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Future LLM Students

University of Pennsylvania Law School

3501 Sansom Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA
Office of Graduate Programs
Phone: 215.898.0407 | Website: www.law.upenn.edu/admissions/grad


Penn Law offers an unparalleled environment for the study of law in the United States. Our LLM program is over a century old and recognized as among the best in the world. Penn Law attracts students interested in

  • a cross-disciplinary approach to legal education. As the boundaries of traditional legal practice and scholarship blur, a cross-disciplinary approach is critical to preparing law graduates who can navigate our increasingly complex world as leaders and influential decision-makers. At Penn Law, this training is infused into the curriculum and augmented by the ability to take a course at any of the graduate and professional schools at the University of Pennsylvania, one of the United States’ Ivy League institutions. In addition, Penn Law LLM students can enroll in our exclusive Wharton Business and Law Certificate program, which was custom designed for internationally trained attorneys who seek to develop the business skills needed to compete in today’s complex legal environment;
  • faculty members who are world-renowned experts in the law and their related disciplines and also engaged and engaging teachers;
  • a culture of collegiality, where students are made to feel welcome and supported, freeing them to take risks that deepen and broaden their study.

What Penn Law LLM Students Say About Their Year with Us:

“I have to credit Penn Law for giving me the courage to take this [career] step, and I don’t think that I will ever be able to convey what my LLM year meant to me, and did for me.”

“It’s really a year full of extraordinary academic, professional, cultural, and fun experience. In any case, I must say that the Public Interest Retreat organized by TPIC [Toll Public Interest Center] was an unforgettable experience for me.”

“Academically, benefiting from the wide variety of transactional courses, seminars, and conferences to improve my corporate law background and enhance my business knowledge. Personally, getting to be in touch with the smart US JD students, my classmates who are lawyers from all over the world, and the friendly and helpful staff at Penn Law.”

Academic and Student Life

The Penn Law LLM program is a two-semester, full-time course of study in advanced legal topics designed primarily for lawyers trained outside of the United States. Students select courses from an extensive curriculum of specialized classes and seminars at Penn Law. LLM students take courses alongside upper-level JD students and are with us for 10 months, including a 5-week summer program.

In addition to our outstanding course offerings, our LLM students have the opportunity to gain real-world US legal experience. As an integral part of the program, the LLM Public Service Program provides students with important opportunities to develop their professional skills while learning more about the communities that exist beyond the walls of Penn Law. The LLM Public Service Program can also assist students in fulfilling the pro bono requirements for the New York bar exam.

LLM students participate in four clinical programs: Entrepreneurship, Intellectual Property and Technology, International Human Rights and Immigration, and Mediation. LLM students also participate alongside their JD classmates in journals, student clubs, and moot court competitions. In addition, Penn Law has a designated LLM career counselor, who organizes programs designed specifically for LLM students and meets individually with LLM students.

The Law School and University of Pennsylvania Campus

Penn Law’s campus is state of the art, with four fully interconnected buildings surrounding a green courtyard. The design of the Law School facilities, along with the small student population (approximately 115 LLM and 900 total students) fosters strong relationships among LLM students, JD students, and faculty. The Law School is located on the 250-acre campus of the University of Pennsylvania, an Ivy League university located in the heart of Philadelphia, one of the most historic and livable cities in the United States. Founded by Benjamin Franklin in 1740, Penn is one of the country’s oldest and best universities. Each year, Penn welcomes more than 4,000 international students from approximately 125 countries. Penn Law is a close community within a large university, where students and faculty participate actively in the strong and diverse intellectual community.

Housing and Living in Philadelphia

There is no better place to study US law than in Philadelphia, the birthplace of the United States. Our Declaration of Independence and Constitution were drafted, debated, and adopted here. Studying rights and freedoms in this cradle of liberty is a unique experience.

Philadelphia’s renaissance over the past decades has garnered national attention. USA Today referred to Philadelphia as a “cultural capital.” The New York Times lauded the “thriving arts and music scene,” adding that the “renaissance in real estate and restaurants has aligned with the city’s music scene, which runs the gamut of cool.” And National Geographic Traveler named Philadelphia the “Next Great City.”

Philadelphia offers a wide variety of neighborhoods and housing options that are surprisingly affordable when compared to other metropolitan areas in the United States. Students can choose to live on campus in graduate housing or select one of the many great options for living off campus.


Applications must be submitted through LLM.LSAC.org by December 15. We will consider requests for deadline extensions on an individual basis.

Candidates who complete their applications by November 15 will be notified by February 1; all other candidates will be notified in March.

For more information about our application process, visit Admissions.

Other Graduate Degree Programs

The Master in Comparative Law (LLCM) program is a one-year course of advanced study for students who have already earned their LLM degree. LLCM students build their own curriculum in the same manner as LLM candidates. Most LLCM students choose to deepen their understanding by concentrating on a specific area of law and frequently complete a substantial piece of writing in that area. While many of our LLCM students come from our population of Penn Law LLM alumni, we welcome applicants from other LLM programs.

The Doctor of Juridical Science (SJD) is the highest law degree offered by the University of Pennsylvania. All applicants must have already earned an LLM, JD, or equivalent degree from Penn Law or another, comparable institution. Penn Law’s SJD program mission is to advance legal scholarship by producing graduates who have made significant contributions to their chosen area of study and who are prepared to become leaders in the international academic community.

More information about our other programs is available at Graduate Programs, or by contacting:

Matthew Parker
Associate Dean of Graduate Programs
Phone: 215.898.0407
Email: gradadm@law.upenn.edu

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Apr 17, 2014, 14:54 PM

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