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Law, J.D.

Saint Louis University's Juris Doctor program offers extensive courses and personalized interaction with nationally recognized professors. Students will be directly exposed to practicing attorneys and clients through professional skills courses, Saint Louis University legal clinics and field placement programs.

Guest speakers who have diverse legal backgrounds and career experience — ranging from federal and state judges to partners, associates and corporate executives — provide students with a real-world approach to learning.

Concentrations

Law students at SLU may also earn a concentration in the following areas:

Employment Law

The employment law concentration prepares students to practice in governmental positions, such as with the National Labor Relations Board, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or the Human Rights Commission of a state or local government. It is also beneficial in the practice of corporate law and in representing other institutional clients such as in health care industries or in higher education. Significant increases in the number of employment discrimination cases filed have made this area an important component of any litigation department. A wide range of opportunities for employment exists in this field.

Health Law

The health law concentration is available to students who meet its rigorous requirements. SLU's Center for Health Law Studies offers a concentration that allows students to use health law skills in research and practical environments. This concentration is evidence of the seriousness with which students approach the field of health law and certifies that graduates are fully prepared to meet the demands of this rapidly changing legal field.

Intellectual Property Law

The intellectual property law concentration emphasizes information, analytical tools and skills lawyers require to represent their clients' intellectual property needs. Students will have the opportunity to take specialized courses that expose students to the legal and practical issues that arise in intellectual property law. Students who wish to receive this concentration will complete a minimum of 10 credits of intellectual property law courses with a satisfactory grade ("C" or higher).

Students will consult with the concentration advisor to tailor course selection to particular interests. Full-time students should able to complete the concentration requirements without additional time or credits beyond what is required for the J.D. program. Part-time students may also be able to earn the concentration with advance planning but may need to occasionally take a course offered before 6 p.m.

International and Comparative Law

Offered through the Center for International and Comparative Law, this concentration can be earned by students who complete both a semester-long study abroad program through the School of Law in France, Ireland or Switzerland and a three-credit international law course. Each student must also complete a substantial research paper on an international or comparative law topic. Students may earn up to six credits from the School of Law’s summer program in Madrid, Spain that will count toward the concentration's ten credits of coursework requirement.

Part-Time Options

Part-Time Day 

There are two options for the part-time day program: an 11.5-credit schedule or an 8.5-credit schedule, which postpones some courses until semesters three and four.

Part-Time Evening 

Students in the part-time evening program complete their required first-year core curriculum in two years by taking courses scheduled in the evening. Part-time students both in their first and second year will be in some of the same classes. Course sequencing will be determined based upon when students matriculate (even-numbered or odd-numbered year). 

Curriculum Overview

SLU's J.D. program offers students a diverse curriculum designed to prepare them for all areas of legal practice. A robust selection of courses and seminars in a variety of legal specialties reflect the commitment to public service and professional ethics.

Goals of the curriculum include:

  • Provide a quality legal education in the Jesuit tradition of academic excellence and concern for the development of individual students
  • Expose students to the interaction of law and other disciplines in the development and application of the law
  • Sensitize students to legal ethics and norms, including the obligation to engage in public service

Core Curriculum ("First Year" Courses)

The law school's required core curriculum includes 31 credits of classes designed to allow students to develop foundational analytical and writing legal skills necessary for the practice of law. First-year, full-time students are required to take these courses in the first two semesters. Part-time students complete these courses within the first two years of study. The core curriculum includes:

  • Civil Procedure I and II
  • Constitutional Law I
  • Contracts I and II
  • Criminal Law
  • Introduction to Legal Studies I and II
  • Legal Research and Writing I and II
  • Property
  • Torts

Upper Division Options

Nearly two-thirds of the 91 credits required to graduate are elective courses. Students who have completed the core curriculum select classes ranging from foundational bar preparation classes to highly specialized legal topics to supervised clinical practice. This allows students to custom design the majority of their law school education. Students may sample courses from a variety of subject areas or specialize based upon their individualized needs and interests.

SLU's School of Law also offers opportunities for students to participate in (and receive credit for) one of three student-run law journals as well as develop critical legal skills in areas such as appellate advocacy, trial practice and client counseling. Students may choose to complete one of four concentration programs.

Admission Requirements

A bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university is required. Exceptions may be made on a case-by-case basis by the Admissions Committee as authorized by ABA Accreditation Standards Section 502.

Register for the Law School Admission Test (LSAT), the LSAC Credential Assembly Service (CAS) and the LSAC Letter of Recommendation Service (LOR). No application is complete without test scores and transcript analysis from LSAC's CAS. The School of Law does accept evaluation forms through the LSAC Evaluations Service, but they are not required. It is highly recommended that applicants take the LSAT the summer or fall prior to the desired entry year. Only LSAT scores earned within the last three years will be considered.

All transcripts must be forwarded directly to the CAS. The School of Law will request the LSAC CAS Report upon receipt of the application.

Letters of Recommendation

Applicants must use the LSAC Letter of Recommendation Service. A minimum of two letters is required, and up to four letters will be accepted. It is recommended to request letters from individuals who can accurately assess their intellectual ability, motivation, character and academic performance. Value is placed on content that verifies the qualifications of the applicant to compete in the law school environment.

Send letters of recommendation to:

Law School Admission Council
662 Penn Street
PO Box 8508
Newtown, PA 19840-8505
Phone: 215-968-1001

Personal Statement

The personal statement is a way for applicants to communicate information about themselves that is not found in the rest of the application. The personal statement provides the admissions committee with insight into an applicant's writing ability and individual character. Information regarding personal or professional goals, academic performance and career history is helpful. The admissions committee looks for brevity and clarity of thought and expression. Please limit the personal statement to two pages.

Important

It is the responsibility of each applicant to provide the admissions office with all the necessary documents. The applicant is encouraged to contact the admissions office throughout the admissions process to confirm receipt of application materials at admissions@law.slu.edu or by phone at 314-977-2800. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed. 

Admissions Determination

The admissions committee considers several factors in determining a candidate's eligibility, including: academic achievement, strength of the undergraduate program, application information, LSAT results (the Admissions Committee looks only at the applicant's highest score), personal statement, work experience, degrees earned, motivation, leadership and service.

Scholarships and Financial Aid

There are many resources to assist students in financing a legal education, including scholarships, loans and work opportunities.

Financial aid award letters for new students are mailed beginning on March 1 of each year.

Although a FAFSA is not required to receive merit-based aid, it should be completed if you plan to seek eligibility for federal aid programs like federal direct loans or federal work-study. Saint Louis University’s school code is 002506.

Accreditation 

Saint Louis University School of Law has been continuously accredited by the American Bar Association (ABA) since December 1924. The accrediting body is the Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar of the American Bar Association, 321 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60654, 312-988-6738.

  1. Graduates will be able to demonstrate knowledge of substantive and procedural law and the American legal system.
  2. Graduates will be able to demonstrate an effective ability to resolve legal issues.
  3. Graduates will be able to communicate effectively, orally and in writing, to clients and other audiences in a variety of legal contexts.
  4. Graduates will be able to research effectively and efficiently.
  5. Graduates will be able to demonstrate competency in additional skills that are essential for effective lawyering.
  6. Graduates will be able to exercise proper professional and ethical judgment in interactions with clients, the profession, and the legal system.
  7. Graduates will be able to exemplify SLU LAW’s mission.
LAW 7000Civil Procedure I2
LAW 7001Civil Procedure II3
LAW 7005Criminal Law3
LAW 7010Contracts I3
LAW 7011Contracts II2
LAW 7015Torts4
LAW 7020Legal Research and Writing I3
LAW 7021Legal Research and Writing II3
LAW 7025Constitutional Law I3
LAW 7030Property4
LAW 7040Introduction to Legal Studies I.5
LAW 7041Introduction to Legal Studies II.5
Upper Division Requirements (can be taken in any semester)
LAW 7100Legal Profession3
Seminar2
Experiential coursework6
Elective Courses
Select remaining courses 149
Total Credits91
1

After completing the first-year requirements, students can select from a variety of offerings to complete the minimum of 91 credits to graduate. The majority of upper division courses are elective with the exception of the requirements listed below.

Seminar Courses

  • Access to Health Care
  • Advanced Corporate Governance
  • Advanced IP: Marketing and Advertising Law
  • American Presidency
  • Art Law
  • Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies
  • Citizenship, Human Rights & Social Justice
  • Critical Race Theory
  • Death Penalty
  • Emerging Health Technologies: Vaccine Law and Policy
  • How Lawmakers Make Law: Purposive and Textual Accounts of Lawmaking
  • Intellectual Property and Global Entrepreneurship
  • International Business Law and Practice
  • International Humanitarian Law
  • International Intellectual Property Law
  • Law and Religion
  • Local Governance and Livability
  • Psychology and Decision-Making in Legal Contexts
  • Race, Health and Justice
  • Sentencing Law and Policy
  • Social Media and Data Subjects
  • The Future of Work
  • White Collar Crime

Experiential Courses

  • Advanced Commercial and Business Transactions Practice
  • Advanced Legal Research
  • Anatomy of a Patent
  • Civil Advocacy
  • Civil Advocacy Clinic I and II
  • Civil Practice
  • Client Counseling
  • Competition-Based Advocacy
  • Criminal Defense Advocacy
  • Criminal Defense Clinic 
  • Employment and Labor Law Research
  • Employment Law Agency Practice
  • Employment Law Field Placement in DC
  • Entrepreneurship and Community Development Clinic I and II
  • Entrepreneurship and Community Development Practice
  • Entrepreneurship Law
  • Essentials of Intellectual Property Licensing
  • Estate Planning
  • Evidence & Advocacy
  • Federal Criminal Prosecution
  • Field Placement
  • Health Equity, Policy and Advocacy
  • Health Law Agency Practice
  • Health Law Field Placement in DC
  • Health Law, Policy and Advocacy I & II
  • Human Rights at Home Advocacy
  • Human Rights at Home Litigation Clinic I & II
  • Intellectual Property Law Research
  • Judicial Process and Procedure
  • Judicial Process Field Placement
  • Jury Instructions
  • Law Practice Management
  • Lawyering Practice
  • Mediation
  • Moot Court I & II
  • Negotiations
  • Removal Defense Project
  • Sentencing Mitigation
  • State Legal Research
  • Transactional Drafting
  • Transactional Drafting for Business Associations
  • Transactional Health Care Practice
  • Trial Advocacy I
  • Trial Advocacy II - Civil and Criminal
  • Urban Issues Symposium

Roadmaps are recommended semester-by-semester plans of study for programs and assume full-time enrollment unless otherwise noted.  

Courses and milestones designated as critical (marked with !) must be completed in the semester listed to ensure a timely graduation. Transfer credit may change the roadmap.

This roadmap should not be used in the place of regular academic advising appointments. All students are encouraged to meet with their advisor/mentor each semester.  Requirements, course availability and sequencing are subject to change.

Full-time Day 

Plan of Study Grid
Year One
FallCredits
LAW 7000 Civil Procedure I 2
LAW 7005 Criminal Law 3
LAW 7010 Contracts I 3
LAW 7015 Torts 4
LAW 7020 Legal Research and Writing I 3
LAW 7040 Introduction to Legal Studies I .5
 Credits15.5
Spring
LAW 7001 Civil Procedure II 3
LAW 7011 Contracts II 2
LAW 7021 Legal Research and Writing II 3
LAW 7025 Constitutional Law I 3
LAW 7030 Property 4
LAW 7041 Introduction to Legal Studies II .5
 Credits15.5
Year Two
Fall
LAW 7100 Legal Profession 3
 
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 12
 Credits15
Spring
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 15
 Credits15
Year Three
Seminar 2
Experiential coursework 6
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 22
 Credits30
 Total Credits91

Part-time Evening

Plan of Study Grid
Year One
FallCredits
LAW 7010 Contracts I 2
LAW 7015 Torts 4
LAW 7020 Legal Research and Writing I 3
LAW 7040 Introduction to Legal Studies I .5
 Credits9.5
Spring
LAW 7005 Criminal Law 3
LAW 7011 Contracts II 3
LAW 7021 Legal Research and Writing II 3
LAW 7041 Introduction to Legal Studies II .5
 Credits9.5
Year Two
Fall
LAW 7000 Civil Procedure I 2
LAW 7025 Constitutional Law I 3
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 6
 Credits11
Spring
LAW 7001 Civil Procedure II 3
LAW 7030 Property 4
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 4
 Credits11
Year Three
LAW 7100 Legal Profession 3
Seminar 2
Experiential coursework 6
 
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 14
 Credits25
Year Four
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 25
 Credits25
 Total Credits91

Part-time Day (11.5-credit schedule)

Plan of Study Grid
Year One
FallCredits
LAW 7000 Civil Procedure I 2
LAW 7005 Criminal Law 3
LAW 7010 Contracts I 3
LAW 7020 Legal Research and Writing I 3
LAW 7040 Introduction to Legal Studies I .5
 Credits11.5
Spring
LAW 7001 Civil Procedure II 3
LAW 7011 Contracts II 2
LAW 7021 Legal Research and Writing II 3
LAW 7025 Constitutional Law I 3
LAW 7041 Introduction to Legal Studies II .5
 Credits11.5
Year Two
Fall
LAW 7015 Torts 4
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 7
 Credits11
Spring
LAW 7030 Property 4
LAW 7100 Legal Profession 3
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 4
 Credits11
Year Three
Seminar 2
Experiential coursework 6
 
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 15
 Credits23
Year Four
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 23
 Credits23
 Total Credits91

Part-time Day (8.5-credit schedule)

Plan of Study Grid
Year One
FallCredits
LAW 7000 Civil Procedure I 2
LAW 7010 Contracts I 3
LAW 7020 Legal Research and Writing I 3
LAW 7040 Introduction to Legal Studies I .5
 Credits8.5
Spring
LAW 7001 Civil Procedure II 3
LAW 7011 Contracts II 2
LAW 7021 Legal Research and Writing II 3
LAW 7041 Introduction to Legal Studies II .5
 Credits8.5
Year Two
Fall
LAW 7005 Criminal Law 3
LAW 7015 Torts 4
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 3
 Credits10
Spring
LAW 7025 Constitutional Law I 3
LAW 7030 Property 4
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 4
 Credits11
Year Three
LAW 7100 Legal Profession 3
Seminar 2
Experiential coursework 6
 
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 6
 Credits17
Year Four
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 18
 Credits18
Year Five
Law ElectiveAny LAW Course 18
 Credits18
 Total Credits91