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Programme de droit canadien

For more than 50 years, uOttawa’s Faculty of Law has been offering, in both official languages, complete programs in the two most widely used legal systems in the world:  common law and civil law. Beginning in September 2008, the Faculty launched a new program, the Programme de droit canadien (PDC), and allowing students to earn both a JD and an LL.L. in three years, thus opening the doors to the practice of law across Canada and abroad.  The Programme de droit canadien reflect the needs of future lawyers in Canada.  It is an innovative program that permits students to benefit from the richness of diverse Canadian legal traditions in order to better respond to changes in society.

Twenty exceptional candidates are admitted each year to the PDC.  Students spend three years, including summer course-work, at the Faculty of Law. Certain courses are designed specifically for PDC students, and most of the program is offered in French, though knowledge of English is required.

uOttawa’s Faculty of Law has long been recognized for its vast range of courses in law and technology, international law, social justice, environmental law, and Aboriginal peoples and the law. Located at the heart of the federal capital, the Faculty of Law offers students unique internship opportunities within the country’s decision-making institutions—Parliament, Supreme Court, federal departments and tribunals, and non-governmental organizations. The Faculty of Law offers candidates an enriching and stimulating education corresponding to the values of an open society and respectful of the rule of law.

What distinguishes our alumni? 

  • They are knowledgeable and understanding of the legal traditions of Canada;
  • They can work in common law and civil law jurisdictions in Canada as well as the rest of the world;
  • They have comparative analytical skills that make them an asset to the Canadian law firms who deal with international customers in an increasingly globalized market.

Additional information

Student testimonials

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Pierre-Arnaud Barry-Camu

Clerk Supreme Court of Canada – Class of 2014

I really enjoyed my experience in the Programme de droit canadien. I originally chose this program to develop an understanding of the different international law systems and to master not only the Canadian common law but also the Quebec civil law. I believe I have become a better lawyer with a significant degree of proficiency and knowledge of the legal methods of common law and civil law. I loved being trained jointly by both Sections. 

Law books stacked

Jamil-Daniel Beauchamp-Dupont

Norton Rose Fulbright Intern – Class of 2014

I highly recommend the Programme de droit canadien at the University of Ottawa to anyone who wishes to acquire an overview of the Canadian legal system. Having the opportunity to study and be trained in both Canadian legal systems, in French and English, is a unique opportunity. This bijuridical training is a constant help to me in my work and allows me to have a very different perspective than if I had studied only one or the other of the two legal systems. 

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Amelia B. Lavigne

Class of 2015

The Programme de droit canadien has been for me an unforgettable experience. I had the opportunity to study and compare the two legal traditions in Canada, and in both official languages. This bilingual and bijuridical training allowed me to gain unique skills. This is a program that seeks to bridge the gap between the two sections of the Faculty and open doors internationally in this era of globalization. 

Law books stacked

Stéphane Erickson

Class of 2015

Having a great desire to get into the field of international law, I was looking for a program that would provide me with opportunities to develop myself and open myself to the world. The intensive training offered by the PDC showcases the French-Canadian experience, the two official languages of Canada and the two most important legal systems internationally. Consequently, my bilingual and bijuridical education at the University of Ottawa has allowed me to do law internships at the Parliament of Canada, the Canadian Embassy in Costa Rica and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada. I was also able to embark in an academic exchange in Spain and I got a job as an intern at a law firm that practices law on a worldwide basis.

Course sequences