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Current Students

Legal Studies is a four-year free-standing undergraduate degree program that critically explores the law's roles in social life. This program boasts outstanding socio-legal scholars who are dedicated university professors. Courses feature a diversity of practical and theoretical approaches to law, animated by a deep commitment to social justice. In the Legal Studies program, you will develop the essential skills for success in the 21st-century workplace:

  • The capacity to communicate fluently and persuasively through the written and spoken word.
  • The ability to think critically and act constructively on a variety of complex problems.
  • The confidence to lead by example, by pursuing both the collective good and personal excellence.

Overall, students in the program discover rich opportunities to learn and grow as thinkers, citizens and human beings.

Visit the Academic Advising page on the FSSH website for additional information.

Contact your Advising team:

Academic Advising team
Faculty of Social Science and Humanities
Bordessa Hall
55 Bond Street, fourth floor, Room 403
905.721.8668 ext. 3838
sshadvising@ontariotechu.ca

Drop-in hours:

Summer hours for July-August are Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 11-noon.

The Legal Studies Honours Thesis is an independent research project on a subject of your own choosing. The Honours Thesis program presents the opportunity to further develop your critical-thinking and analytical skills, while enhancing your understanding of how to access and use legal materials. Drawing on the guidance and support of a Legal Studies supervisor, you are responsible for conceiving and executing their particular research project. You might pursue an Honours Thesis project to enhance your research and writing skills, work one-on-one with a supervisor from the Legal Studies program, and prepare for graduate-level scholarship.

Eligibility

You must have a GPA of 3.70 to be eligible to be admitted into the Honours Thesis program. Exceptions may be made for a GPA of 3.50 or above, subject to recommendation from a prospective supervisor as well as faculty approval. If you do not pursue an Honours Thesis project, you will be expected to enrol in LGLS 4099U Legal Studies Integrating Project, a course dedicated to the development of a research project alongside other students, with less-extensive requirements around research and writing.

Apply to register in the Honours Thesis program by submitting to Academic Advising a statement of intent outlining the proposed methodology and theoretical significance of their proposed research project. Academic Advising accepts applications on a rolling basis until September.

Process

Generally, by the end of the Fall-term course Honours Thesis I, you would submit a literature review, which showcases what has been published on a topic. You would provide a summary and synthesis of the available literature, as well as critical appraisal of its strengths and weaknesses.

The project initiated in Honours Thesis I is developed through further research and writing, culminating in the submission of an honours thesis by the end of the Winter-term course Honours Thesis II. An honours thesis is a specific scholarly project on a well-defined topic, to be determined in consultation with a thesis supervisor.

Examples of completed projects

  • Shelby Aggiss-Norton, Prostitution and Law in Canada: Safety, Stigma and Nuisance.
  • Rachel Calvelli, A Socio-Legal Critical Analysis of Refugee Claims to Canada on the Basis of Sexual Orientation from Mexico (2002-2011).
  • Carolyn Carter, A Study of Jamaican Immigrants Admitted under the Federal Skilled Worker Class: 2003-2013.
  • Daniel Elmadany, Membership and Long-Term Permanent Residents: The Implications of Deportation, Criminality, and Immigration Law.
  • Shaina Hodgson, Prostitution in Canada: An Analysis of the Most Appropriate Legislative Response.
  • Megan Jamieson, Colonialism in Canada: The Effects of Post-Colonialism on the Continued Marginalization of Aboriginal Women in Law.
  • Mackenzie McFarlane, Challenging the Gender Binary: Transgender Rights.
  • Dallia Mitchell, The Crisis of the Future: Forced Migration, Climate Change and International Protection.
  • Kristen Sullivan, Self-Determination in the First Nations Land Management Act.
  • Nicole Walker, Same-Sex Marriage and Assisted Reproductive Technologies: Access to Genetic Families for Same-Sex Couples or a Further Violation of Equality Rights?

The FSSH Experiential Learning office serves students from all BA programs, arranging placements and internships for students in a wide variety of workplace environments. The office therefore has experience and an established network of contacts for catering to students enrolled in the Legal Studies program. For more information, please visit the Experiential Learning office page

Examples of placements

Previous placements for Legal Studies students have included:

Student testimonials

"My Practicum placement was at a law office in Oshawa and I owe a lot of my success to that experience. The skills I developed as a legal assistant provided a strong foundation for my professional career. My experiences in the Practicum course play a big role in my day to day work and also prove to be a big boost to my resumé. I strongly believe the Practicum program prepared me for the working world post-graduation and provided me with great references and experiences. I work with other graduates from other universities who did not have the opportunity to have a hands-on practicum and they envy my experience."
- Ryan Mills, Legal Studies, class of 2016

"When I first applied for the Practicum course, I never imagined being blessed with such a fulfilling experience. I have learned many valuable life lessons and skills I can apply in any future career setting. The organization I worked with helps multicultural women find the counselling they need. Many of them, whether they are permanent residents or immigrants, don't know where to turn for help. My project opened my eyes to the fact that there are more than just often-expensive legal services available."
- Sandra Edobar, Legal Studies, class of 2017