Jun 22, 2024  
2019-2020 Graduate Catalog 
2019-2020 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Law, JD

The principal objective of the college is to prepare students for the practice of law. The college teaches the analytical and practical skills needed to interpret cases and statutes, the ability to communicate effectively, an awareness of the historical growth of the law, a knowledgeable appreciation of the interrelationship of law and society, and the ability to use law as an implement of social change and development. Students are thus equipped to serve their communities not only as advocates and counselors, but as policy makers and active, responsible citizens. Law students may also elect to complete the Contractual and Legal Affairs in Engineering and Construction Graduate Certificate .

Concentrations (Optional)

Advocacy and Dispute Resolution
Business Transactions

Campus Code

Knoxville Campus

Credit hours required

89 credit hours (including the hours for the concentration)

Academic Standards

  • The required average is 2.00 and that average must be maintained on the work of all six semesters and also for the combined work of the grading periods in which the last 28 credit hours taken in residence were earned.
  • Averages are computed on weighted grades and rounded to one decimal point. Grades are awarded on a numerical scale (in increments of 0.1) from 0.00 to 4.30.
  • No credit toward the JD degree is awarded for grades of 0.00 to 0.70.
  • Law student grade point averages are reported on the official transcript rounded to one decimal place.
  • The course of study for the JD must be completed no earlier than 24 months and no later than 60 months after a student has commenced law study at the College of Law or a law school from which the college has accepted transfer credit.

Required Courses

Additional Course Requirements

  • To be eligible to receive the JD, candidates must earn at least 58 credit hours in residence at the College of Law.
  • Of the required 89 credit hours, no more than 18 credit hours may be earned in any combination of the following courses – LAW 947 LAW 948 LAW 949 LAW 989 LAW 992 LAW 994 LAW 995 LAW 996 LAW 997 LAW 998 , or LAW 999  or up to 6 credit hours of non-law electives.
  • One Perspective course:  a course devoted to the study of legal systems, insights of other academic disciplines (such as history, literature, economics, philosophy, anthropology, or sociology), or other non-traditional viewpoints on legal concepts or problems.  The courses listed below satisfy this requirement, as may other courses as approved by the Dean or the Dean’s designee
  • One Expository Writing experience:  a substantial research paper involving in-depth research and analysis of a legal issue. The paper should propose a solution to an important legal problem or present a sensible way of thinking about an important legal question. To satisfy this requirement, the paper must be well written, include proper citation to authority, and give appropriate attention to opposing arguments. The final version of the paper must respond to the professor’s feedback on the draft or drafts. The paper must be a minimum of 5,000 words in length (disregarding footnotes or endnotes).  The Expository Writing requirement may be satisfied through:
    • a College of Law Course (including a course used to fulfill another graduation requirement) that requires such a paper;
    • LAW 993 , 1 to 2 credit hours; a comment or other article written for a College of Law journal, subject to the policies of the relevant journal and approval of the faculty advisor for the journal.
  • One Planning and Drafting experience: a substantial planning and drafting project that requires them to do the following:  anticipate problems and changes in circumstances and plan for their resolution in documents that govern future behavior; and draft those documents in precise language so that the effected persons understand their future rights and responsibilities.  The courses listed below satisfy this requirement, as may other courses as approved by the Dean or the Dean’s designee:
  • Experiential courses (for students entering Fall 2016 or after) totaling at least 6 credit hours:  a simulation course, a law clinic, or a field placement as defined by ABA Standards.  The courses listed below satisfy this requirement, as may other courses as approved by the Academic Standards & Curriculum Committee: 
  • One Professional Skills course (for students entering prior to Fall 2016): a course that involves substantial instruction in professional skills generally regarded as necessary for effective and responsible participation in the legal profession, develops the concepts and theories underlying the professional skills being taught, and engages each student in professional skills performances that are assessed by the instructor, such that the student has multiple opportunities to perform tasks with appropriate feedback and self-evaluation, and reflective evaluation of the students’ performance by the faculty member.  The courses listed below satisfy this requirement, as may other courses as approved by the Dean or the Dean’s designee:

Non-Course Requirements

  • The Doctor of Jurisprudence degree will be conferred upon candidates who complete, with the required average, 89 credit hours, including all required courses.
  • A grade of 2.00 in at least 21 hours of required, numerically graded first-year courses.
  • A cumulative grade point average of 2.00 or better at the end of the final semester.
  • A grade point average of 2.00 or better for courses completed during the final two semesters of coursework at the College.
  • At least 58 credit hours in residence at the University of Tennessee while enrolled at the College of Law.
  • At least 64 credit hours in courses that require attendance in regularly scheduled classroom sessions or direct faculty instruction as defined by ABA Standards for Approval of Law Schools.
  • The course of study for the JD degree must be completed no earlier than 24 months and no later than 60 months after a student has commenced law study at the College of Law or a law school from which the College has accepted transfer credit.

Advocacy and Dispute Resolution Concentration

The curriculum focuses on the substantive and procedural aspects of adjudication and gives students the opportunity to practice lawyering skills in an experiential learning atmosphere.

Credit Hours Required

25 credit hours

Required Courses

Business Transactions Concentration

The Business Transactions curriculum allows students to concentrate their studies on the legal aspects of business and finance, emphasizing the needs of business concerns both large and small in terms of litigation and transactional lawyering.

Credit Hours Required

21 to 23 credit hours (depending on the capstone completed)

Required Courses

  • LAW 818  
  • LAW 826  (LAW 826 is not required for students who have an undergraduate major in accounting, finance, or business administration, who hold the MBA, or who are enrolled in the dual JD-MBA program. Waivers may also be granted to students who have acquired the requisite business knowledge through other course work or through practical experience.)
  • LAW 827  
  • LAW 972  
  • LAW 940  
  • LAW 842  
  • LAW 841  
  • In addition to the other requirements, students must complete a capstone course.
    • There are three capstone courses for the concentration, LAW 833 , LAW 937 , and LAW 978 , offered as instructors are available.  The Estate Planning Seminar has additional prerequisites. 
    • To complete the concentration, a student must take at least one of the capstone courses and may take all three if they are offered and the student’s schedule allows.