Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Opinions about JD

Since I posted the informal poll on if you would prefer an LLB or a JD, I've been speaking with others in the law school about the issue. For example, I learned that our new dean, a graduate of UofT, was awarded an LLB when he graduated but he traded it in for a JD when that option became available. Other people have added other comments. (I'll let you vet the myth from fact.)

- If we switch to a JD system, the government will use it as an excuse to raise tuition. They will say that a JD is worth more so we, as students, should be paying more to get it.

- The government pay scale regards an LLB on par with a BA or a BSc. But, they consider a JD as a Master's degree so graduates of American schools & UofT are paid more.

- Harvard used to give out LLBs so Americans know the value of an LLB.

- A "JD" implies that it's a doctorate degree, which it's not. It doesn't make sense to go from a JD to an LLM, which is a "Master's". Furthermore, some schools offer PhDs in law. Given that system, it makes sense that the first level is a Bachelor's and law students can then go on to get Master's level and then PhD level degrees.

Here's a reply to the last opinion:
American law schools (and UofT) don't offer a PhD in their doctoral law program. Its an SJD, so the progression from a JD to SJD kind of makes sense. Some schools, like Stanford, even offer the JSM degree, but most only offer the LLM in between the JD and SJD.
Other comments, in addition to the comments from the above post, can be found under the post: JD versus LLB: Results.

With the new agreements between schools such as Osgoode-NYU and Windsor/ University of Detroit Mercy, Canadian students are slowly getting the choice. While other Canadian law schools deliberate on this important issue, I think we need to separate fact from fiction.


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