Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Bond University - from yesterday's post

Yesterday's post included information that an Australian University accepts 70 Canadian law students each year. The university is Bond University. They have an FAQ for Canadian students. I am hoping that they don't mind that I copy that FAQ here (if they do, they can feel free to write me), but I think it would be very beneficial for those applicants who either cannot get accepted, or choose not to apply to Canadian Law Schools:

Faculty of Law - International Perspective

FAQ'S for Students from Canada

What is the difference between the LLB and the JD?

The LLB and the JD are both professionally recognised degrees. The JD is restricted to graduate entrants; the LLB has no such restriction.
Law has traditionally been taken as a first degree in Australia and ‘LLB’ is the traditional label for that degree. However a number of universities have recently introduced 'JD' degrees for graduate students.

The compulsory law units for the two Bond degrees are the same and students in these units are taught together.

The LLB comprises 32 subjects in total, 19 compulsory law units and 4 compulsory non-law units.

The JD comprises 24 subjects in total, all being law units , with 19 of the units being compulsory. Electives for the JD are taken from the LLM list rather than the LLB list.

Canadians who possess a first degree generally enrol for the JD. It is easy to switch between the degrees in the early semesters.

How much does it cost?

Fees are currently about AU$3,000 per subject (24 subjects). They are adjusted each year.
Residence fees vary depending on the level of accommodation.

Shared accommodation in the vicinity of the University is readily available.
Email: student_residences@bond.edu.au if you have questions.

What are the admission requirements and are there deadlines?

Bond does not operate with fixed cut-offs. That is partly due to its international character, with students coming from many different areas of the world and with different kinds of qualifications.

We seek to maintain the total numbers in the Faculty of Law within the range 600-700. Admission decisions are made on an overall assessment of the application, with prior academic performance being the primary consideration.

In common with other Australian universities, we do not use the LSAT.

There are no fixed deadlines for admission applications. We make our decisions on a ‘rolling’ basis, issuing offers to qualified applicants until all available spaces have been filled. You can apply up to one year in advance.

After I graduate, what do I have to do in order to be eligible to practice law in Canada?

To practice law in Canada, you will need to complete a Canadian bar admission course. To be eligible for a bar admission course in any of the common law provinces (ie excluding Quebec), you will need a Certificate of Qualification from the National Committee on Accreditation (the ‘NCA’) of the Federation of Law Societies of Canada.

The certificate will state that you have education and training equivalent to that of a Canadian law graduate. Application is made to the NCA at the end of your degree at Bond.
The NCA will review your record and prescribe a number of examinations in Canadian law. View the NCA's guidelines.

The NCA makes its decisions on an individual basis, taking account of academic performance. Decisions are made following submission of a final transcript of studies : the NCA will not issue advance rulings.

The major variables affecting NCA rulings include the amount of any pre-law undergraduate studies, the length of the law degree, the amount of any studies undertaken in a Canadian law school, and the marks obtained in the law degree.

Our experience has been that graduates with respectable academic records are commonly required to complete 8 examinations if they have four-year pre-law degrees; 10 examinations if they have three-year pre-law degrees; and 12 examinations if first degree programs have not been undertaken or have been partially completed.

However, many graduates have been required to complete fewer examinations.

How can I take the examinations in Canadian law?

There are two ways of taking these examinations.

You may seek admission to a Canadian law school for this purpose. Places are limited. However, the University of Manitoba Faculty of Law has agreed to try to accommodate Bond applicants.
Alternatively you may take ‘challenge exams’ set by the NCA.

At present the most popular route is the challenge exams. Constitutional Law, which is regularly prescribed by the NCA, can present a difficulty with proceeding via a Canadian law school: openings are mainly in the upper years but Constitutional Law is a first year course in most schools.

In order to overcome this problem, Bond has periodically offered Canadian Constitutional Law, taught by visiting professors from the University of Manitoba and with the course credited by both universities.

How much difference is there between Australian and Canadian law?

The principles and methodology of Australian and Canadian law are similar. The details of statutory provisions and case-law obviously differ but an Australian law degree provides a good basis for taking examinations in Canadian law.

Can I take some of the examinations by going on exchange to a Canadian law school?

Our Canadian students are permitted to credit one semester at a Canadian law school toward their Bond degrees (usually the elective component).

Some students apply directly to Canadian schools for admission as visiting ‘letter-of-permission’ students. In addition, we have a formal exchange program with the University of British Columbia..

Our experience has been that the NCA may make some reduction in its requirements for graduates who have undertaken exchange programs. However, the amount any reduction varies.

Can I transfer from Bond to a Canadian law school?

Some of our students have transferred to Canadian law schools in order to take Canadian degrees, receiving some credit for their studies at Bond.

Several have also managed to complete the requirements for their Bond degrees, receiving some credit for their studies in Canada, so that they have both Canadian and Australian degrees.
Admission to Canadian law schools as a transfer student is competitive. The most common destinations have been University of Toronto and Queen’s University.

Will I be able to stay in Australia and practice law there?

Australian immigration operates on a ‘points’ system. Some points are awarded for having an Australian degree but additional points are required. Several of our graduates have qualified and are working in Australia.

Inquiries about immigration should be directed to Australian Consulates in Canada.

How can I apply?

Students may apply on-line or through one of our Canadian agents:

KOM Consultants
905 3188200

AustraLearn Canada
1 888 637 4412

1866 698 7355

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