Student exchange programs play an important role in enhancing the international character of the Faculty of Law and provide a rich and diverse legal education for its students. Exchange programs are signed agreements or a Memorandum of Understanding between universities and take a considerable amount of time to set up. As there is a good selection of programs available and the University of Toronto Centre for International Experience continues to negotiate new programs every year, it is not possible for students to set up their own exchange program.
The Centre for Transnational Legal Studies (CTLS) is a joint venture between the University of Toronto and other premier law schools from countries around the world. It is a global education where students and faculty come together to examine and contribute to an understanding of the development of transnational legal norms, institutions, and processes.
Note: Simply because the University has an exchange with another university does not mean that the Faculty will approve an exchange with that institution.
On this page
The University of Toronto's Centre for International Experience (CIE) facilitates and supports all students going on exchange, but final approval for your participation rests with the law school.
The CIE site is useful for preliminary research on the range of exchange opportunities available at the University of Toronto: it provides a list of host partner universities, with links to their websites, basic exchange-related information, a schedule of the mandatory CIE pre-departure orientation sessions, and the exchange application form. The CIE also maintains a library of exchange-related resources in room 202, Koffler Student Services Centre. See The Faculty of Law Approved Exchange Partners.
Prospective exchange students who wish to speak to recent exchange participants, or who wish to review the exchange evaluation binder, should see the Assistant to the Assistant Dean, Students, in the office in Falconer Hall (FA211).
Students should be aware that some exchanges require strong proficiency in the language of the host institution. While the Faculty has traditionally been able to place students on exchange, there is no guarantee that you will be accepted to participate in an exchange.
An Exchange Information Session is held in the late Fall each year.
November 19, 2012 in FLA from 12:30 - 2:00 p.m.
The deadline for applications is in January each year.
The deadline is 5:00 p.m. January 22, 2013
The Centre for International Experience website is: http://www.cie.utoronto.ca/
NOTE: Students in combined programs must complete:
Combined Program Student Approval Form (Word)
Is an Exchange for me?
Before proceeding further, ask yourself: Is an exchange the experience I am looking for and my best option at this time? Exchange programs at the Faculty of Law place academics at their core. If you are considering an exchange, academic courses may not be your primary interest in travelling internationally. Your interest may be one of "seeing the world", or your goals may be more career-oriented and would be better met by working or volunteering abroad. Students may find overseas internship placements through the International Human Rights Program, ProBono Students Canada or the Work in Japan Program. If you want international experience, your options are not limited to the programs offered at the law school, but keep in mind, you can only get academic credit for Faculty of Law approved exchanges.
"Going on exchange to the University of Amsterdam was one of the highlights of my time in law school. I had the opportunity to take a course on the Laws of the War, and participate in a seminar on war crimes that included regular trips to The Hague to watch sessions of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia. I also got to meet students from other law schools, and travel around the Netherlands as well as other parts of Europe. I would highly recommend doing an exchange to other law students."
- Elliot Smith, JD
Back to Top
All Students must complete all of the JD Degree Requirements while in residence at University of Toronto Faculty of Law.
Faculty of Law students may go away on exchange for one term only.
Full-time J.D. Program
In order to participate in an exchange, students must be in either their second or third year of study, and in good standing. Students going on exchange in the second term of their graduating year must have successfully completed all of the JD Degree Requirements prior to going on exchange:
In order to receive a standing of "Honours or High Distinction" in the year during which you plan to participate in an exchange, students must complete a minimum of 14 graded credits and obtain "Honours or High Distinction" standing in courses during the term which is spent at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law.
Half-Time J.D. Program
Students can only participate in an exchange if they switch to the Full-time J.D. Program.
Students must seek written permission from both departments/faculties to participate in an exchange.
The form Combined Program Student Approval to Participate in an International Exchange (Word) must be completed by both parties and copies provided to all parties listed on the form.
Combined Program students are required to complete 14 law credits while away on exchange. Students cannot satisfy the Moot requirement while away on exchange.
If you are in a combined program, you may find that the other Faculty or academic division at which you are studying may also offer its own exchange opportunities; for example, the Munk School of Global Affairs (JD/MGA program) offers its own list of guaranteed exchange opportunities.
Note: Please refer to Centre for International Experience (CIE) materials for possible additional requirements for students in Combined Programs.
Upper Year Moot
Students completing the Upper Year Moot in the second term must comply with all fall deadlines, which are posted on the web, with the exception of attending the introductory session. Students are responsible for obtaining material (from their partner, or from the website) presented during any session they miss. Note that: in no case will absence from a mandatory session be an excuse for missed deadlines/ improper formatting, etc. Exchange students must check their UTOR e-mail and the law library's e-legal website on the the Upper Year Moot, regularly.
Students selected to obtain credit for Journal work must be in residence at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law for the year to obtain credit for a journal.
Back to Top
The following information is a guide as to what can be expected in the Application Process. However, the requirements set out by the Centre for International Experience are what students must follow.
The application procedure is designed to ensure that you have a viable study program, realistic financial support, and allow you to receive appropriate credit towards your University of Toronto degree. Following are the procedures for applying for an exchange. Note: Host Universities require you to complete their Application Form once you have been admitted to their program. This is necessary for administrative purposes at the host university.
Application and participation procedure
The application form must be completed on-line through the Center for International Experience. General guidelines for applying are included on-line. It is extremely important to provide all required documents when you submitt your application. These documents include:
- Statement of Interest
- Academic transcripts for all post secondary schools attended other than U of T (The Faculty of Law Registrars office cannot provide transcripts submitted for admission)
- Two passport-sized photos (with your name on the back)
- Two references (in signed and sealed envelopes)
Note: You are required to select a first AND second choice for your exchange program i.e. host university. Applicants who select only one university may be disadvantaged in the selection process. If you are not selected to participate in your first or second choice, the CIE will work with you to find another exchange host university. While we will work hard to try to place all applicants, we cannot guarantee that all applicants will be able to have an exchange opportunity.
The Deadline for application is: 5:00 p.m. January 22, 2013. All applications must be submitted to:
Centre for International Experience
33 St. George Street
Toronto, Ontario M5S 2E3
Students apply and are approved for an exchange opportunity through the CIE's on-line application and interview process. Exchange selections are made in consultation with the office of the Assistant Dean, Students.
All Students once accepted to participate in an exchange will receive a confirmation letter from the Faculty of Law. You are required to read the letter thoroughly before signing back a copy so confirming your acceptance of the exchange. Students who do not sign back the confirmation letter by the deadline will forfeit their spot.
ALL students must attend. No exceptions will be made.
Once selected to participate in an exchange you must attend a pre-departure orientation. This is an excellent opportunity to meet other students who will be going on exchange, to ask questions, address concerns, and, over all, help prepare you for your adventure abroad! A pre-departure orientation is held at the law school in March each year.
Back to Top
Students are expected to arrive at the host univeristy prior to the start of classes and be in attendance until they have completed all evaluation requirements for the program.
Please note that while away on exchange the University of Toronto attendance policy applies, which states that:
"Students are expected to attend class on a regular basis. Students who are absent for a lengthy period due to illness or personal circumstances should inform the Assistant Dean, Students. Any student whose attendance at lectures or whose work is, in the opinion of the Faculty, deemed unsatisfactory, may, at any time, have his or her registration cancelled and be refused admission to lectures and examinations".
Course Selection (VERY IMPORTANT)
Guidelines for selecting courses:
- All students must take the equivalent of 14 UT law credits while on exchange, however, the number of credits required to be completed at a host institution varies. The Faculty has set credit requirements for approved host schools.
- You may not take a course that you have already taken or plan to take unless the material being covered is distinctly different.
- Once students have slected their courses at the host university and prior to the add/drop date at the host university, students must seek course approval from the Assistant Dean, Students, c/o email@example.com. Failure to obtain this approval could jeopardize graduation from the Faculty of Law.
Note: No course approval will be given prior to your departure, however, some schools require you to pick preliminary courses at the time of application.
Credit Transfer and Transcripts
On completion of the term of the exchange, the Faculty will receive a transcript from the host university. Assuming you have passed all your courses, your University of Toronto transcript will have a notation indicating that you participated in an exchange for the term.
Credits from the host university will not appear on your Universtiy of Toronto transcript. It will be necessary for you to obtain an official transcript from the host university to accompany your University of Toronto transcrip for job applications and further study. Note: Students will not be eligible to graduate until the University of Toronto Faculty of Law has received an official transcript from the host university.
ALL Faculty of Law Students returning from an exchange must fill out a form evaluating their experiences. A form will be sent to you towards the end of your stay. The evaluation forms survey your experience with the exchange program both at the law school and at the host university. This information is invaluable in assistaing students interested in going on exchange and the law school in assessing its programs viability.
There are financial issues to consider when contemplating an exchange. When on exchange, students pay the University of Toronto's tuition and incidental fees. These fees MUST be paid prior to the start of the term at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law unless appropriate deferral arrangements are put in place. No additional bursaries are available through the Faculty of Law, however, the CIE may provide some financial assistance through their office.
Note: Many institutions require you to purchase their institutions Health Insurance and this is mandatory for attendance at their school.
First Term Exchanges
Students returning from first term exchanges must register in person with the Records Office by 4:00 p.m on the first day the Faculty of Law re-opens in the second term. If students fail to do so, the student's courses for the second term will be deleted with any priority letters that were used being forfeited.
Students who have medical or other compelling reasons for not registering on the first day the law school is open in the second term must e-mail the Assistant Dean Students as soon as possible to communicate the reason for their absence. Supporting documentation will be required. The Assistant Dean will respond as soon as possible and advise the student whether an exception will be made to the rule outlined above.
Graduating students need to be aware of the requirements they must fulfill in their final year of study and the timelines of convocation, bar admission courses, and articling placements. It is the student's responsibility to check the sessional dates of the host univeristy to determine how schools with terms ending later than April 30 will impact bar admission courses, articling placements and their convocation in June. Students who are not eligible to graduate in June will, on the satisfactory completion of all requirements to graduate, convocate in November.
Bar Admission Courses and Articling Timelines
Graduating students are required to register for the Bar Admission Course in the fall term prior to graduation. Students articling in Ontario may obtain the Application form from the Law Society of Upper Canada web site. Students articling in other provinces must check with Career Services for details.
It is the responsibility of students, who will not return to Canada in time to start their articling placement and bar admission course, to make inquiries of both the articling employer and relevant Law Society as to how to meet the requirements. These arrangements must be made as soon as possible, and prior to accepting your exchange.
The University of Toronto Health Service is a designated Health Canada Travel Medicine Clinic. As such it offers a complete travel immunization and education program. This program takes longer than the time allocated for a drop-in appointment, so travel appointments must be booked in advance. For more information contact the U of T Health Service at 416-978-8030.
Travel immunizations and education are no longer covered by OHIP. If you are travelling as part of your academic program you may obtain a Fee Waiver letter from the CIE or the Assistant Dean, Students. Whether you are travelling for academic purposes or for pleasure, you will need to show your travel itinerary and your immunization records at your appointment.
If you are concerned about possible health problems, please call the Center for Disease control (CDC) International Traveler's Hotline (404-332-4559 ) in Atlanta.
The CIE Pre-Departure Orientation Guide has detailed information on OHIP, UHIP, and other health insurance issues.
Accommodation for Faculty of Law students going on exchange varies. More information can be found by consulting your host institution's website. Students are responsible for arranging their own accommodation.
Staying in touch
It is very important that while away on exchange you maintain your utoronto e-mail account and check it regularly as this is our only way of contacting you. You must not forward this account to any other domain as we often run into problems with students not receiving our messages and we then have no way of contacting you.
Faculty of Law students going on exchange are responsible for their own travel arrangements to and from their host country. Travel Cuts, a travel agency owned and operated by the Canadian Federation of Students, Canada's national student organization, offers student discounts, bookings, and assistance with flights, accommodations, tours, and rail passes.
If, for any reason, you decide to withdraw from an exchange you must immediately submit a letter of withdrawal to the Assistant Dean, Students, the CIE office, and if applicable, the joint program registrar. Holding a spot that you are not using may jeopardize another student from being able to participate in an exchange or possibly jeopardize our relationship with our partner institutions. As well, you may jeopardize your ability to re-register at the Faculty.
Back to Top