About us

Consistently ranked in the top 1 percent of universities worldwide, Pennsylvania State University is one of the largest and most respected universities in the United States. Considered among the nation’s most prestigious law schools and over 185 years old, Penn State Dickinson Law is the oldest law school in Pennsylvania and one of the most well-established in the country. Strategically located close to the major urban centers of Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Baltimore and New York City, Dickinson Law offers a state-of-the-art facility and a wide range of services that support advanced legal scholarship.

The Master of Laws (LL.M.) program is designed for both domestic and internationally trained legal professionals seeking advanced study in law. The one-year program offers students a high-level understanding of the U.S. legal system and the opportunity to pursue specialized coursework in a wide array of areas such as: “Cyber Law, Data Privacy, and Information Security”, “Health Law and Policy”, “Intellectual Property and Innovation”. All LL.M. applicants are automatically considered for generous merit-based scholarships at the time of admission.

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Study program

Penn State Dickinson Law offers a generalized LL.M. degree program designed to give students a high-level understanding of the U.S. legal system. Studying alongside J.D. students, LL.M. students may enroll in a wide variety of courses that allow concentration in certain types of law or law-related topics. In addition to completing basic degree requirements, LL.M. students may opt to pursue specific curricular tracks to fulfill prescribed course requirements associated with bar exam eligibility or complete a certificate program.

LL.M. students must earn a minimum of 24 credits which can be taken full-time over one academic year. Students may opt to stay for a third semester of legal study with the intent of completing an experiential learning program or preparing for a U.S. bar exam. To earn the LL.M. degree, students must successfully complete the following courses:

– Introduction to the U.S. Legal System (2 credits, Fall semester)
– LL.M. Legal Research (1 credit, Fall semester)
– LL.M. Legal Writing (2 credits, Spring semester)

Additionally, LL.M. students must successfully complete one course from the following list:

– Civil Procedure
– Constitutional Law I
– Contracts
– Criminal Law
– Criminal Procedure
– Property
– Torts

Application Process

The LL.M. program at Penn State Dickinson Law is highly selective with a limited number of qualified students admitted each year. To be considered for admission, applicants must have completed, or be in the process of completing, a first professional degree in law. This is generally a J.D. from an ABA-approved, U.S. law school or the equivalent to the J.D. from an international law school. Successful applicants are often licensed to practice law and have significant professional experience in legal practice.

Dickinson Law maintains a holistic approach to admission. Successful applicants will have provided a clear and compelling rationale for pursuing an LL.M. degree and specifically at Penn State Dickinson Law. It is important that applicants have well-defined career plans and demonstrate the importance of earning an LL.M. degree in realization of those plans.

For admission to the LL.M. program, applicants must submit an application via the Law School Admission Council (LSAC). Dickinson Law does not assess any application fees.

While most students seek to enroll in the fall semester (August), LL.M. students also have the option of beginning the LL.M. program in the spring semester (January).

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Penn State Dickinson Law is committed to providing every student access to a world-class legal education. All LL.M. applicants are automatically considered for merit-based scholarships at the time of admission.

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