Our College

Our College

The University of Tennessee College of Law offers sound legal education and boasts the longest-running legal clinical program in the country.

Our College

The University of Tennessee College of Law offers sound legal education and boasts the longest-running legal clinical program in the country.

Founded in 1890, the college prepares tomorrow’s lawyers through clinical and skills training, innovative classroom teaching, legal writing, and professional values. UT Law is accredited by the American Bar Association and is a charter member of the Association of American Law Schools.

Our Mission

Our mission is to prepare students for the practice of law by integrating theory and practice across the curriculum. We do so with emphasis on clinical and skills training, innovative classroom teaching, legal writing, and professional values We endeavor to produce high-quality scholarship that examines, explains, critiques, and improves the law and the legal system. We strive to serve the university, the profession, and the public by developing and sharing our talents and expertise.

Learn more about our strategic initiatives.

Degree Programs

The Juris Doctor (JD) degree is your ultimate goal as a law student. In your pursuit of a JD, you can choose from one of our two concentrations and earn a second graduate degree through one of our joint-degree programs.

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.

Students may choose to specialize in either in Advocacy and Dispute Resolution or Business Transactions.

J.D./MBA – Business
J.D./MA – Philosophy
J.D./MPH – Public Health
J.D./MPPA – Public Policy & Admin.

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.

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.

The Master of Laws (LLM) in United States business law is an advanced law degree for practicing lawyers with a Juris Doctor (JD) or its foreign equivalent (for example, a Bachelor of Law degree). UT Law’s LLM program brings non-US lawyers together for a one-year program that will enhance their ability to practice in a global marketplace by providing specialized knowledge in United States business law.

Centers, Institutes, & Programs

At UT Law’s Bettye B. Lewis Career Center, our goal is to add value at every step of the professional journey—whether you’re a law student, alumnus, or an employer, we reduce the complexity, frustration, and risk in meeting your professional goals.

UT Law takes its responsibility to the judicial system seriously. Through its visionary Center for Advocacy and Dispute Resolution, the college offers an academic concentration in Advocacy and Dispute Resolution designed to prepare students for the rigors of the practice of law. The concentration’s tailored curriculum engages students in experiential learning through simulations and real-world experience, helping them master a variety of lawyering skills. Courses are taught by a highly respected and experienced full-time faculty with diverse backgrounds, as well as adjunct faculty who are members of the state and federal bench and bar. In addition to curricular offerings, the center sponsors frequent multidisciplinary symposia, lectures, and special events on emerging legal issues in which students, lawyers, judges, and other professionals participate. Learn more.

The Clayton Center for Entrepreneurial Law seeks to improve the training of business lawyers in both transactional and litigation practices through the Concentration in Business Transactions for JD candidates, the LLM program in United States business lawTransactions: The Tennessee Journal of Business Law, a visiting professor program, faculty and student scholarship, field placement opportunities, the Business Law Clinic, the Trademark Clinic, the Homer A. Jones Jr. Wills Clinic, and presentations for the business bar and community, both regionally and nationwide. Learn more.

The Institute for Professional Leadership helps students develop their leadership skills and professional values through interdisciplinary programming beyond a strictly legal context. The institute hosts courses and practicums in public service and leadership and develops extracurricular programming in leadership and professional development, including collaboration with the college’s Bettye B. Lewis Career Center. Learn more.

Lawyers are professional writers. Whether it be a letter, a motion, a brief, a complaint, a contract, or any of the other multiple documents attorneys are frequently asked to prepare, lawyers spend much of their professional career writing. A lawyer who cannot write effectively is greatly handicapped in his or her ability to represent clients. Through the Legal Writing Program the college takes seriously its role in training students to become effective legal writers. Learn more.

Through this student-driven pro bono program, as well as funding opportunities for students who engage in public interest work, the college is committed to expanding opportunities in public service. This dedication is manifested in UT Pro Bono’s active student involvement, faculty support, and a staff position dedicated to addressing access-to-justice issues. Learn more.

The college’s Mentoring Program offers law students the opportunity to establish a mentoring relationship with a professional in the field. Mentors help students identify and fulfill professional goals while fostering the highest levels of ethics and professionalism. Through these interactions, attorney participants can serve the profession and the community. Students gain new perspectives and insights into issues related to civility, ethics, and professionalism. Learn more.

Accreditation

The University of Tennessee College of Law is fully approved by the American Bar Association. As part of the law school accreditation process, the Accreditation Committee of the American Bar Association Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar requires accredited law schools to complete a relevant to continued compliance with the accreditation standards, including data regarding curriculum, faculty, facilities, fiscal and administrative capacity, student retention, bar passage rates, and student placement. Information obtained is reviewed by the Accreditation Committee in accordance with Rule 6 on Interim Monitoring.

Fully approved law schools undergo a full site evaluation every seven years. The next site visit for the University of Tennessee College of Law will take place during the 2022-23 academic year.