Study Groups

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All students in the PhD program must enroll in a Study Group. This involvement is graded pass/fail and carries academic credit. Participation in the Study Group is required in the first year of PhD studies and in the second and third years thereafter, provided PhD students are registered full time. Participation in a Study Group is optional for PhD students in subsequent years of their program of study. This involvement is not graded and carries no credit.

The Study Groups provide an intellectual community for graduate students. They are essential for a true graduate education in law. It should be noted that most graduate programs have more course requirements but, at Osgoode, participation in the Study Groups serves a similar purpose. Through the Study Groups, students are exposed to and engage with legal scholarship that is thematically related to their own research, such that their eventual degree is reflective of more than the students’ own research. Study Groups are not structured as courses, but instead function as reading and discussion groups.

The Study Groups meet for two hours weekly for a total of 20 sessions over the fall and winter semesters. Successful participation in a Study Group involves regular attendance (attending a minimum of 75% class attendance), reading assigned materials and active engagement with discussions (no written work is required).

The five study groups are:

  • Regulation and Governance GSLAW 6135
  • Law & Economic Relations GSLAW 6139
  • Theoretical Perspectives in Legal Research GSLAW 6155
  • Law and Social Justice GSLAW 6151
  • Law in a Global Context GSLAW 6131

The schedule of the study groups and descriptions of the topics to be covered will be provided to all students, new and continuing, before September registration each year. Students who wish to write a graduate level paper (up to 10,000 words) in connection with their participation in a Study Group may seek permission to do so from the faculty member leading the group.