Law School Goes Online with LL.M. in U.S. Law

@WashULaw is the first and only top-tier online degree of its kind  

Washington University School of Law announced it will begin offering its Master of Laws in U.S. Law for Foreign Lawyers (LL.M.) in a new and innovative online format. Called @WashULaw, the program is the first and only top-tier online LL.M. in U.S. law. The online LL.M. builds on the law school’s internationally recognized postgraduate law degree program, which is designed for foreign attorneys interested in increasing their knowledge of U.S. law to more effectively practice in today’s global legal environment.  

  • Article in New York Times [view]
  • Article in Inside Higher Ed [view]

@WashULaw will allow foreign lawyers to complete an LL.M. degree in U.S. law without leaving their law practices or relocating to the United States. Students will receive an excellent grounding in U.S. Law, with a focus on business issues, without dramatic disruption to their professional and personal lives or the relocation costs associated with a prolonged stay overseas. @WashULaw provides foreign lawyers with a flexible option to earn their degree from a world leader in legal education and research.

“We aim to produce extraordinary graduates who benefit from the highest caliber online education available – and to ensure that the quality equals or exceeds the quality of the best LL.M. programs in the world,” says Kent Syverud, dean of the Law School and Ethan A.H. Shepley Distinguished University Professor.

The @WashULaw LL.M. program offers students an online version of Washington University School of Law’s on-campus LL.M. curriculum, with:

  • Courses designed and taught by Washington University law school faculty, who are renowned legal educators and scholars;
  • Classes of students who meet the same selective admissions criteria as the on-campus graduate law program;
  • An LL.M. degree identical to the one received by on-campus graduates and the option to attend the campus graduation ceremony;
  • Intimate classes of no more than 15 students; and
  • An optional summer immersion in U.S. law experience offered in the U.S. and taught by Washington University faculty.

Delivered through state-of-the-art online technologies, @WashULaw courses will integrate live classroom sessions with streaming video and self-paced content. In live classroom sessions, Washington University law faculty and @WashULaw students will “meet” at pre-arranged times for coursework discussions, study groups and face-to-face office hour meetings. The self-paced content offers students high-quality faculty-designed coursework, highly produced video content and an interactive social technology platform that allows students to chat, study and join communities with classmates and professors 24 hours a day. During the summer, @WashULaw students will be offered an intensive U.S. immersion program in St. Louis, Washington D.C. and other U.S. cities to experience U.S. law from inside U.S. courtrooms and law firms.

@WashULaw is being directed by Melissa Waters, professor of law, and Tomea Mersmann, associate dean for strategic initiatives and lecturer in law. An advisory council is being formed to engage the Washington University School of Law community and thought leaders in education in the development of @WashULaw.

One of the initial advisory council members, Andrew Puzder, CEO of CKE Restaurants, Inc., is enthusiastic about the opportunities and benefits provided by @WashULaw.

“I have been extremely supportive of this program since day one. I manage our company by the maxim that to survive and prosper, companies must take advantage of current technology and innovate,” says Andrew Puzder, CEO of CKE Restaurants, Inc. and a member of both the law school’s National Council and the @WashULaw advisory council. “I am proud that my law school is embracing technology, without sacrificing quality, to expand its presence in global legal education.”

Washington University School of Law has partnered with the education technology company 2tor, Inc. to deliver @WashULaw. 2tor partners with leading higher education institutions to deliver rigorous, selective degree programs online by providing the technology platform, instructional design, marketing and infrastructure support.

"We’re honored to add Washington University to the esteemed family of 2tor partners," says Chip Paucek, co-founder and CEO of 2tor. "We’re thrilled to be working with a school that is pioneering a law program for the 21st century and one that is primed for an increasingly globalized world."

Education innovation expert Michael B. Horn is also a member of the program’s initial advisory council. Horn is the co-founder and executive director of the education practice of Innosight Institute, a nonprofit think tank devoted to applying the theories of disruptive innovation to solve problems in the social sector.

“It's exciting that a top-tier law school is taking a leadership role in online learning,” says Michael B. Horn, co-founder and executive director of the education practice of Innosight Institute and @WashULaw advisory board member. “Washington University’s partnership with 2tor is a clear signal that the field of online learning is being invigorated and transformed by top-flight entrants.”

@WashULaw is now accepting applications; classes begin in January 2013. International applicants must first earn a law degree from their home jurisdiction. For more information, visit onlinelaw.wustl.edu, email admissions@onlinelaw.wustl.edu or call 888-WashULW (888-927-4859).

About Washington University School of Law  

Washington University School of Law offers students an outstanding legal education in an intellectually challenging and collegial environment. With faculty members recognized for excellent teaching and scholarship, a student body among the most selective in the country, and an increasingly global and diverse community, we strive to prepare graduates for the quickly evolving legal and business environment. @WashULaw is an example of our school’s efforts to innovate using technology and new teaching methods as we pursue our mission to be the best place in the United States to learn to be a lawyer.

About 2tor, Inc.  

2tor, Inc. partners with top-tier universities to deliver rigorous, selective graduate programs online. Founded in 2008 by a unique team of education veterans, the company provides universities with the web technologies, infrastructural support and capital needed to compete in a space previously dominated by mediocre online programs. 2tor is one of the highest-funded education technology startups in the United States. The company has partnered with prestigious research universities, including the University of Southern California, Georgetown University and the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, to deliver groundbreaking online degree programs.

Washington University School of Law
Jessica Martin, Law School News Director
jessica_martin@wustl.edu
314-935-5251

2tor, Inc.
Shirley Chow, Public Relations Manager
schow@2tor.com
858-336-0358