Peter A Allard School of Law

Frequently Asked Questions

Contact Information and FAQ's

See below for links to frequently asked questions. If you cannot find what you are looking for on this site, please contact us at 604-822-6303 or admissions@allard.ubc.ca.

Admissions guide

Please email us at admissions@allard.ubc.ca with "Calendar Request" as the subject line. Please be sure to include your mailing address. Download our Admissions Guide (PDF).

LSAT

We take your best LSAT score.

The January writing of the LSAT is the last sitting that we will accept for the current admissions cycle, but we strongly encourage applicants to write the LSAT prior to the January test date. Decisions are made on a rolling basis beginning in late November, and continue through to the summer months. An applicant who wishes to rely on the January LSAT score may diminish their chance of gaining admission due to the delayed review of their file and the possibility that there may no longer be positions available in the upcoming entry class. Applications from candidates writing the January LSAT will not be considered complete until all elements, including LSAT score, are received. After review, if the complete application file is considered competitive for a place in the upcoming entry class, the applicant may either be admitted or placed on a wait list depending on whether a position is still available.

There are various LSAT preparation options available, ranging from self-study resources to paid courses. Many students excel through self-study, while others prefer to pay for a course. The choice is purely personal, and depends on your independent study style. If you would like to speak with a current JD student about the resources they found helpful, please contact the Allard School of Law Student Ambassadors.

LSAC has recently partnered with the Khan Academy to offer a free online Official LSAT Prep Course. Applicants interested in self-studying are strongly advised to consider this option.

There is no limit to the number of times you can take the LSAT.

You can go to:

www.LSAC.org (patricularly the FAQ)

or contact them at:

Law School Admission Council
662 Penn Street
Box 2000
Newtown, PA
18940-0998
fax: 215-968-1119
email: lsacinfo@LSAC.org

Application Requirements

There is no required course of pre-law study. Students enter the Allard School of Law from a variety of pre-law disciplines and we have found that students can and do succeed at law school regardless of their previous courses of study. Law school does require, however, that students be able to read and process large amounts of written material. It also requires that students have good oral comprehension and communication skills, and that students be able to write clearly and well.

Applicants who are concerned that their course of pre-law study has not required them to develop these skills should consider taking a credit or non-credit writing course, or availing themselves of online resources and tutorials designed to improve their writing skills. Your university study skills or writing centre may be able to refer you to such resources.

To be eligible to apply, prospective students must:

1. Have obtained an undergraduate degree in an approved course of studies from an approved university. Diploma or Certificate programs are ineligible;

or

2. Have successfully completed the first three years (minimum 90 credits) or more of an approved course of studies leading to an undergraduate degree at an approved university. A full complement of third year level courses must be completed by the end of the Spring Semester.

Applicants completing their third year at the time of the application deadline are eligible under this second option; however, an offer of acceptance will be conditional on the maintenance of the academic average obtained in the first two years of studies. The third year of studies must be completed by the end of the Spring Semester of the year of admission. (Spring Semester runs from January to April.)

To be considered for admission, applicants must have successfully completed three years (minimum 90 credits) of an approved course of studies leading to an undergraduate degree at an approved University. The 90 credits must be completed no later than the end of April in the year of entry. However, prospective applicants should be aware that almost all of our JD students have completed a four year degree. In recent years approximately five applicants a year have been admitted without a four-year undergraduate degree.

No, you do not need to take Law 12 (or any equivalent high school law courses). However, you should ensure that the courses you take and the marks you receive in high school fulfill the requirements of the undergraduate program you wish to enter.

Applicants who have not received post-secondary education in the English language may be required to demonstrate a TOEFL score of 100 or higher (Writing score of 25) or an IELTS score of at least 7.0 (Writing score of 7.0).

There is no specific minimum LSAT score or CGPA that is required to apply, but higher scores will make your application more competitive. Over the years, successful applicants within the General Category had an average CGPA of 83% - approximately 3.8 - with an LSAT score of 166. the CGPA and LSAT are given equal weight and the personal statement is also factored into the admissions decisions. CGPAs have ranged from 76% to 90% and LSAT scores can range from 156 to 180. 

We do not require reference letters for applications in the General Category. Two reference letters are required in all other categories (Discretionary, Indigenous, as well as upper-year transfer or letter of permission applications). 

Two reference letters are required for applications not submitted under the General Category. There is no specific form or format required, but for the Discretionary and Indigenous categories, our preference is one professional reference and one academic reference. In situations where either a professional or academic reference cannot be obtained, submitting two of the same type of reference is acceptable. For upper-year categories (Transfer, Letter of Permission), both letters of reference should be from law professors at your current institution. Reference letters should be mailed directly to our office by your referee, and they should sign the back of the envelope. Referees may also e-mail letters of reference directly to admissions@allard.ubc.ca. Please ensure that your full name is used in your reference letters so we are able to match them with your file.

Note: When selecting a referee, make sure they are able to speak positively about your academic, extracurricular, or employment contributions. Generic letters simply stating that you took (X) class and received (Y) grade are largely unpersuasive.

A limited number of positions in first year law are available for discretionary applicants. The Discretionary Category is for applicants who may have relevant achievements and experiences, but because of special factors in life, may not satisfy one or more of the requirements for General applicants. The Admissions Committee has the discretion to respond to such circumstances by taking into account factors such as disability or special needs, financial disadvantage, age (generally for applicants over 30 years of age), membership in a historically disadvantaged group, and any other factors that the applicant wishes the Committee to consider. These factors will be considered in the context of the applicant's other achievements, work experiences, volunteer work, and community involvement.

Discretionary applicants are required to have completed the first two years of an approved course of studies leading to an undergraduate degree at an approved college or university. Two letters of reference are required, and where appropriate, documentation such as medical reports should be submitted.

Decisions in this category are usually made in mid to late May.

No, interviews are not part of the admissions process.

For the General category: The structure of the personal statement under the General category has changed for this year. Applicants are now required to answer the three questions listed below. Please clearly number your answers and include your name and birthdate at the top of every page.

  1. (Maximum 500 words)  Tell us about why you would like to study law at UBC, and how your past education, employment, extracurricular activities and/or other experiences have prepared you for the study of law.
     
  2. (Maximum 400 words) Tell us about a time when you considered whether to intervene to correct an injustice, what you decided to do and why.
     
  3. (Maximum 400 words)  Tell us about how equity and diversity have mattered in your life. This could include identifying your own experiences as a member of one or more groups that have historically faced systemic barriers to equal educational and other opportunities and/or discussing the ways in which you have engaged with these issues in your education, employment or relationships with others.

    Note:  Equity factors relate to systemic barriers to equal access to opportunities. These include grounds of discrimination found in human rights laws, such as race, sex, disability, gender identity, nationality, religion, age, and family status. Diversity factors relate to other personal characteristics and identities. These include cultural, social, and socio-economic diversity.

For all other categories: The purpose of the personal statement is to provide the Admissions Committee with any information an applicant considers relevant to the review and evaluation of their application. The Admissions Committee is particularly interested in hearing why you want to study law, what makes you well-suited to the study of law (e.g., the particular skills, interests and/or experiences you have), why you are interested in the Allard School of Law specifically, and what contributions you think you would make to the Faculty. A personal statement should also highlight those aspects of your personal history that will generally enhance your application. For example, you should set out relevant information about any academically related extra-curricular activities, community involvement, paid and volunteer work experiences, parental or caregiver responsibilities, and any other relevant personal characteristics and attributes.

You should consider including information about any significant life circumstances which may have arisen in the course of your studies. For example, if your academic performance in some limited period was affected by a short-term medical condition or other circumstances, information about this should be provided, along with supporting documentation.

For the Discretionary, Indigenous, Transfer, Letter of Permission and Advanced Standing categories, personal statements should be 2 to 3 pages in length (approximately 1500 words). Please include your name and birthdate at the top of every page.

Submitting Your Application

The application deadline for First Year Law is December 1st. We will continue to accept documents (transcripts, reference letters, medical docmentation, etc.) until January 31st, but it is highly recommended that you submit all documents as soon as possible. The deadline for those applying in the Upper Level categories is April 30th, although we will accept law school transcripts through to the first week of June.

The Application Fee is $95.00 and is non-refundable.

Official transcripts must be sent directly from your university to our admissions office. Please ensure they are NOT sent to the general UBC Admissions Office. Foreign transcripts must be evaluated by a foreign credential evaluation service (note that this does not apply to exchange transcripts). 

If you have already completed your degree, only one official copy should be sent to the Law Admissions Office. If you are currently attending university, one transcript should be sent prior to the document deadline, and a final copy must be submitted once your degree has been confirmed. UBC students do not need to submit transcripts; we will access UBC transcripts directly from Enrolment Services. However, if you attended another institution prior to UBC or went on exchange, you must arrange to have those transcripts sent directly to our Law Admissions Office.


Transcripts can be sent by email (preferred), mail or courier to our admissions office.

Send by email

You can have your post-secondary institutions email transcripts directly to admissions@allard.ubc.ca.

Send by mail

JD Admissions
Allard School of Law
1822 East Mall
Vancouver, BC Canada V6T 1Z1

Send by courier

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, if you are sending your transcripts by courier (e.g., DHL, Fedex, UPS, etc.), please use the following address with attention to “Peter A. Allard School of Law”:

UBC Campus Mailing Services
ATTN: Peter A. Allard School of Law
2300 Lower Mall
Vancouver, BC Canada V6T 1Z4

Two reference letters are required for applications not submitted under the General category. There is no specific form or format required, but one letter may be a professional reference, the other may be academic, depending upon your current situation and whether you are currently enrolled in university or graduated some time ago. Reference letters should be mailed directly to our office by your referee, and they should sign the back of the envelope. Referees may also e-mail letters of reference directly to admissions@allard.ubc.ca. Please ensure that your full name is used in your reference letters so we are able to match them with your file.

Please email admissions@allard.ubc.ca with "Address update" in the subject line.

You will receive an e-mail with login information for our online status checker approximately one week after submitting your application. From there, you can check the status of your application at any time. Please note that updates can take longer during peak periods of the admissions cycle. We thank you for your patience.

We will hold all documentation pending receipt of your application. Supporting documents will then be matched with your application.

Application Review

The Peter A. Allard School of Law will admit 200 students to first-year law. Generally, we receive in excess of 1,500 applications. Typically we make 300+ offers to fill the 200 positions.

"Rolling admissions" describes the ongoing process of reviewing files and admitting applicants into the JD program. We begin reviewing individual applications within the General category as soon as all documentation has been received. For those who qualify for "early admission," offers may be made as early as November. These offers, made before the application deadline, generally go to applicants with GPAs above 84% along with an LSAT score above 166. Over the course of the spring and summer, as others withdraw or are no longer able to attend, offers will be made to those applicants that appear on our waitlist.

When calculating your GPA, we consider all completed courses leading to your first undergraduate degree. However, we do exclude 12 of your worst credits if you have a four-year degree. Generally, this is the equivalent of four semester-long courses, or two year-long courses. If you are in your third year when you apply, we will exclude 6 of your worst credits. Please note that if you are currently enrolled in your final year, those final-year courses will not be included in the calculation of your GPA.

If your institution has switched to a Pass/Fail or Credit/D/Fail system due to the disruptions caused by the ongoing pandemic, it will not affect your application unless a) you obtained a D or an F in the course or b) you are applying in the third year of your undergraduate degree. Both situations will be addressed on a case-by-case basis.

If we receive a file that is complete and is highly competitive, an offer could be given as early as November. However, we honour the December deadline as well as the January writing of the LSAT. Therefore, we cannot and do not fill all our spots early. Applying early does not increase an applicant's chance of being given an offer, but it does allow us to begin evaluation as soon as possible.

We use the same conversion scale used by the UBC Registrar's Office. On that scale, a 4.0 is an 86%, a 3.7 is an 80%, a 3.0 is a 73%, and a 2.0 is a 60%. A general "Percentage/GPA Equivalency Table" can be found here.

General Information

Information on tuition fees for all programs can be accessed the Tuition and Program Fees page.

Direct transfers are restricted to applicants from Canadian law schools only.

All accepted applicants are automatically considered for entrance scholarships based on academic merit. Applications for financial aid and bursary assistance are made through the UBC Awards and Financial Aid Office or in the student's home province. Please see the Student Services Finance website or book an appointment with an Enrolment Services Professional at es.lawsupport@ubc.ca.

A call for scholarship applications will be sent out in mid-May after students have been accepted. The deadline for entrance scholarship applications is typically June 15th. A complete list of entrance awards requiring applications and their criteria may be found the Scholarships & Awards page.

Proof of enrolment letters for financial aid applications can be found here.

Yes! We have an exchange program. Please see the UBC Go Global website for more information. You can search for partner universities here. Make sure to enter "Law" as the area of study.

Our Allard School of Law Student Ambassadors are available to offer tours to prospective and admitted students. For more information about tours and availability, please click here.

Our Law Student Ambassadors welcome the opportunity to correspond with prospective or admitted students about the law school experience, life at UBC, and living in Vancouver. You may email an Ambassador at ambassadors@allard.ubc.ca.

The educational requirements to practise law vary from state to state. Please visit the ABA website for information about individual state bar associations.

Yes. To be eligible for the part-time program, students must demonstrate special needs resulting from such factors as family responsibilities, or financial or health problems. Applicants must include an additional letter outlining their request and demonstrating their need to study part time. A maximum of ten students per year will be admitted on this basis. 

You can explore UBC housing's website for information about on-campus housing options. For information about off-campus housing, you can also check out the Alma Mater Society website, Craigslist or Kijiji. UBC also has housing boards in the Student Union Building where students post vacancy notices.

Note that the Faculty of Graduate Studies has two residential Colleges - Green College and St. John's College - devoted to providing housing for graduate students, post-doctoral fellows and visiting scholars, but Law students are also considered. You can find more information here.

Yes, this is called a Letter of Permission. Please see the Upper Level Applicants page and our Admissions Requirements for more information.

Let us know as soon as possible at admissions@allard.ubc.ca so we can make arrangements to accommodate you to the best of our abilities. You may also wish to contact the Centre for Accessibility at 604-822-5844 or accessibility@ubc.ca.

Please contact the National Committee on Accreditation. They will assess your foreign credentials and determine how many courses you must retake. Foreign-trained lawyers should contact the Master of Laws (Common Law) (LLM CL) program or the Online Learning program for more details.

We generally only offer deferrals in extenuating circumstances (e.g. medical or compassionate reasons. An applicant wishing to defer their studies should contact the admissions office outlining the reasons for which they are requesting a deferral.

Registering for Classes

You don't! We register all first year students.

You can register for your classes using the UBC Student Service Centre website at https://ssc.adm.ubc.ca/sscportal/servlets/SRVSSCFramework. However, you cannot access the online registration services until you have paid your deposit. Please see your offer letter for details on how to pay.

Please also read through our admissions guide as most information can be found there. If you cannot find what you are looking for please contact us at 604-822-6303 or  admissions@allard.ubc.ca.

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