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University of Southern California Becomes Third to Offer Online LL.M.
With law school enrollment dropping steeply these last three years, schools are considering alternative way to tender funds into their programs. The University California Gould School of Law, for instance, announced Tuesday it would be the third in the nation to offer a fully online masters of law program for out of country students, as the National Law Journal reported. That would make it the highest ranked college to offer such a program.
“The online program allows international students to pursue a graduate degree focused in American law while meeting their professional and personal obligations in their home countries,” USC Law dean Robert Rasmussen said. “Classes offered online mirror those taught in the residential program. The program will also offer workshops on writing résumés, interviewing skills and networking practice—all online.”
This is a canny strategy for law schools to take, considering that they don’t have to add much faculty to support the programs, and furthermore, they don’t have to report the LL.M for their U.S. News & World Report’s laws school ranking. To put it cynically, it is free money without responsibility.
They are also somewhat popular. The first such program in Florida Coastal School of Law bean in 2010, with Washington University in St. Louis School of law making their own version of the program in 2013. Washington Law expected only 20 students to enroll, but sees 51 at the moment.
The Gould School likewise is hoping to rally about 35 students with the imitation of their program, and slowly develop and expand their program from there.