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Law School: Online Law Degree

While many students must move to a new city or state to pursue their law degree, there are several online law school programs and law schools that allow students to complete their legal studies from the comfort of home. Online law degree programs allow students to complete their JD Degree and sit for their state's bar examination just like an campus-based student. These degree programs and law schools may be accredited by national accrediting agencies, and allow students to complete their law school education at their own pace and enter the job market with the skills and knowledge they need for a successful law career.

Law School Programs

Every college and university offers its own set of degrees and programs of study, and in some cases, students may elect to take classes on campus or online. Different types of law school programs available include:

  • 3-Year J.D. Degree Program

  • J.S.D. Degree Program

  • One Year Master of Laws (LL.M) Program

  • Master of Science – Legal Studies (M.S.L.S.) program

  • International Dual Law Degree Programs

  • Joint Degree Programs

Students must complete general educational requirements for a Bachelors of Science degree from the respective school before applying to a formal law school program. Competition is fierce, and candidates may be required to submit a personal essay, obtain references from professors and colleagues, and participate in a work-study program in order to enter the program.

Law Schools Admissions Information

Students who are interested in completing a law degree at their selected law school may have the opportunity to submit application materials in person, by mail or online. Application packets typically include a faculty recommendation form, Dean's Certification or recommendation form, and a personal essay requirement.

Individuals interested in pursuing a law school degree online may also need to submit recommendations from college professors or personal references as part of their application process. After the designated selection committee has reviewed all materials, the candidate may be required to meet a representative in-person for a face-to-face interview.

Career Options with a Law Degree

Students who successfully complete a law degree program can pursue a number of career opportunities within the legal professional. Law degrees and criminal justice programs give students a comprehensive education in the legal system, local and national law enforcement operations, and a thorough understanding of the litigation process. Students may pursue a career as a:

  • Attorney

  • Law Clerk

  • Bailiff

  • CIA Agent

  • Corrections Officer

  • Legal Secretary

  • Law Librarian

  • Paralegal

  • Secret Service Agent

  • Business Consultant

  • Corporate Analyst

  • Corporate Advisor

Many students pursue nontraditional careers with a law degree, and can specialize in a particular industry or niche for better career opportunities in their field of choice.

Online Law Degree Program Information

Online law degree programs give students a chance to enjoy a flexible schedule and work at their own pace. These programs provide a quality education over the Internet, and students may be involved with several web-based activities such as forum discussions, collaborative group projects, web-based lectures, downloading and creating PowerPoint presentations, and communicating with students and professors around the country.

Common online law degree program courses may cover areas such as:

  • Civil Procedure

  • Alternative Dispute Resolution

  • Administrative Law

  • Federal Income Tax Aspects of Corporate Reorganization

  • Criminal Law

  • Estate Taxation and Planning

  • Corporate Securities Law

  • Health Care Law

  • Community Property

  • Bankruptcy Law

  • Torts

  • Legal Writing

  • Intellectual Property

Most online law degree schools offer the standards Juris Doctor program, Master of Laws program and Bachelor's Degree in Science of Laws program. Online curriculum may be formatted as a directed independent study course that can be completed within a given time frame, or as a telecommunications course where the student must ‘attend' online lectures, submit assignments and participate in class discussions on a weekly basis.

Online Law School: Key Benefits

Online law school opportunities give students of all ages and backgrounds a chance to complete their legal studies using several tools and resources over the Internet. This unique learning environment may be beneficial for stay-at-home-parents who want to work towards their degree, individuals who are working full-time but want to complete their degree on the side, or for individuals who simply live too far from a college campus that offers a law degree program. Some of the key benefits of online law school include:

  • Flexible scheduling

  • Ongoing e-mail communications directly with the professor and students

  • Opportunity to work on collaborative projects over the web

  • Ease of communications

  • Supportive faculty and administration

  • Highly focused programs

  • Accredited by nationally recognized accrediting institutions

Career Outlook and Employment Prospects with a Law Degree

The total educational requirements necessary to become a lawyer include a 4-year college degree, three years of law school and passing a written bar examination. Requirements do vary by State, and candidates who complete their law degree online may need to take additional courses on campus to meet State requirements. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Handbook, the May 2006 median annual earnings of all wage-and-salaried lawyers were $102,470. Salaries vary significantly depending on the type of law practiced, and the location of the firm.

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Law School: Online Law Degree