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J.D. Degree & Requirements

The Juris Doctor degree requires the successful completion of at least 87 academic credits, including all required courses, and a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.20. In addition, students must complete at least six full-time semesters, fall or spring, in which they are enrolled in a minimum of at least 10 academic credits and pass at least nine of those. Students are prohibited from enrolling in more than 17 credits in any semester. All academic requirements for the Juris Doctor degree must be completed within five calendar years. 

The 87 semester hours necessary for graduation must include the successful completion of the following courses and requirements:

  • Sixty-four credits from courses that require attendance in regularly scheduled classroom sessions or direct faculty instruction; BannerWeb designates such courses with the label LAWC. Most students will satisfy this requirement as a matter of course.
  • Six credits from experiential courses, which include clinics, clinical placements, and simulation courses; BannerWeb designates such courses with the labels LWXC, LWXP, and LWXS, respectively. 
  • The courses listed as "Required First-Year Courses." See curriculum page.
  • The courses listed as "Required Upper-Level Courses." See curriculum page.
  • A "Lawyering Skills IV" course. See curriculum page.
  • The "Upper-Level Writing Requirement." See curriculum page.

Restrictions on Counting Credits

Please note that, in calculating the 87 required credits, students may not count more than four credits from Research Assistant positions; no more than three credits from Independent Study; and no more than 12 total credits from clinics (designated LWXC in Bannerweb) and clinical placements (designated LWXP in Bannerweb) combined (with the exception that for students who have done the D.C. Externship, the limit is 19, not 12).

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