The program is full-time and must be completed in residence within one calendar year. The two primary academic semesters are in the fall (from late August to mid-December) and in the spring (from mid-January to mid-May). There are limited course offerings during the summer semester (early June to mid-August). All students begin their studies in the fall semester with a mandatory orientation in mid-August. Most students complete the degree in the spring semester, although occasionally students complete the degree in the summer semester. A student may request an extension of time in which to complete the degree only under exceptional circumstances.
Students must complete at least twenty-four (24) semester hours of credit with a grade point average of at least 1.90. Candidates must maintain a grade point average of at least 1.80 to continue in the program. Students who fail one class will be placed on scholastic probation. A student who fails two classes in a single semester will be dropped from the program, regardless of the student's grade point average.
Each student is admitted to a particular track of study, all of which lead to the LL.M. degree. Students in a specialized concentration must complete specified courses to earn a certificate of specialization along with the degree.
Enrollment for each concentration is limited. Students with a foreign law degree are eligible for all five concentrations. Students with a J.D. are eligible for: (1) Global Energy, International Arbitration, and Environmental Law, and (2) Latin American and International Law. The Business and Intellectual Property specializations are designed for students with a foreign law degree. The Law School will consider, on an ad hoc basis, an application to one of those concentrations from a student with a J.D. and little background in the area.
Students may satisfy part of the 24-credit degree requirement by completing graduate-level courses in other departments at the University. Non-law courses must be approved in advance by the director of the LL.M. program and the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs. Enrollment in most courses within and outside the Law School is limited, and not all courses are available.
Students with a foreign law degree may wish to consider a new course offered in the fall semester exclusively to LL.M. students: Legal Research and Writing for Foreign Lawyers. This course will introduce foreign lawyers to the case-law method, the basic tools for conducting legal research, and the basic conventions and expectations for creating professional legal work product.
Each student's course schedule must be approved in advance by the director of the LL.M. program or his/her delegate.