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C02027v5 Doctor of Juridical Science

Award(s): Doctor of Juridical Science (SJD)
CRICOS code: 001126M
Course EFTSL: 4
Location: City campus

Career options
Admission requirements
Credit recognition
Course duration and attendance
Course structure
Course completion requirements
Course program
Other information


This course combines coursework subjects and completion of a thesis. Candidates develop their doctoral topic through the coursework component. The SJD is awarded to candidates who successfully complete their coursework and, through their thesis, make an original and distinct contribution to knowledge in their field of specialisation.

This program was the first professional doctorate of its kind in Australia. It counters the isolation experienced by many PhD candidates by providing a combination of postgraduate coursework subjects and a thesis, and allows candidates to benefit from contact with coursework students and UTS: Law academic staff. This degree is valuable for an academic or professional career.

Career options

Career options include positions in universities, undertaking research, contributions to public policy, or other academic work including teaching, submissions to think tanks and interest groups and legal publishing.

Admission requirements

Applicants must have completed a UTS recognised master's by research or bachelor's degree with first or second class honours (division 1), or an equivalent or higher qualification, or submitted other evidence of general and professional qualifications that demonstrates potential to pursue graduate research studies.

Support for the project, availability of supervision, availability of places, legal knowledge and experience, evidence of research capacity in a relevant discipline and the applicant's overall abilities and experience are all taken into account.

The English proficiency requirement for international students or local applicants with international qualifications is: Academic IELTS: 6.5 overall with a writing score of 6.0; or TOEFL: paper based: 550-583 overall with TWE of 4.5, internet based: 79-93 overall with a writing score of 21; or AE5: Pass; or PTE: 58-64; or CAE: 58-66

Eligibility for admission does not guarantee offer of a place.

International students

Visa requirement: To obtain a student visa to study in Australia, international students must enrol full time and on campus. Australian student visa regulations also require international students studying on student visas to complete the course within the standard full-time duration. Students can extend their courses only in exceptional circumstances.


Applicants must submit a research proposal at the point of application. Once final approval is obtained for a research proposal, the topic cannot be changed except with the approval of the University.

Detailed information about the application process can be found at:

Credit recognition

Students who have successfully completed the Juris Doctor (C04236) at UTS and have completed 6 credit point Master of Laws (C04143) equivalent subjects within the Juris Doctor, may apply for these subjects to be credited towards this course, up to a maximum of 18 credit points. Such students have this credit applied towards, and must complete, Options (CBK90419), contained within Options (Law) (CBK90400).

Course duration and attendance

The maximum course duration is four years of full-time or eight years of part-time study.

There are no attendance requirements once the coursework component is completed. The dissertation component may be carried out either on University premises or at a site external to the University, or some combination of both. However, candidates are required to make contact with their supervisor(s) at least once a month to discuss the progress of their dissertation. UTS: Law recommends that candidates spend no longer than one-third of the maximum course duration on the coursework subject component and no less than two-thirds of the maximum course duration on the dissertation component.

Course structure

The course requires completion of five 8-credit-point postgraduate coursework subjects, the subject 77697 Higher Degree Research Seminar and a dissertation of approximately 50,000–70,000 words. For a current listing of subjects in each course refer to the study package directory.

While the SJD thesis may be shorter than a PhD thesis, taking account of the coursework component, it is expected to exhibit the same level of originality, criticism and intellectual rigour normally associated with a PhD thesis.

The candidate is required to undertake all assessments as part of the Faculty's Doctoral Framework three-stage program. Within the first stage candidates must complete a formal candidature assessment. In the second stage candidates must complete a progress confirmation assessment to ensure their progress is consistent with completion of the research program in the prescribed time and demonstrates potential to complete the work to standard. Doctoral candidates are required to make an oral presentation of their dissertation six months prior to submission of their dissertation for examination.

Information on UTS: Law's key research areas and strengths, and the research interests of staff members, is available at postgraduate research degrees.

Course completion requirements

77688 Doctoral Dissertation (SJD) 
Select 48 credit points from the following options: 48cp
MAJ09390 Corporate and Commercial Law24cp 
MAJ09392 International Law24cp 
CBK90400 Options (Law)24cp 
CBK90412 Options B24cp 
MAJ09400 Intellectual Property24cp 
MAJ09410 Global Business Law24cp 
MAJ09425 Dispute Resolution24cp 

Course program

As part of this course, students must complete the subject 77697 Higher Degree Research Seminar.

Candidates may choose to complete one or two majors and the subject 77697 Higher Degree Research Seminar can be counted as part of any one of their major(s). Alternatively, students can choose not to major in a particular area and instead choose subjects from across any major areas of study.

The coursework subjects and 77697 Higher Degree Research Seminar must be completed before the dissertation is commenced as the subjects provide the basis of the research for the dissertation.

List of majors
MAJ09390 Corporate and Commercial Law 24cp
MAJ09425 Dispute Resolution 24cp
MAJ09392 International Law 24cp
MAJ09400 Intellectual Property 24cp
MAJ09410 Global Business Law 24cp

Other information

Further information is available from the faculty research officer:

telephone +61 2 9514 3753
fax +61 2 9514 3400

Applicants are encouraged to visit the UTS: Graduate Research School website at: