About this course
The Juris Doctor is accredited as fulfilling the academic requirements for admission to legal practice in Victoria by the Council of Legal Education. Mutual recognition legislation generally allows lawyers admitted in Victoria to gain admission to practice in other States and Territories of Australia.
Intended learning outcomes
The objectives of the degree are to ensure, as far as possible, that every graduate with a Melbourne JD has the following attributes and skills:
- Profound respect for truth and intellectual integrity, and for the ethics of scholarship and legal practice;
- Highly developed cognitive, analytic and problem-solving skills;
- Capacity for independent critical thought, rational inquiry and self-directed learning;
- Intellectual curiosity and creativity including understanding of the philosophical and methodological bases of research activity;
- Extensive knowledge of the discipline of law, including legal knowledge and skills, and informed respect for the principles, disciplines, values and ethics of the legal profession;
- Ability and self-confidence to comprehend complex concepts, to express them lucidly, whether orally or in writing, and to confront unfamiliar problems;
- Awareness of advanced communications technologies and modalities, sound working skills in the application of computer systems and software, and receptiveness to the expanding opportunities of the 'information revolution';
- International awareness and openness to the world, based on understanding and appreciation of social and cultural diversity and respect for human rights and dignity;
- Leadership capacity, including a willingness to engage in constructive public discourse, to accept social and civic responsibilities and to speak out against prejudice, injustice and the abuse of power;
- Ability and confidence to participate effectively in collaborative learning as a team-member, while respecting individual differences; and
- Ability to plan work and to use time effectively.
At the completion of the JD course all students are able to demonstrate competence in a range of core skills essential to many career paths in law. The cumulative nature of the course curriculum allows for the development of skills throughout the course.
For more information about Skills Development for the Melbourne JD please visit the Melbourne Law School website.
The Melbourne JD offers an outstanding graduate-level legal education designed to develop the knowledge, skills and attributes central to an effective and rewarding legal career in the twenty-first century. The degree is characterised by a highly rigorous, integrated and comparative curriculum that enables students to develop rich and holistic understandings of laws within their broader national and international contexts. Students' growing mastery of complex legal skills takes place within, and is supported, by mature, diverse and collaborative learning cohorts. Emphasis throughout is on developing students' professionalism and expertise so as to prepare graduates who will enrich and renew the profession and public life through their commitment to excellence, innovation, service and engagement.
Melbourne JD graduates demonstrate an advanced and integrated knowledge of:
- The Australian legal system and its foundational principles, sources, concepts and values;
- Law in practice, including detailed understanding of legal institutions, methods of reasoning and dispute resolution processes;
- Law in context, including comparative, international and multi-cultural perspectives on contemporary legal issues.
Melbourne JD graduates are able to work highly effectively both autonomously and collaboratively to:
- Solve a wide range of complex problems and address new challenges by identifying relevant and accurate information and applying logical, critical and creative thinking;
- Advance knowledge, practice and understanding by engaging in processes of research, analysis, interpretation, reflection and review;
- Communicate effectively, constructively and persuasively in oral and written forms and in a range of public and interpersonal contexts.
In addition, Melbourne JD graduates:
- Critically reflect upon and engage with legal traditions, institutions and values, and the roles and responsibilities of legal professionals;
- Recognise and reflect upon the responsibility of legal professionals for the renewal of laws, legal institutions and legal processes and the promotion of justice to serve the changing needs of contemporary communities;
- Demonstrate high standards of socially responsible and ethical conduct, and the ability to exercise sound professional judgement, in their personal, professional and public lives.
Last updated: 15 March 2021