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General Certificate in Law

New in 2024: Exclusively Online

Learn more about our General Certificate in Law.

General certificate in law

This program offers a basic legal education to students not intending to practise law. As a result, the teaching objectives for this program are focused on the study of law as a social phenomenon and on understanding the impact of law on various aspects of society.

The certificate program is offered on a part-time basis only. However, you can register in additional courses in other disciplines on a full-time basis if you have all the course prerequisites.

This general certificate in law comprises 30 credits (10 courses). You can take this program in English, in French or in both languages.

Courses in the general certificate in law program
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Admission requirements

In order to apply to the law general certificate program, you must:

  • We strongly recommend you have at least a secondary school or
  • CEGEP or College diploma (CAAT) or
  • a minimum of 30 prior university credits before applying to this program or
  • hold a high school diploma . Exceptionally candidates with a high school diploma and justifying work experience may be considered.

Applicants should submit a cover letter and curriculum vitae; or

  • have the knowledge required to enter the program, as determined by the Faculty, or
  • meet the definition of mature applicant


  • if taking the program in French, be fluent in French and have a working knowledge of English in order to read and understand English reference works (many Quebec, Canadian and international law reference books are in English).

Minimum average required in order to be considered: 70%

Courses considered for advanced standing in the general law certificate program

If you have successfully completed law courses at another university as part of a program leading to a law certificate or degree, you can request advanced standing (supporting documentation for the courses is required). The University will base its decision on the objectives, content and level of the courses you’ve completed and on your overall academic record.

Your request for advanced standing must be submitted in writing and include the necessary supporting documentation.

Please note that a maximum of 15 credits advanced standing will be granted. To receive the general certificate in law, you must have completed at least 50% of your credits (i.e., at least 15 credits) at the University of Ottawa.

Courses recognized for equivalencies when applying for admission to the civil law degree program (LL.L.)

If you have completed a general certificate in law or a minor in law, you can apply for admission to the civil law degree program (LL.L.). If you’re admitted and meet the minimum admission criteria, you will be granted advanced standing for no more than 15 credits of optional courses.

You cannot be granted advanced standing for DCC2117, DCC2118, DCC2119, DCC3101, DCC3102, DCC3103, DCC3117 or DCC4102 (or equivalent courses offered in French) because the content of these courses is explored in great detail in the mandatory first- and second-year courses of the in LL.L. program.

Please submit your application for admission using the online undergraduate admission application form.

Course Sequence

General certificate in Law and Minor in law - 30 credits

DCC2117 Introduction to the Study of Law
DCC2118 General Public Law
DCC2119 Protection of Rights and Freedoms


DCC2120 Law and Social Justice
DCC2121 Legal Theory & Social Sciences - Aspects of Human Rights


DCC3101 Law of Obligations
DCC3102 Criminal Law
DCC3103 Law of Persons and Family Law


15 optional DCC credits