Chicago-Kent College of Law, Illinois Institute of Technology

The information on this page was provided by the law school.

Official Guide to ABA-Approved JD Programs


Chicago-Kent College of Law at Illinois Institute of Technology is a national leader in legal education, recognized for the strength of its faculty and for its innovative approaches to traditional legal education. The second oldest law school in Illinois, Chicago-Kent was founded in 1888 by two judges who believed that legal education should be available to working men and women. The law school’s first female student graduated in 1891, and the first African American woman admitted to the bar in Illinois (and among the first three admitted to practice law in the United States) was a graduate of the class of 1894. Today, Chicago-Kent students come from 39 states and are citizens of 20 countries. Fifty-six percent of the students are women, and 31 percent are students of color.

Drawing on its distinctive affiliation with Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago-Kent is at the vanguard of exploring new frontiers in the law raised by biotechnology, cybersecurity, legal innovation and technology, intellectual property, international business transactions and trade, and much more. Chicago-Kent is located in downtown Chicago, the heart of the city’s commercial and legal communities. The law school is accredited by the American Bar Association and is a member of the Association of American Law Schools and the Order of the Coif.

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The JD Program

Chicago-Kent's forward-thinking approach to legal education combines academic rigor with practical training, readying graduates for a rapidly changing legal industry. Our students receive a comprehensive and practice-focused legal writing foundation that empowers them to be successful at every step of their careers. With faculty who are both scholars and practitioners, a dynamic legal externship program, pioneering legal clinics, and award-winning moot court and trial advocacy teams, Chicago-Kent provides students with skills-based learning opportunities that prepare them to practice law in one of the largest legal markets in the U.S. and beyond.

Curriculum

Both full-time and part-time programs are available. Full-time students usually complete the JD degree in three years, and part-time students usually finish in four years. Students may apply to transfer between divisions after completing the first year. First-year class sizes typically range from 30 to 90 students.

Students admitted to the fall entering class may take advantage of the early summer start option by taking Criminal Law during the summer term. First-year students may also take advantage of the law school’s innovative 1L Your Way Program, which permits full-time students to take either a specialized elective course or a unique first-year clinical course during the spring semester.

Faculty

The foundation for academic excellence at Chicago-Kent is derived from its faculty, who engage in broad-ranging legal scholarship and research. As advisors frequently approached for their expertise, faculty members help shape policy and thinking on a variety of issues, and make it a point to involve students in their particular areas of influence.

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Practical Skills Training

Legal Research and Writing: Chicago-Kent’s acclaimed legal research and writing program is one of the most comprehensive in the nation. The three-year, five-course curriculum teaches students to research, analyze, and communicate effectively about a wide range of legal problems.

Clinical Education: C-K Law Group: The Law Offices of Chicago-Kent, a fee-for-service law firm encompassing one of the largest in-house clinical education programs in the country, offers 10 clinical practice areas and coordinates externship placements in law firms, corporate legal departments, government agencies, and not-for-profit organizations, and with federal and state court judges.

Trial Advocacy: The law school offers a two-semester sequence in trial advocacy and an intensive course taught by veteran judges and experienced practitioners.

JD Certificate Programs

Business Law: The program prepares students to practice corporate law through a broad range of business courses, a specialized writing course, and business-related experience.

Criminal Litigation: The program prepares students for careers in criminal law as either prosecutors or defense counsel. Students take classes in both substantive areas and practical skills development—including evidence, criminal law, criminal procedure, trial advocacy, criminal clinic and externships.

Environmental and Energy Law: The program explores environmental and energy policy initiatives, the legislation that was enacted to effectuate these policies, and the practical implementation of this legislation. Students acquire an understanding of the legal context in which environmental decisions are made in light of contemporary political, scientific, and economic realities. Students also gain the ability to apply legal requirements to regulated facilities, sites, and activities and to communicate as an effective environmental advocate.

Intellectual Property Law: The program focuses on issues relating to patents, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets, and design protection, both in the United States and abroad. Students can choose from approximately 25 IP-related courses taught by six full-time faculty members and prominent attorneys from the IP community.

International and Comparative Law: The program encompasses study in international business and trade, international and comparative law, international human rights, and specialized areas related to international and cross-border legal issues.

Labor and Employment Law: The program provides students with theoretical education and skills training in the law governing the workplace. Students benefit from experiential learning opportunities that offer interaction with leading academics and prominent legal practitioners. Through the Institute for Law and the Workplace, students have access to a national center for research, training, dialogue, and reflection on the law that governs the workplace as well as mentorships, journal editorial board opportunities, conferences, and special scholarships.

Legal Innovation and Technology: Students learn methodologies for applying technology and quantitative analysis to the delivery of legal services. Students also explore how technological advancements and more efficient business processes are shaping the practice of law.

Litigation and Alternative Dispute Resolution: Students in the program examine the connection between legal doctrine, skills and values, and the art of lawyering to become reflective practitioners who incorporate high standards of competence, ethics, and social responsibility.

Praxis Program: This specialized curriculum was created to meet the requests of employers seeking law school graduates with a high level of real-world skills. Among other topics, students explore issues of law practice management and learn how to build and market their own legal portfolios. Praxis received the Illinois State Bar Association’s first Excellence in Legal Education Award in 2015.

Public Interest Law: Students in the program develop knowledge and experience related to public interest law through individualized curriculum and career planning as well as a course focused on the actual practice of public interest law in a wide range of settings. Chicago-Kent also supports a number of public interest resources and activities, including the Public Interest Resource Center (PIRC) and the Center for Access to Justice and Technology.

Workplace Litigation and Alternative Dispute Resolution: Students in the program become well-versed in the highly complementary areas of litigation, alternative dispute resolution, and labor and employment law.

Joint Degree Programs

Chicago-Kent Joint Degrees:

J.D./LL.M. in Financial Services Law

With Illinois Tech's Stuart School of Business:

J.D./M.B.A.
J.D./M.S. in Finance
J.D./M.S. in Environmental Management and Sustainability
J.D./M.P.P.A. (Master of Public Policy and Administration)

Institutes and Centers

Chicago-Kent is home to 12 institutes and centers with missions that range from conducting scholarly and practical research on legal and social issues to providing topical programming to developing public interest services. Through the initiatives listed below, many of which involve cross-disciplinary projects, students learn to appreciate and adapt to major social and global influences that can change the legal profession and its practice.

  • Center for Access to Justice and Technology
  • Center for Design, Law and Technology
  • Center for Empirical Studies of Intellectual Property
  • Center for National Security and Human Rights Law
  • Center on Socio-Legal Approaches to Property
  • Institute for Compliance in in Financial Markets
  • Institute for Law and the Humanities
  • Institute for Law and the Workplace
  • Institute for Science, Law, and Technology
  • Institute on the Supreme Court of the United States (ISCOTUS)
  • Justice John Paul Stevens Jury Center
  • The Law Lab

Student Life

Student Organizations and Activities

Student editors and staff, in association with a faculty editor, publish the Chicago-Kent Law Review in symposium format. Moot court and trial advocacy teams successfully compete in local, regional, and national competitions each year, providing numerous opportunities to develop litigation expertise. Diverse student interests are represented in a wide variety of social, political, and professional student groups.

Location and Housing

Chicago-Kent is located within the downtown “Loop,” blocks away from the city’s courthouses, government centers, and countless law firms. A thriving nightlife and restaurant district lies within walking distance—and public transportation can conveniently take you anywhere from Lake Michigan’s iconic beaches to the city’s many diverse neighborhoods.

Affordable housing is available in nearby urban and suburban neighborhoods. Dormitory housing is available on the university’s main campus, approximately five miles south of the law school. The law school is close to all public transportation downtown.

Library and Facilities

Chicago-Kent’s modern, 10-story building is designed to support a first-class legal education and offers an infrastructure that embraces a practice and technology-focused curriculum. The building features a three-story atrium, technologically advanced classrooms and courtrooms, an auditorium, student lounges, a fitness center, and a cafeteria. A game room on the fifth floor gives students a comfortable place to relax and enjoy a wide variety of board and table games. The law school’s library provides a center for study and research with access to extensive print and electronic collections supported by skilled, friendly staff. Library space includes group study rooms to enhance collaboration and balconies that provide outdoor study areas.

Chicago-Kent’s courtrooms are among the best trial advocacy training facilities in the nation and set the stage for the law school’s hands-on litigation technology course. The Abraham Lincoln Marovitz Courtroom, named for one of our most distinguished alumni and the former senior judge of the US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, is a teaching facility as well as a working courtroom. The Bruce M. Kohen Courtroom, named for an acclaimed alumnus and litigator, incorporates emerging computer and audiovisual technologies, including 90-inch video walls and document cameras.

Career Placement and Bar Passage

Career Services

The Career Services Office, with four full-time and two part-time staff, provides career counseling, résumé and cover letter review, and interview preparation. In addition to running the on-campus interviewing program and participating in various job fairs, the office posts jobs and maintains an online document library with employer resources, and offers structured professional development programs. The office also plans career panels and networking events, and performs employer outreach to learn of potential job opportunities.

Bar Exam Preparation

Chicago-Kent is committed to providing students with the academic foundation necessary for success on the bar exam. We encourage students to think about bar preparation beginning in the first year, with the goal of being bar ready by graduation. Our Director of Bar Success oversees a program of support that includes a series of bar readiness review sessions for 3L students on key bar subjects and Bar Exam Strategies, a Barbri-designed course for students looking to get a head start on summer bar preparation. The course is required for selected students whom the law school identifies as needing additional assistance and sharpens the analytic and writing skills needed for practice as well as for success on the bar exam.

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Tuition and Aid

Chicago-Kent is committed to helping students manage the cost of a legal education. New students will pay a guaranteed, per-credit-hour tuition rate for their law school studies. The rate is contingent upon the year in which a student commences studies at Chicago-Kent and will not increase for the duration of the J.D. program.

Substantial scholarship assistance is offered to entering and continuing students based on factors that include academic achievement, test scores, leadership ability, and potential contributions to the law school community. The Honors Scholars Program provides renewable scholarships of full tuition and special seminars to a select group of students who demonstrate exceptional academic and leadership ability.

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Admission Decisions: Beyond the Numbers

Admission is selective. Each application is individually reviewed and decisions are based on a range of factors, including quantitative and qualitative criteria. Although the GPA and LSAT are important criteria, consideration is also given to nonnumerical factors such as the nature and rigor of the undergraduate curriculum, writing ability, graduate work and professional experience, extracurricular activities, diversity, and the personal statement. The admission requirements for the full- and part-time divisions are the same. The law school is committed to attracting and retaining students from a variety of racial, ethnic, economic, geographic, and educational backgrounds.

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Admitted Applicant Profile

25-75% UGPA Range at Chicago-Kent:

3.19 to 3.69

2.00
2.58
3.16
3.74
4.33

25-75% LSAT Score Range at Chicago-Kent:

152 to 161

120
135
150
165
180

25-75% UGPA Range at Chicago-Kent:

3.19 to 3.69

2.00
2.58
3.16
3.74
4.33

25-75% LSAT Score Range at Chicago-Kent:

152 to 161

120
135
150
165
180

25-75% UGPA Range at Chicago-Kent:

3.19 to 3.69

2.00
2.58
3.16
3.74
4.33

25-75% LSAT Score Range at Chicago-Kent:

152 to 161

120
135
150
165
180

Contact Information

Office of Admissions, 565 West Adams Street,
Chicago, IL 60661,
United States