Juridical Studies

Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: English
Foreign:$ 27.7 k / Year(s) Deadline: Mar 1, 2024
51 place StudyQA ranking:2827 Duration:4 years

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The Doctor of Juridical Studies (SJD) prepares you for careers in advanced research, policy development, public service, tertiary teaching or professional leadership. The SJD will enable you to develop and acquire sophisticated skills in research and analysis, through a topic of your choice that expands legal thinking and understanding.

The SJD is suitable if you do not wish to undertake a course of study exclusively by research but are looking for higher degree studies in law that extend beyond the Master of Laws by coursework. The Sydney Law School offers you the opportunity to pursue their interests in an array of major research areas including commercial law, corporate law, criminology, environmental law, family law, international law, public law and taxation.

The degree comprises a minor coursework component and a major thesis of 75,000 words. The thesis is supervised and examined on the same criteria as the PhD. You are also required to complete three coursework units of study (total of 18 credit points) which relate to the thesis topic (lecture timetable) and three compulsory research-support units, namely Legal Research 1, 2 and 3. The coursework units are to be completed in conjunction with the thesis and research-support units.

Areas of research

  • Doctor of Juridical Studies candidates may undertake research in one of the following areas: 
  • Asia and Pacific Law 
  • Constitutional / Public Law 
  • Contract / Commercial / Obligations 
  • Corporate 
  • Criminal Law and Criminology 
  • Employment Law 
  • Environmental Law 
  • Equity / Property / Family 
  • Health Governance Law and Ethics 
  • International Law 
  • IP, Media and Sports 
  • Jurisprudence 
  • Litigation / Dispute Resolution 
  • Taxation

There are two steps involved in making an application to a Law research program:

  • Expression of Interest (EOI) - Prior to making a formal application, you are required to provide information about your area of intended research, academic qualifications, professional or other qualifications, details about your original research activities and publications, and any other information relevant to the application by completing an Expression of Interest form. 

EOIs are due:
Domestic students: 3 months prior to the application closing date
International students: 6 months prior to the application closing date

  • Formal application for admission – If your Expression of Interest is accepted, you must submit a formal application through the University’s Online Application portal. Ensure that all the Supporting documentation is submitted with your online application – Click on ‘Apply Now’ on the right hand side of this course page.

If you have already commenced a research degree, there are additional requirements - Transfer of research candidature.

Additional application requirements

Admission to candidature for the Doctor of Juridical Studies requires a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Sydney with first or second class honours and/or Master of Laws by coursework from the University of Sydney completed at a level of attainment deemed appropriate by the Faculty Postgraduate Research Committee . The Dean or Associate Dean may admit to candidature an applicant who does not meet these requirements provided that the applicant holds a qualification or qualifications that, in the opinion of the Faculty Postgraduate Research Committee, are equivalent to those prescribed.

Applications for admission to candidature for the Doctor of Juridical Studies are assessed on the basis of: academic merits; satisfactory evidence of adequate training and ability to pursue the proposed course; suitability of the proposed course of study and research; and availability of appropriate supervision.

  • IELTS: A minimum result of 7.0 overall and a minimum result of 6.0 in each band
  • TOEFL paper-based: A minimum result of 592 overall including a minimum result of 4.5 in Writing TOEFL IBT: A minimum result of 96 overall including a minimum result of 17 in Reading, Listening and Speaking and 19 in Writing


  • Australia Awards Scholarships (AAS)
  • Research Training Program Fee Offset and Stipend Scholarship (International - formerly IPRS)
  • University of Sydney International Scholarship (USydIS)
  • Vice-Chancellor International Scholarships Scheme
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