How to Apply

Your Application Package

You must complete your application for admission to Law School on-line at the OLSAS (Ontario Law School Application Service) website. All documents must be submitted to OLSAS directly.

InformationThe deadline to apply to the English JD program for the next fall session is November 1stLate applications will not be accepted.

 In order for the application to be considered complete, OLSAS must have received all of the following components:

  1. Completed on-line application form which includes:
    • Personal Statement
    • Autobiographical Sketch with verifiers
    • Required Personal Information (date of birth, etc.)
  2. LSAT Reports (English program only);
  3. Letters of Reference (two letters are required);
  4. Official Transcripts for All Post-Secondary Studies.

You must also send an up-to-date resumé or curriculum vitae to OLSAS in addition to your personal statement if you are applying in the Mature or Indigenous category. Persons of indigenous ancestry (First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples) may apply as either general or Indigenous applicants. 

InformationPlease visit our Admissions Criteria page for more information.

On-line Application Form

All applications for admission are to be completed on-line at the OLSAS (Ontario Law School Application Service) website. Paper application kits may be obtained, for an additional fee, on the OLSAS website.

Writing Your Personal Statement

The personal statement that you must prepare is a critical part of the application, and should be thought of as an interview with the Admissions Committee. In reviewing personal statements, committee members assess you according to the following considerations:

  1. Capacity for critical, creative and original thinking
  2. Communication skills, including writing skills
  3. Evidence of capacity to manage work load and time
  4. Ability to make a meaningful contribution to the overall law school environment and to the profession and the public it serves as demonstrated by, among other things:
    • A record of extracurricular activities and community involvement
    • Career experiences and achievements
    • Personal success in dealing with challenges
    • Diverse social, economic, ethnic, or cultural experiences and perspectives
    • Awareness of and interest in specializations and other strengths of the Faculty’s program of legal education
    • Specific career aspirations
  5. Commitment to upholding ethical standards and to treating all university members with respect.

The information contained in personal statements will be considered in a manner consistent with the Ontario Human Rights Code.

Please do not use the personal statement as a resumé. Instead, explain why you are interested in studying and practicing law at the University of Ottawa, with regard to the 5 criteria.

Please do not use your personal statement to describe why you are applying in the Special Circumstances or Access categories. Dedicated forms are provided for this purpose in the application.

Writing the LSAT

The LSAT is required if you are applying to first year of English Common Law, without exception. The LSAT is not a requirement for application to French programs, as it is only offered in English. For test dates and registration, please visit the Law School Admission Council.

The school does not set a minimum LSAT score requirement. The weight given to the LSAT will vary according to the other elements in your file.

If you decide to write the LSAT on a date other than the one indicated on your application, please amend your OLSAS application and inform the University of Ottawa in writing prior to writing the test.

If English is not your first language, the LSAT, while relevant, may carry less weight in the Admission Committee’s evaluation of the application. The LSAT is not required for upper-year applicants or for students applying to the French Common Law Program.

The LSAT consists of two portions: a Multiple Choice portion (scored) and a LSAT Writing (formerly called the Writing Sample)(unscored). Both portions must be completed and processed by the LSAC for your score to be released to OLSAS.  

Effective June 2019: If you are a first-time test taker, you should complete your LSAT Writing as close as possible to the date that the Multiple Choice score is released to test takers.

If you are a prior test-taker with scores from June 2015 to May 2019, and will be re-writing the LSAT, you do not need to complete the LSAT Writing (although you may choose to do so) in order for your new Multiple Choice scores to be released to OLSAS. 

It is strongly recommended that you write the LSAT by November 2019; it must be written in January 2020 at the latest. The results of the January LSAT will not be available until late February. An application is incomplete and not evaluated until all documents, including the LSAT results, are received. Writing the LSAT in January may therefore prejudice your chance of admission.

The Admissions Committee will not wait for the March LSAT score to review your file, if there is a previous score available.

Results from an LSAT taken prior to June 2015 are not accepted.

Files are not assessed until they are complete and you have provided all required documents. The application deadline for fall 2020 entry to English programs is November 1, 2019. Applications that remain incomplete after April 1, 2020, will be cancelled without further notice.

Letters of Reference

Applicants must provide two letters of reference. We strongly recommend that at least one be from an academic source. It is important that you carefully choose the individuals who will write your letters.

These individuals should be able to speak to your abilities as a future law student, such as your ability to write, conduct research, work in groups, organize your time, etc. If the person is someone who has taught you, this person should also indicate your performance relative to the rest of the group. Avoid asking someone who cannot provide more than a character reference.

Applicants who have submitted an application under the Mature category who can't secure an academic reference, should find suitable references who can speak to the skills listed above.

Submitting Official Transcripts

Official transcripts are required from each post-secondary institution you have attended. 

If you have attended or are currently enrolled at an Ontario university you must use the appropriate online form in OLSAS.

If you studied outside of Ontario, you must contact the Registrar's Office of the universities where you studied to request that official transcripts be sent directly to OLSAS, and not the University of Ottawa.

170 Research Lane
Guelph, Ontario 
N1G 5E2

Please note that only official transcripts will be accepted by OLSAS.

Transcripts from outside North America are not converted by OLSAS.  Applicants must ensure foreign credentials are the equivalent to a recognized Canadian degree before applying.  An evaluation of foreign credentials from the World Education Service is required.  This evaluation must be based on a course-by-course assessment and must specify Canadian degree, grade and credit hour equivalency.  Universities in the United States are exempt from this requirement.

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