The Deakin Juris Doctor (JD) combines its commercial focus with the development of practical skills essential to contemporary legal practice. Designed for non-law graduates, this intellectually-stimulating course is offered fully online after an optional, but highly recommended, induction program held in Melbourne.
The Deakin JD goes beyond the teaching of legal knowledge and practical skills, to the development of a broader understanding of the policy informing the law, focusing on current policy issues and developing skills in the use of legal theory and legal research methods.
Your assignments might include problem-based written advice, an oral bail application, an assignment focusing on the implementation of procedural rules, preparation of a memorandum of advice, oral court submissions and a file management project. Group assignment work is also a feature of some units to ensure you develop the important skills necessary to work as part of a team.
The Deakin JD meets the academic requirements for admission to legal practice in Victoria and other Australian jurisdictions. A person wishing to practise as a lawyer is also required to complete a 12-month traineeship program or six-month legal practice course and demonstrate that they are a 'fit and proper person' as required by Australian admitting bodies.
The Deakin JD course is designed to produce graduates who can become first-class law practitioners by providing comprehensive training in each of the major areas of legal practice and systematically embedding research, theory and policy considerations throughout the curriculum. A distinctive feature of the course is its orientation towards commercial law, though students may choose from a range of elective options including placement in the Deakin Law Clinics, an award winning community legal centre where students can work with practicing solicitors and real client matters.
Leading practising lawyers help shape our courses, so everything you learn is relevant to the industry and preparing you for a career in law.
Minimum admission criteria:
A) A bachelor's degree in a different discipline must be a non-law bachelor's degree that is not accredited or approved by the Victorian Legal Admissions Board (previously COLE) as meeting the requirements for admission to the legal profession.
B) Applicants with a law degree from an overseas jurisdiction, deemed to be the AQF equivalent of a 3 year bachelor's degree, will be eligible to apply.
C) A master's degree in a different discipline must be a master's degree that is not accredited or approved by VLAB as meeting the requirements for admission to the legal profession.
Deakin University offers admission to postgraduate courses through a number of Admission categories.
All applicants must meet the minimum English language requirements.
Please note that meeting the minimum admission requirements does not guarantee selection, which is based on merit, likelihood of success and availability of places in the course.
For more information on the Admission Criteria and Selection (Higher Education Courses) Policy visit the Deakin Policy Library
A Juris Doctor is a qualification that offers great career opportunities. In addition to opportunities within law firms, which range from small rural and regional general legal practices through to large national or international practices, law graduates may enter other industries such as business (e.g as a corporate lawyer, company administrator or business manager); government service (e.g. as a lawyer with departments or authorities as diverse as the Attorney-General's Department, the Office of Parliamentary Counsel, the Director of Public Prosecutions, and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission); industrial relations; public administration; academia; or bodies that recommend law reform (e.g. as a law reform commissioner).
To complete the Juris Doctor, students must attain a total of 24 credit points, including 17 core units and 7 elective units, plus completion of the compulsory 0-credit point module, MAI010 Academic Integrity Module. Each unit (think of units as 'subjects') is equal to 1 credit point.
Students are introduced to research tools and techniques in core units of the course where they learn analytic skills and the ability to apply those skills in professional contexts. They must also complete advanced level units and a capstone unit that require them to integrate the skills learnt over their course of study and produce applied pieces of research with reference to prevailing literature.
The University aims to provide students with as much credit as possible for approved prior study or informal learning which exceeds the normal entrance requirements for the course and is within the constraints of the course regulations. Students are required to complete a minimum of one-third of the course at Deakin University, or four credit points, whichever is the greater. In the case of certificates, including graduate certificates, a minimum of two credit points within the course must be completed at Deakin.
You can also refer to the Recognition of Prior Learning System which outlines the credit that may be granted towards a Deakin University degree and how to apply for credit.
Recognition of Prior Learning into the Master of Laws (Juris Doctor) may be granted to students who have successfully completed appropriate Masters-level law studies in Juris Doctor programs offered at other universities.