Supervised Upper Year Research Paper ("SUYRP")

Students may choose to complete a Supervised Upper Year Research Paper in any course designated as such. A SUYRP is written under the supervision of a full-time member of the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. It contemplates discussion with the supervising faculty member of the choice of topic, review of a detailed outline (and bibliography) and ideally, review of a draft. A SUYRP is not simply a longer research paper. It is a serious attempt at legal scholarship, and supervision by a full-time faculty member is integral. Note: Students may do one SUYRP per year.  For the same reason, students may not do a SURYP during the same year that they undertake a directed research project.

The following sets out the process requirements:

  • In either second or third year, students may complete one Supervised Upper Year Research Paper ("SUYRP") for one additional credit. 
  • This may be fulfilled by enrolling in a seminar indicated as an eligible "Supervised Upper Year Research Paper course." See the relevant web page for a list of seminars available to fulfill the SUYRP. This is also indicated in the course descriptions on the main Faculty of Law website. 
  • A SUYRP can only be written under the supervision of a University of Toronto Faculty of Law full-time faculty member. Students must obtain permission from the instructor before making their selection. The general rule is that Adjunct Faculty may not supervise the Supervised Upper Year Research Paper.  In exceptional circumstances, a student can petition the Assistant Dean, J.D. Program for permission to do a SUYRP with an Adjunct Faculty member only if a full-time faculty member has agreed to co-supervise
  • This program contemplates on-going discussion with the supervising faculty member about the choice of topic and the direction of the paper and may include: review of a detailed outline, review of a bibliography; review of a draft; and comments back about the draft prior to submission of a final version. 
  • Students may be asked to submit their work in progress to their supervising faculty member and to arrange a schedule of meetings or opportunities for feedback with their supervising faculty member. 
  • The length of the paper cannot be less than 7,500 words (30 pages) in total (excluding the bibliography). 
  • Students completing a SUYRP in a designated course must complete all of the required elements of a course evaluation (e.g. case comments, class presentations) unless they are specifically outlined as different for students completing a SUYRP in the course.
    EXCEPTION: Students completing a SURYP in a designated course with an examination as one of the evaluation components are exempt from the examination in lieu of the SURYP paper. 
  • Deadlines for the submission of draft work are to be determined between the faculty member and student.

Choosing a course

  • Students are strongly encouraged to consult with the instructor well in advance of the deadline for submitting the SUYRP form. Instructors may limit the number of students whom the instructor is prepared to supervise (for e.g., 5 per seminar).
  • Students are advised to read the course description carefully to determine whether or not there is a limitation and consult with the instructor early to avoid disappointment. Even if this is not indicated, instructors reserve the right to limit the number of papers which they will supervise. Instructors may do this on a first-come first-served basis, or may require that students submit an outline (and/or bibliography) prior to approval.

The process

  • Students receive an additional credit when they complete a SUYRP
  • 'Supervised Upper Year Research Paper' will show on the transcript with a 'CR' notation in the term in which the supervised upper year research paper is completed. 
  • Students must submit a Supervised Upper Year Research Paper Request Form (available on-line under Forms, or from the Records Office), signed by the supervising faculty member, to the Records Office by the SUYRP deadline date in each term. 
  • If, after the end of the course change period, a student wishes to change the course in which the student proposed to do the Supervised Upper Year Research Paper, the student must submit a revised Supervised Upper Year Research Paper Request Form, signed by the supervising faculty member, to the Records Office. This discretion is not available to students for whom the loss of the additional credit would take them below the minimum of 13 credits in a term or 28 in a year.

Responsibilities

  • Students must make sure to select the "Supervised Upper Year Research Paper" Course in the term in which the student intends to fulfill this requirement. If this is not done, students will not receive the additional credit, and students will not be considered to have completed the SUYRP.
  • Students must arrange to discuss a topic with an approved instructor in an approved course. Note that some instructors are available and would like to do this prior to the start of term; others will prefer to do this once term begins.
  • Students must submit a signed (by the supervisor) approval form by the SUYRP deadline for the term. See Sessional Dates on the main Faculty of Law website. 
  • Students with their supervisor should arrange a schedule of consultations / opportunities for feedback through the term
  • The schedule of consultations / opportunities for feedback could include:
    • Submission of an outline
    • Submission of a bibliography
    • Submission of a first draft
    • Review of first draft with comments
    • E-mail and in-person discussions about the topic and the development of the paper. 
  • Deadlines for the submission of draft work are to be determined between the supervisor and the student. 
  • Students must deliver the final paper to the Records Office by the relevant deadline for submitting written work in each term.