University of Southern California LLM 

University of Southern California Law School LLM Program

The Master of Laws (LLM) program at University of Southern California offers flexible coursework, and allows students to design programs that meet their interests and career goals. Two specialty certificates are offered, however, in Business Law and Entertainment Law. Details regarding these programs are discussed further below. A total of 21 credits taken over the course of two semesters on a full-time schedule are required for the completion of the degree. The program is intended for recent law school graduates, international attorneys, government officials, judges, prosecutors, corporate legal counsel, and bankers who would like an overview of the U.S. legal system and American law.

Students can choose to structure their classes to study specialty areas such as Intellectual Property Law, International Law, Entertainment Law, and Corporate/Business Law. Each student must take two courses, however: Introduction to the American Legal System and Legal Research. These courses familiarize students with the legal system at the foundation of the majority of courses offered by the university, as well as the research tools and methods that are central to the practice of law in the U.S. In addition to the generalized program, two specialty certificates are offered in Business Law and in Entertainment Law:

  • University of Southern California LLM in Business Law. This certificate is relevant to those who will primarily serve clients that are business organizations. Topics include corporate governance, finance, securities, contract drafting and negotiation, mergers and acquisitions, taxation, among others. The certificate consists of 14 credits, taken from the three required courses Business Organizations, Corporate Finance or Analytical Methods for Lawyers, and Securities Regulation as well as selected electives.
  • University of Southern California LLM in Entertainment Law. Students opting for this specialization will take courses that are a mixture of intellectual property law and business organization law topics. Copyright law, and issues presented by broadcasting content in the modern technological environment, will be central. A total of 14 credits must be taken to complete the specialization, including the courses Entertainment Law, Business Organizations, Intellectual Property or Copyright, Trademark, and Related Rights, and Topics in Entertainment Law, and electives in topics such as Art Law, Sports Law, and Antitrust Law.

In addition to these specialty degree tracks, LLM students can also enroll in a four-week intensive program that takes place before the LLM program formally begins. This summer program is intended to help students increase their comfort and proficiency writing and speaking English, and also to enhance their understanding of the American legal system. Students who wish to stay in the U.S. can transfer to the JD program during their second semester, or upon completion of the UCLA LLM degree, sit for the New York or California bar exam (in which case they should prepare by taking the following courses).

University of Southern California Law School LLM Admission

Admissions at University of Southern California are highly selective. The priority USC LLM deadline for applying to the program is February 1st. After that, applications will still be considered, but on a “rolling basis” for the program, which begins in August.

Admissions decisions are based on academic performance, professional background (if any), and career goals. Students must also demonstrate English language proficiency in order to be admitted. Students who are native English speakers, or who have obtained degrees at institutions in which English was the language of instruction, are considered to have met this requirement. Other students must take an English language proficiency test.

Recommended scores are:

  • TOEFL (Internet-based): 100
  • TOEFL (computer-based): 250
  • IELTS: 7.0

A complete USC LLM application includes:

  • Application submitted electronically by LSAC
  • Application fee of $75
  • Official academic transcripts
  • Resume or CV
  • Personal Statement
  • Letters of Recommendation (2)
  • TOEFL or IELTS scores

University of Southern California Law School LLM Tuition

For the upcoming academic year, check the school website for USC LLM tuition and fees . Estimated living expenses are not provided by the school, but many urban programs estimate roughly $20,000 for such costs. Please note that financial support documentation must be provided in order to demonstrate a student’s ability to cover education costs. These can include documents issued by your financial institution or your sponsor, where appropriate.

University of Southern California Law School LLM Scholarships

USC Law School offers an array of USC LLM financial aid options. While a limited number of merit-based USC Gould School of Law Scholarships are available, LLM students can also seek out graduate employment positions, on-campus employment, research assistant positions, jobs staffing full-day CLE events, Student Fellow positions at the Center for Law, History & Culture or the LLM Legal Writing program, and student loans to offset the USC LLM program cost.

The school also encourages students to explore the possibility of obtaining aid from organizations and foundations in their home countries, or through a Fulbright or similar program. To obtain more information, contact the educational attaché to your U.S. Embassy or Consulate or explore these lists of additional USC graduate law scholarships, recommended outside aid sources by USC Law School.

A helpful directory to international educational funding sources, called “Study Abroad,” is published by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization. And for more information on scholarships for LLM students, please visit our LLM Scholarships page.

University of Southern California Law School LLM Employment

The USC Law School Office of Career Development works in conjunction with the Graduate & International Programs Office to assist USC LLM students in finding employment after graduation. The Office runs workshops on topics such as interviews, networking, resumes, and cover letters, provides counseling, maintains an online job database, and allows students to participate in the International Student Interview Program and the West Coast LLM Job Fair. Students can also attend the USC Law Continuing Legal Education conferences, which are held in Entertainment Law & Business, Real Estate Law & Business, Intellectual Property, Corporate Counsel, Tax, and Trust & Estate, are attended by alumni and professionals working in these areas, and thus allow a valuable opportunity for networking, participate in Optional Practical Training, and receive assistance in preparing and sitting for the New York or California Bar Exams.

University of Southern California Law School LLM Contact

USC Gould School of Law
Graduate & International Programs
LL.M. Program
699 Exposition Boulevard, Suite 105
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0071
Phone: (213) 821-5916
Fax: (213) 821-5915
Email: llm@law.usc.edu
Website: http://law.usc.edu/llm