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LLM Degree Requirements

General Requirements

In order to be eligible to receive the LLM degree, a student must attend full-time for two academic semesters, taking no more than 15 credits per semester and no less than 9 credits per semester, and complete the requirements of either the Course Track or the Thesis Track.

Course Track

Course Track Requirements

a) Complete 23 credits, or complete 20 credits and complete a senior writing project*, and

b) Receive the grade of “F with credit” in no more than four semester hours of coursework.

The 5 credits earned in the summer program count toward the credit requirements.

*Senior Writing Project: Those choosing to pursue the senior writing project typically do so as part of a seminar in which the student is enrolled, but it may be undertaken through independent study with a faculty member. The parameters of the paper are determined in consultation with the faculty member involved but, in general, these projects are in-depth research papers on a topic of the student’s choice. (Note, however, that these papers are substantially less ambitious than the thesis required for the Thesis Track, described below.)

Thesis Track

Thesis Track Requirements

a) Complete 20 credits, 13 of which include courses and seminars; and

b) Satisfactorily complete a scholarly thesis, worth 7 credits, of high analytical quality suitable for publication in a law journal; and

c) Receive the grade of “F with credit” in no more than four semester hours of coursework. 

LLM Public Service Program

The Toll Public Interest Center is excited to welcome LLMs as participants in Penn Law’s commitment to service. As an integral part of the LLM program, public service and pro bono provide students with important opportunities to develop their professional skills while learning more about the communities that exist beyond the walls of Penn Law.

Every LLM student is expected to complete at least 10 hours of public service/pro bono before graduation. Many LLMs exceed the expectation and receive recognition at our annual event in April honoring all Penn Law students who excel in service.

For more information and placement opportunities, please visit the Toll Public Interest Center

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