Candidates are to have the J.D. or LLM degree preferably from HBKU College of Law. Exceptional candidates from other universities may also be considered. Candidates with an LL.B. degree from a recognized university require the LLM degree, again preferably from the College of Law, or in exceptional cases from a recognized university.
Candidates should have at least a 3.0 GPA in their previous law degree with a strong preference for candidates with a 3.3 GPA.
Applicants are required to submit an IELTS score of 6.5 or a TOEFL score of 79 to demonstrate their proficiency in English. Applicants can be exempt from this requirement if they meet one of the conditions listed below:
The online application form can be accessed here.
Please note that this application is for admissions only. Information on how to apply for funding (where this is an option) is provided to students who have been admitted to the program.
It is the applicant's responsibility to submit all required documents at the time of application. Incomplete applications will not be considered.
Official electronic copies of transcripts should be submitted as part of the online application. Final transcripts and graduation statements are required for all previous university studies. All transcripts submitted should include an explanation of the grading system.
For those who have not completed their current studies, transcripts must include results from the last completed semester of coursework. Transcripts in languages other than English or Arabic must be accompanied with an official translation.
Applicants who are admitted to the program based on copies of or incomplete transcripts will be required to provide original transcripts upon enrollment in order to register for courses.
Official copies of standardized test results, where required must be sent directly to HBKU. Please refer to the institutional codes below:
Applicants should also submit copies of their test scores with the online application.
Applicants should submit two letters of recommendation, one of which must be from an academic referee. Referees should send their letters of recommendation from their professional email directly to and mention the name of the applicant and program they are applying to in the subject line of the email.
Letters which are not directly written for this program or which are incomplete will not be accepted.
Click here to download the recommendation form
The personal statement should introduce the applicant to the Admissions Committee.
Topics that may be discussed include, among others, personal or professional goals and personal, academic or career history. The committee looks beyond test scores and grade point averages in making selection decisions.
The personal statement gives the committee a means to consider a variety of factors in assessing applicants.
All applicants are required to submit a research proposal for the dissertation that illustrates their readiness to explore a particular research question in the areas covered in the SJD program in depth. The research proposal, which should not exceed 1,000 words, should describe a dissertation that can reasonably be completed during the duration of the program. The Admissions Committee considers the following:
Applicants should submit a copy of their current resume or curriculum vitae with the online application.
All applicants should submit an electronic copy of their passport as part of the online application. Nationals and residents of Qatar should also submit their valid Qatari ID.