How to Apply

Entry Requirements

International applicants must have completed their first degree in law at a University outside of the United States and have completed (or be in the process of completing) an LL.M. degree at the University of Minnesota Law School or another American Bar Association-approved law school. 

Applicants whose native language is not English must also demonstrate proficiency in English. Minimum TOEFL score is 80, with strong preference given to candidates who score 100 or higher. IELTS scores are also accepted, with a minimum score of 6.5 required.

Domestic applicants must have completed a JD degree at an American Bar Association-approved law school.

The ideal S.J.D. candidate meets the above requirements and is a graduate of the University of Minnesota Law School LL.M. or JD program.

2018-19 Tuition and Fees*

Tuition, fees, insurance & books $57,800 estimated*
Living costs for 10 months $15,500 estimated (for one person in modest accommodations)
Total for 2018-19 $73,300

Applicants must demonstrate adequate financial support for their educational and living expenses prior to being admitted to the program.

*Tuition fees after the first year will be determined by the number of credits taken in subsequent years.

Application Process

A completed application includes:

  • application form and application fee
  • official academic transcripts from all colleges and universities attended (must be officially translated in English)
  • two letters of recommendation
  • personal statement
  • proof of English proficiency demonstrated through adequate TOFEL or IELTS scores
  • résumé or CV
  • submission of a detailed dissertation proposal demonstrating that the dissertation will constitute an original and substantial contribution, of publishable quality, to legal scholarship
  • submission of an extensive, high quality writing sample written in English to demonstrate the ability to engage in advanced research and writing

To apply online:
S.J.D applicants may use the LSAC online application for the University of Minnesota LL.M. program, which becomes available on October 1. Before you begin to complete the online application, please review the University of Minnesota’s requirements and application instructions by clicking on “Law School Instructions.” Please note that if you apply online you will be required to use the LSAC Credential Assembly Service and to pay the application fee with a credit card. Once the application is submitted, email llmadm@umn.edu to notify International Programs staff that the application should be considered for the S.J.D. program.

To apply via postal mail:
Instructions for applying are included on the PDF iconSJD Application PDF or FileSJD Application DOC If you download the paper application forms, you must pay the application fee with a check in U.S. dollars, which must be enclosed with your application.

2018-19 Application available: October 1, 2017
Priority Application Due Date: March 15, 2018
Review of completed applications begins after March 15. S.J.D. applications received after March 15 are reviewed on a space-available basis. Qualified applicants may be interviewed by phone (or in person, if practical).

Contact Information

University of Minnesota Law School

Walter F. Mondale Hall | 229 19th Avenue South | Minneapolis, MN 55455

P: 612-625-1000

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