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LAWS papers


Course structure

There is a wealth of information available to you on this page designed to assist you to understand the structure and content of your law studies. We suggest that you start by reading this fact sheet.
Read the Law Degree fact sheet (PDF)

The fact sheet sets out the formal structure of the LLB, the structure of a LLB combined with another degree and the structure of the LLB Honours programme. This identifies the compulsory elements of the degree, shows you how long it will take and guides you as to how many papers to take each year.

It is possible to reduce the number of elective Otago law papers by a maximum of 30 points. You can credit non-law papers (if they are at 200 level and not used for another qualification) or, in limited circumstances, can credit a law paper taken at a different University – most likely on exchange.

View the Faculty of Law Guidelines – Exchange and Substition points document (PDF)
Learn about completing part of your study overseas on exchange

During the course of the degree, you need to complete a number of elements aimed at starting you on the path of developing the skills of a practicing lawyer. The first of these is LAWS298 Legal Writing, which is augmented in third year by LAWS398 Legal Research. Both are part of a larger Research and Writing programme. In addition to the plea in mitigation completed as part of LAWS 201 Criminal Law (to introduce oral advocacy skills), you will also need to do the moot for LAWS 499 Advocacy Skills in the same year you do LAWS 301 Torts.

Read the Skills Development fact sheet for more information about the programme (PDF)

Every 300 and 400 level paper will offer some form of internal assessment – at the very least a research and writing assignment. The Faculty has collated information about the due dates, weighting and nature of the internal assessment available for most papers offered.
2021 Internal Assessment Information (PDF)

The Faculty has formal processes for entry into:

Choosing your papers

As you probably know, the choice of law papers you do in first and second year is dictated by the Law Faculty. From third year onwards, while there are still some compulsory elements to the degree, you start to make your own choices about what sort of papers you want to study.

View this fact sheet for assistance on making these choices (PDF)
Download the degree planner (PDF)

If you are not enrolled in the LLB in conjunction with another degree, then filling all of the boxes will mean the requirements for both degrees are satisfied, unless you are doing a double major or a minor in your other degree. The bold lines represent the requirements for the LLB.

In 2021 we will be offering approximately 43 elective law papers, including the six summer school papers.

These papers are all described in more detail below, but are also conveniently collected together:

Law timetable for 2021 (PDF)

Two of these papers have controlled entry. LAWS 464 Advocacy is limited to 12 students: if you want to do this paper, you must first pass evidence and be in your final year. Enrol through eVision in the normal way, but before the closing date of 30 November. LAWS 480 allows you to do a single piece of researched writing on a topic of your choosing.

Read about how to apply for LAWS 480 and how it works (PDF)
Application for admission to LAWS 480 form (PDF)

For more information or specific advice:


Law papers offered during 2021 Otago Summer School

The University of Otago’s Summer School runs from early January to late February each year.

The Faculty of Law offers law papers as part of the Summer School programme, in Auckland, Wellington and Dunedin. All of the papers are 400 level and generally require pre-requisite papers. However, you can apply to the Faculty of Law Dean for special entry.

Download Summer School Law papers 2021 flyer (PDF)

Visit the Otago Summer School website.

100-level papers

200-level papers

Full year

300-level papers

Full year

400-level papers

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Papers offered in 2021

First Semester 2021 Second Semester 2021
LAWS 353 The Law in the South Pacific LAWS 102 Introduction to Law and New Technologies
LAWS 407 Company Law LAWS 354 Insolvency Law
LAWS 409 Private International Law LAWS 403 Immigration and Refugee Law
LAWS 411 Family Law LAWS 405 Civil Liberties and the Private Sector
LAWS 413 Labour Law LAWS 406 Civil Procedure
LAWS 416 Taxation LAWS 412 International Law
LAWS 418 Crime and Property LAWS 414 Law of Evidence
LAWS 422 Bill of Rights LAWS 415/515 Resource Management Law
LAWS 426 Insurance Law LAWS 421/521 International Environmental Law
LAWS 440/540 Environmental Law LAWS 428/528 Law and Emerging Technologies
LAWS 447/547 Law and Medicine LAWS 432 Animals and the Law
LAWS 454 Negotiation LAWS 433 Advanced Family Property
LAWS 455 Māori Land Law LAWS 437 Competition Law
LAWS 457 Secured Transactions LAWS 441 Advanced Taxation
LAWS 462 Wills and Trusts LAWS 458 Sentencing
LAWS 467 International Human Rights LawLAWS 461 Law and Indigenous Peoples
LAWS 469 Law and Religion LAWS 463 Legal Ethics
LAWS 464 Advocacy
LAWS 479 Constitutional Law: Federalism
LAWS 488/588 Accidents and the Law
LAWS 499 Advocacy Skills

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Papers offered in 2022

Note: Information for papers offered in 2022 is not currently available.

LAWS 402 The Genomic Future and the Law LAWS442 Law and the Sports Industry
LAWS 403 Immigration and Refugee Law LAWS443 International Investment Law
LAWS 404 Administrative Law LAWS444 Intellectual Property
LAWS 405 Civil Liberties and the Private Sector LAWS447/547 Law and Medicine
LAWS 406 Civil Procedure LAWS448/548 Law and Psychiatry
LAWS 407 Company Law LAWS450 Law of Restitution
LAWS 409 Private International Law LAWS452 Legal Theory
LAWS 411 Family Law LAWS455 Maori Land Law
LAWS 412 International Law LAWS458 Sentencing
LAWS 413 Labour Law LAWS459 Treaty of Waitangi
LAWS 414 Law of Evidence LAWS460 Vendor and Purchaser
LAWS 415/515 Resource Management Law LAWS461 Law and Indigenous Peoples
LAWS 416 Taxation LAWS462 Wills and Trusts
LAWS 417 Criminal Justice LAWS463 Legal Ethics
LAWS 418 Crime and Property LAWS464 Advocacy
LAWS 419 Securities Market Regulation LAWS465 Law and Society
LAWS 421/521 International Environmental Law LAWS467 International Human Rights Law
LAWS 425 Energy Law LAWS468 Advanced Company Law
LAWS 426 Insurance Law LAWS469 Law and Religion
LAWS 428/528 Law and Emerging Technologies LAWS477 Mediation
LAWS 430 Advanced Criminal Law LAWS478 Insolvency Law
LAWS 432 Animals and the Law LAWS480 Research Paper
LAWS 436 Commercial and Consumer Law LAWS481 International Litigation and Dispute Settlement
LAWS 437 Competition Law LAWS485 Chinese Law
LAWS 440/540 Environmental Law LAWS 488 Accidents and the Law

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