Research programmes

The Auckland Law School leads the development of quality postgraduate legal education in New Zealand.

If you are interested in including a research component in your Masters programme, you should contact a potential supervisor in the first instance to discuss your thesis or dissertation topic. The thesis or dissertation topic will need to be approved by the Associate Dean (International and Postgraduate).

LLM by major thesis

The LLM degree by major thesis requires completion of a supervised 120-point research thesis of approximately 40,000 words on a topic approved by the Associate Dean (International and Postgraduate).


In addition to completion of the 120-point thesis, you must complete LAW 700 - Legal Research Methodology in the first semester of enrolment unless you are exempted from the course.


Approval to undertake the degree by major thesis usually requires a GPA of 6.0 or higher in the LLB degree, or an LLB(Hons) degree. This is higher than the requirement for a taught LLM.

LLM, MLS or MTaxS by minor thesis

You can also complete a supervised 90-point thesis to be credited towards the LLM/MLS/ MTaxS. As with the major thesis, the topic must be approved by the Associate Dean (International and Postgraduate). The remaining points of your degree can be completed by enrolling in taught courses (which are either 30-points or 15-points) and/or completing a dissertation.

In addition, LAW 700 - Legal Research Methodology must be completed in the first semester of enrolment unless you are exempted from the course.

Dissertation

You may also include a supervised 30-point dissertation of approximately 15,000 words on a topic approved by the Associate Dean (International and Postgraduate) in lieu of one of your 30-point taught masters courses.

Learn more about applying for postgraduate study

PhD thesis

The PhD is an advanced degree awarded for an original contribution to research and academic debate in a student’s chosen legal specialisation, with the findings published in a substantial thesis.

Stimulating and rewarding, embarking on a PhD requires a high level of self-motivation and discipline, providing an exciting opportunity to engage in independent, cutting-edge research.

Your PhD research will be guided by an appointed supervisor (usually a senior academic from the Auckland Law School) and co-supervisor. Your thesis can be completed within three to four years of full-time study or on a part-time basis. The PhD is an ideal qualification if you wish to pursue an academic or research career.

Learn more about applying for doctoral study

Contacts

Postgraduate Student Adviser

Law Student Centre
Level 2, 1-11 Short St
Phone: 09 923 1973 or 09 923 1973
Email: postgradlaw@auckland.ac.nz

Associate Professor Caroline Foster
Director of Doctoral Studies
Phone: +64 9 923 5636
Email: c.foster@auckland.ac.nz

Associate Professor Chris Noonan
Associate Dean (International and Postgraduate)
Phone: +64 9 923 8180
Email: postgradlaw@auckland.ac.nz