Doctor of Civil Law (D.C.L.)

Offered by: Law     Degree: Doctor of Civil Law

Program Requirements

The Doctor of Civil Law (D.C.L.) program allows for the development of substantive and original contributions to legal research and knowledge under the supervision of a faculty member. Doctoral candidates normally plan to pursue an academic career and develop their approach to pedagogy, research and writing while at McGill. D.C.L. candidates may be associated with the Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism, the Quebec Research Centre of Private and Comparative Law, the Centre for Intellectual Property Policy, or one of the specialized Research Chairs at the Faculty of Law. For more information, see our Website: The degree will be awarded, at the earliest, after the completion of three years of residence in the Faculty. In the case of a candidate holding an LL.M. from McGill or an equivalent degree from another university, the residency requirement may be reduced to two years of study beyond the Master's degree, with the approval of the Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Office, upon recommendation of the Graduate Studies Committee of the Faculty of Law. The core of the D.C.L. program is a substantial thesis of up to 400 pages that makes a significant contribution to legal scholarship, evidencing in concept and execution the original work of the candidate. Its form must be suitable for publication. The thesis must be submitted within four years of completion of the residency requirement.

Comprehensive - Required

Every candidate must successfully pass a comprehensive examination, usually after one year in the program.

  • LAWG 701 Comprehensive Exam - Law

    Offered by: Law (Faculty of Law)

    Administered by: Graduate Studies


    Law General : An examination that must be passed by all doctoral candidates in order to continue in the doctoral program.

    Terms: Fall 2009, Winter 2010

    Instructors: There are no professors associated with this course for the 2010-2011 academic year.

    • Restriction: D.C.L. graduate students in Law.

Required Course

Complementary Course

Students are encouraged to take

  • CMPL 610 Legal Research Methodology (4 credits)

    Offered by: Comparative Law (Faculty of Law)

    Administered by: Graduate Studies


    Comparative Law : A programme of instruction in legal research methodology, including electronic legal research and the formulation of research plans.

    Terms: Fall 2009, Winter 2010

    Instructors: Shauna Van Praagh, Karen Crawley (Fall) Shauna Van Praagh, Karen Crawley (Winter)

    • Restriction: Open only to graduate law students registered in a non-thesis Master's program or permission of instructor.
Faculty of Law—2009-2010 (last updated Apr. 17, 2010) (disclaimer)