Academics

ACADEMICS

Colleges of Law students learn that they are more than just client representatives or repositories of legal knowledge—they are guardians of the rule of law. They have a duty not only to their clients, but to the communities in which they live and work, and to the justice system as a whole

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LEARNING AT THE COLLEGES OF LAW

Colleges of Law students study within a diverse, connected community of scholars, educators, practitioners, and the public, all engaged in continuous learning about the law and its significance within and outside the classroom.

A defining feature of our curriculum is that it’s highly practical as well as theoretical. Our J.D. program and Master of Legal Studies program combine the intellectual understanding of legal principles with rewarding hands-on experience in the legal field. Graduates are prepared to enter their professional careers with a comprehensive, dynamic knowledge of the law and how it impacts clients, communities, the nation, and the world.

OUR DEGREE PROGRAMS

JURIS DOCTOR (J.D.)

Our J.D. program thoroughly prepares graduates to sit for the California Bar Exam through a collaborative learning environment that emphasizes discussion and debate. Students develop the skills needed to become “citizen lawyers,” effectively advocating for a diverse range of clients and serving the community.

HYBRID JURIS DOCTOR (J.D.)

We are the first accredited law school in California to launch a Hybrid J.D. program. This program revolutionizes traditional legal education by combining online learning with intensive residencies while focusing on “Lawyering Skills” that prepare you to begin making immediate contributions to the legal community upon graduation.

MASTER OF LEGAL STUDIES (M.L.S.)

Our accessible online M.L.S. program enables working professionals to become informed, innovative problem-solvers in fields that routinely intersect with law. By studying the legal system and its workplace implications, students gain the expertise necessary to navigate legal challenges that arise in their chosen field.

M.L.S. DUAL DEGREE OPTIONS

 In partnership with The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, we offer two dual-degree programs combining our Master of Legal Studies degree with an M.A. in Forensic Psychology or an M.A. in Industrial/Organizational Psychology. As the field of psychology becomes increasingly interwoven with the U.S. legal system, these dual degrees offers graduates an opportunity to stand out, by combining the foundations of law with the clinical expertise of a psychology education.

EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING

Our J.D. students have a wealth of opportunities to engage in the real-world practice of law, from legal research and writing projects to internships with practicing attorneys and jurists. In addition, the Colleges of Law have created exciting new international study experiences that will help students develop the cultural competence necessary to enter an increasingly globalized field.

GAIN HANDS-ON EXPERIENCE

Whether they contribute to legal scholarship, work in judicial chambers, or engage in the rough-and-tumble environment of real-world law practice, students at the Colleges of Law have many opportunities to explore their own interests outside the classroom.

DIRECTED STUDY

Through the Colleges’ Directed Study Program, students earn academic credit for completing in-depth legal research and writing projects under the supervision of a faculty member. These projects may include:

  • Writing scholarly papers (“articles”) for potential submission to legal journals or law reviews
  • Creating publications that explain the law to lay audiences (e.g., brochures summarizing consumer laws or bankruptcy options)
  • Designing legal research pathfinders upon which practitioners rely when handling matters in specific legal fields (e.g., Franchise Law or Civil Rights Law)

INTERNSHIPS

One of the most exciting components of our J.D. program is the opportunity to earn credit by volunteering in a legal environment. Selecting from a wide variety of internship sites, students gain invaluable real-world experience as they prepare documents, perform research, interview clients, or assist in trial preparation under the supervision of judges or attorneys.

Some students work for judges as law clerks; others intern with public law offices like the District Attorney and Public Defender, legal services organizations, or law firms (handling pro bono matters).

One unit of Legal Internship is required for graduation. Third- or Fourth-Year students may apply for certification under the Rules for Practical Training of Law Students, which permit students to give legal advice or appear in court under the direct supervision of a qualified attorney. More information can be found on the State Bar website.

EDUCATION BEYOND BORDERS: STUDY ABROAD COURSE

As part of our commitment to creating a connected and global institution that stays abreast of cross-border commerce and changing demographics, the Colleges of Law offered a cutting-edge study abroad course in Cuba. Through online and field study that emphasized critical and creative reflection, students emerged from this course with a strong understanding of Cuban law and the legal system.

Students examined Cuba’s constitutional framework, electoral system, the court system, and government structure and studied the U.S./Cuba embargo.
To read more about the experience you can read a full recap on our blog.

We remain dedicated to providing students a fulfilling and engaging experience, allowing them the opportunity to study effects of law domestically and abroad. Our next study abroad course is currently under development and we will update you as soon as it is made available.

The General catalog is not a contract and can be changed at any time. It describes the school’s course offerings and states the basic policies, procedures and standards by which the School operates in the ordinary course of activities. The Catalog is current as of its effective date; an updated version will be published annually. The School may also publish policies separate from the Catalog; it retains the right to, at any time, make modifications to its course offerings, policies, procedures, and standards. Such changes will be applicable to all students.

The Academic Catalog describes the Colleges of Law course offerings and details the basic policies, procedures and standards by which the school operates.

Effective August 1, 2019

Effective August 1, 2018

Effective August 15, 2017

Effective August 15, 2016

Effective August 14, 2015

Effective August 1, 2014

Effective September 17, 2013

REQUIRED DISCLOSURES FOR PROFESSIONAL LAW DEGREE PROGRAMS

Except as provided in rule 4.30 of the Admission rules (Legal education in a foreign state or country), completion of a professional law degree program at this law school other than for the Juris Doctor degree does not qualify a student to take the California Bar Examination or satisfy the requirements for admission to practice law in California. It may not qualify a student to take the bar examination or to satisfy requirements for admission to the practice of law in any other jurisdiction. A student intending to seek admission to practice law should contact the admitting authority in the jurisdictions where the student intends to qualify to sit for the bar examination or to be admitted to practice for information regarding their legal education requirements.