admissions

PRACTICAL SKILLS REQUIREMENT

The School of Law and the ABA require as a condition for graduation that each law student complete at least one practical skills course.  The law faculty has designated the following courses as satisfying the skills course requirement.

• Advanced Trial Practice
• Advanced Writing Seminar: Appellate Practice
• Alternative Dispute Resolution Seminar
• Anatomy of a M&A Deal
• Appellate Advocacy
• Appellate Litigation Clinic I
• Appellate Litigation Clinic II
• Business Negotiations
• Business Law Clinic
• Capital Assistance Project
• Civil Externship I
• Civil Externship II
• Constitutional Litigation (Eaton)
• Community Economic Development Clinic
• Community Health Law Partnership Clinic
• Corporate Counsel Externship
• Criminal Defense Clinic I
• Criminal Defense Clinic II
• D.C. Externship Clinic
• Dispute Resolution & Design
• Document Drafting: Survey
• Document Drafting: Contracts
• Document Drafting: Litigation
• Environmental Dispute Resolution
• Environmental Law Practicum
• Estate Planning
• Family Violence Clinic
• Interviewing, Counseling, and Negotiating
• Labor Arbitration
• Legal Drafting for Transactional Practice
• Life Cycle of a Corporation
• Mediation Practicum I
• Mediation Practicum II
• Patent Prosecution & Procedure
• Prosecutorial Clinic II
• Public Interest Practicum
• Summer Externship
• Trial Practice

 

ADVANCED WRITING REQUIREMENT

The School of Law requires, as a condition for graduation, that each student complete a substantial, traditional research paper in a style similar to a law review article. The research paper must be at least 30 pages in length, with one-inch margins and be in 12 pt. Times New Roman font. The faculty member certifying a student's satisfaction of the Advanced Writing requirement must complete a certificate available from the Law School Registrar, stating the method by which it was satisfied and the grade earned.  Completion of the Advanced Writing requirement is necessary before graduation certification can be provided to any Bar.  The requirement may be satisfied in any of three ways:

1. Completion of a research paper (consistent with the requirements noted above) in connection with a class or seminar of 20 students or fewer taught by a full-time School of Law faculty member in which the predominant evaluation mechanism is the writing of a paper, on which a grade of not less than a B- is received. The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, in consultation with the relevant faculty member, may make an exception to the class size limitation.  If a student is interested in using a class paper for satisfaction of the writing requirement, he or she should meet with the faculty member to discuss this option and obtain approval.
 
2. Completion of a research paper (consistent with requirements noted above) produced in the Supervised Research course with a School of Law faculty member for 2 credit hours, on which a grade of at least B- is received. Without expressed authorization from the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, an adjunct professor may not oversee a Supervised Research paper.  Further information regarding supervised research requirements is set forth below.
 
3. Satisfactory completion of the writing task assigned by either the Georgia Law Review, the Georgia Journal of International and Comparative Law or the Journal of Intellectual Property Law. This paper should be at least 30 pages in length.  If a student chooses to use this method of satisfying the upper level writing requirement, the writing project for the Georgia Law Review, Georgia Journal of International and Comparative Law or the Journal of Intellectual Property must be written under the supervision of a School of Law faculty member.  This supervision must involve the faculty member's feedback on the review of the writing project, which shall include faculty comments on draft(s) of the writing project.  Certification of the final work product by the faculty advisor is required.
 
 

SUPERVISED RESEARCH AND INDEPENDENT PROJECT

A student may not receive more than 4 hours total credit toward the J.D. degree for any combination of Supervised Research and Independent Project. No more than 2 hours credit for Supervised Research or Independent Project or any combination thereof can be earned in any semester without permission of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. Supervised Research and Independent Project assignments should be completed by the end of the semester in which credit is sought. Occasionally, additional time beyond the semester may be required. In such cases, a professor may enter a grade of I (Incomplete) and grant a one- semester extension for completion of the work. To enroll in Supervised Research or Independent Project, the student must obtain a form from the Law School Registrar  to be completed by the student and signed by the supervising professor. Upon returning the form to the Registrar, the student will register in OASIS for the appropriate course: Supervised Research (JURI 5190) or Independent Project (JURI 5510).

 

Supervised Research

Supervised Research, JURI 5190, (2 credits) involves an in-depth written analysis of a legal issue under close faculty supervision. It requires significant legal research and original thinking and analysis. Students must produce a final paper of a kind and quality similar to that found in law review articles. Completion of this course should involve: (1) thesis description of topic and scope; (2) general outline of approximately two pages; (3) detailed outline with citations to each major point, including preliminary bibliography listing of all sources searched to this point; (4) textual draft with bibliography of sources consulted, whether or not cited in text; and (5) final paper including footnotes.

Supervision of the paper in Supervised Research generally should be undertaken by a full-time faculty member. On rare occasions, the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs may authorize an adjunct or visiting professor to supervise such a paper.
 
The thesis description should be approved by the professor prior to enrollment in Supervised Research. Once the project has been approved and the student is enrolled, the balance of the steps should be completed according to a schedule established by the faculty member .
 
The final paper must be submitted to the supervising professor no later than the last day of the semester, unless other arrangements have been made with the supervising professor.
 
Supervised Research cannot involve a topic significantly explored or researched by the student previously in another context such as legal journals, moot court, paid research, law office work, and previous seminars. A student is free to use the completed project in any manner the student desires.
 
A professor will not supervise research outside of the area of his/her expertise, unless there is no faculty member possessing that expertise. Normally, Supervised Research will not be undertaken on a topic covered by a seminar currently being offered. A professor may not supervise more than 7 students per academic year in Supervised Research. No faculty member may grade a supervised research paper where the paper was originally supervised by another faculty member, except in extraordinary circumstances with the approval of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.
 
 

Independent Project

Independent Project, JURI 5510, (1 or 2 credits) provides a flexible opportunity for independent exploration of legal issues or questions sometimes not found in any course or seminar and without following the format of a formal research paper. Projects must involve significant legal, social or empirical research or experiences.
 
The supervisor of an Independent Project should be a full-time faculty member. To enroll, the student must present to a faculty member a prospectus describing in detail the project, the resources to be consulted, and the final product, if any, that will result from the student's project. The faculty member must review and approve the proposal prior to the student's enrollment.
 
The grade for Independent Project will be based upon the originality and creativity of the project, the amount of effort expended, the extent of the learning experience, and the quality of any written work prepared by the student in connection with the project. The work must be completed and any product submitted no later than the last day of scheduled classes for the semester.
 
A faculty member normally will not grade Independent Projects in fields outside of his/her expertise, unless no other faculty members possess that expertise. Faculty members are not permitted to grade an independent project that was originally approved by another professor. A faculty member may not supervise more than 9 independent projects per semester.
 
Independent Project credit cannot be given to work previously done for law review, legal journals, moot court, paid research, law office work, or work done in a course or seminar.
 
Independent Project credit does not satisfy the Advanced Writing Requirement for graduation.
 
 

CLINIC HOUR LIMITATION

No student may apply more than 16 hours of credit toward the J.D. degree in any combination of clinical courses. Clinical courses include: Prosecutorial Clinic II, Criminal Defense Clinic I, Criminal Defense Clinic II, Civil Clinic I, Civil Clinic II, Community Economic Development Clinic, Summer Externships, Mediation Practicum II, Corporate Counsel Externship, Family Violence Clinic, Appellate Litigation Clinic, Business Law Clinic, Medical-Legal Partnership Clinic (beginning Fall 2014), and the Washington D.C. Externship. The School of Law may offer additional clinic courses from time to time. Any question about whether a course counts against the clinic hour limitation should be addressed to the Law School Registrar. Having earned credit in the basic course in one clinic, the student generally can take advanced clinic work only in that clinic. Exceptions can be granted by the clinic directors in consultation with the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.

 

FACULTY POLICY ON PLAGIARISM

While the Honor Code is designed primarily to govern situations in which students observe or detect other students acting inappropriately, the Law Faculty has adopted the following policy to cover situations where a faculty member concludes that a student is guilty of plagiarism:
 
A. Plagiarism
 
Plagiarism is unacceptable and will not be tolerated at the University of Georgia Law School. Plagiarism is the submission of another's work as one's own. It includes: 1) use of another's exact words without use of quotation marks and acknowledgement of that use in a footnote or endnote; 2) use of another's organizational scheme without acknowledgement of that use in a footnote or endnote; 3) either close paraphrasing of the work of another without attribution or submission of a work which is largely a paraphrasing of another's work without attribution. Each student is obliged to be aware of the policy against plagiarism and lack of awareness of the policy does not excuse a violation of it. No student shall be permitted to graduate while charges of plagiarism are pending against that student.
 
B. Options for Faculty Member Who Believes Plagiarism Has Been Committed
 
Upon discovering what is believed to be plagiarism on written work submitted by a student in a course, a faculty member may:
 
1. Assign a grade to the written work based on the faculty member's determination of plagiarism. This determination and the explanation thereof shall be expressed in writing and transmitted to the student with a copy to the dean; or
2. Refer the matter to the Honor Court which will deal with the matter according to its Constitution. A student found guilty of plagiarism by the Honor Court may appeal to the dean for review of the penalty assessed.
C. Institutional Response to a Faculty Member's Finding of Plagiarism
 
1. Upon receiving notification from a faculty member of his or her determination of plagiarism, the dean, upon finding probable cause that plagiarism has been committed, shall appoint a committee of five tenure-track or clinical faculty members to conduct a hearing to determine whether plagiarism has been committed by the student. A faculty member who does not feel capable of rendering a fair decision in a particular case shall refuse to serve on the faculty committee.
2. At the hearing, the faculty member will introduce evidence relevant to the question of whether plagiarism has been committed. The student is entitled to be represented by counsel of his or her choice, to introduce relevant evidence and to confront and cross-examine any witnesses against him or her.
3. To support a finding of plagiarism at least four members of the committee must find plagiarism beyond a reasonable doubt. A finding of plagiarism by the committee in accord with the procedures established by this policy shall be final and binding on the dean and the student.
4. The committee shall file with the dean a written report on its proceedings and its findings. If plagiarism has been found by the committee, the report shall include a recommended sanction. The presumptive sanction shall be a one- semester suspension, but the committee may recommend a different sanction, either more or less severe. Such sanctions include, but are not limited to, expulsion, suspension for a longer period, probation or remedial activity.
5. The final determination of the appropriate sanction for plagiarism shall be made by the dean. It may be more or less severe than any sanction recommended by the committee. This determination shall be expressed in writing and provided to the student within 14 days of the filing of the committee's report with the dean. The committee members and the complaining professor shall receive copies of the dean's determination of sanction. The dean's determination of sanction may be appealed to the provost of the University.
6. In response to appropriate inquiries, the law school shall make available to appropriate bar officials the written committee report and the dean's final determination of sanction.
D. Decision in Favor of the Student
 
In situations where:
 
1) the dean finds insufficient probable cause to impanel a faculty committee; or
2) a faculty committee appointed under this policy fails to find plagiarism has been committed; or
3) the Honor Court fails to find plagiarism has been committed; the dean shall assign to another faculty member the task of entering a course grade for the originally accused student.
E. Definitions
 
1. "Faculty Member" means any individual assigned to teach a course offered by the University of Georgia Law School.
2. "Student" means any person enrolled in a course offered by the University of Georgia Law School.
 
 

Policy on Student Peer Harassment

All students are subject to the University's Non-Discrimination and Anti-Harassment Policy (NDAH) and are expected, as a condition of enrollment, to conduct themselves in accordance with this policy.  It is important that you familiarize yourselves with the University's policy, which can be accessed at http://eoo.uga.edu/policies/non-discrimination-anti-harassment-policy.
 
In compliance with federal law, including the provisions of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Sections 503 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, the University of Georgia does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, religion, color, national or ethnic origin, age, disability, or military service in its administration of educational policies, programs, or activities; its admissions policies; scholarship and loan programs; athletic or other University-administered programs; or employment. In addition, the University does not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation consistent with the University non-discrimination policy. 
 
Inquiries or complaints should be directed to the director of the Equal Opportunity Office, 119 Holmes-Hunter Academic Building, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602. Telephone (706) 542-7912 (V/TDD). Fax (706) 542-2822.
 
 

LAW SCHOOL COMPUTER USE POLICY

Instructors may restrict or prohibit the use of computers in class subject to any requirements imposed by state or federal disability law.

 

LAW SCHOOL GRADING POLICIES

To ensure a measure of uniformity in grading policies, the faculty has instituted the following regulations:
 
1. First Year Grades
 
The average grade in each first year course shall fall within the range of 2.9-3.1 based on the Law School's grading system (A+ = 4.3; A = 4.0; A- = 3.7; B+ = 3.3, etc.). The grades of non-J.D. students shall be disregarded for purposes of this policy. Variation from this rule is permissible only in extraordinary circumstances which must be outlined by the instructor in a letter to the Dean. Suggested guidelines, which are not mandatory, are:
 
• Maximum 33% "A" grades (including A+ and A-)
• Maximum 33% grades of C+ or lower
• Maximum of two A+ grades
 
2.Upper-level Grades
 
Except as set forth below, the average grade in all upper-level courses shall fall within the range of 2.9-3.2. The grades of non-J.D. students shall be disregarded for purposes of this policy. Variations are permissible only in extraordinary circumstances which must be outlined in a letter from the instructor to the Dean. All courses and seminars with 20 or fewer students are not subject to this policy.
 
Suggested guidelines, which are not mandatory, are:
 
• Maximum 33% "A" grades (including A+ and A-)
• Maximum 33% grades of C+ or lower
• Maximum of two A+ grades
 
School of Law Faculty Policy stipulates that grading should be completed and course grades submitted to the Law Registrar’s office within thirty days following the conclusion of the final exam period.