Of the 60 units required in upper years, only Civil Procedure, Administrative Law, Business Organizations and the second Constitutional Law course, focusing on the division of powers, are mandatory. This provides students with the necessary flexibility to decide their program based on their needs and interests, while gaining a solid common law training.
Our objective is to provide a full service legal education, complemented by areas of specialization that reflect our faculty strengths and our location in the National Capital.
As a professional program, the Common Law Section prepares students for entrance to the practice of law or other careers in the public and private sectors where a legal education is required or beneficial. As an academic program, the Section is committed to providing students with intellectual development consistent with their strong academic background. These professional and intellectual objectives are achieved in a manner which is mindful of the privilege and power often accorded to lawyers in our society.
Our programs concentrate on more than just the letter of the law; we address the spirit of the law and the ideal of justice. In our view, it is the duty of the program to respect and promote the full range of diversity reflecting the multi-lingual, multi-cultural and multi-racial characteristics of the women and men in our programs and in Canadian society. Our students are Canada’s future leaders.
English Juris Doctor
The English Common Law Program accepts approximately 280 entering students each year. The program is offered over three distinct and compulsory terms: the fall term from September to December, the January term over the first three weeks of January, and the winter term from February to April.
French Juris Doctor
The French Common Law Program accepts approximately 80 entering students each year. The program is offered over three distinct and compulsory terms: the fall term from September to December, the January term over the first three weeks of January, and the winter term from February to April.
JD National Program
The National Program is an accelerated course of study for students who already hold a civil law degree from a Canadian university. Students are expected to have a high level of proficiency in both French and English, as the program is bilingual.
In addition to offering common law JD degrees via the French, English and National Programs, the Common Law Section also offers a variety of combined programs, allowing students to earn multiple degrees in a reduced timeframe.
Active learning is a learning process that differs from the traditional teaching process by which students passively receive information. Through active learning, students learn by doing and participating. The University of Ottawa’s common law section appreciates the effectiveness of active learning in improving students’ law school performance and offers numerous active learning opportunities to allow students to develop practical experience through legal clinics, moot competitions, Pro Bono Students Canada, internship opportunities, mentorship programs and fellowships.