About the Program
The Law Degree Program is a four-year program that will be delivered primarily in Iqaluit, Nunavut. Graduates of the program will possess the necessary skills to meet the growing demand for lawyers. It will increase access to justice for Nunavummiut. Historically, criminal law has been the area of law dominantly practised in Nunavut. With more legally trained Inuit, it is hoped that other areas of law will start to take more shape in our jurisdiction, such as corporate law, and family law.
The Government of Nunavut has made education a priority in our current mandate. The delivery of a law degree program through the University of Saskatchewan will give Nunavummiut the best opportunity to learn about and engage actively in the legal profession.
Classes are expected to begin in September 2017 in Iqaluit. There will be some courses at the University of Saskatchewan’s School of Law based in Saskatoon. There will be 25 seats available for students from across Nunavut.
Student Funding and Financial Assistance
Funding for this program is provided from a number of sources. Students may be eligible for Financial Assistance for Nunavut Students (FANS) through the Government of Nunavut’s Department of Family Services or through their Regional Inuit organizations.
The four-year Law Degree Program leads to a bachelor of laws (LLB) degree from the University of Saskatchewan.
The first year the program will introduce students to the historical and social context of law, indigenous legal traditions, and the legal system. It will place emphasis on the development of skills in research, writing, analysis, and negotiation.
The second year would introduce students to the basic legal paradigms which form part of most first year Law curricula - criminal law, contract, property law, tort law and Canadian constitutional law. Students would also begin to study the framework of the Nunavut land claim and its implications.
The third and fourth years of the program will feature courses covering a range of legal subject matter. Though a number of these courses will be common to all students, there will be opportunities for electives, and it will be open to students to spend a term at the University of Saskatchewan in order to pursue additional elective interest.
Skills development and traditional law will be continuing elements of the program. The College will consult with the Law Society of Nunavut to determine how aspects of the program might be dovetailed with the requirements for admission to the bar in order to ensure that the passage from Law School to the profession is as efficient as possible for students.
Supports will be provided to students in the program, including peer mentoring, instructor and administrative mentoring, cultural advice and encouragement from members of the legal profession. The College of Law will be working with Nunavut Arctic College with respect to other student support services and amenities that may be available for students in the program.
Description of the Law Program
The Nunavut Artic College in partnership with the University of Saskatchewan, College of Law will deliver a four year post-secondary law program in Iqaluit, Nunavut commencing in September, 2017. Successful graduate of the program will be awarded a Juris Doctors (JD) in Law from the University of Saskatchewan. The law degree program is intended to develop students to become eligible members of the Law Society of Nunavut and all other Law Societies in Canada. Students will learn both contemporary law and Inuit traditional law. Graduates will be able to become employees of the Government of Nunavut, leaders in senior management positions, or practice law in various fields, such as family, employment, business or criminal law.
The University of Saskatchewan and the Nunavut Article College have experience in creating a welcoming and supportive learning environment that respects and encourages the practice of Inuit Societal Values. The learning environment will
- Be academic
- Be a safe place where students can speak openly, experiment, make mistakes, and lean
- Build confidence, mutual respect, and mutual trust
- Encourage constructive dialogue and collaboration
- Gently challenge students to learn and grow outside their comfort zones
The Nunavut Law Program is designed as a four-year program. The first year of the program will be dedicated to equipping students with adequate skills and knowledge to undertake the subsequent three law-intensive years of study. The focus of the program as a whole will be on leading students to understand, examine, apply, and critique legal doctrine, systems and processes. It will provide opportunities to students to explore both traditional and southern perspectives on law, and to consider the role played by both systems in their society.
The law degree program will be a semester-based program. Semesters will be scheduled over a period of up to four months within an eight-month school year commencing in early September and ending in late April.
Students in the program will be required over their years of study to successfully complete courses including criminal, constitutional, property, tort, contract, administrative, business, family, construction, labour and employment law. They will develop critical analysis skills, skills in negotiation and mediation, as well as in legal research, writing and drafting. For each of the four years in the program, students will be required to successfully complete 30 credit units.
The Nunavut Arctic College and University of Saskatchewan will accept a maximum of 25 qualified applicants in the program. Students will adhere to NAC’s policies, such as attendance and academic standards of excellence. It will also be necessary for students to adhere to relevant policies of the University of Saskatchewan, such as the Regulations on Students Academic Misconduct and the Standard of Student Conduct in Non-Academic Matters. Policies and regulations of the College of Law and the University of Saskatchewan with respect to examinations, assessment, accommodation for examinations and other academic matters will be applied.
All courses will be delivered in Iqaluit. Some content may be delivered through e-learning or other distance-learning methodologies.
The law degree program is intended to develop students to become eligible members of the Law Society of Nunavut. They will learn both contemporary law and Inuit traditional law. Graduates will be able to become employees of the GN, become leaders in senior management positions, or practice law in various fields, such as family, employment, business or criminal law.
The purpose of the writing test is to determine how well the applicant can develop and express a writing analysis of a problem. There is no single correct answer to the problem. The applicant will be expected to develop and express an argument based on evidence. An example of the type of question you should expect is:
Kim likes to sell hot dogs. Kim’s goal is to earn a living by selling hot dogs to customers. Kim has two options to sell hot dogs: Kim rent space in the local bar to sell hot dogs, or Kim can rent a small stand-alone store to sell hot dogs. The cost of rent is the same in both options. Market research indicates that Kim would be able to sell the same amount of hot dogs in both options.
Using the fact presented here write an essay that explains which option you believe Kim should follow.
- Kim would like to earn a large amount of money.
- Kim would like to have time for family life and hobbies.
The person who owns the bar is willing to rent Kim space inside the bar, as long as Kim is at the hot dog stand all day Saturday and from 6:00-midnight every evening except Sunday. Market research indicates that people are more willing to spend money in a bar, and so Kim would be able to charge 50% more for each hot dog sold in the bar. Some years the bar owner has closed the bar during July and August, so it is possible that Kim would not work these months. Kim’s children are 10, 14 and 15 and would not be allowed in the bar.
The hot dog business in the stand-alone store would primarily serve hot dogs over the lunch hour. Kim would have to be open from 11:00am until 6:00 pm , Monday to Saturday in order to sell the same number of hot dogs as in the bar. Kim’s children could help out in the store, as long as they were not in school.