University of Pittsburgh

LL.M. Basic Facts

Length of LL.M. Program: One Academic Year (August to May)

The U.S. Law & Language program is often a requirement for LL.M. students and occurs during the month of July before the LL.M. program begins at the University of Pittsburgh.  

Estimated LL.M. Tuition & Fees: $35,000 tuition + $900 fees

Estimated LL.M. Living Expenses: $1,400 / month
Apartments in Pittsburgh can be very inexpensive.  This estimate includes phone, electricity, groceries and social expenses. Your student identification card entitles you to free bus fare throughout the county.  See our page about "Living in Pittsburgh" for more information, including links to apartment ads and foreign cultural affiliations  in Pittsburgh.

Degree Requirements

Students must complete 24 credits to graduate. The program is completed in one academic year (August to May). Additional Requirements are:

  1. Students are required to take U.S. Legal Analysis & Writing (2 credits; Fall Semester), Introduction to American Law (3 credits; Fall Semester), and the LL.M. Colloquium (2 credits, Spring Semester).
  2. Each student must complete a faculty supervised writing project, either in a seminar or as   an independent study.
  3. Students who will take the New York Bar Exam must take courses that satisfy the Exam’s requirements for LL.M. students. These requirements can be found here.

Pennsylvania State Bar Exam:

While Pitt Law LL.M. graduates routinely qualify to take the New York bar exam, changes adopted in December 2013 now make it easier for an LL.M. graduate to qualify to take the Pennsylvania Bar exam as well.            

            Generally, a foreign lawyer may sit for the Pennsylvania Bar Exam if he/she:              

  1. has been admitted to practice in his/her home country;
  2. has practiced in his/her home country for five of the past eight years immediately preceding application to take the Pennsylvania Bar Exam; and
  3. has completed at least 24 credits in classes from a specific list of courses (these courses must include Constitutional Law, Civil Procedure, Professional Responsibility, and Legal Research and Writing).        

Any student interested in this possibility should carefully check Rule 205 of the Pennsylvania Bar Admission Rules (

Academic Program Outline:

LL.M. students must take at least 9 credits per semester to retain full-time status. Because 24 credits are required to graduate with the LL.M. and most students complete the LL.M. in two semesters, it is expected that students will take 11-13 credits per semester. If students register for too many credits in one semester, they may find themselves at an academic disadvantage.

Fall Semester:


Legal Analysis, Research & Writing


Introduction to American Law



At least 5

Spring Semester:


LL.M. Colloquium Class



At least 9

Either Semester (usually Spring):


Writing Requirement: Seminar or Independent Study


Total Credits:


Here are descriptions of these required courses.

The structure of the program allows each student the opportunity to obtain an in- depth view of the fundamentals of U.S. legal practice, while concentrating elective courses in a specific area of interest. Elective courses also allow LL.M. students to participate with J.D. students in the regular academic life of the Law School. Electives can be selected from the full array of courses offered in the law school, which the registrar lists for each semester here.

LL.M. Internships
CILE works with LL.M. students who wish to stay in Pittsburgh for the summer and intern at a law firm or other organization. We work with each student to match them with an internship provider that best suits his or her field of interest. 



Revised 09/28/2011 | Copyright 2011 | Site by UMC