Undergraduate selection criteria for entry into second-year of the LLB and 300-level course and elective constraints.
Find out what selection criteria apply to the Bachelor of Laws (LLB) degree.
Selection criteria into 100-level Law
LAWS 121 is open to all applicants with a University Entrance qualification, subject to room capacity and Victoria University of Wellington admission requirements. Entry into LAWS 122 and 123 requires a pass in LAWS 121.
Entry requirements into second year Law
If you are applying for second-year Law you must have passed:
- LAWS 121, 122 and 123 (or LAWS 101 prior to 2003) at Victoria University of Wellington, or their equivalents at another New Zealand or Australian university; and
Selection criteria into second year Law
Preference will be given to first-time applicants (i.e students who have not previously enrolled in a 200-level LAWS course, but who have completed their 100-level LAWS courses) who have a grade point average of 5 (B) or better over LAWS 121, 122 and 123 (or LAWS 101 at Victoria University of Wellington prior to 2003).
If there are more applicants than there are places available, students will be ranked and selected according to their LAWS grade point average.
Other first-time applicants
Once preferential entry applicants have been considered, all other students who have passed LAWS 121, 122, and 123 (or LAWS 101 at Victoria University of Wellington prior to 2003) will be ranked and selected according to their LAWS grade point average.
- In the case of students who have completed their 100-level LAWS course(s) at another university, but who have not previously enrolled in a 200-level LAWS course, those students must have a grade point average of 6 or better over their 100-level LAWS courses.
- In the case of students who have commenced but not completed second year at another university, those students must have passed more than 50 percent of all previous 200 level LAW points in respect of which they have received a grade (i.e. a passing grade or any failing grade).
Transferring students who meet either of these criteria will be ranked behind students who are eligible for preferential entry, but ahead of other first-time applicants.
Calculation of grade-point average
In calculating the grade point average for the purposes of ranking, a student’s highest LAWS passing grades in each 100-level LAWS course are taken into account; previous lower passing grades, and any failing grades, are not taken into account. If there is a need to determine cut-off points (i.e. between accepted, waitlisted and declined applicants), specific marks in 100-level LAWS courses may be taken into account.
Māori Admissions Process
A supplementary admission process is also run to assess tangata whenua students for entry into 200-level LAWS courses if they would not otherwise be admitted. Ten percent of available places at 200-level Law are reserved for Māori students applying under the Māori Admissions Process. Students who wish to be considered under this process should indicate so when asked as part of their enrolment application. Note: Applicants must have passed all prerequisite courses.
Applicants applying under the Māori Admissions Process will be invited to attend an interview. Successful applicants will:
- be able to complete the expected workload
- personally attend the interview
- be committed to attending the tutorial support programme for the year
- agree to meet with the Kaitakawaenga Māori – Māori Law Students’ Coordinator – as necessary during the academic year, and
- demonstrate a commitment to kaupapa Māori.
Applicants will be interviewed by a panel normally comprising members of the Māori community, the Law Faculty, and Māori legal practitioners. Applicants are encouraged to bring their whānau and other supportive family members to any interview or hui held as part of the Māori Admissions Process.
Graduate students who have achieved a grade point average of B+ or better over their most recent 90 points (or their equivalent) of their non-Law degree may:
- be permitted to enrol in 100-level and 200-level LAWS concurrently; or
- only if they have passed LAWS 121, 122 and 123 at Victoria University of Wellington (or LAWS 101 prior to 2003), or the equivalent course(s) at another university, be permitted to enrol in 200-level LAWS.
If that permission is granted, graduates may use their graduate status for enrolment purposes only once. That is, they may only once either:
- enrol in 100-level and 200-level LAWS concurrently; or
- having passed the relevant 100-level LAWS classes, enrol in 200-level LAWS.
Permission may be sought even if:
- the applicant has previously failed any LAWS courses, or has previously passed 100-level LAWS but did not qualify for entry, and
- the applicant has since completed their non-Law degree.
If a graduate is enrolled in LAWS 121 and 200-level LAWS concurrently in any given year, and if they fail LAWS 121 in that year, they may continue with their 200-level LAWS courses in that year. However, they cannot re-enrol in any 200-level LAWS course until they have passed LAWS 121, 122 and 123. This restriction applies even if the graduate student passed their 200-level LAWS courses in the year in which they failed LAWS 121.
If a graduate is enrolled in LAWS 122 and/or 123 and 200-level LAWS concurrently in any given year, and if they fail LAWS 122 and/or 123 in that year, they cannot re-enrol in any 200-level LAWS course until they have passed LAWS 122 and 123. This restriction applies even if the graduate student passed their 200-level LAWS courses in the year in which they failed LAWS 122 and/or 123.
For the avoidance of doubt, failing any of LAWS 121, 122, or 123 while concurrently enrolled in 200-level LAWS will render the graduate ineligible to concurrently enrol in the future.
Think carefully before you enrol in 100- and 200-level LAWS courses concurrently. Case Law and Statute Law at the 100 level are taught in the second trimester only. It is assumed that you know how to apply case law in the first trimester of 200-level Law.
To partially address this issue, graduate students are strongly recommended to read the relevant chapters of Glanville Williams Learning the Law. In recent editions, including the latest (the 15th edition, 2013) they are chapters 6 (Case Law Technique) and 7 (The Interpretation of Statutes).
Although the above criteria will be the primary basis for admission to second-year Law, students who have met the pre-requisites to apply for second-year law but failed to satisfy the other entry criteria listed above can seek selection into second-year courses on the basis of exceptional circumstances.
Exceptional circumstances are circumstances that mean the application of the entry criteria provides an inappropriate or incomplete impression of a person’s ability as a law student and that justify ranking them ahead of applicants who have stronger qualifications for admission in terms of this policy.
The documentation of exceptional circumstances must be made on the Faculty’s form in writing and be submitted by 1 December of the year prior to study; late applications cannot be considered.
These applications will be considered on a case-by-case basis by a panel of Faculty members, chaired by the Deputy Dean, according to criteria agreed by the Faculty.
Transferring previous non-law credit
Graduates are exempt from the non-law requirement of the degree. Non-graduates can transfer previous non-law credit, provided it is at Level 5 or above either from another university, or in a subject that can be taken at a New Zealand university. Note that a Legal Executive Certificate is awarded 20 non-law points, and a Legal Executive Diploma is awarded 60 non-law points.
International exchange students and those short-term fee-paying students known as ‘Study Abroad’ students, may not enrol in LAWS 122, 123, 211, 212, 213, 214, 297, 301 or 312.
Other selection considerations
Applicants with international or non-standard qualifications are subject to the preceding criteria. Contact the Law Faculty Student Administration Office for advice.
Choose your stream carefully as you may not be permitted to change stream mid-year. Course/stream preferences are included as part of the online enrolment process.
Entry requirements into third-year Law
LAWS electives are ‘limited-entry’. Applications must be received by the limited-entry deadline of 1 December in order to be included in the ballot for any oversubscribed course.
Trimesters 1 and 2
In order to enrol in 300-level LAWS electives in Trimesters 1 and 2, you must have:
- passed LAWS 121, 122 and 123 (or their equivalent) and passed all five 200-level LAWS courses and LAWS 301 and 312, or
- passed LAWS 121, 122 and 123 (or their equivalent) and passed all five 200-level LAWS courses and be concurrently enrolled in LAWS 301 and 312, or
- passed LAWS 121, 122 and 123 (or their equivalent) and passed at least three 200-level LAWS courses, including LAWS 297, and be concurrently enrolled in the two remaining 200-level LAWS courses and LAWS 301 and 312.
The Manager, Student and Academic Services in consultation with the Course Coordinator may make an exception to the above, having regard to the following criteria:
- exceptional academic performance, or
- exceptional reasons individual to the student that explain why the student has not already completed the requirements above, or
- individual experience that would benefit the individual studying the course, and/or would benefit other students in the course, or
- Certificate of Proficiency (COP) enrolment.
Appeals against exclusion from limited-entry courses
These should be made, in writing, to the Manager, Student and Academic Services of the Law Faculty.
Trimester 3, Summer trimester
In order to enrol in 300-level LAWS electives in Trimester 3:
- Subject to 2 below, students must have passed LAWS 211, 212, 213, 214 and 297 before enrolling in any 300-level LAWS elective in Trimester 3.
- The Head of School (Law) has a discretion to permit, in exceptional cases, a student to enrol in a 300-level LAWS elective in Trimester 3 if the student is awaiting results which, if successful, will see them pass all five 200-level LAWS courses. In deciding whether to exercise that discretion, the Head of School will take into account the student’s overall academic record, including their performance in any in-term work completed in LAWS 211, 212, 213 and 214 and 297.
- Regardless of the Head of School’s discretion referred to above, a student cannot enrol in any 300-level LAWS elective (in any trimester) which has a 200-level LAWS course as a prerequisite unless they have already received a passing grade for that 200-level LAWS prerequisite course.
- Where the Head of School exercises discretion in a student’s favour and permits enrolment in a 300-level elective in Trimester 3 in the situation where the student is awaiting results which, if successful, will see them pass all five 200-level LAWS courses, if that student fails any 200-level LAWS course(s) for which they were awaiting results, that student will be permitted to remain in any November/December electives in which they are enrolled, but will be withdrawn from January/February electives in which they are enrolled. If the Trimester 3 elective in which they are enrolled runs from November to February, they will be permitted to remain in that course (subject to note (1) above).
- A student cannot enrol in more than two LAWS courses in the pre-Christmas period of Trimester 3, and two LAWS courses in the post-Christmas period of Trimester 3.
- A student who is permitted to enrol in Trimester 3, but who has not yet completed LAWS 301 and 312, must enrol in LAWS 301 and 312 in the following Trimesters 1 and 2.
- The discretion given to the Manager, Student and Academic Services to permit students to enrol in 300-level LAWS electives in Trimesters 1 and 2, despite the student not fulfilling the criteria for enrolment in those Trimesters, does not apply to enrolment in 300-level LAWS electives in Trimester 3.
Selection criteria for 300-level electives (including LAWS 334)
Applicants will be divided into two groups:
- Group 1—those who applied by the enrolment deadline, and
- Group 2—those who applied after the enrolment deadline.
Group 1 has priority over Group 2. If there are more applicants in Group 1 than there are places available, priority is given to students who are enrolling in their final year of study. The balance will be selected by ballot.
If there are fewer applicants in Group 1 than there are places available, applicants from Group 2 will be selected to fill the remaining places. If there are more applicants in Group 2 than there are places available, priority is given to students who are enrolling in their final year of study. The balance will be selected by ballot.