JD Program Overview

One of the things that makes UIC Law so special is the variety and number of courses we offer our students. Regardless of which of our courses interest you, you'll develop the strategic, analytical, and transactional skills that are so valuable to employers. We specialize in educating attorneys who can succeed from their first day on the job.

General Requirements

The juris doctor (JD) program consists of a required core curriculum that all students must pass in order to graduate. These courses, listed on the proposed degree tracks below, provide students with a fundamental store of knowledge and skills related to substantive legal concepts and rules, including analysis of cases, statutes, and other sources of law; recognition of relevant facts from a mass of raw data; effective oral and written communication; advocacy; and organization and management of legal work and ideas. Remaining credit hours for the JD are fulfilled by selecting electives from substantive areas of law, including business law, employee benefits, estate planning, information technology law, intellectual property law, international law, public interest law, real estate law, and more.

To successfully earn a JD from UIC Law, degree candidates must:
1) earn credit for at least 90 semester hours of law study
2) obtain an overall GPA of 2.25 or better, and
3) earn a minimum of 3 clinical and/or externship credit hours.

Lawyering Skills Program

A foundational component of the JD curriculum, the Lawyering Skills Program teaches students practical lawyering skills, including legal reasoning, legal research, oral advocacy, drafting, and client counseling over the course of four semesters. That’s double the training you’d receive at most law schools. All Lawyering Skills courses are taught in small sections to provide students the level of personalized instruction they need to succeed throughout law school.

JD Clinical & Externship Opportunities

In addition to the other required courses that ensure our degree candidates develop the basic competencies expected of attorneys, the Law School has numerous experiential education opportunities that offer students a chance to put their skills to the test in real legal work settings. Students can fulfill their experiential learning requirement in one of our Community Legal Clinics, by taking externships, or a combination of both. A maximum of 15 clinic or externship hours may be credited toward the JD.

Required Curriculum

  • Civil Procedure I (3 Credits)
  • Civil Procedure II (3 Credits)
  • Contracts I (3 Credits)
  • Contracts II (3 Credits)
  • Constitutional Law I (3 Credits)
  • Constitutional Law II (3 Credits)
  • Criminal Law (3 Credits)
  • Evidence or Trial Lawyer: Evidence (4 Credits)
  • Expert Learning (1 Credit)
  • Lawyering Skills I (3 Credits)
  • Lawyering Skills II (3 Credits)
  • Lawyering Skills III (2 Credits)
  • Lawyering Skills IV (2 Credits)
  • Professional Responsibility (3 Credits)
  • Property (4 Credits)
  • Torts (4 Credits)

Experiential Learning Requirement

  • Clinic/Externship (3 Fieldwork Credits)

JD Concentrations

JD concentrations offer degree candidates the opportunity to go beyond their foundational knowledge of law to develop further competitive distinction at the JD level. All concentrations are designed to serve the candidate as a guide for selecting electives in specific areas of study and to develop the practice-ready skills that employers seek in career applicants. Each concentration has specific requirements and elective courses a student may take in order to earn the certificate.

JD candidates can pursue a concentration in one of the following areas: