University of Alberta Faculty of Law

University of Alberta Faculty of Law

Infobox University
name = University of Alberta Faculty of Law
native_name =

image_size = 130px
latin_name =
motto = Quaecumque Vera
mottoeng = Whatsoever things are true
established = 1912
closed =
type = Public
affiliation =
endowment =
officer_in_charge =
chairman =
chancellor = Eric P. Newell
president = Indira Samarasekera
vice-president =
superintendent =
provost = [ Carl G. Amrhein]
vice_chancellor =
rector =
principal =
dean = David Percy
director =
head_label =
head =
faculty =
staff = 39
students =
undergrad =
postgrad =
doctoral =
other =
city = Edmonton
province = Alberta
country = Canada
coor =
campus =
former_names =
free_label =
free =
sports =
colours = Green and Gold color box|greencolor box|gold
nickname = The Golden Bears (men), The Pandas (women)
mascot = GUBA (men), Patches (women)
athletics =
affiliations = AUCC, CIS, CWUAA,AUFC, UArctic, ACU, CUSID
website = []

footnotes =

Established in 1912, the University of Alberta Faculty of Law is the oldest faculty of law in western Canada. The University of Alberta Faculty of Law is seen as one of the most traditional and well established Law Schools in Canada because of the strong tendency to focus on the basics of legal education. The Faculty of Law at the University of Alberta has, throughout the years, garnered respect as one of the best Law Schools in Canada. It is consistently ranked as the best Law school in Western Canada. MacLeans magazine ranked the University of Alberta Faculty of Law as the #1 Law school in Western Canada in 2007. The booming Alberta economy is expected to increase the University of Alberta's international rankings, subsequently strengthening the Faculty of Law's prominence in the Canadian legal world.

Early History

Phenomenal growth in Canada’s western region during the 1880s resulted in an influx of settlers to the area. Among these early pioneers were many professionals (including lawyers), from other parts of the country, as well as the globe. A general lack of regulation in the profession allowed for many different approaches to the application of law¯ a cause of major concern.

By 1898, the Law Society of the Territories had come into existence. This organization formalized Bar admission eligibility by establishing new requirements. In order to gain admission to the Bar, law students were now required to article under a practicing lawyer for a period of five years. The compulsory articling period was shortened to only three years for students who had previously earned a degree in either Arts or Law, or had graduated from the Royal Military College.

As it was generally accepted that law was learned through the practical experience of articling, lectures were offered on a part-time basis only, permitting students to carry on part-time study while still working full-time day hours. Lectures were commonly given in early morning hours or at supper time after work, in order to accommodate the working students’ schedules.

As the first law school in Western Canada, the University of Alberta Faculty of Law made significant efforts to help establish the practice of law in western Canada. The Faculty’s long-standing tradition of excellence is rooted in the contributions of its many educators, starting with Drs. Power and Scott, whose legacies live on today.

The Faculty of Law’s first class, which counted only eight people, graduated in 1915.

By the Faculty’s second year (1913-1914), there were fifty students registered in the Bachelor of Laws program.

Committed to continuous improvement and concerned about growing enrollment, the Faculty reassessed its program offerings. In 1921, the Faculty of Law implemented major changes and redesigned the existing LL.B. program to become a full-time, three-year program with mandatory attendance at University lectures. Before these new program regulations, attendance at lectures was not compulsory, and the LL.B. degree was not required for admission to the Bar. Other changes to the Bar admission process included shortening the articling period following completion of the LL.B. degree to only one year.Building on the excellent academic foundation that Drs. Power and Scott had developed, John Alexander Weir became the first full-time teacher at the Faculty of Law.



The University is located in vibrant Edmonton, Alberta, Canada - a thriving and diverse riverside city with a population of nearly 1 million. Here you will enjoy an outstanding arts scene, world-class sporting events, and great international cuisine. Edmonton is also close to the magnificent Rocky Mountains - a perfect venue for skiing, camping, and hiking.


Edmonton's temperature varies considerably, ranging from +30 to -40 degrees celsius (84 to -40 degrees fahrenheit). This means that University of Alberta students can enjoy four distinct seasons.



The University of Alberta Faculty of Law is prominent in health law, constitutional law, jurisprudence, property law, and the legal profession. [] The Alberta law school educates the majority of legal professionals that enter the Law Society of Alberta.

Joint Programs


The University of Alberta Faculty of Law offers a joint LL.B/MBA program. The program is offered within a four-year period - one year less than taking each degree separately. Beside new entrants, students in the first year of the regular MBA program or first and second year students enrolled in the Faculty of Law are eligible to apply for the joint program.


The University of Alberta Faculty of Law and the University of Colorado Law School (at Boulder, Colorado) will be offering a dual degree program. This program will enable students from both law schools to obtain an Alberta law degree and a Colorado law degree in a four-year period. Alberta students will take the first two years of their legal studies at the University of Alberta and their third and fourth years in Boulder.


The LLM is an advanced research degree, which provides students with an opportunity to study a particular area of law in much greater depth than is possible in the LLB program. Although the LLM does not qualify a student to practice law in Canada, there are a variety of reasons why students enter the LLM program. Some of our students are practicing lawyers who wish to specialize in a particular area of law, while others are preparing for careers as academic lawyers at universities throughout the world.

The LLM can be completed either by a course based route or a thesis based route. Students in these programs must have completed a law degree. Students are admitted to the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research (FGSR), and degrees are awarded by FGSR; however, students are taught by members of the Faculty of Law and generally do their study and research in the Faculty of Law.

Postgraduate Diploma in Law

The program is designed to provide an extensive exposure to a limited area of the law and to help prepare candidates as specialists in that area. The Postgraduate Diploma in Law is a much shorter program, which can be completed in one semester of full-time study. Diploma students take three or four courses, including an independent research paper. The diploma is intended for students who have an LLB (or equivalent) and want to supplement or update their legal education. Although we have very few diploma students, they work along side the LLM students and participate in the life of the faculty in much the same way.





To be considered for admissions, the applicant must have successfully completed an undergraduate degree, or at least the first three years (90 credit hours) of a program leading to a degree, at the University of Alberta or from a university recognized by the University of Alberta. An LSAT score is also mandatory for admissions.

The regular application deadline is February 1st.


To be considered a mature applicant you must:

A) Be 35 years of age prior to the first day of September in the year admission is sought. We do not have a maximum age restriction for admission to the law program. B) Provide evidence of a minimum of five (5) years past achievements in non-academic areas indicative of ability to succeed in the studies in law school. C) Have a minimum of two years (60 credits) leading towards any degree or equivalent acceptable to the University of Alberta, completed prior to or in the winter session preceding the September in which admission is sought (i.e., by April 30th).


To be considered an aboriginal applicant you:

A) Normally must have a minimum of two years leading towards any degree or equivalent acceptable to a university in Alberta, completed prior to or in the Fall/Winter preceding the September in which admission is sought (i.e., by April 30th). Consideration may be given to Aboriginal Applicants with a minimum of one year leading to a degree or equivalent, if they exhibit evidence of past achievements in non-academic areas indicative of an ability to succeed in law school. B) Have written the Law School Admission Test within a 5 year period preceding the September of the year in which admission is sought. The last acceptable LSAT writing date for September admission is December of the previous year.

Admissions for Aboriginal and Mature students are more holistic than for applicants in the regular category.


The entrance average is traditionally around 3.7/161 (GPA/LSAT). The University of Alberta Faculty of Law weighs the LSAT and GPA equally. The male/female ratio has in recent years been an even split (with most years having slightly more females than males). The average age of admitted students is 24.5


Tuition fees for entering Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) international students are set at C$10,216.16 for domestic students and C$27,342.20 for international students in 2008-2009.



The John A. Weir Memorial Law Library is one of the best in Canada. It contains a collection of some 300,000 volumes, making it the second largest Law Library in Canada (#1 in Western Canada). Also housed within the Faculty of Law are the Alberta Law Reform Institute, the Canadian Forum on Civil Justice, the Centre for Constitutional Studies, the Health Law Institute, and the International Ombudsman Institute.


The academic reputation of the University of Alberta's Faculty of Law is high due to its focus on practice and the legal profession itself. Over a dozen graduates have become Rhodes Scholars and two have won the Vinerian Prize at Oxford. Students from the University of Alberta have clerked at all levels of the Canadian Court system, including the Supreme Court of Canada, the judiciary and the cabinet at both the provincial and federal levels. Traditionally, the University of Alberta's Faculty of Law has graduated many of Alberta's Justices and Judges along with many of Alberta's most prominent lawyers. The University of Alberta is often viewed as the center of legal education and community in Alberta, as originally envisioned by Alexander Weir. The school achieves a near 100% employment rate for law graduates from the University of Alberta.


Today, the law school has over 35 highly respected full-time faculty members.

2008-2009 Faculty:

Annalise E. Acorn

Eric Adams

Sanjeev Anand

Kathryn Arbuckle

Richard Bauman

Catherine E. Bell

Barbara Billingsley

Ron Bouchard

Russell Brown

Tamara Buckwold

Peter Carver

Timothy Caulfield

Timothy Christian Q.C.

Christine Davies Q.C.

Frederick DeCoste

Gerald L. Gall O.C.

Joanna Harrington

Elaine L. Hughes

Cameron Hutchison

Eran Kaplinsky

Robyn Kaulback

Lewis Klar Q.C.

John M. Law

Matthew Lewans

Morris Litman

Heather Manweiller

Mitchell McInnes

A. Anne McLellan

James W. Muir

Delphine Nakache

Val Napoleon

Erin L. Nelson

Shannon K. O'Byrne

George Pavlich

Steven Penney

David R. Percy Q.C.

Linda C. Reif

Wayne N. Renke

Gerald B. Robertson Q.C.

Jeremy D. Schick

Christopher Sprysak

Roderick J. Wood

Moin A. Yahya

Bruce H. Ziff


The University of Alberta has an extensive list of distinguished alumni.
*The Right Honourable Madame Beverley McLachlin, current Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada
*The Honourable Madame Catherine Fraser, Chief Justice of Alberta,
*The Honourable Mr. Alan Wachowich, Chief Justice of Court of Queen's Bench of Alberta
*The Honourable Mr. William Stevenson, retired Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada
*The Honourable Mr. Ron Stevens, Deputy Premier of Alberta and Minister of International and Intergovernmental Relations
*The Honourable Peter Lougheed, former Premier of Alberta
*The Honourable Ron Ghitter, former Senator and Alberta MLA
*Judge Tony Mandamin, Aboriginal Judge of Provincial Court of Alberta
*Clarence Campbell, former President of the National Hockey League
*Wilton Littlechild, first treaty Indian in Canada to serve as a Member of Parliament
*Daryl Katz, CEO & Chairman of The Katz Group and owner of the Edmonton Oilers
*Eldon Douglas Foote
*Frank MacInnes, CEO & Chairman, EMCOR Group
*David McLean, The McLean Group CEO and Canadian National Railway Company Chairman of the Board

In December 2005, law school alumni Frank MacInnis ('71), donated $2.5 million to the law school. [ [ U of A Faculty of Law receives unprecedented $2.5 million donation - ExpressNews - University of Alberta ] ]


ee also

*List of law schools in Canada

External links

* [ University of Alberta Faculty of Law]
* [ Canons of Construction - University of Alberta Faculty of Law Student Newspaper]
* [ CanLII - Canadian Legal Information Institute]
* []

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