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Non-Juris Doctor Enrollment on Continual Rise, Finds American Bar Association

According to the end of the year report by the American Bar Association, the leading legal universities and law schools on the US ground are experiencing yet another surge in popularity among aspiring non-Juris Doctor students.

The non-Juris Doctor students, all 18,523 of them who have enrolled in top US law schools this academic year, are acquiring legal education by pursuing LLM and other Master of Laws degrees. They now make 14% of all law students in the United States.

The interesting thing is - this number has doubled over the past decade.

The American Bar Association has detected an 8% increase in 2018 alone and is predicting a similar upturn in 2019. This is, of course, in part due to the growing number of high-quality LLM programs in leading law schools such as the following:

  • The University of Oklahoma College of Law, which offers both an LLM and MSL (Master of Legal Studies) alongside the J.D.

  • New York University School of Law is known for its Tax LLM program, ranked No. 1 in the country, and its LLM for international attorneys.

  • Pepperdine University School of Law boasts another excellent LLM in Dispute Resolution. This year, it attracted 38% of all Pepperdine students.

  • Seton Hall University School of Law shares these numbers, with its LLMs being focused on Health Law and Intelectual Property Law.

  • The Appalachian School of Law has 41% of its students enrolled in LLM programs.

  • Washington University in St. Louis School of Law boasts 571 non-Juris Doctor students.

  • The University of Southern California Gould School of Law offers a number of LLM courses for 49% of their students, all non-J.D.

But the absolute winners of this category are the Liberty University School of Law, Regent University School of Law, and the University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law, with 51%, 64%, and 78% (respectively) non-Juris Doctor students in their student body, all thanks to the changing trends in legal education, as well as these schools’ diverse LLM programs.

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