With permission of the Office of Academic Services, FH 400, and subject to supervision of the Vice Dean, J.D. students may register for up to 12 credits and LL.M. students up to 6 credits of courses offered in other graduate schools of the University and in exceptional cases undergraduate division of the University by submitting a request form to the Office of Academic Services or the Office of Graduate Affairs. The courses must be directly related to the study of law in order for credit to be applied toward the law degree. Few courses in other disciplines can meet this standard.
For graduate students, the request form must already be signed by the Faculty Director before submitting it to the Office of Graduate Affairs. In some cases, permission of the professor may also be required.
As part of the request form, the student must include:
1) An explanation of the student’s reasons for seeking to receive law school credit for the course. If the student is able to show that the course is directly related to the study of law, the law school administration will usually grant the request to allow law school credit as long as the course is appropriately rigorous. If the course is not directly related to the study of the law, the law school generally will not allow law school credit unless the student is able to make a detailed, persuasive showing that taking the course will further the career that the student intends to pursue and/or enhance the value of law school courses that the student plans to take. Basic courses in foreign languages will not qualify but a course conducted in a foreign language that is directly related to the study of law may be permitted upon petition of a student, and a student can petition to take one course conducted in a foreign language that is not directly related to the study of the law by showing that the course will further the career that the student intends to pursue or enhance the value of law school courses that the student plans to take.
2) The syllabus for the course that the student is seeking to take at the other division of the University for law school credit.
3) Information about the teacher of the course that the student is seeking to take at the other division of the University for law school credit.
Grades for these courses are not computed in the GPA, and they may not be taken credit/fail.
Students may take no more than 6 credits of non-law courses in any one semester. LL.M. students may enroll in no more than 6 credits of non-law courses that may be counted towards the LL M. degree. For J.D. students, up to 12 credits of non-law courses may be counted towards the J.D. degree and up to 12 transfer credits may be counted for dual-degree students.
The Law School does not calculate credit for these courses in the same way as the other school (please see below). Students who wish to take non-law-related courses excepting language courses, must pay tuition for those courses. No credit is awarded toward the degree for non-law, unapproved courses.
Calculating non-law course credit:
According to ABA Rules, a “credit hour” is an amount of work that reasonably approximates: (1) not less than one hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and two hours of out-of-class student work per week for fifteen weeks, or the equivalent amount of work over a different amount of time; or (2) at least an equivalent amount of work as required in subparagraph (1) of this definition for other academic activities as established by the institution, including simulation, field placement, clinical, co-curricular, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours. For purposes of this Standard, fifty minutes suffices for one hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction. An “hour” for out-of-class student work is sixty minutes. The fifteen-week period may include one week for a final examination.
For courses taken elsewhere in the University toward a Law degree, Law students will earn credits calculated as above (rounded down to the nearest quarter credit).
LLM students must comply with requirements of the particular program in which they are enrolled and should be aware of requirements for bar examinations in U.S. jurisdictions. For example, New York requires as one route to qualification for taking the bar examination “a minimum of 20 semester hours of credit…in professional law subjects…in an approved law school in the U.S.” Section 520.6 (b) (1) (ii), Rules of the New York Court of Appeals. Please note that non-law graduate courses, including Stern Business classes, do not qualify within the 20 credits.
Courses at Other Law Schools (Excluding Columbia Law School)
Outside of approved dual-degree or exchange programs, law courses at other accredited law schools may on exceedingly rare occasion be taken during the academic year or summer, but credit may be obtained only with the advance permission of the Office of Academic Services, FH 400. Only NYU School of Law courses are used in computing grade point averages.