The Specialization is open to all law students and "is the natural evolution of the broad range of courses covering Aboriginal law and Indigenous legal issues currently offered" at UBC.
UBC has been a leader in Aboriginal law, offering the first course in Aboriginal law in a law school in 1972. The First Nations Legal Studies program began in the 1980s, with the goal of furthering research and teaching in Aboriginal law and as a means to support Aboriginal law students in their pursuit of a legal education. "Since then hundreds of Indigeous students have graduated, many of whom are now leaders who have helped to redefine Aboriginal legal issues in Canada". In fact, UBC Law has the highest Indigenous student population, 10% of its student body, of any law school in Canada.
Those students who choose the Specialization will be "undertaking a course of study that thoroughly prepares them for a demanding practice in Aboriginal Law". The Specialization also touches on many other areas of law, for example, taxation, property,and wills and estates.