SOP for Law in Canada – Guidelines for Top Universities

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Srishti Chatterjee
Study Abroad Expert
Updated on Sep 1, 2022 16:12 IST

The admission committee (AdCom) of Canadian Law schools provides its candidates with certain recommendations to craft an effective statement of purpose (SOP). Some of the common guidelines to be kept in mind while submitting your SOP to the Law schools in Canada are discussed below:

Listing your accomplishments precisely: As one would expect, an SOP for Canada will include your academic and non-academic qualifications like test scores, and grades. You must emphasize your previous academic conduct; focus on your knowledge base and the skillset that you have gained in the past.

Keeping it personal: Generally, an SOP for MBA or for MS programs requires you to be straightforward. Canadian law schools, however, require their students to be not entirely professional or academic but somewhat personal. It means that aspirants are free to talk about particular incidents that became the driving force for them to pursue law as a career. This can be presented effectively in an SOP. After all, Law is all about presenting your points strongly, isn’t it?

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Pro Tip: International applicants, who are potential immigrants, must ensure to describe their diversified experience to make their write-up more interactive.

Maintaining the word limit: Importance of word limit in any essay or SOP cannot be emphasized enough. When students apply to the Law courses, the significance of the word limit becomes even more crucial. The top Law Schools in Canada are quite stringent about the word limit. One such example is Queen’s University, which expects a Law SOP within 6,000 characters, including spaces. Exceeding the stipulated limit by even one character results in direct rejection. The importance of words is a criterion that Law professionals must understand.

SOP for Law in Canada – Guidelines for Top Universities

The top Canadian universities are known to prefer candidates with specific profiles especially while considering international applicants for admission to the Law domain.

The University of British Columbia (UBC)

  • Length: Approximately 500-word single-spaced SOP in one page
  • Points to be covered:
    • Relevant experience, interest, skills, and professional vision
    • Distinguishing features in your application
    • Any information that is not in the application form and you want the admission committee to consider

University of Toronto (U of T)

  • Number of SOPs: 2 SOPs, 1 mandatory and 1 optional, are required by the University of Toronto
  • Word limit: A 5000-character mandatory essay and a 2500-character optional essay (both including spaces and punctuations)
  • Points to be covered in the mandatory essay:
    • Personal interests
    • Identification with the community
  • Points to be covered in the optional essay: For the optional essay, one of the following listed topics should be chosen-
    • Ways in which your identity, background, and experiences will contribute to the diversity of law school
    • Meaningful intellectual experience
    • Ways of dodging hurdles in the path of achievements
    • Vision of your future

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Queen’s University

  • Number of essays: Two mandatory essay requirements, one of these needs to be produced by those belonging to the access category
  • Length: The first essay within 6000 characters including spaces and the access category essay must be of 1500 characters
  • Points to be covered: Academic, personal and professional accomplishments, alongside the reason for choosing Queen’s University is to be mentioned in the SOP

York University

  • Number of essays: York University required 2 SOPs: 1 mandatory and 1 optional
  • Length: The mandatory essay has 2 sections of 2,000 words each; the optional essay must be in 2500 words
  • Points to be covered in the mandatory essay:
    • Academic leadership
    • Community leadership and involvement
    • Reason for pursuing law education and where you envision yourself using it
    • Advanced academic work and athletic activities
  • Points to be covered in the optional essay:
    • Work or life experiences
    • Equity as well as diversity factors

Carleton University

  • Number of essays: Carleton requires one SOP from its candidates aspiring to pursue Law discipline. Additionally, a program-specific SOP for Law is found in the supplementary forms section of the online application.
  • Points to be covered:
    • Specific interest in the desired program
    • Reasons and expectations from the program at Carleton University

SOP for Law in Canada is generally a compulsory submission whether by most Canadian universities. It fulfils the purpose of bridging the gaps of the application form while helping the admission committee understand your potential in the domain.

Adding to it, lower grades in the previous academic conduct can be compensated with the help of a well-written SOP. However, it is essential to note that there is no substitute for an SOP, which is not strong.

When it comes to the personal statement, it is integral for candidates to add a personal touch while answering the desired questions. Check out the difference between Statement of Purpose and Personal Statement here.

Check out the other related guidelines for Law School SOPs:

If you seek professional help, reach out to the Shiksha Study Abroad counselling services online. Our expert counsellors will help you with university shortlisting, editorial process, application process, and so on.

About the Author
Srishti Chatterjee
Study Abroad Expert

Srishti has spent six years in the Education industry helping study abroad aspirants draft their application documents for their dream universities. Experienced in creating impressive SOP, LOR, and Essays, she knows... Read Full Bio


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