Why do your Master of Laws at Dal?

Pursue a master's degree perfectly matched to your needs

Our Master of Laws (LLM) degree, established in 1951, is diverse and deep. It can deliver the development you're looking for, whether your focus is health, environment, human rights, business, technology, tax, or something else entirely.  

Program Details

Master of Laws (LLM)

LLM program options

We offer two options for the LLM program. The first is a combination of a thesis plus three courses. The second is a program of six courses, all of which require substantial research papers.

You may choose to do either of these options on a full-time (usually one year) or a part-time (usually two or more years) basis.  

Thesis option

Students usually complete the program's three courses during the first and second terms (September to April) of the academic year before completing a supervised thesis over the course of the summer (May to August).

Coursework option

The coursework LLM option includes six courses that each conclude with a substantial paper. This version of our LLM normally runs from September to May.  

Before deciding on the thesis or coursework option, candidates who are contemplating future doctoral studies should note that some doctoral programs require the completion of a Master of Laws degree which includes a thesis.

LLM degree requirements

Graduate Seminar on Legal Education and Legal Scholarship

The Graduate Seminar on Legal Education and Legal Scholarship (LAWS 3000) is a required class for all LLM students. This seminar is given in the fall term and early part of the winter term and requires from the student a comprehensive class presentation based on a substantial paper.

Thesis option

If the degree is taken by thesis and coursework, a candidate is also required to:

(a) complete at least two additional one-term classes from the course offerings of the Schulich School of Law and
(b) present a well-researched substantial thesis of scholarly quality produced under the supervision of a member (or members) of the law faculty.  Such a thesis would normally be 125-150 typescript pages in length (double-spaced).

Coursework option

If the degree is taken by coursework alone, candidates are also required to take at least an additional five one-term classes. Of those five classes, at least three must be designated as "major paper courses" by the Schulich School of Law, or be approved by the Graduate Studies Committee as having a sufficiently substantial written component.

Course Selection

Choice of classes must be approved by the Graduate Studies Committee. The Graduate Studies Committee may approve the substitution of not more than two seminars or graduate-level classes in a discipline other than law, which may be highly relevant to the candidate's area of specialization, provided that any such substituted course or seminar has, in the opinion of the Committee, equivalence to the law classes being substituted.

Performance during program

In all courses, graduate students must receive a minimum mark of "B-" in order to pass. No more than 3 courses in which a student receives a B- grade will count towards the degree requirements.

Length of program

The degree may be taken on the basis of either one academic year (September 1 to August 31) of full-time studies, or two academic years of part-time studies.