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Victoria University of Wellington
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Graduate Certificate in Law - GCertLaw

This course is available

On-Campus, Online

Level of Study

Graduate Certificate or Diploma


60 credit hours

Next start date

Expected Feb 2023


Pipitea Campus


Build your legal skills or focus on a new specialisation with the Graduate Certificate in Law (GCertLaw). Study at undergraduate and/or postgraduate-level from a choice of 300- to 500-level LAWS.

Whether you're already a lawyer or paralegal, a graduate from a different background or a legal practitioner from overseas, the GCertLaw has the study options to help you meet your goals.

The 60-point GCertLaw can be completed in one trimester of full-time study. If you're studying part time it must be completed in two years. At least 40 points must be at 300 level or above.

A GCertLaw alone does not allow you to practise as a lawyer. You must have an LLB or equivalent. However, the LAWS courses you pass as part of the GCertLaw may be credited to an LLB at a later stage.

Depending on your background and experience, if you're a graduate of another degree you might benefit from first enrolling in LAWS 121 Introduction to New Zealand Legal System. This course can't be credited to the GCertLaw, but will give you the foundations you need to succeed in studying law. Talk to the Law Faculty staff or the Director of Postgraduate Studies to discuss your options.

If you're a legal practitioner from overseas who needs to meet New Zealand Council of Legal Education requirements, the GCertLaw will help you meet them. 200-level LAWS courses can only be taken under a GCertLaw if they are requested by the New Zealand Council of Legal Education usually in relation to overseas lawyers looking to practise law in New Zealand.

Programme requirements

For this programme you’ll need to:

Complete 60 points

Include courses from LAWS 200-599, of which:

  • At least 40 points must be from 300-level courses or above

Entry criteria

Students must have a Bachelor's degree in Law or equivalent.

Proof of English proficiency

To be accepted into this programme you will need one of the following:

IELTS overall band of 7, including a writing sub-score of 7 and no sub-score below 6.5

TOEFL 100 on the internet-based test with a minimum of 25 in writing

final scores with writing ‘5’, reading ‘5’ and speaking ‘5’ and listening ‘4’

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