Juris Doctor | Hamad Bin Khalifa University

A three-year legal education graduate program


Juris DoctorThe Juris Doctor (JD) degree is a unique model of graduate legal education designed to meet the needs of Qatar and the Middle East. The JD is the first-of-its-kind graduate law degree in the MENA region; courses are taught in English, so that graduates are prepared to work in the international legal market.

A JD differs from the undergraduate law degree in that it targets individuals who already hold an undergraduate degree, which can be in any subject, including law. The JD education builds on the student’s previous expertise and experience. JD students may pursue expertise in law that is aligned with their previous degree or move in a completely different direction.

The College of Law’s JD curriculum is consistent with the best offered internationally. The program was created through a strategic partnership with Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law. The JD equips graduates with a high level of legal knowledge and complementary research, writing, and advocacy skills. The focus on skills training enables our graduates to make the most of a wide range of career options in the public sector, private corporations, law firms, international organizations, and academia.

The American Bar Association, the governing body of US lawyers, has passed the following resolution about the JD degree:  

“WHEREAS, the acquisition of a Doctor of Jurisprudence degree requires from 84 to 90 semester hours of post baccalaureate study and the Doctor of Philosophy degree usually requires 60 semester hours of post baccalaureate study along with the writing of a dissertation, the two degrees shall be considered as equivalent degrees for educational employment purposes.” 

JD graduates are also in a position to undertake further legal studies in other countries, such as the United States or in Europe. Recent JD graduates have pursued or are pursuing LLM degrees at Harvard Law School, New York University School of Law, Georgetown University Law Center, and the Graduate Institute Geneva.   

In short, our JD graduates rise to the top as they have combined previous university education and training with three years of rigorous, interdisciplinary legal education.


Program Focus

  • The first year and a half (Part I) focuses on foundations for lawyering, while the second year and a half (Part II) applies and elaborates on the legal principles from Part I to major sectors that are vital to Qatar and the region.  
  • The courses in Part I, foundations for lawyering, develop a student's understanding of legal doctrine in key subjects. They also develop analytical and reasoning skills so that the student can articulate the relevant principles and apply them to real world problems. Taught from a comparative perspective, the courses in Part I examine the different legal systems that converge in global legal practice with a focus on identifying common themes and points of departure. Part I also trains students how to navigate from one system to the other, depending on the exigencies of the transnational transactions they will be required to manage during their professional careers.
  • During Part II, students apply and further develop their foundational skills to sectors that are vital to Qatar and the region. These areas include Energy, Healthcare, Global Economic Law and Governance, Construction & Infrastructure Development, Media, and Sports.  
  • Accompanying a dynamic curriculum is an extensive offering of co-curricular activities, such as colloquia and Majlis, at which leading experts provide insights on contemporary legal topics.  Student moot court competitions, in which students argue a simulated case before a court or arbitral tribunal, provide an important avenue for skills development. Through moot courts, students experience drafting memorials and engaging in oral argument. The College of Law has fielded teams in top international competitions, including the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition, the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot, and the Europa Competition. In 2019, the College of Law hosted its first international moot, the Cybersecurity Law Moot Court Competition, featuring ten teams from around the world.        


A student in the JD program will take the following courses:

  • Year 1, Semester 1 (Fall 2020)

    Code Course Credits
    Code: Law 601 Course: Global Legal Systems Credits: 2
    Code: Law 652 Course: Injury Law/Torts Credits: 4
    Code: Law 651 Course: Contracts Law Credits: 4
    Code: Law 650 Course: Property Law Credits: 4
    Code: Law 667 Course: Legal Research and Writing I Credits: 2

    Total Credits



  • Year 1, Semester 2 (Spring 2021)

    Code Course Credits
    Code: Law 653 Course: Constitutional Law Credits: 4
    Code: Law 654 Course: International Law Credits: 4
    Code: Law 655 Course: Buisness Associations Credits: 4
    Code: Law 668 Course: Legal Research and Writing II Credits: 2
    Total Credits   14
  • Year 2, Semester 1 (Fall 2021)

    Code Course Credits
    Code: Law 665 Course: Administrative Law Credits: 4
    Code: Law 659 Course: Commercial Law Credits: 4
    Code: Law 666 Course: Criminal Law and Procedure Credits: 4
    Code: Law 669 Course: Legal Research and Writing III Credits: 2
    Total Credits   14


  • Year 2, Semester 2 (Spring 2022)

    Code Course Credits
    Code: Law 658 Course: Civil Procedure Credits: 2
    Code: Law 678 Course: Dispute Resolution (Negotiation and Trial Advocacy) Credits: 3
    Code: Law 675 Course: Ethics & Professional Responsibility Credits: 2
    Code: Law 676 Course: Introduction to the Legal Foundations of the Global Economy (International Business Transactions, International Investment Law, and International Taxation) Credits: 3
    Code: Law 679 Course: Entrepreneurship Law Credits: 4
    Total Credits


  • Year 3, Semester 1 (Fall 2022)

    Code Course Credits
    Code: Law 752 Course: Construction & Infrastructure Development Credits: 3
    Code: Law 750 Course: Energy Law Credits: 3
    Code: Law 753 Course: Healthcare Law Credits: 3
    Code: Law 759/760 Course: Media Law or Sports Law Credits: 3
    Total Credits   12


  • Year 3, Semester 2 (Spring 2023)

    Code Course Credits
    Code: Law 756 Course: Advanced Dispute Resolution (Arbitration and Mediation) Credits: 3
    Code: Law 751 Course: Global Economic Law and Governance Credits: 3
    Code: Law 754 Course: Advanced Human Rights Credits: 3
    Code: Law 757 Course: Environmental Law Credits: 3
    Code: Law 761 Course: Law, Technology and Intellectual Property Credits: 3
    Total Credits   15