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2014 2015
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    • 2014 2015

Bachelor of Laws LLB


UC School of Law's mission statement is 'the internationally recognised, professionally relevant, community focused Law School'.

Students gain a professional degree of outstanding quality in four years. In addition, Law students deal with real people with real problems as part of the innovative clinical studies programme at UC. By helping the community, our students hone critical practical skills in the process.

Features of the LLB at UC

  • Prestigious Law School founded in 1873
  • High employment rates in stimulating, diverse careers
  • Many legal textbooks are written by UC lecturers
  • Guest lectures by Supreme Court judges and top international lawyers
  • Law courses can be credited to most other degrees and students can study towards a double degree
  • Numerous scholarships and bursaries
  • International exchanges including the prestigious US Congressional Internship Programme
  • Active Law Students' Society (LAWSOC) and Te Putairiki Maori Law Students' Association

Recommended preparation

The study of Law does not require a background in any specific subject at school and entry to the first year of the LLB is open to all students with University Entrance.

You will need to have good reading, writing and analytical skills. Subjects such as English, drama, economics, te reo Māori, languages, history and classical studies are useful preparation.

Degree structure

The LLB is made up of the following:

  • eight compulsory Law courses
  • 13 optional Law courses
  • 75 points of non-Law courses (five 100-level courses).

For the full degree requirements see the Regulations for the Bachelor of Laws (University Regulations website).

LLB degree structure diagram

In the first year students must take LAWS 101 Legal System: Legal Method and Institutions (30 points), LAWS 110 Legal System: Research, Writing and Legal Foundations (15 points) and up to 75 points from other degree courses.* Students planning to complete the LLB degree in four years must enrol, in Year 1, in the number of courses shown in the diagram.

With good grades in LAWS 101 and LAWS 110 (normally at least a B) students can advance into 200-level Law courses, all of which are subject to limited entry. In their second year, students who have completed the 75 points at 100-level will take four of the five compulsory 200-level courses (Public Law, Criminal Law, Law of Contract, Law of Torts and Land Law). Those who have not completed the 75 points at 100-level will take the remainder of those, plus fewer 200-level courses.

In their third and fourth years, students will take LAWS 301 Equity and Trusts and any other remaining compulsory courses, plus the 13 optional Law courses. LAWS 398 Legal Ethics is required if you later wish to be admitted as a Barrister and Solicitor.

* Please note ACIS 152, ACCT 152, ACIS 252 and ACCT 252 are not approved courses.

Bachelor of Laws Honours

Students who achieve a satisfactory standard in their first two years of study for the LLB degree may be invited to enter the honours programme. Students meeting the criteria enrol in three additional Law courses in fourth year: LAWS 410 Advanced Research Skills, LAWS 420 Honours Research Paper and LAWS 430 Honours Dissertation.

For the full requirements see the Regulations for the Bachelor of Laws Honours (University Regulations website).

Double degrees

Many Law students also study towards a second degree with Arts, Commerce and Science being the most popular. The new Bachelor of Criminal Justice (BCJ) degree is also a good fit as a double degree with the LLB.

Many students see the extra time it takes to complete a double degree as a wise investment, as they gain additional skills and knowledge to give them an advantage in the workplace. If you wish to do this, consult the Student Liaison Office or the student advisory staff in the School of Law and the other College.

See the double degrees page for more information.

Further study

Able students who want to differentiate their qualification but do not want to complete a double degree, could consider postgraduate study. The Bachelor of Laws is a four-year degree, but with the addition of one extra year of study, a student can complete a Master's qualification.

Postgraduate options include:

Career opportunities

With the largest Law internship paper of any New Zealand law school, this UC course and the clinical and community work experience available can really give your resume the edge over other graduates.

Graduates can become a practice solicitor, in-house lawyer or a self-employed barrister. Recent UC graduates have also found roles as research counsel, judge’s clerk, policy analyst and Māori development advisor.

Legal skills of research, writing, analysis and reasoning are highly prized in many professions such as politics, policy, public service, foreign affairs, journalism, publishing, immigration and business.

For further career information, please go to


For more information email or freephone in NZ 0800 VARSITY (827 748).

For assistance with planning your programme of study contact the School of Law (advancing students) or the Liaison Office (new students) or visit the Liaison Office’s course planning page (new students).