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Upcoming Calendar - Spring 2014

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This new program is awaiting Quality Council approval. Prospective students are advised that offers of admission to a new program may be made only after the university’s own quality assurance processes have been completed and the Ontario Universities Council on Quality Assurance has approved the program.

Windsor Law's Master’s program (LLM) will stress rigorous scholarship, centred on our institutional themes of Access to Justice and Transnational Law. A key feature of the Windsor LLM will be that our students, while enrolled, will make concrete contributions to legal scholarship. Moreover, students in our unique and innovative LLM with teaching option stream will be offered the chance to complete the University of Windsor’s internationally recognized University Teaching Certificate program as part of their course of study, as well as the opportunity to engage in law teaching. In addition to students contemplating an academic career, the program will be suitable for legal practitioners interested in developing expertise in a specialized area of law. Wherever possible, students will be integrated into our Law Faculty’s existing Centres, and interdisciplinary and multi-disciplinary collaborations will be promoted.

The experiential learning component of the program consists of the law teaching practicum that students in the LLM with teaching option stream will complete. The law teaching practicum will, in most cases, extend for a maximum of four weeks (or twelve hours) of teaching. The practicum may be completed in a variety of ways including as part of a team of professors/instructors teaching a course, as a series of guest lectures in a faculty member’s course and, for students who show exceptional promise or who have exceptional background in teaching, the teaching of a one-semester course.

Admission Requirements

Students who are accepted to the program will be academically inclined, motivated, and committed to continuous learning. Outside of exceptional circumstances, students applying to the LL.M program will be required to have an undergraduate law degree. In rare cases, a student may be admitted without a law degree. For students without law degrees to gain entry, they must have outstanding grades or experience and superior ability to complete the LL.M program. Admission to the program will be based on four categories which evaluate the student’s: a) aptitudes, b) academic achievements, c) research proposal and, d) additional requirements such as reference letters and language proficiency. Details of these four broad categories are as follows:

a) Aptitudes
Generally, successful students admitted to our LL.M program will demonstrate the following aptitudes in terms of their ability to apply themselves, their knowledge, and their reasoning and communication skills. Specifically, the student accepted into the program will have shown evidence of:

Application: exceptional academic motivation; capacity for sustained and intense work; developed ability to organize time and set own agenda for study; academic curiosity for investigation and learning.

Knowledge: a broad, deep, advanced, and integrated understanding of the main branches of law and / or a related discipline.

Reasoning ability: outstanding analytical abilities, including the ability to draw and maintain fine distinctions, the ability to separate the relevant from the irrelevant, and the ability to develop and sustain complex arguments; capacities for accurate observation and insightful criticism, including willingness and ability to engage with disciplines other than law and to bring their insights to bear on legal problems; originality and creativity of thought, open-mindedness, and capacity for lateral thinking; excellent powers of synthesis.

Communication: willingness and ability to express highly complex ideas clearly and effectively; ability to conduct a mature debate leaving room for the contributions of others; aspiration to professional standards of style and organization in legal and scholarly writing.

b) Academic Achievements
First and foremost, applicants will be able to demonstrate their exceptional abilities through their academic achievements. Generally, this will mean high academic standing – normally at least a 77% average in an undergraduate law program (although this alone will not necessarily guarantee admission), and evidence of interest in academic pursuits (for example, pursuing independent/supervised research studies, publications, editing of academic work, etc.). For applicants applying from the workforce, noteworthy achievements may also be taken into account for what they reveal about the applicant’s ability to succeed academically within a Master’s program in Law.

All applicants will also be required to submit their undergraduate transcripts.

c) Research Proposal
A significant element of each student’s application package will be the statement of proposed research. The research proposal should provide evidence of the candidate's ability and potential to engage with the relevant scholarly literature, doctrinal and/or empirical material and to formulate pertinent research questions. An academic writing sample will also be required.

d) Additional Requirements
Applicants will be asked to submit at least two letters of reference that show support for their scholarly endeavour. Admission will be contingent upon availability of a suitable supervisor and suitable reference materials for the applicant to pursue their research project.

Finally, all students must meet an English language proficiency standard of :
250 (600) IBT-100 minimum on the TOEFL or 7.0 IELTS

Program Requirements

One-year stream – LLM without teaching option

Total courses:
      Research Methods (6 credits)
      Graduate Seminar (1 credit)
      Legal Theory (3 credits)
      Thesis (12 credits)
      0-2 optional 3-credit courses, depending on student’s background
Two-year stream – LL.M with teaching option

Total courses:
      Research Methods (6 credits)
      Graduate Seminar (1 credit)
      Legal Theory (3 credits)
      Thesis (12 credits)
      0-2 optional 3-credit courses, depending on student’s background
      Learning-Centred Teaching in Higher Education (UTC course) (or equivalent) (3 credits)
      Course Design for Constructive Alignment (or equivalent) (3 credits)
University Teaching Credit (UTC) 6-week half-course (or equivalent) (non-credit)
Law Teaching in the Diverse Classroom (1.5 credits)

Students in this stream must also complete the Law Teaching Practicum (non-credit)

Other requirements:
Presentation of research at scholarly conferences or other academic venues outside of Windsor Law’s graduate program.

In order to obtain wider academic feedback, students will be required to present their research as an academic talk. During the write-up phase of their thesis, students will be a) required to present their work in progress in an open faculty/graduate student seminar (outside of the graduate seminar) and b) encouraged to present their work at subject-relevant conferences which foster graduate student networking, such as the Canadian Law and Society Association annual conference.

Subject-relevant conferences should be academic in nature -- for example, a graduate students’ conference, faculty seminars, or conferences/workshops set up by learned associations such as the Canadian Law and Society Association. Students may also organize their own talks. In this connection, the Graduate Studies Committee has begun to make connections with other universities and research institutes which may be interested in hosting presentations by our graduate students.

Standing Required for Continuation in the Experiential Learning Option of the Program
Students will need to pass the teaching practicum and otherwise meet the normal regulations for continuation in the program as set by the University’s regulations.