Each student must satisfy an upper level writing requirement in order to receive the J.D. degree by completing a paper of 25 or more double-spaced pages with a twelve-point font and ordinary margins. The paper must demonstrate substantial in depth analysis, reflection, and revision. Only papers prepared under faculty supervision, including extensive written feedback on at least one substantial draft of the student’s writing project can satisfy the requirement. Only papers prepared for courses or activities certified by the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs can satisfy the writing requirement. The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs may certify a course or any other activity (including independent study) as a vehicle for satisfying the writing requirement, provided that a faculty member will provide the required supervision in conjunction with the activity.

Writing Requirement Form

Single-Semester Independent Study

A student may earn 2 hours of fully graded credit for independent research under faculty supervision which results in a significant research product by the student, on a topic of the student’s choice. The student’s research product is to be completed in one semester. The student must secure approval of a supervising faculty member before registering for such credit. Credit will be given only for research undertaken after the student actually registers for the independent research project. The satisfactory completion of a one-semester independent research project may satisfy the writing requirement for graduation provided that the project satisfies the requirements of Rule A.3.(b).

Students may not register for more than four credits of independent research projects during their law school careers without first seeking the approval of the Academic Standards Committee. Such approval shall be granted if in the judgment of the Committee, taking into consideration the student’s academic record, the academic integrity of the student’s overall program will not be impaired.

Single-Semester Form

Two-Semester Seminars

Two-semester seminars are two-semester offerings in which students may earn 3 hours of fully graded credit which offerings are normally restricted to 16 students or, at the instructor’s option, to 20 students, and in which offerings the instructor must require the writing of a research paper or papers which meet standards established by the faculty, which research paper or papers must comprise at least two thirds of the basis for the grade. The satisfactory completion of a two-semester seminar may constitute satisfaction of the writing requirement pursuant to the requisite certification under Rule A.3.(b).

Two-Semester Form