In order to be eligible for graduation from the Moritz College of Law with an LL.M. degree, candidates must accumulate a minimum of 24 semester credit hours through the successful completion of all coursework. Out of the 24 minimum credits, five (5) are comprised of required courses: LL.M. Analysis, Research & Writing (2 credits) and U.S. Legal Systems (3 credits). Students typically complete all required credits in two semesters, however, there is also the option to enroll in the three-semester program (see FAQs for details).
– LL.M. Analysis, Research & Writing – Two (2) Semester Credit Hours
This course introduces international students to U.S. legal analysis, writing, and research. Through interactive class exercises and written assignments, students gain experience with legal communications in the U.S. Course assignments include an email to a fictional law firm partner and an office memorandum addressing a simulated client’s legal problem.
– U.S. Legal Systems – Three (3) Semester Credit Hours
The course in United States Legal System and Legal Tradition is designed to introduce foreign-trained lawyers to the unique aspects of law and legal practice in the United States. Topics include: 1) The Nature and Sources of American Law–The structure of the United States, and its courts, and how statutes and constitutional provisions are interpreted by courts. The idea of the common law and how the common law tradition influences how law is made and interpreted. 2) An Introduction to the “Structural” Constitution–An examination of the powers and interrelationship among the judicial, legislative and executive branches of the federal government; the idea of federalism and the relationship between the federal government and the states. 3) The Constitution and Rights–An examination of the role of courts in enforcing rights secured by the Constitution, including substantive and procedural due process, equal protection, freedom of speech and of the press, and the concept of unenumerated rights. 4) Introduction to Civil Litigation in American Courts–Introduction to civil procedure, including subject matter jurisdiction of the federal courts, personal jurisdiction, jury trial, pleading and discovery and adjudication without trial.
LL.M. Academic Concentrations
At Ohio State, LL.M. students have the option to enroll in courses that will qualify as a specialization in a selected area of law. By taking a minimum of 12 semester hours of related courses, the student earns a certificate for an academic concentration in the area.
The following six concentration areas are pre-designed to meet the needs of many LL.M. students:
- Alternative Dispute Resolution
- Corporate Law
- Criminal Law and Procedure
- Employment and Labor Law
- Intellectual Property and Technology Law
- International and Comparative Law
In addition, LL.M. students may design a customized concentration or choose a general LL.M. degree, where they take various courses that interest them. Finally, students focusing on preparing for a U.S. bar exam may take general bar-tested subjects. All academic and course decisions are made in consultation with the Assistant Dean for International and Graduate Affairs.