Most students earning a law degree receive a Juris Doctor. Other law programs award a Master of Laws. If you're interested in becoming a law student or working as a legal professional, read on to learn more.
Inside Law School
An undergraduate degree is a prerequisite for law school. There isn't a specific type of program or set of courses that law school applicants need to complete. However, students can take certain undergraduate courses to prepare for the extensive writing, speaking and research requirements of a law program.
Law school students enroll in Juris Doctor (J.D.) programs accredited by the American Bar Association (ABA). These programs offer coursework in rules of procedure, evidence, the role of case law, due process, government organization and constitutional provisions. J.D. candidates can often specialize in a particular area, like intellectual property, real estate or taxation. Toward the end of a J.D. program, students will be able to practice under the supervision of a licensed attorney in law clinics.
Master of Laws (LL.M.) programs are usually designed for experienced attorneys. However, some joint programs award a J.D. and a Master of Laws. The LL.M. allows students to learn more about a specialized area of practice, such as environmental, immigration, tax or international law. Other programs award a J.D./Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), allowing students to earn a doctorate in a field that may be complementary to the area of law they wish to practice.
Learn More About Law
This field offers opportunities to practice different types of law and continually update one's skills. Education-Portal.com has a variety of free resources that provide more information about careers, degree options and distance learning opportunities.
The most common law degree is the Juris Doctor. Other programs offer specializations, concentrations or specific coursework in an area of practice.
- Constitutional Law Degree
- Corporate Law Degree
- Environmental Law Program
- International Law Program
- Degree in Immigration Law
After earning a J.D. and passing the bar exam, law school graduates can enter general practice as an attorney. However, many specialize in a particular area of practice after earning a J.D. or LL.M.
Distance Learning Options
Most distance learning opportunities are available through schools based in California. These schools are recognized by the Committee of Bar Examiners of the State Bar of California, allowing graduates of online J.D. programs to sit for the California bar exam. However, students in all states can find LL.M. programs online, as well as some stand-alone classes.
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