Berkeley Law Launches New Summer LL.M. Program

Contact: Susan Gluss, UC Berkeley School of Law, 510.642.6936 / 510.705.3366 (cell)

Berkeley , CA —August 5, 2008 … UC Berkeley School of Law (Berkeley Law) is launching a new summer LL.M. (Master of Laws) program in May 2009. International students who already hold a professional law degree will be able to earn an LL.M. by attending two consecutive summers—for six months of condensed course work—rather than a full academic year.

The accelerated program targets busy foreign executives who may find it easier to take summers off for advanced legal study. It’s also a boon to students who may be turned away from the traditional nine-month academic term due to limited enrollment. Applicants for Berkeley Law’s advanced LL.M. degree increased to 1,000 for the most recent academic year, compared with 611 for 2006-2007. Only ten percent of applicants are accepted.

Berkeley Law’s LL.M. graduates represent a worldwide community of about three dozen countries, including France, Germany, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Pakistan, and more. The director of the law school’s advanced degree programs, Professor Andrew Guzman, says demand for an LL.M. degree from a top U.S. school is increasing due to the rise of international business transactions in a global economy.

“We’ve been developing a summer LL.M. program for three years,” said Professor Guzman, who cited the spike in applications as a catalyst. “The law school waited to launch, however, until it could offer the same high-quality curriculum and training that our existing program provides.”

Tenure-track professors will teach fundamental courses in constitutional law, contracts, civil procedure, and U.S. law. Electives may include Intellectual Property, Mergers and Acquisitions, International Business Transactions, and Patent Law. After earning an LL.M. degree, students will be eligible to sit for the California Bar exam.

“International summer LL.M. students will not only receive rigorous legal training,” said UC Berkeley School of Law Dean Chris Edley, “but they will also join a global community of outstanding professionals and academics, with the intellectual and career advantages those relationships yield.”

The deadline to apply for the 50 slots in the inaugural 2009-2010 summer session is September 30, 2008. Classes will begin in mid-May and end in mid-August, for a total of six months over two summers. The degree will cost the equivalent of Berkeley Law’s academic-year LL.M., most recently priced at $42,265.

While a number of U.S. law schools offer basic summer courses for international students who want to improve legal writing or language skills, only a handful offer a full-fledged LL.M. summer degree program. For more information about Berkeley Law’s LL.M. degree, go to:

University of California, Berkeley, School of Law: For over a century, Berkeley Law has prepared lawyers to be skilled and ethical problem-solvers. The law school awarded its first LL.M. degrees in 1952. The law school’s curriculum—one of the most comprehensive and innovative in the nation—offers its J.D. and advanced degree candidates an array of nearly 200 courses. Students collaborate with leading scholars and practitioners working on complex issues at more than a dozen interdisciplinary centers, institutes, and clinical programs within its Boalt Hall complex. For more information, visit