LL.M. General

Master of Laws (General)

The general LL.M. program offers law graduates an opportunity to broaden their backgrounds in certain specialized areas of law by enrolling in advanced courses and seminars and by engaging in specialized research. Although the Dedman School of Law awards no specific subject-designated LL.M. degrees under this program, students seeking this degree may concentrate in areas such as corporate and commercial law, international law, legal practice and procedure, natural resources law or property law. Formal concentrations are offered in some areas of law. Students interested in concentrations should consult with the Assistant Dean for Graduate and International Programs.

With the approval of the Graduate Committee, applicants who do not hold a J.D. degree may be admitted into the general LL.M. degree program if they possess an academic or professional background that demonstrates their ability to succeed in this program despite not holding a prior law degree. Advanced degrees in other disciplines (e.g., Masters or Ph.D.s) and relevant work or academic teaching experience are possible criteria that could qualify such a candidate. To qualify, the academic background of the applicant must be such that they can be awarded six credit hours of advanced standing credit. Candidates admitted through this alternative process must complete at least an additional twenty-four credit hours to obtain their General LL.M. degree.

For Degree Requirements

See General LL.M. degree requirements.

Admission Criteria

Admission to this program is by selection. An applicant for admission to the general LL.M. degree program must hold a J.D. degree from an ABA-accredited law school. Full-time students are strongly preferred, and admission for the full-time program is in the fall only. Part-time applicants must demonstrate special academic reasons or circumstances for choosing a part-time track.

Application Procedures

Applicants must include with their applications a letter setting out their interest in entering the graduate degree program, two letters of recommendation, and certified transcripts from their undergraduate and law schools. Each applicant must have, in advance of acceptance, the commitment of a School of Law faculty member to serve as the applicant's academic adviser. The application, along with all supporting documentation, must be received in the Admissions Office by April 15 of the year of intended enrollment.

Financial Aid

The SMU Financial Aid Office is available to assist students in obtaining student loans. No scholarship funds are available for general LL.M. students. 

2024-2025 LL.M. Tuition, Fees, and Estimated Expenses (standard course load of 12-17 hours).

For more information see:  Graduate Tuition and Fees.

Tuition $58,504
Fees $ 7,538
Living Expenses $20,000
Miscellaneous/Health Insurance $  4,000
TOTAL $90,042