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William S. Boyd 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.S.W. (Juris Doctor/Master of Social Work), and J.D./PH.D (Juris Doctor/Doctor of Philosophy in education).

The Capital Defense Clinic, Child Welfare Clinic, and Immigration Clinic, worth 1 to 6 credits each, afford students the opportunity to represent clients in real-life settings, under faculty supervision. Each clinic also has a classroom component. In the Child Welfare Clinic, students represent children, parents, or guardians in child protection, termination of parental rights, guardianship, and related matters which involve contested trials, administrative advocacy and sometimes cutting edge legal issues. In the Juvenile Justice Clinic, students represent children who have been charged in juvenile delinquency proceedings. In the Capital Defense Clinic, students represent defendants in Nevada death penalty cases, focusing primarily on preparing mitigating evidence and argument, the legal case for a sentence less than death. In the Immigration Clinic, students represent clients in a variety of matters involving immigration and immigrant rights. In the Education Clinic, students represent children and parents in education matters in the Clark County School System, such as special education, suspension, expulsion, and English as a Second Language. In the Criminal Appellate Clinic, students represent young convicted criminal defendants in state post-conviction appellate proceedings. Seminars include Bill of Rights in Law and History, Education Law and Policy, Natural Resources Field Seminar, Domestic Violence, Advanced Intellectual Practice, Death Penalty, and Gaming Policy Law. Government and Public Interest Externship, worth 1 to 12 credits; Judicial Externship, worth 3 to 6 credits; and Legislative Externship, worth 1 to 12 credits are also offered. Research programs include Directed Readings, where students earn credit for completing readings under the supervision and approval of a faculty member for 1 credit, or Directed Research, where they research and write about a legal topic of their choice under faculty supervision, for 1 to 3 credits. The Barrick Lecture Series brings well-known persons to the university for free public lectures on a variety of topics. Lecturers have included Walter Cronkite, Louis Rykeyser, and Benazir Bhutto. The series has also featured academicians such as Stephen Jay Gould, Carl Sagan, and Richard Leakey. The law school offers an Academic Success Program, the objective of which is to provide a comprehensive network of presentations, activities, tutorials, and workshops designed to stimulate learning and amplify the classroom experience. The Academic Success Program supplements the required curriculum with a host of opportunities to enhance learning skills and develop more efficient, effective methods of studying, comprehending, and writing in the law school environment. The Academic Success Program supervises the Center for Academic Success and Enrichment, a student-operated mentoring, advising, and tutoring program. The most widely taken electives are Evidence; Criminal Procedure; and Wills, Trusts, and Estates.

To earn the J.D., candidates must complete 89 total credits, of which 41 are for required courses. The following first-year courses are required of all students: Civil Procedure/Alternative Dispute Resolution I, Civil Procedure/Alternative Dispute Resolution II, Constitutional Law I, Contracts I, Criminal Law I, Introduction to Law, Lawyering Process I, Lawyering Process II, Property I, Property II, and Torts. Required upper-level courses consist of Constitutional Law II, Lawyering Process III, and Professional Responsibility. The required orientation program for first-year students Introduction to Law, a 1-week course.

In order to graduate, candidates must have a GPA of 2.0, have completed the upper-division writing requirement, and have completed community service and writing requirements.


In the fall 2007 first-year class, 1713 applied, 395 were accepted, and 153 enrolled. Nineteen transfers enrolled. The median GPA of the most recent first-year class was 3.38.

Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree and take the LSAT. No specific undergraduate courses are required. Candidates are not interviewed.

The application deadline for fall entry is March 15. Applicants should submit an application form, LSAT results, transcripts, a personal statement, a nonrefundable application fee of $50, 1 letter of recommendation, and r

Financial Aid

About 70% of current law students receive some form of aid. The maximum annual amount of aid from all sources combined, including scholarships, loans, and work contracts, is $34,860. Awards are based on need and merit. Required financial statement is the FAFSA. The aid application deadline for fall entry is February 1. First-year students are notified about their financial aid application on a rolling basis.


About 48% of the student body are women; 28%, minorities; 5%, African American; 12%, Asian American; 9%, Hispanic; and 2%, Native American. The majority of students come from Nevada (76%). The average age of entering students is 27; age range is 21 to 73.

Students edit the Nevada Law Journal. Moot court competitions include ABA-LSD National Appellate Advocacy, Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition, and Bar Association of the City of New York National Moot Court Competition. Other competitions include the ABA-LSD Negotiation Competition, Clark County Client Counseling Competition, and Clark County Moot Court Competition. Law student organizations, local chapters of national associations, and campus organizations include the Environmental Law Society, Sports and Entertainment Law Association, Organization of Women Law Students, American Constitution Society, Federalist Society, Phi Alpha Delta, Student Bar Association, Minority Law Students Association, and Public Interest Law Association.

The law school operates on a traditional semester basis. Courses for full-time students are offered both day and evening and must be completed within 5 years. For part-time students, courses are offered both day and evening and must be completed within 6 years. New full- and part-time students are admitted in the fall. There is a 10-week summer session. Transferable summer courses are offered.

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