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Supporting documents

Applicants may, and are strongly encouraged to UPLOAD supporting documents via Minerva the day after having completed the online application (after having received the acknowledgment notice via email). Not all documents may be uploaded via Minerva. See the "Uploading supporting documents" section below.

Supporting documents required for all categories of applicants (unless otherwise indicated):

  • Transcripts

  • Personal Statement

  • Résumé

  • Letters of Reference (Not required for Exchange students)

  • Letter of Permission (Exchange and Visiting students only)

  • Final decision from the Comité des équivalences of the Barreau du Québec (Comité des équivalences applicants only)

  • Final decision from the Chambre des notaires (Chambre des notaires applicants only)

The Law Admission Office will obtain LSAT test results directly from the Law School Admission Services for those candidates who have taken, or plan to take, the LSAT.

After completing the online application, candidates must ensure that required supporting documents are uploaded via Minerva (or, if necessary, mailed directly to the Admissions Office at the Faculty of Law) by the deadline for supporting documents. Except for reference letters, all supporting documents may be uploaded via Minerva the day after having completed the online application. Documents sent by mail must be postmarked or delivered on or before the dates listed in Deadlines and categories. Documents sent by email or fax will not be accepted, unless specifically indicated in the instructions for document submission. See Letters of Reference.

During peak periods (i.e., close to deadlines), the volume of document intake is extremely high (over 1,300 applications yearly) and there may be a delay of up to 48 hours between the receipt of a document and the date on which it is recorded in our information system. Taking this delay into consideration, please contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office only if your file remains incomplete 48 hours past the deadline for supporting documents.

Documents submitted to McGill University in support of an application to be admitted, including, but not limited to transcripts, diplomas, letters of reference, and test scores (in paper or electronic format), become the property of McGill University and will not be returned to the applicant or forwarded to another institution

Uploading supporting documents

You are strongly encouraged to upload your supporting documents rather than mailing them. Uploading your documents saves you time, effort, and the expense of mailing transcripts and supporting documents to us. It avoids delays normally incurred in the processing of paper documentation, allows you to associate your documents with the correct application and requirement, and assures you that your documents have been received.

Documents that can be uploaded via Minerva

Number of uploads allowed

Unofficial transcripts Updated version accepted
Personal statement One
Résumé Updated version accepted
Letter of extenuating circumstances (if applicable) One
Part-time letter (if applicable) One

Please see the instructions for uploading supporting documents. (This link will open a new window to the Future Students, Applying to McGill website).

Documents that have been successfully uploaded to an application do not need to be sent by mail.

Mailing supporting documents

Documents that have been successfully uploaded to an application do not need to be sent by mail.

Below is the address for supporting documents, if submitting in person, by mail, or courier (for documents that cannot be uploaded):

Law Undergraduate Admissions Office
Faculty of Law, McGill University
New Chancellor Day Hall
3644 Peel Street, Room 418
Montreal, Quebec    H3A 1W9
CANADA

Submit your documents as early as possible: the Admissions Committee only reviews files with complete supporting documents. Only required supporting documents will be added to your file. Please refrain from sending other items, as these will not be considered part of your admission file.

Inquiries about supporting documents should be directed to:
Telephone: 514-398-6602
Fax: 514-398-8453
Email: undergradadmissions [dot] law [at] mcgill [dot] ca
Website:www.mcgill.ca/law-admissions

What to avoid

It is important to not have documents bound, or to send them in special presentation folders, plastic sleeves, etc. as these will be removed and discarded. Bindings, sleeves, and so forth slow down the processing and filing of your application.

Do not send the following: CD-ROMs or DVDs, copies of letters of recommendation that are not specific to this application, certificates or diplomas, theses or school papers, art portfolios, photographs, flyers, or newspaper articles.

Any item that is not a required supporting document will be discarded, and not included in the file that is viewed by the Admissions Committee.

Transcripts

Applicants must submit a complete academic record from all previous university studies, as well as subsequent transcripts until the applicant has received the Admissions Committee's final decision.

Applicants have three different ways to submit their transcripts:

Transcripts for studies performed in Quebec universities may be submitted electronically via the CREPUQ system (Conférence des recteurs et des principaux des universités du Québec). Applicants have to contact the Registrar of their home university and ask for this arrangement.

Applicants may, and are strongly encouraged, to upload all their transcripts via Minerva. Transcripts received in this manner are considered unofficial. Applicants will only be asked for official transcripts (sent to us by mail in an envelope sealed by the Registrar of the issuing institution) if and when offered admission to the program. Our offer of admission will be contingent upon the receipt and verification of these official documents. If you have uploaded unofficial transcripts, you are not required to submit official transcripts until we request them from you.

Page Orientation – Make sure that the scanned document orientation matches the original. For example, transcripts that are printed vertically (portrait) should be scanned so that they appear in the portrait format. Transcripts printed horizontally (landscape) should appear in landscape format.

NOTE: McGill University reserves the right to require official academic credentials at any time during the admissions process, and rescind any offer of admission made if discrepancies between unofficial and official transcript(s) are found.

If submitting official transcripts, to be considered official, these must be submitted in an envelope sealed by the Office of the Registrar of the issuing institution.

It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure that all required transcripts are submitted as early as possible.

  • CREPUQ transcripts: Applicants need not submit paper-based official transcripts of studies performed in Quebec universities to the Admissions Office, if these transcripts are submitted electronically via the CREPUQ system.
  • McGill Transcripts: Applicants need not submit official transcripts of studies at McGill University to the Admissions Office. The Admissions Office obtains these results directly from McGill's Enrolment Services. However, applicants who had participated in an exchange during their program at McGill must submit a transcript.
  • Exchange studies transcripts: Applicants must submit transcripts for studies carried out while on exchange, unless the marks as well as the credits obtained are already included on transcripts issued by their home university. Exchange programs should be indicated in the University History portion of the online application.
  • Transcripts not in French or English: Transcripts in a language other than English or French must be accompanied by an English or French translation provided either by the school issuing the transcript or by a certified translator.
  • Cegep transcripts (permanent code): Applicants who are currently, or have been, enrolled at a Cegep must provide their Permanent Code. Starting mid-October, McGill will obtain official Cegep transcripts electronically from the Ministère de l'Enseignement Supérieur, Recherche, Science et Technologie. The processing of applications for applicants who are currently, or have been, enrolled at a Cegep will not take place until a valid Permanent Code is provided.
  • Quebec French baccalaureate: Applicants in Quebec French baccalaureate programmes must submit official transcripts.
  • Winter term transcripts for Transfer students: Transfer students (application for admission from another Canadian law faculty) should forward the transcript of their winter term results as soon as they become available. Transfer applications cannot be evaluated without these results.
  • Transcripts will not be returned: Transcripts sent to McGill become the property of the University and will not be returned or forwarded to other institutions.
  • Law School Data Assembly Service: The Faculty of Law at McGill does not receive transcripts through the Law School Data Assembly Service.
  • French or English Language courses: Applicants must report in the University History form (or the Quebec Collegial Studies form) of the online application any courses taken, outside a degree program, which would contribute to their language competency.

Personal statement

Applicants must submit a brief essay referred to as a Personal Statement. The following is intended to assist applicants in preparing this document.

What is the purpose of the Personal Statement?

Your Personal Statement allows the Admissions Committee to understand the factors that motivate you to pursue a legal education, the particular meaning that the study of law holds for you, and the reasons for your interest in our program. In addition, your Personal Statement shows the Admissions Committee your writing style, your ability to present your ideas in English and/or French, and your maturity and judgment as shown through your writing.

What is the Admissions Committee looking for in reading your Personal Statement?

Members of the Admissions Committee are interested in what you will bring to the study of law and to our learning community, and how you will benefit from the study of law. They look for indicators of intellectual curiosity, community engagement, political/social insight, leadership skills, ability to work with others, openness to diversity (cultural, linguistic and otherwise), maturity, judgment, and potential for development through opportunity or adversity. Particularly if you are a Mature category applicant, you should discuss the relevance of your past experiences to your current motivation(s) for the study of law, and the reasons for doing so at this point in your life. Ultimately, and whatever your applicant category, the Personal Statement must be a product of your own reflection. We truly value a wide range of backgrounds, identities, and future aspirations. Whether you wish to become a practicing lawyer or you have other ideas about your career path following a legal education, your application, and specifically your Personal Statement, should show thoughtful consideration of your reasons for studying law (at our Faculty in particular).

Practical Tips

Before writing, reflect critically on your motivations, your interests, and your convictions, and their connection to our program. The Personal Statement should not be used as a vehicle for narrating or repeating your résumé. Bear in mind that you have a limited amount of writing space; make it count. Be authentic. Be yourself. Don't be afraid to be original, but don't overlook the importance of the substance. Finally, ensure that your Personal Statement follows our formatting guidelines and that it has grammatical integrity. It is important to submit the Personal Statement in its final version of both format and substance, as only one submission of the Personal Statement is accepted. Subsequent submission by mail or email will not be accepted.

Re-application

Candidates who have applied to the Faculty in the past must submit a new Personal Statement with any new application. A Personal Statement submitted in respect of a previous application will not be considered.

Format

The format of the Personal Statement must adhere to the following basic characteristics:

  • Two pages in length (maximum);
  • Single-spaced;
  • Arial or Times New Roman theme font;
  • 12 point font;
  • Margins of 1.25 inches;
  • Indicate your name and McGill ID (if available) at the top right corner of both pages.

Résumé

Applicants are required to submit a résumé highlighting their:

  • Academic background and achievements;
  • Work experience;
  • Volunteer and community work;
  • Extra-curricular activities, sports, hobbies, and other significant interests.

Note: It is useful to the Admissions Committee if you indicate the number of hours worked during your studies, as well as the time commitment involved in your volunteer and community activities. It is in the interest of the candidate to share with the Committee his or her academic and non-academic contributions and distinctions.

The résumé assists the Admissions Committee in its assessment of a candidate's academic strength, depth of involvement in extra-curricular activities, leadership, and time management skills.

Re-application

Candidates who have applied to the Faculty of Law in previous years are required to submit an updated résumé.

Format

As of September 1, 2013, the resumé is required to be a maximum of two (2) pages (letter size). Applicants should not expect that the Admissions Committee will read beyond two pages. Please indicate your name and McGill ID (indicated in the acknowledgment notice) in the top right corner of each page.

Letters of reference

Two (2) letters of reference are required. The Admissions Committee does not accept additional letters of reference.

Applicants who are students, or who have recently completed programs of study, are expected to provide academic references from current or recent professors or teachers who are familiar with their work. Applicants in the CEGEP and Quebec French Baccalaureate (Collèges international Marie de France and Stanislas) category are expected to submit two letters of reference from CEGEP or college professors.

Applicants who are unable to obtain academic references because they are no longer students should submit letters from individuals who are well placed to evaluate the applicant's academic abilities such as critical reading, research, and writing; these may be professional references, but ought to be from a person who is in a supervisory position vis-à-vis the applicant.

Personal references are not helpful.

Requirements

The candidate must send a copy of the Reference letter instructions [.pdf] to the referees to ensure that the letters of reference meet the formatting requirements set out by the Faculty's Admissions Office.

Letters may be sent electronically by the referee via e-mail.

  • Letters sent by University Career Centres will also be accepted if stated that the letters are confidential.

If submitted on paper, the sealed letter of reference may be given to the applicant directly or be mailed to the Law Admissions Office.

  • The Admissions Office does not accept letters of reference by fax or by telephone.
  • Given our strict requirement of two letters of reference:
    1. A candidate should indicate the two chosen referees in the first and second fields of the Referee Information section of the online application.
    2. Only letters from those two referees will be inserted in the candidate's file.
    3. A candidate who wishes to make a referee substitution may do so until the deadline to submit Supporting Documents. In this case, please advise the Faculty of undergradadmissions [dot] law [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Law Admissions Office) in writing.

Law School Admission Test (LSAT)

For specific information about the Law School Admission Test, please refer to our LSAT page or check the LSAT section of our FAQ.

Extenuating circumstances

Serious medical or personal difficulties may have had an impact on an applicant's academic performance. If this is the case, the applicant should submit a separate letter and provide supporting documentation as appropriate.

Format

Indicate your name, McGill ID (indicated in the acknowledgement notice), and the subject of your letter "Extenuating circumstances" in the top right corner of each page.

Letters of Permission/Nomination

For students applying as exchange or visiting students only. The permission/nomination letter should be written on university letterhead and include the student’s name, the faculty where the student wishes to study and the semester(s) of the exchange.