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The Summer Start Advantage

Summer Start Program

Start law school early and enjoy the benefits. All summer starters begin law school in late May and enjoy several advantages.

Still accepting applications for 2015!

The Benefits

Small class sizes
Summer start classes are significantly smaller than typical first-year law classes.

Start law school with a lighter load
You’ll work hard in summer school, but you’ll only be taking two classes at a time.

Flexible start
Worried about the first-year crush? Want the freedom to take a lighter load in your final semester? Summer starters get an 8-credit head start on completing the 90 credits required to graduate. That's like starting a 100-yard dash at the 10-yard mark, meaning you can take a slightly easier path to the finish line. You'll still work hard, but you'll also have the opportunity to take fewer credits per semester and still graduate on time. Following is a sample schedule for the path you might take:

  Summer Fall Winter Spring
First year 8 credits 12 - 14
Second year 2 14 2 14
Third Year - 12 - 12
Total credits: 90

Electives in the first year
Because summer starters have already completed two substantive courses, they have the chance to take up to two electives in their first year.

Accelerated Program

Want to finish law school almost a year ahead of schedule? Summer starters who choose the Accelerated Program can complete their J.D. in a little over two years by attending school during summer and winter. Here's how it's done:

  Summer Fall Winter Spring
First year 8 credits 16 - 16
Second year 8 16 2 16
Third Year 8 - - -
Total credits: 90

Financial Considerations

For students worried about the cost of law school, the Accelerated Program is one fundamental way to keep your debt under control. Because tuition is on a per-credit payment system, you'll still end up paying about the same in tuition. So if the cost is the same, how do summer starters in the Accelerated Program save money?

  1. One less year in living expenses.
  2. Start your career one year early, providing a bonus year of employment.
  3. No student fees for the third year.

But what about your scholarship?
Scholarships are awarded on a semester basis, so you will not be able to use the third year. For example, if you have been awarded a $2,500 per year scholarship, you will receive $5,000 total over two years.

How to Apply
The requirements and process for enrollment in the Summer Start program are the same as for the J.D. program, with the following exceptions:

  • The deadline to apply for the Summer Start program is April 15.
  • You will apply using the J.D. application on the LSAC website. Question 1 of the application asks whether you are applying for the "Fall Session" or "Summer Session." Please mark "Summer Session."
  • Your choice of session is not binding until April 15. If you want to change your selection, you must inform the Admissions Office by that date.

KU Law charges students on a per-credit basis, so tuition will be higher in your first year but lower in your second and third years. Comparing fall starters to summer starters demonstrates the difference:

  Fall Starters Summer Starters
1st Year 29 credits 37 credits
2nd & 3rd Year 61 credits 53 credits

Scholarships are awarded per year, not per credit, and are disbursed in the fall and spring semesters. For example, if you have been awarded a $5,000 scholarship in the first year, you will receive a $2,500 award in the fall semester followed by a $2,500 award in the spring semester.

Financial Aid
Financial aid is available for summer starters. For more information, please contact the KU Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships.

Info for 2015 Summer Starters

Orientation & Lawyering Class

Summer Start students must attend orientation on Thursday and Friday, May 21-22. There is no class Monday, May 25, but students will need to attend Lawyering class on Tuesday, May 26. During orientation, we will cover the first-day assignments and how to access them.

Regular Schedule

Beginning May 27, summer start students will attend classes per the schedule below. Classes will meet every weekday. You do not need to enroll yourselves in summer classes because the law school registrar will enroll you in mid-May.

Once enrolled, you will be able to see your course materials list in Enroll & Pay. But if you choose to get your books before the list is viewable, please check the KU Bookstore website. Book lists will not be posted until late April or early May. Once the LAW classes are viewable, you can find the book information by using the course information listed below.

First-Year Courses

First Session
Classes May 27 - June 19 | Exams June 22 and 24
LAW 831 Torts I McAllister 2 credits 9:05 - 10:25 Room 203 83272
LAW 826 Property Kronk Warner 2 credits 10:45 - 12:05 Room 203 87782
Second Session
Classes June 25 - July 21 (no class July 3) | Exams July 23 and 25
LAW 831 Torts I Kautsch 2 credits 9:05 - 10:25 Room 203 83273
LAW 814 Property DeLaTorre 2 credits 10:45 - 12:05 Room 203 87784

First-year courses will be taught in traditional 80-minute time periods over 18 class days.

New Student Orientation/Lawyering Skills classes: Thursday, May 21 - Friday, May 22
Lawyering Skills class: Tuesday, May 26


Apply Now
Register for the Fall Open House at KU Law
Schedule a visit
Check application status

Office of Admissions
103 Green Hall

Why KU
  • One-third of full-time faculty have written casebooks used at U.S. law schools
  • 2 KU law faculty were U.S. Supreme Court clerks
  • KU’s Project for Innocence: 33 conviction reversals since 2009
  • 7,300+ alumni live in all 50 states and 18 foreign countries
  • #18 “best value” law school in the nation — National Jurist Magazine
  • 12 interdisciplinary joint degrees
  • 27th nationwide for lowest debt at graduation. — U.S. News & World Report
  • 70 percent of upper-level law classes have 25 or fewer students
  • Nearly 800 employment interviews at law school, 2012-13
  • Top 25% for number of 2013 grads hired by the nation’s largest law firms
  • 20th: for number of law alumni promoted to partner at the 250 largest law firms