Program management: Juris Doctor

A Juris Doctor (JD) provides students with a law degree that opens doors to a diverse range of professional careers in Australia and around the world.

In addition to equipping you with an understanding of the law and the contexts in which it operates, the JD places a significant emphasis on building your high-level research skills through opportunities to conduct independent legal research.

The JD gives you additional advantages in establishing your career or providing a strong continuation for postgraduate study.

Managing your program

Juris Doctor

The Juris Doctor program consists of 144 units in total or the equivalent of three years full-time study, distributed as follows:

  • 15 compulsory courses (96 units)
  • 9 Law elective courses (48 units)
    • Including a Capstone course (6 units minimum)

The JD program with the ANU College of Law is intended to be completed in three years full-time or up to a maximum of ten years part-time including periods of leave or suspension.

As a postgraduate student of ANU, you take responsibility for your own studies administratively and academically. This includes correctly enrolling in the courses, updating your personal details in the ANU system through ISIS, applying for program leave, withdrawing from a course without financial and/or academic penalty, verifying census date deadlines, applying for FEE-HELP (if you are eligible) and more.

Program fees

All students will receive an invoice in ISIS. Your invoice will indicate the cost of your course tuition, and the due date for payment.

Eligible domestic students may apply for FEE-HELP through ISIS to defer their fees to the Australian Taxation Office. Ensure you apply for FEE-HELP before the course Census Date or you will need to pay your fees upfront.

A Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP) is a place at a university or higher education provider where the government pays part of your fees. The University has a limited number of these placements.

Course information

Students must enrol themselves for each session by the appropriate deadline.

JD compulsory courses are mainly taught during Semester 1, with electives being both offered during non-standard sessions and semesters. Attendance is compulsory.

These sessions are as follows:


Semester 1 Coursework takes place over 12 weeks in the first half of the year.
Semester 2 Coursework takes place over 12 weeks in the second half of the year.
Summer Coursework takes place between January and towards the end of March
Autumn Coursework takes place between the end of March and towards the end of June
Winter Coursework takes place between the end of June and around mid-September
Spring Coursework takes place between mid-September and the end of December.

Current and continuing coursework students must enrol themselves for each session by the appropriate deadline.

JD online course information

From Semester 1 2020, the online delivery mode for all compulsory courses in the ANU College of Law Juris Doctor is being phased out. From Semester 1 2024, all compulsory courses in the ANU College of Law Juris Doctor will be delivered on-campus only. Students will then benefit from the on-campus postgraduate student experience and become part of our vibrant campus community.

Some elective courses in the Juris Doctor will remain available online. In the latter years of their degree, students may elect to study some of their courses online (subject to the availability of online elective courses). Students who commenced the ANU Juris Doctor program prior to 2020 still have the option to complete the program completely online provided the recommended study pattern is adhered to. Those studying part-time will need to maintain a load of at least two courses per semester in order to have a choice of studying online or on campus. Please view the remaining online delivery schedule.

Census dates

The census date for a course is the last day to withdraw without academic or financial penalty. Census dates are different for each course held in a non-standard session. Please check census dates for courses under the individual course entry on the ANU Programs and Courses website.

Class summaries

A class summary is produced for each course. This document contains vital information including materials, texts, learning outcomes, and details on assessment and must be read by the student. It is available on ANU Programs and Courses and the Wattle course site at least two weeks prior to the course start date.


WATTLE course sites

WATTLE (Web Access To Teaching and Learning Environments) is an online learning environment used to facilitate learning, communication and collaboration, and is used to make lecture notes, readings and other learning resources available to students online.

Each course has its own WATTLE site which you must access. You will have access to the sites of the courses you are enrolled in approximately two weeks prior to the commencement of the course. Course Study Guides, course materials, ebricks, resources, discussion forums, quizzes and online activities can all be accessed via each Wattle course site. Assessments will be submitted electronically on the course site. It is your responsibility to regularly check your University email account in order not to miss vital information. The University is not responsible if a student cannot access their ANU email or forwarded email at their place of work.

Capstone requirements

JD students are required to complete a Capstone project as part of their degree. The JD Capstone requires a minimum of 6 units from the completion of a capstone course. All of the Capstones (except LAWS6700 Capstone project) involve an application process.

The capstone courses available to all JD students are:

A Graduate Research Unit may be taken as part of the Juris Doctor. This 12-unit course requires the completion of an 11,000-16,000-word research paper.

The research Capstone requirement allows students to refine their legal research and writing skills, both of which are fundamentally important for any law graduate.

Course cancellation

Students will be notified by email as early as possible when a course has to be cancelled or changed. Every effort will be made by the ANU College of Law not to cancel courses unless absolutely necessary or due to circumstances beyond our control.


Whether you are looking for financial support to start your studies at ANU or help to move away from home for the first time, we have scholarship opportunities for you and your situation. From recognition of academic achievements or athletic performance, to support for unique challenges and experiences, ANU has scholarships for you.

Practical Legal Training for ANU Students

Admission to Practice

You can find the steps on how to get admission to practice here.

Disestablished program Resources

Updated:  10 August 2015/Responsible Officer:  College General Manager, ANU College of Law/Page Contact:  Law Marketing Team