Message from the Dean (interim)

photo of François Larocque

For over 50 years, the Common Law Section at the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Law has been at the forefront of legal research and legal education.  As Common Law’s dean, it is my intention to continue to foster the law school’s growing international reputation, our innovative approach to teaching and research, and our institutional commitment to social justice.

Located in the heart of downtown Ottawa, within walking distance of Parliament Hill and the Supreme Court of Canada, the University of Ottawa provides the best opportunity in the world to study Canada’s legal systems in English or in French.  With an emphasis on critical thinking skills, the Common Law Section’s solid curriculum can prepare students for any legal career in Canada or abroad.

The Common Law Section’s faculty is composed of a wide range of experts, many of whom are renowned as leaders in their respective fields.  Through their scholarship, many of our professors have contributed to the transformation of Canada’s legal systems as well as the ways in which law is practiced, taught and conceived.  We are proud to have among our faculty four Canada Research Chairs, one University Research Chair and many recipients of prestigious awards.

As a global and national leader in a variety of fields, Common Law offers specializations in Dispute Resolution, Environmental Law, International Trade, Business and Human Rights Law, Social Justice and Technology Law, Public Law and Aboriginal Law.  The Centre for Law, Technology and Society has helped to solidify the law school’s position as the leading Law and Technology Faculty in the country. Our Centre for Health Law, Policy and Ethics is the biggest and most important centre of its kind in Canada. uOttawa also provides one of the richest sets of course offerings in the world in International Law.  We are also home to the internationally renowned Human Rights Research and Education Centre. 

Students can also take advantage of a wide variety of “hands-on” learning opportunities, ranging from an expanded selection of internship placements, to valuable work experience at one of the Faculty’s three student-run legal clinics:  the University of Ottawa Community Legal Clinic, which deals with criminal and civil matters; the Samuelson-Glushko Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic (CIPPIC), which deals with public interest disputes involving technology issues; and the uOttawa-Ecojustice Environmental Law Clinic, which, through a partnership with Ecojustice, engages in environmental policy litigation.  Moreover, the National Capital offers countless work-study opportunities where students can earn academic credit and experience in placements with the government, courts, tribunals and industry sectors.  Finally, our January Term exposes students to scholars from around the world and also allows students to engage in a variety of internships.  Our undergraduate and graduate programs are designed to inspire our students to excel and to contribute meaningfully to their societies. 

The Common Law Section is also pleased to offer some of the most exciting programs of study available anywhere, with many opportunities for students to volunteer their time and expertise to help enrich the community while acquiring the necessary skills and knowledge to uphold the rule of law and the values of the Charter.


François Larocque

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