program may be admitted to the PhD. without completing all of their program requirements.  To be eligible to request a transfer to the PhD, students must show that they meet the following conditions:

They have completed all required coursework with a minimum average of "A-" (80%);

They have demonstrated their ability to do research at the doctoral level; and

A full time permanent faculty has consented, in writing, to supervise the student at the PhD level.

The student must submit a request for transfer to the PhD, in writing, to the Graduate Studies in Law office.  The deadline is the same as the general PhD application deadline for the semester for which transfer is sought (see Application Deadline below).

Students are advised that admission to the PhD by transfer is discretionary and that it may be subject to additional requirements than those for candidates admitted directly to the PhD program.


Application Deadline

Given the structure of the doctoral program, September admission is preferred.  

The application deadline for September admission is February 1 of the same calendar year for which admission is sought.  By the deadline, the Graduate Studies in Law office at the Faculty of Law must have received both the completed on-line application form and all supporting documents. Please note that we will evaluate exceptional applications submitted after the deadline.

Applications for admission other than in September are as follows:

January admission: September 1 of the previous calendar year to the one for which admission is sought.

May admission: December 1 of the previous calendar year to the one for which admission is sought.


Where to Send the Application

Applications for admission, along with all supporting documents, must be sent to:

Graduate Studies in Law
Faculty of Law
University of Ottawa
57 Louis Pasteur
Ottawa, ON. K1N 6N5

University of Ottawa Admission Scholarship

All eligible applicants are considered for a University of Ottawa Admission Scholarship on the basis of their application for admission to the PhD.  For full information about the University of Ottawa Admission Scholarship, please consult the Office of the Vice-Provost, Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies website.

Other Scholarships

Applicants interested in applying for scholarships other than the University of Ottawa Admission Scholarship should verify the specific deadline for each scholarship and submit their file in accordance with that deadline.  For more information about scholarships that are administered through the University of Ottawa or the Faculty of Law, please consult the "Financials" heading on this website.

Back to top