School of Graduate Studies

School of Graduate Studies
School of Graduate Studies

Law: Graduate Diploma in Legal Services Management

GDip Legal services -client photo

 

“Managing partners and law firm leaders consistently tell me they're looking for new lawyers with practical legal knowledge and business skills -- not just because these assets help lawyers connect more effectively with their commercial clients, but also because firms increasingly expect lawyers to ’own their practices’ and be responsible for constantly improving their own productivity and value. I fully expect the knowledge imparted by this program will be extremely helpful to lawyers making their way in law firms. But really, it's going to constitute a valuable cornerstone of their careers no matter which route into the legal market -- private practice, in-house lawyer, public-sector counsel, startup innovator, and more -- they eventually pursue. The profile of the 21st-century legal professional looks a great deal like the lawyers that Queen's Law's new program will produce.”

Jordan Furlong, Legal analyst and author, speaker & consultant Owner/operator Law21

Program Contact

Andrea Labelle
Program Coordinator
Faculty of Law
Macdonald Hall
128 Union Street, Kingston, ON, Canada K7L 3N6

Phone: 613.533.6000 ext 75799
E-mail: lawmanagement@queensu.ca
Website: https://graduatediploma.queenslaw.ca/program

 

Program Overview

Established firms, large and small, report that many new Law graduates have the legal skills they need to succeed as lawyers, but these graduates often lack the business process and management skills necessary to thrive in today’s fast-changing legal markets.  This Graduate Diploma will provide graduates with the knowledge and skills necessary to make legal services more accessible and more sustainable to provide by:

  1. Examining the foundational areas of business and management education (such as strategy, operations, human capital, and marketing) and apply that foundational knowledge to the practice of law.
  2. Provide a deep understanding of the economic and technological forces impacting the legal profession, equipping students to improve existing models of legal services delivery or innovate new ventures to take advantage of the forces impacting the legal profession. 

 

Career paths – employment opportunities

A new kind of lawyer needs a new kind of classroom.

The intersection of business skills, law, and management isn’t currently taught at most Canadian law schools. Some firms bring in business trainers. Some lawyers pay for workshops and EMBA programs once they realize they’re falling behind. Some trade associations provide basic seminars. But until now, no law school has delivered a full range of future-proofing courses that lawyers need to thrive in practice.

We deliver our courses entirely online in a way that provides a highly personal and interactive experience while still fitting the busy schedules of legal professionals.

 “Over the last twenty some years, the legal profession has experienced a variety of pressures – globalization, technological innovation, competition from outsiders and most importantly, consumerism. These have left us with significant gaps in our education so we have had to adapt what we learn and how we learn very quickly. Although not all students of the law go on to practice (be it as a private practitioner, in-house, for profit or not, or in government), most do. And being aware of and prepared to deal with the issues of managing practice in any of these environments is vital but until recently has been out of the mainstream of education.

The Legal Services Management Program at Queen’s Law School is a big first step to filling the gap and it does so in terms of both content and format. It puts front and centre the drivers for success in legal practice - client centricity and service, productivity, teamwork, technology and innovation, and profitability. It ‘educates’ with context. It shares practical perspectives. Simply put, it equips the legal student to apply the other dimensions of their legal education. And it does so from an online platform, which makes for or a more nimble and accessible experience for students and faculty alike.

There are many dimensions to legal education. This program recognizes that there is a place in law school to address other dimensions that focus on the business of law. And that is very important for the future of our profession.”

Karen KH Bell, Practice Management Advisor
Formerly Senior Director, Professional & Client Education at McCarthy Tetrault LLP

1. Application & Tuition Fees

There is a non-refundable application fee of $110.00 payable to the School of Graduate Studies. There are no registration fees, the fee per courses is $3,600.00. Student activity fees are $16.67 per term. All fees are in Canadian dollars and are subject to change. Fees may be waived for Queen's employees..

2. Admission Requirements

Applicants to the Graduate Diploma in Legal Services Management will require one of the following:

  • Bachelor’s degree from a recognized university, or
  • Enrolled in a JD program (we will consider JDs without an undergraduate degree), or
  • Graduate from a JD (or equivalent) program.
  • All applicants must have B to B+ average grades to meet Queen’s School of Graduate Studies standards 
  • Students will require supporting documentation to accompany their application.

Documentation

Applicant Type Requirement Description
All applicants Statement of Interest Explain your interest in the program! Include prior experience and how the program fits your career plans. (500 words maximum)
All non-Queen's applicants* Transcripts Copies of all post-secondary transcripts are required (unofficial are accepted). Note: Original official transcript(s) will be required from all applicants who accept an offer of admission. *Queen's University students and alumni do not need to submit transcripts from their studies at Queen's
Anyone who is not in or has not graduated from a JD program Two references Names and contact information for two letter-of-reference writers who will support your application. The referee must submit letters directly to lawmanagement@queensu.ca. (The applicant must tell the reference providers to send the letters).
International Students English Language Proficiency Those applicants whose native languages do not include English will need to earn satisfactory standing in an English Language Proficiency Test as part of the application process, and before final acceptance is granted. Any applicant whose first language is not English, but who, within the 12 month period prior to the month of application, has studied for at least one complete year at a post-secondary institution where English is the official language of instruction, may submit with their application a request to be exempted from the English language proficiency test requirement. The Director of Admissions, School of Graduate Studies, will review the request. The applicant will be informed of the results of the review.
3. Application Deadline & Start Dates
  • September 2020 (Application Deadline: August 15, 2020)

  • January 2021 (Application Deadline: December 15, 2020)

  • May 2021 (Application Deadline: April15, 2021)

These deadlines are firm and include the submission of all supporting documentation.

Grad Maps

View the Grad Maps for this department and all graduate degrees on the Career Services website

 

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