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School of Law

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Students may take relevant courses in other programs and apply credit toward the J.D.; a maximum of 6 credits may be applied. The following joint degrees may be earned: J.D./M.B.A. (Juris Doctor/Master of Business Administration), J.D./M.P.H. (Juris Doctor/Master of Public Health), J.D./M.S. (Juris Doctor/Master of Science in accounting), and J.S./M.S./Ph.D. (Juris Doctor/Master of Science/Doctor of Philosophy).

The School of Law offers concentrations in corporate law, criminal law, environmental law, family law, international law, labor law, litigation, tax law, public interest, and advocacy. In addition, clinical courses include Certiorari Clinic/Criminal Appeals for 3 credits, Criminal Advocacy for 7 credits, and Poverty Law and Practice for 6 credits. Seminars include an Advanced Writing Seminar, Health Law Seminar, and Racism and American Law Seminar. Research assistantships are available with individual professors. Students are required to complete 4 distinct cooperative legal education quarters during the second and third year of school, alternating every 3 months between full-time classes and full-time work. Study abroad is possible through international co-ops available on a limited basis. There are many academic support programs, including the Legal Writing Workshop, Legal Analysis Workshop, and Analytical Skills Workshop. Upper-level courses include Advanced Writing, Legal Reasoning, Advanced Legal Research, and a not-for-credit Bar preparation course. Minority students may take advantage of the Analytical Skills Workshop. Special interest group programs include the Environmental Law Forum, Tobacco Products Liability Project, Prisoner’s Assistance Project, Domestic Violence Institute, Urban Law Institute, Human Rights and Global Economy. The most widely taken electives are Evidence, Corporations, Federal Courts and the Federal System, and Trusts and Estates.

To earn the J.D., candidates must complete 103 total credits, of which 53 are for required courses. The following first-year courses are required of all students: Civil Procedure, Constitutional Issues, Contracts, Criminal Justice, Legal Skills in Social context, Property, and Torts. Required upper-level courses consist of Professional Responsibility. Students are required to complete 4 supervised legal internships under the school’s program of cooperative legal education. In the second and third year of school, students alternate every 3 months between full-time class work and full-time co-op work. The school also offers traditional clinical courses as electives for upper-level students. The required orientation program for first-year students is 2 to 3 days and introduces students to the first-year curriculum, faculty, law school, and university services.

In order to graduate, candidates must have completed the upper-division writing requirement, cooperative education, and a public interest requirement.


In the fall 2007 first-year class, 3034 applied, 1098 were accepted, and 198 enrolled. Fourteen transfers enrolled. The median LSAT percentile of the most recent first-year class was 79; the median GPA was 3.39 on a scale of 4.0. The lowest LSAT percentile accepted was 40; the highest was 96.

Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree and take the LSAT. The most important admission factors include general background, LSAT results, and GPA. No specific undergraduate courses are required. Candidates are not interviewed.

The application deadline for fall entry is March 1. Applicants should submit an application form, LSAT results, transcripts, a personal statement, TOEFL, if indicated, a nonrefundable application fee of $75, and 2 letters of recommendation. Notification of the admissions decision is on a modified rolling basis. The latest acceptable LSAT test date for fall entry is December. The law school uses the LSDAS.

Financial Aid

About 86% of current law students receive some form of aid. The average annual amount of aid from all sources combined, including scholarships, loans, and work contracts, is $37,244; maximum, $46,900. Awards are based on need and merit. Required financial statements are the FAFSA institutional application, and federal tax returns. The aid application deadline for fall entry is February 15. First-year students are notified about their financial aid application at time of acceptance and upon completion of financial aid application information.


About 59% of the student body are women; 27%, minorities; 6%, African American; 10%, Asian American; 10%, Hispanic; and 1%, Native American. The majority of students come from Massachusetts (36%). The average age of entering students is 25; age range is 21 to 59. About 35% of students enter directly from undergraduate school, 8% have a graduate degree, and 68% have worked full-time prior to entering law school. About 2% drop out after the first year for academic or personal reasons; 98% remain to receive a law degree.

Students frequently participate in the Frederick Douglass Moot Court Competition, ABA National Appellate Advocacy, and National Trial Moot Court. Other competitions include the ABA Client Counseling Competition. Law student organizations include Jewish Law Students, Environmental Law Forum and International Law Society. Local chapters of national associations include National Lawyers Guild, Queer Caucus, and Jewish Law Students Association. Other organizations include the Black Law Students Association, Asian Pacific Law Students Association, and Latino/Latina Law Students Association.

The law school operates on a quarter basis. Courses for full-time students are offered days only and must be completed within 5 years. There is no part-time program. New students are admitted in the fall. There is a 12-week summer session. Transferable summer courses are offered.

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