In 1996, the faculty and administration implemented a large-scale and long-term Curriculum Revision project. The guiding principles behind the reform were to require the completion of mid-year examinations in year-long courses and to reduce the number of required courses whenever possible, thereby enabling students to focus their energies on particular areas of law, or in the concentrations currently offered in the areas of civil litigation, financial services, health and biomedical law, intellectual property law and international law. The curriculum is designed to provide each law student with the basic knowledge essential for a successful practitioner while also providing opportunities for individual concentration in specialized areas of the law.
The Day Division of Suffolk University Law School comprises approximately 1,000 students. Day Program students are able to substantially devote all their time to the study of law. This program requires the traditional three years (six semesters) to complete.
The Evening Division is designed for students who want to pursue a legal education on a part-time basis. It can be completed in four years (eight semesters) of part-time study. Evening Division students are awarded the same degree as that earned by Day Division students. First year Evening Division students usually attend classes three evenings a week on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, beginning at 6:00 pm.
Day and Evening Division applicants are only accepted into the regular degree-seeking program. Applicants may not audit courses or apply for a conditional acceptance. A total of 84 semester hours is required to earn the JD degree.
As a candidate for admission you must choose to apply to either the Day or the Evening Division. Students who have completed the first academic year in the Law School, and who are in good academic standing, are eligible to transfer internally to either the Day or the Evening division.
The study of law requires an ability to analyze and organize complicated fact situations. The law faculty assist students in learning how to approach a complicated fact pattern either through the study of adjudicated cases or the use of carefully constructed problems. Students are challenged by the questions and comments of the professor and their fellow students as they work with cases or problems. From time to time the professor may clarify or lecture on some points of fact or law, but the ultimate responsibility for developing the skills of legal analysis rests on the student.
It is the student’s role to prepare the course assignments carefully, to utilize the resources available in the law libraries, to attend class and be prepared to actively discuss the assigned materials. In class, students must analyze the presentation of their classmates, compare the work of others to their own, and be prepared to respond intelligently to the questions asked by the professor. Thus, students’ roles are active ones, and the value of their legal education will depend in large measure on the enthusiasm, dedication and responsibility with which they approach their work.
EVENING DIVISION REQUIREMENTS
Students who cannot devote a substantial portion of time to the study of law may apply for enrollment in the Evening Division and complete the work for the Juris Doctor degree in four years (eight semesters).
Semester Hour Requirements
The academic year consists of two semesters: the first, or fall, semester commencing in August, and the second, or spring, semester commencing in January. The Evening Division requires eight semesters of class work. A total of 84 semester hours is required to receive the Juris Doctor degree.
Classes in the Evening Division are usually conducted on weeknights between 6 and 10 pm.
Evening Division Requirements Effective 2014-2015 Academic Year
|Civil Procedure 1||2||2|
|Legal Practice Skills||3||2|
|Professional Responsiblity 3|
|Base Menu4/Electives 5,6,7||4-7||5-8|
|Third-Year||Base Menu 4|
|Fourth-Year||Base Menu 4|
DAY DIVISION REQUIREMENTS
The Day Division course of study consists of three academic years of full-time study. Under the regulations of the Law School, Standards of the American Bar Association, and the Rules of the Board of Bar Examiners of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, only those students who can devote substantially all of their working time to the study of law are eligible to enroll in the full-time Day Division and to complete their law study in three years.
Semester Hour Requirements
The academic year consists of two semesters: the first, or fall, semester commencing in September, and the second, or spring, semester commencing in January. The Day Division requires six semesters of class work. A total of 84 semester hours is required to receive the Juris Doctor degree.
Day Division Requirements Effective 2014-2015 Academic Year
|Constitutional Law 8||0||4|
|Legal Practice Skills||3||2|
|Second-Year||Professional Responsibility 3|
|Base Menu 4|
|Third-Year||Base Menu 4|
After the first year of study, the curriculum consists of a Base Menu and Advanced Electives. The Base Menu reflects the faculty’s belief that although students may begin their professional lives in very varied settings, there are fundamentals to the law as a whole that cannot be ignored.
Students are required to take one course within three out of the five following subject categories:
Business Associations & Agency
Basic Income Tax
All students must enroll in 3 out of 5 of the Base Menu Subject Areas
Any one or any number of these courses will satisfy the Base Menu Requirement for that subject only.
Prior to graduation, each student is required to take one course from the Skills Menu. The purpose of the Skills requirement is to assist students in developing skills required to successfully perform lawyering tasks, such as problem solving, legal analysis and reasoning, legal research, factual investigation, communication, counseling, negotiation, litigation and alternative dispute resolution procedures, organization and management of legal work, and recognizing and resolving ethical dilemmas in practice.
|All Clinics and Legal Internships||Investment Management|
|Adv. Environmental & Energy Law||Labor and Employment Arbitration|
|Advanced Legal Research||Law Practice Planning|
|Advanced Legal Writing||Lawyering in an Age of Smart Machines|
|Alternate Dispute Resolution||Legislative Process, Drafting, & Interpretation|
|Appellate Practice||Litigating Federal and State Constitutional Claims|
|Appellate Practice Advocacy||Mediation|
|Arbitration of Domestic and International Disputes||Negotiation for Lawyers|
|Business of Intellectual Property Innovation||Patent Litigation Seminar|
|Business Planning||Patent Prosecution I:Drafting|
|Business of Practice: Hit the Ground Running||Patent Prosecution II: PTO Practice|
|Climate Change Law Policy and Legislation||Pretrial Civil Litigation|
|Commercial Lending and Finance Practicum||Pretrial Federal Criminal Practice|
|Counseling Technology Leading Emerging Enterprises||Private Placements|
|Cyberspace and Technology||Probate/Family Trial Practice|
|Drafting Discovery Documents||Technology, Energy and the Environment|
|Drafting Wills and Trusts||Transactional Law and Practice|
|Emerging Companies||Trial Advocacy - Criminal|
|Employment Law Practice||Trial Advocacy - Family|
|Environmental Law||Trial Advocacy - Intensive|
|Intensive Research and Writing||Trial Evidence and Technique|
|International and Comparative Legal Research||Trial Practice|
|Interviewing and Counseling||Trial Practice: Criminal|
All students should take at least one of the Perspectives courses listed below before graduation. The purpose of the recommendation is to help students develop an analytical perspective on our legal system, by viewing it through the lens of another discipline, probing the foundations, values or assumptions underlying our legal institutions, or studying alternatives to our own doctrinal approach to legal problem
|American Legal History: 1877 to present||Justice, Morality and Film|
|American Legal Thought||Justice, Rights and the Law|
|Animal Law||Law and Economics|
|Civil Disobedience||Law and Literature|
|Civil Rights Litigation||Law and Public Policy|
|Comparative Criminal Procedures||Law and Religion|
|Comparative Law||Lawyer as Public Policy Maker|
|Comparative Legal Cultures Contemporary American Politics||Public Interest Law Seminar|
|Indigenous Peoples ’ Rights and U.S. Law||Race, Gender and the Law|
|International Children's Rights||Rape, Culture and the Law|
|International Human Rights||Selected Topics in Criminal Law: Applying Identity Theories to the Criminal Justice System|
|International Human Rights: The Death Penalty and Related Issues||Sexual Orientation in the Law: Regulation and Recognition|
|International Human Rights: A Woman's Model||Sex Trafficking|
|Issues of Law, Policy, and Ethics in Global Technology||Women & the Law|
|Jurisprudence||Women, Film and Law|
|Women's Health Law & Policy Seminar|