LL.M. or M.J. in Individualized Legal Studies
A candidate for the LL.M./M.J. degree in Individualized Legal Studies (ILS) must successfully complete 24 semester hours of law credit drawn from the regular Drake Law School curriculum.
A candidate who wishes to do so may pursue a concentration within the LL.M./M.J. program by devoting 12 of these 24 credits to one of the areas of study set forth below: Specialized Study
A student may design his or her own concentration by devoting 12 of 24 credits to a specialized area of study, with the approval of the Program Director. Each student can choose his or her own individual specialization as an alternative to the prescribed concentrations (e.g., Human Rights and Global Citizenship, or Sustainable Development) listed below.Business Law Criminal Law Family Counseling and the Law Human Rights and Global Citizenship Legislative Practice and Government Relations
(LL.M. only)Sustainable Development
For a list of course options for each specialization, see Areas of Concentration
Written Project Requirement
Subject to waiver by the Program Director, a candidate for the LL.M./M.J. in Individualized Legal Studies shall write a paper of two to four (2-4) credit hours under the supervision of a full-time member of the Drake law faculty. With the permission of the supervising professor, the LL.M./M.J. written project requirement can be satisfied by a paper or written project completed for any course within the LL.M./M.J. curriculum.
The minimum standards for the paper are as follows:
- The paper must be a written project of sufficient quality and suitably documented for a project of its type to be deemed of professional quality by the supervising professor.
- The project must be at least 35 pages long, double-spaced on 8 ½” x 11” paper, including any footnotes.
- The project must involve submission of a draft to the supervising professor, with the requirement of a rewrite at the option of that professor.
Experiential Training Requirement
Clinic Internship Requirements
Subject to waiver by the Program Director, a candidate for the LL.M./M.J. degree is required to satisfy an experiential training requirement by participating in one of the law school’s clinics or internship programs.Credit vs. Compensation
The internship experiences which may qualify for the Experiential Training Requirement are sometimes done for academic credit and sometimes done for compensation. Accreditation rules do not permit a candidate to earn academic credit for work for which the candidate is compensated (i.e., paid internships). However, with the Program Director’s approval, a candidate can satisfy the experiential training requirement in a paid internship; however, the internship will not count toward the required 24 semester hours of Individualized Legal Studies course work.
Unless the Program Director grants a waiver, LL.M. candidates who do not have a basic or an advanced law degree in a common law jurisdiction and all M.J. candidates must complete:
- Introduction to the American Legal System which will familiarize the student with the structure of the American legal system and the requisite research techniques to support continued study; and
- Legal Writing and/or Legal Research which will provide a special focus on the research and writing needs of international scholars and non-lawyers.