Important Application Deadlines for September 2024 Start Date:
Supporting Document deadline
Letters of reference
Please note that the application, supporting documents (such as TOEFL, IELTS, etc.), and letters of reference are due at 11:59 p.m. PST on the dates indicated above.
Program Duration: Maximum of six years.
How to Apply Online
1. Review the minimum program requirements to ensure you qualify
Please review the PhD program requirements to ensure you meet the minimum requirements.
2. Complete the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies online application form and pay the application fee
When applying, be sure to choose "Law, PHD" as the program.
A non-refundable application fee by Visa or Mastercard must be paid for your application to be processed.
- Canadians (and Permanent Residents, Refugees, Diplomats): (CDN) $106.00
- International Applicants: (CDN) $168.25
3. Upload your supporting documents
You must submit all supporting documents before your application will be reviewed and considered.
4. Await the results
Applications are reviewed after the closing deadline.
Supporting Documents You Will Need to Upload
1. Curriculum Vitae
Provide details of your education, academic awards, relevant work experience, relevant volunteer experience, publications, conference presentations, etc.
2. Scans of Official Transcripts
Scan and upload PDF copies of all university official transcripts and proof of degree conferral. All copies must include the marking guide from the corresponding university. We only accept scans of an official transcript. In-progress official transcripts are acceptable for your application.
Only PDF files are accepted for your application. Image files and/or transcripts downloaded from your university’s student portal are NOT acceptable. Submissions that don’t meet the proper format will be marked as incomplete.
You are not required to submit hard copies of your transcripts unless you are made an offer of admission. Further instructions will follow.
- For transcripts and degree certificates not in English: You must upload scanned versions of English language translations of all transcripts and degree certificates completed by a certified translator. For degrees from China, official original and English language translations of degree certificates are required in addition to transcripts.
- Each institution’s transcript must be uploaded as a separate document. If you have attended two different institutions, each transcript is to be uploaded as a separate file.
- For transcripts longer than one page, please combine the entire transcript in one file. Do not upload each page as a separate document.
- If your institution offers secure electronic delivery of official transcripts, please contact us for further instructions: email@example.com. Please continue completing the rest of your application, including submitting the application and paying the application fee.
- Please note that an e-transcript is downloaded via a link to a secure site. It is NOT an email attachment of any kind, even if sent from an authority at the issuing institution.
3. English Language Proficiency Test Results
This is only required for applicants from a university where English is not the primary language of instruction in the entire university (not just at the Faculty of Law). Applicants are required to demonstrate a minimum level of oral English language proficiency.
You must upload a copy of your test scores to your application. The examining body must send results directly to the Graduate Program Allard School of Law, Attention: Ph.D. Program.
For TOEFL examinations, our institution code is 0965, and the department code is 03.
We only accept test scores for exams taken within the last two years.
Please refer to the Eligibility section for our English proficiency requirements and further submission details.
4. Dissertation Proposal
As the Ph.D. Law degree is a dissertation based degree involving original research, a dissertation proposal is mandatory for your application. Your dissertation proposal helps the Graduate Committee pair you with potential supervisors and supervisory committees.
A proposal should outline a research project that could reasonably lead to a dissertation that makes an original scholarly contribution in an area of legal study. The Ph.D. thesis proposal should be approximately 10 pages (2,500 words) in length. It should include:
- Introduction — Explain the problem you seek to address and your working hypothesis
- Literature Review — Make a clear scholarly justification for your proposed research that sets it in the context of existing relevant scholarly literature. Explain how your proposed work will make an original contribution
- Theory and Research Methodology — Provide an explanation of the body of theory that informs your research problem and your method for exploring the proposed research problem
- Preliminary Bibliography — List approximately 10-20 scholarly books and articles that inform your approach to the research problem
The thesis proposal is to be uploaded to the application form under the "Experience and Interests" section.
5. Proposed Dissertation Supervisors
You do not need to find a supervisor prior to applying to or in order to be considered for admission to the research-based LLM/PhD program. Faculty members are busy with teaching and other commitments and may not have time to respond to your email, this is not an indication that they are not willing to supervise your research project. Many faculty members prefer to review applications that have been forwarded to them from the Graduate Committee.
In order to be considered for admission, you are required to submit a list of two or three possible thesis supervisors, drawn from our faculty listing, with your application. Every effort will be made by the Graduate Committee to locate a suitable supervisor for your particular research topic. If you contact a faculty member, please note that the willingness of a faculty member to supervise does not guarantee admission. The decision about whether to recommend admission remains with the Graduate Committee. However, no one will be admitted without a faculty member agreeing to supervise.
6. Three References
The Graduate Program requires 3 letters of reference. At least 1 (and preferably 2) of the 3 should be from an academic referee who is able to speak to your abilities as a student. Ph.D. applicants are required to include a letter of reference from their LL.M. supervisor as one of their referees. Please contact the research-based Graduate Program office at: firstname.lastname@example.org if you are unable to comply with this request.
Please forward your thesis proposal to your referees and ask that they comment on the quality of the proposal and your preparation for undertaking the proposed project.
Your references can be uploaded after you submit your application up until the document deadline.
Detailed information regarding reference requirements and instructions can be found on the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies webpage.
Notes for reference submissions:
- Please ensure valid and correct email addresses for each of your referees. Your referees will only receive reference instructions after you officially submit your application with the application fee.
- We strongly recommend providing a referee’s institution or company email address to allow them to submit an e-reference directly to our application system. Referees with email addresses from free email providers (e.g. Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, etc.) will not be able to submit electronic references. They will need to mail us a hard copy letter and/or form in a sealed envelope signed across the seal that is received by the Graduate Program by the referee deadline.
- Please confirm with your referee before you submit their contact information to ensure they will have enough time to submit the reference within the deadline.
7. Immigration Documents
Permanent residents must upload a clear scanned copy of their Permanent Resident Card (front and back) to their application. Please do not send hard copy original documents to the Graduate Program staff.
Have a Question? Need help Applying?
Our graduate admissions team is here to help.