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The S.J. Quinney College of Law accepts applications from foreign lawyers to enter the J.D. program.  Consistent with ABA rules, Global J.D. Program students will receive one or two semester(s) worth of credit for their prior foreign legal education. Rather than enrolling in the upper-class curriculum however, the law school will place these students in the first-year program; thus, putting them on an equal playing field with their U.S. counterparts. The first-year experience will give foreign lawyers the foundational experience they cannot gain exclusively in an upper-class curriculum, evaluations that are comparable to any other J.D. student in the country, complete socialization and integration, and full access to student organizations as well as journal and clinical opportunities.

After completion of the first-year curriculum and posting of grades, the students’ performance at the College of Law will be evaluated.  Based on that evaluation and a review of the students’ foreign law school academic record, the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs will determine whether to grant credits for the student’s prior educational training. Students who achieve at least a 2.75 GPA after the first year will be granted up to one-third of the total credits required for graduation at the College of Law.   The Global J.D. students will focus their first summer and second year on satisfying graduation requirements, and advanced training in specialized areas such as innovation (technology commercialization), environmental law, health law, criminal justice, family law, and global justice (human rights and the rule of law).

2020-2021 Important Dates and Deadlines

September 1 Application Opens
January 31* Final File Completion Deadline

*Application files received after the final deadline will be reviewed if seats remain available.

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Global J.D. Application Requirements

1Baccalaureate degree from an accredited university recognized by the U.S. Department of Education (or foreign equivalent)

Foreign lawyer candidates are required to have a foreign law degree that makes them eligible to practice law in their home country and is at least the foreign equivalent of a U.S. baccalaureate degree.

LSAT scores that are older than five years will not be accepted for candidates seeking admission. For example, applicants submitting and application during the 2020-2021 application cycle must have a score no older than the September 2015.

LSAT Exemption
The College of Law, under ABA Standard 503, may admit a limited number of students who have not taken the LSAT. Those applicants must meet certain conditions to be eligible to apply.  Information on the College of Law's LSAT exemption policy can be found on the Admissions FAQs page.

Applicants must register for the Credential Assembly Service (CAS). It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that transcripts from each U.S. college or university ever attended are sent to the CAS, regardless of credits being transferred or applied toward degree requirements. If an applicant is seeking readmission, they must submit a new CAS report. Once the CAS file is complete, applicants should allow four to six weeks for the S.J. Quinney College of Law to receive and process the CAS report.

CAS Evaluation of Foreign Transcript(s)
The S.J. Quinney College of Law requires that foreign transcripts be submitted through the Credential Assembly Service. If an applicant completed any postsecondary academic work outside the U.S. (including its territories) or Canada, they must use this service for the evaluation of their foreign transcripts. The one exception to this requirement is if an applicant completed the foreign work through a study-abroad, consortium, or exchange program sponsored by a U.S. or Canadian institution, and the work is clearly indicated as such on the home campus transcript.

This service is included in the Credential Assembly Service registration fee. An International Credential Evaluation will be completed by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO) and will be incorporated into your Credential Assembly Service Law School Report. To use the Credential Assembly Service for your international documents, follow the online instructions for registering for the service. Be sure to print out a Transcript Request Form for each institution and send it promptly to them. More time is usually required to receive foreign transcripts. Questions about foreign transcripts and the Credential Assembly Service can be directed to LSAC at 215.968.1001 or

Applicants are required to have one, but may have up to three, letters of recommendation submitted on their behalf. Letters of recommendation should come from people who know the applicant well and have had the opportunity to observe the applicant in an academic or professional setting. Letters must be submitted directly through the LSAC Letter of Recommendation Service that is included with your CAS registration subscription.

Applicants are required to submit a personal statement. The personal statement is also viewed as a document demonstrating their writing ability; therefore, the personal statement must be written by the applicant. The Admission Committee’s goal is to assemble an intellectually stimulating community of students composed of individuals who have diverse backgrounds and perspectives. In addition to outstanding academic ability, we seek students whose life experiences, backgrounds and interests will enhance our educational community. This includes, but is not limited to qualities such as leadership, maturity, organization, sincere commitment to community service, a history of overcoming disadvantage, extraordinary accomplishment, or success in a previous career.

The subject matter of the personal statement is up to the applicant. The personal statement should let the Admission Committee know more about the applicant as a person and should address the above qualities if that information is not presented in other areas of the application. Issues addressed in the personal statement may include the background, experiences, and events (positive or negative) that have affected the applicant. Applicants may address the perspectives and experiences they will bring to classroom discussions and the law school community or their motivations for seeking a legal education.

Applicants whose native language is not English must submit official results from the TOEFL test. The test needs to have been administered within 12 months from the JD application. Applicants should contact the Educational Testing Service (ETS) and request that their TOEFL score be sent to LSAC to be incorporated into their Credential Assembly Service Law School Report. Their score will be included in the International Credential Evaluation Document. LSAC’s TOEFL code for the Credential Assembly Service is 8395.


PLEASE NOTE: Applicants are not required to submit a TOEFL score if they have received a baccalaureate or graduate degree from an institution whose primary language of instruction is English.

Diversity Statement

*Files will be processed if a valid LSAT score and LSAT writing sample are on file unless the candidate requests a hold on review.

Admissions Criteria

When we assess applicants for admissions, academic aptitude is not the only factor considered. Below is a list of criteria to keep in mind:

Academic Factors

  • LSAT score(s)
  • Undergraduate GPA
  • Advanced work, other degrees
  • Major
  • Difficulty of college course work
  • Grade trends
  • Dominant language or other language skills
  • Quality of high school and prior academic experience
  • Family education history
  • Other test scores
  • Hours worked and other responsibilities during school

Demographic and Diversity Factors

  • Age (Life experience)
  • Gender
  • Sexual orientation
  • Race/ethnicity
  • Geographic residence
  • Socioeconomic status, family size
  • Multicultural experiences
  • Growing up in a low-income community
  • Law related experience or knowledge
  • Military status
  • Work experience
  • Position
  • Level of responsibility achieved
  • Full time, part time
  • Number of years worked
  • Type of industry or business
  • Follow-through ability

Leadership and Extracurricular Factors

  • Undergraduate or graduate leadership activities
  • Community leadership/accomplishments
  • Volunteer activities
  • Academic leadership and organizations
  • Civic engagement
  • Athletic activities
  • Travel, foreign living
  • Service activities


  • Special skills and talents
  • Music, drama, writing, artistic

After You Apply

Track your application status here.