Organizing a Directed Research Project

Please note that JD students may complete a maximum of two (2) directed research projects during the course of their studies. Exceptions to this rule may be granted by the Assistant Dean, JD Program of the English or French Vice-Deans, in rare cases where exceeding the limit is appropriate.


CML 3251 (4 units)
CML 3351 (3 units)
CML 3394 (2 units)

Section F - Fall
Section J - January
Section W - Winter

Students who have completed two terms in law may apply for permission of the Academic Advisor to undertake research and writing in an area of their interest, under the supervision of a member of the Faculty who agrees to act as supervisor of the research. Students who enrol in this course must request permission to do so prior to the end of the add/drop period of the term in which they propose to undertake the research for units. Permission to enrol in this course will ordinarily be granted only to students who have demonstrated a high level of competence in their law studies.

Students must obtain the appropriate form and once completed and signed by the supervising Faculty member, it should be submitted to the Common Law Student Centre before the deadline indicated in the Important Dates of the Common Law Student Centre’s website. Forms handed in after those dates may be refused.

Guidelines approved by Faculty Council provide for the following:

  • 2 units: 5000 to 6500 words (approximately 20 to 25 typed, double-spaced pages), excluding footnotes and bibliography
  • 3 units: 7500 to 10000 words (approximately 30 to 40 typed, double-spaced pages), excluding footnotes and bibliography
  • 4 units: 10000 to 12000 words (approximately 40 to 50 typed, double-spaced pages), excluding footnotes and bibliography

These guidelines are meant to assist students and their supervisors in assessing the unit value of the work undertaken and to provide some consistency between supervisors. Ultimately, however, the final determination is to be made by the supervisor in light of the type and complexity of the work.

Back to top