2022-2023 WCL Catalog 
    
    Apr 13, 2024  
2022-2023 WCL Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

LL.M in Intellectual Property and Technology


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The Master of Laws in Intellectual Property and Technology offers numerous paths of study of U.S., international, and comparative laws that regulate technology and information. Students focusing in Intellectual Property Law will receive opportunities for advising and experiential learning through the Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property. Students focusing in technology and security will receive opportunities for advising and experiential learning through the Program on Technology Law and Security. The program has been specifically tailored to enable LL.M students to take maximum advantage of the unique organizations and resources in Washington, DC and also through a summer program in Geneva, Switzerland. 

LL.M Admissions


  • Hold a JD from a U.S. law school accredited by the ABA or a first degree in law from a foreign law school with equivalent standards. 
  • Submit a completed application form along with supporting documents before the application deadline.
  • International applicants must meet the English Language Proficiency Requirement.

More information about applying is available on the Office of Graduate Admissions website.

LL.M Degree Requirements


  • Students must successfully complete 24 credit hours from the designated list of classes with a GPA of 2.0 (C) or better.
  • In the first semester, non-common law trained students must successfully complete American Legal Institutions (LAW-580-001; 2 credits) and LL.M Legal Research and Writing (LAW-580-002; 2 credits).
  • Graduation tracks:
    • Research Track: students are in this track by default. Students must successfully complete two research papers of at least 3,500 words each that demonstrate a high degree of skill in legal scholarship and writing. The legal memo written in the LL.M Legal Research and Writing class counts as one paper. 
    • Practical Skills Track: students are in this track when they register for the International Legal Studies Externship course (LAW-754). They must successfully complete an externship for credit, and complete one research paper of at least 3,500 words that demonstrates a high degree of skill in legal scholarship and writing. This legal memo written in the LL.M Legal Research and Writing class counts as one paper toward the paper requirement. 
  • The 24 credits needed for the LL.M degree can be completed part-time, or full-time (two or three regular semesters). Students on an F-1 or J-1 visa must be enrolled in at least eight credits during the fall and the spring, except for the last semester when students can take a reduced course load for one to seven credits. To take a reduced course load, the Reduced Course Load Authorization Form must be completed and submitted to the Office of International Student and Scholar Services at isss@american.edu. NOTE: International students interested in taking the New York bar exam must complete the LL.M program within 24 months of matriculation. 
  • Students may enroll in a maximum of 16 credits per semester (fall and spring), however, it is recommended that students take no more than 14 credits per semester. WCL allows up to seven credits in the summer. NOTE: International students interested in taking the New York bar exam can only be enrolled in a maximum of four credits in the summer.
  • LL.M students may complete their degree requirements entirely by traditional classroom study or by classroom study combined with no more than six semester hours of approved externship and/or independent study credits.
  • Absent extraordinary circumstances, students must complete the LL.M degree within 60 months of matriculating in a given LL.M program.

Required Courses


  • LAW-929B Advanced Legal Writing (Intellectual Property)
  • At least 12 credits must be taken from the approved intellectual property and information law courses, including at least one foundational IP course:

Areas of Concentration


To satisfy the requirements for an area of concentration, students must successfully complete 12 credits of approved coursework in one of the following areas:

  • Trademark Law
  • Copyright Law
  • Patent Law
  • Cyber Law

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