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J.D. Degree Requirements

To earn a J.D. degree a student must:

  1. Earn at least 88 credits, including all first-year required courses. The maximum number of credits permitted per semester is 17.
  2. Be in residence for six semesters.  To be in residence, the student must enroll in at least 12 credits, at full tuition, and not work more than 20 hours per week during the semester.  Credits earned through the Semester in Washington Program, the Semester in Harrisburg Program, the Externships Everywhere Program, and authorized Penn State Law semester-long study abroad programs may be used to fulfill this requirement.  Credits earned during the summer months may not be used to fulfill this requirement.
  3. Complete with a grade of at least C one course designated as an Upper Level Writing Seminar course.
  4. Complete with a grade of at least C the course in Professional Responsibility
  5. Complete with a grade of at least a C one or more experiential course(s) totaling at least six credit hours.
  6. Starting with the Class of 2025, complete the Professional Development program that takes place in January of your first year. Please see academic calendar for dates of the program. 
  7. Starting with the Class of 2026, complete with a grade of at least a C one course approved by the faculty to comply with ABA 303(c).

Each student is responsible for fulfilling the above graduation requirements. Students should track their academic record and progress using their Degree Audit (Academic Requirements report), and should seek clarification as needed from the faculty, deans, registrar and other administrative personnel.

Complete List of Required Courses

Semesters of Residence