UDC David A. Clarke School of Law offers a traditional three-year, full-time J.D. program and a four-year, part-time, evening J.D. program. The admission process is the same for both programs.

To qualify for graduation, a student must satisfactorily complete a course of study consisting of not fewer than 90 credit hours. Non-elective courses account for between seventy-one (71) and seventy-eight (78) of the ninety (90) credit hours, including fifty-three (53) to fifty-five (55) credit hours of required courses; eight (8) to nine (9) credit hours of core courses typically tested on most state bar examinations; and ten (10) to fourteen (14) credit hours of clinic. Students may choose their remaining credit hours from a diverse menu of elective courses.

Courses Required of All New Students

  • 1L Lab (P/F)
  • Civil Procedure I and II (6)
  • Constitutional Law I and II (8)
  • Contracts I and II (6)
  • Criminal Law (3)
  • Criminal Procedure (3)
  • Evidence (4)
  • Lawyering Process I and II (5)
  • Legal and Bar Success Foundations (3)
  • Legal Research (1)
  • Moot Court (2)
  • Professional Responsibility (2)
  • Property I and II (6)
  • Torts (4)

Plus three additional courses from the following ‘core’ courses:

  • Administrative Law (3)
  • Business Organizations I (3)
  • Business Organizations II (3)
  • Conflict of Laws (3)
  • Family Law (2-3)
  • Federal Courts (3)
  • Federal Taxation (Tax I) (3)
  • Remedies (3)
  • Uniform Commercial Code I (3)
  • Wills and Estates (3)

Plus two 7-credit clinics if enrolled in the full-time division or one 10-credit clinic if enrolled in the part-time division.

Students with a CGPA below 2.5 may be required to take additional courses.

Upper Level Writing Requirement (ULWR)

Research and Legal Analysis Writing Requirement
Students may satisfy this requirement by completing successfully one of five alternative writing options: 1) Independent Study paper; 2) Seminar paper; 3) Law Review note or comment; 4) Advanced Legal Writing; or 5) Outside Writing Competitions (Moot Court or other).

Applied Legal Writing Requirement
The second component of the ULWR is a Clinic Portfolio. Students may meet the Clinic Portfolio requirement by producing a qualifying written product in each required clinic. Written products may include a variety of types of documents that demonstrate competency in Written Communication and Legal Analysis.


Elective Courses Offered Every Year

  • Administrative Law
  • Advanced Criminal Procedure
  • Advanced Legal Writing
  • Business Organizations I and II
  • Civil Rights in the 21st Century Seminar
  • Conflict of Laws
  • Employment Discrimination Seminar or Employment Law
  • Externship and Externship Seminar
  • Family Law
  • Federal Courts
  • Federal Taxation (Tax I)
  • Immigration Law or Immigration Law Seminar
  • Remedies
  • Uniform Commercial Code I
  • Wills and Estates

Elective Courses Offered As Often As Feasible

  • Adv. Legal Analysis & Strategies: Bar Exam Multiple Choice
  • Advanced Legal Research: Essential Skills
  • Advanced Torts
  • Asylum and Refugee Law: Trial Skills
  • Criminal Justice, Social Justice and Community Justice
  • Death Penalty & the Law
  • Demonstration Law Seminar
  • Education Law
  • Entertainment Law Seminar
  • Gender and Sexual Orientation Under the Law
  • Health Law Seminar
  • Intellectual Property Seminar
  • International Human Rights
  • International Law Seminar
  • Introduction to Bar Strategies
  • Introduction to Critical Race Theory
  • Labor & Employment Law
  • Law & Justice Practicum
  • Mass Communications Law
  • Mindful Lawyering
  • Mock Trial Competition
  • Moot Court Competition
  • Negotiations
  • Non-profit Law
  • Perspectives on Social Justice
  • Race and the Law or Race and the Law Seminar
  • Rights of Persons with Disabilities Seminar
  • Service Learning Practicum & Seminar
  • State and Local Government Law
  • System Change: Theory and Practice
  • Technology Policy
  • Trial Advocacy
  • Trial Advocacy: Deposition Skills

Pathways to Practice

Students are free to choose any combination of electives that sound interesting. For students who know they would like to specialize in a certain kind of law, we have developed Pathways to Practice in eight broad practice areas. Pathways are designed to help students select courses and experiences that connect with specific career paths.

  • Civil Rights and Equality
  • Criminal Law
  • Family and Juvenile Law
  • Housing and Community Development Law
  • Immigration Law and Human Rights
  • Public Service/Public Policy/Government
  • Solo and Law Firm Practice
  • Transactional Law Practice

Course descriptions for required, core and elective courses can be found in the Course Catalog. Detailed graduation requirements can be found in the Student Handbook.