Begin your legal education journey with UT Law.
Juris Doctor (J.D.)
The Juris Doctor (JD) degree is your ultimate goal as a law student.
In 2016, the college revised its first-year (1L) curriculum, which now focuses on practical training, legal writing, and career planning. Experience-focused opportunities are available through courses in civil procedure and torts and a lab course in transactional lawyering. Plus, the college’s introductory criminal law and legal process courses connect and reinforce theoretical concepts in a more active, writing-focused experience. In addition, a course in lawyering and professionalism provides students with basic training in essential attorney skills while introducing the values of the legal profession. The new curriculum also gives all students hands-on experience with both litigation and transactional lawyering in the first year, providing them with an early opportunity to consider either of those fields as a career path.
Accelerated J.D. Program
If you’re interested in earning your JD in less than three years, you have a few options to consider at UT Law. These options will allow you to graduate by the fall of your third year—one semester earlier than usual. View two of our sample accelerated curricula.
The College of Law offers several dual-degree programs that enable students to obtain two advanced degrees in less time than it would normally take to earn both degrees separately. Whether you’re seeking an advanced dual-degree in business (JD-MBA), philosophy (JD-MA), public policy and administration (JD-MPPA), or social work (JD-MSSW), our partnerships with the Haslam College of Business, the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Education, Health & Human Sciences, and the College of Social Work are designed to accommodate your interests, broaden your perspectives, give you highly-marketable skills and experience, and save you time and money.
Flexible Schedule Degree Program
This program allows flexibility for students who cannot commit to full-time study. While the traditional course load for first-year law students is between 14 and 16 hours of class credit per semester over three years, the flexible schedule option allows students to take a reduced load of 10 credit hours their first semester, and 11 hours during their second.
Students admitted to the flexible schedule JD will take no more than 11 credit hours per semester and may take up to five years to finish their JD studies.
Flexible schedule JD students may also enroll in the college’s dual degree programs including the JD-MBA in business, the JD-MA in philosophy, the JD-MPH in public health, or the JD-MPPA in public policy and administration.
UT 3+3 is an accelerated dual-degree program offered by the College of Law and the College of Arts and Sciences, which saves students an entire year of tuition and related costs, without sacrificing quality of education. In the program, students complete three years of approved undergraduate coursework in the College of Arts and Sciences. Following their third year, participating students admitted to the College of Law become full-time, first-year law students. The first year of law study will count toward a student’s law degree and also toward the completion of his or her bachelor’s degree. Two additional years of law study follow, after which a student earns a juris doctor degree.
In addition to earning a Juris Doctor (JD), students have the opportunity to complete one of two graduate certificates.
The Health Policy Graduate Certificate – offered in conjunction with the College of Education, Health & Human Sciences. This certificate is intended to prepare future leaders, researchers, and educators to be active in all aspects of policymaking relative to health and health care. Students complete the certificate by taking two to four courses outside of the College of Law and can complete the requirements of the certificate within their three-year J.D. course of study. Contact Professor Zack Buck for additional information.
The Graduate Certificate in Law and Social Welfare is offered in conjunction with the College of Social Work. This certificate is intended to provide law students with the opportunity to focus a portion of their studies on courses related to legal services for the underrepresented and to benefit from interdisciplinary study in forensic social work. An understanding of theories of social work and interpersonal dynamics may enhance a lawyer’s ability to represent and advocate on behalf of clients and victims of crimes. Contact Professor Joy Radice for additional information.
Master of Legal Studies (MLS) and Graduate Certificate in Legal Studies
Our program will benefit individuals whose careers intersect with the law but who do not need to earn a law degree. The program provides knowledge of the law and problem-solving skills that will enable graduates to more effectively deal with legal matters in their jobs.
First- year law students at other institutions may apply to transfer to UT Law to complete their legal training. The transfer application period is April 1 through July 1. Application files should be complete no later than July to be considered for enrollment in the fall semester, which begins in late August.
Take the first step and apply to UT Law