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2-Year J.D. for Foreign-Trained Lawyers

Visit the tabs below to learn more about application requirements for the 2-Year J.D. for Foreign-Trained Lawyers.


Foreign-trained lawyers applying for admission to the Two-Year J.D. Program should submit the following items after registering with the Credential Assembly Service (CAS) at www.lsac.org:

  • Completed online application by April 1, 2021 deadline
    • To apply for the Two-Year J.D. program, please fill out the KU Law J.D. application at www.lsac.org. Be sure to check the "Two-Year J.D." box on your application.
    • Include official transcripts from all undergraduate and law school programs attended.
    • A personal statement. Your personal statement is your opportunity to share with the Admissions Committee your significant personal, social or academic experiences that demonstrate why you are interested in attending law school and what qualities you will bring to our campus. Please attach a two- to three-page, double-spaced statement reflecting your interest in seeking a J.D. and in joining our community.
    • Resume. Please attach a resume to your application that includes all of your relevant education, work experience, volunteer activities, honors, scholarships, awards and other activities that reflect your background and experience.
    • Include at least two letters of recommendation attesting to your ability to pursue advanced graduate work. 
  • The $55 non-refundable application fee. The application fee should be paid online through your LSAC.org account. Get information about fee waivers.

Upon admission, you will be required to submit financial documents verifying that you have savings to cover the cost of attendance (tuition, fees, living expenses and mandatory health insurance) for the academic year in which you will be enrolling. You will be required to submit these documents before an I-20 form will be issued to you.

Extending to a third year

Students who have been admitted to or are already pursuing the 2-Year J.D. Program for Foreign-Trained Lawyers may elect to remain for a third year in order to complete additional coursework to complete the degree. Students wishing to extend their J.D. studies to a third year may do so with the approval of the Associate Dean for International & Comparative Law.

Taking the LSAT

The LSAT exam is a required part of the admission to the Two-Year JD program. The LSAT is administered in many cities around the world. A foreign-trained lawyer or current law student should plan ahead and take the LSAT in advance of applying to KU Law. Although the LSAT is required for admission, there is no minimum LSAT score required for entry into the Two-Year JD program.

What is the LSAT exam?

The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) is a half-day, standardized test administered four times each year at designated testing centers throughout the world. The test is an integral part of the law school admission process in the United States, Canada, and a growing number of other countries. It provides a standard measure of acquired reading and verbal reasoning skills that law schools can use as one of several factors in assessing applicants.

In the United States, Canada, the Caribbean, and some other countries, the LSAT is administered on a Saturday, except in June, when it is generally administered on a Monday. For Saturday Sabbath observers, the test is also administered on a weekday following Saturday administrations.

KU Law recommends that the LSAT be taken no later than February for admission the following fall. However, taking the test earlier — in June, September or December — is advised.

Complete information on the LSAT exam is available at http://www.lsac.org/jd/lsat/about-the-lsat.

How to Prepare for the LSAT

The LSAT exam tests skills rather than knowledge. That means that applicants do not need any knowledge of the American legal system. In fact, there will not be any questions specific to law, and the test-taker has no way of knowing which subjects will be on the exam. So how do students prepare for such an exam? By practicing the skills that are tested on the exam, namely logic, reading comprehension and critical reasoning.

Do not take the test without preparing for it! Understanding the skills tested on the exam and practicing those skills is essential for performing well. Students who take the test “cold” often perform well below what is required for admission. Fortunately, there are a number of resources available online. The key is to find a program that teaches you the test and provides opportunities to practice the types of questions on the exam.

How to Register for the LSAT

You can register for the LSAT exam at http://www.lsac.org.  

Proof of English Proficiency

Except for U.S. citizens or permanent residents, proficiency in English is a requirement for all 2-Year J.D. candidates. Foreign students who speak English as a first language, or who obtained a law degree at an institution with instruction in all courses in English, may have the TOEFL requirement waived. For all other international students, students must submit a TOEFL score report. Students with an iBT TOEFL score above 95 are presumptively proficient. Students with scores below 95 will be evaluated on a case by case basis and may be required to attend KU’s Legal English Program (prior to and/or during) their enrollment. LSAC's TOEFL code for the CAS is 0058.

All students are encouraged to participate in KU’s Legal English Program, a four week English class focused on skills and concepts specific to the American legal education system.

Complete information about the Legal Information Program is available at https://aec.ku.edu/legal-english-program.

KU Law also accepts IELTS and deems students with an overall score of 7.0 or better as presumptively proficient. Students with an overall score below 7.0 will be evaluated on a case by case basis and may be required to attend English language classes prior to and/or during their enrollment.

Tuition & Fees

For the fall and spring semester of the 2020-21 academic year, tuition is $959 per credit hour for newly enrolled international students. All law students pay a required campus fee of $984 per year.

These fees entitle the student to course instruction, dispensary care for ordinary illnesses and special medical care at nominal rates, the use of the Kansas Union, a copy of the University Daily Kansan and other newspapers, and admission at reduced prices to most campus events, such as concerts, plays, films, lectures and athletic events.

Total fees and tuition for the 2020-21 academic year will be $28,777 for first-year international students.

Cost of Attendance Fact Sheet 2020-2021

Estimated Annual Expenses 2-Year J.D. Tuition
Tuition per credit hour
(29 hours in first year)
Fees per year $984
Total for Tuition/Fees $28,777
Room and Board $10,724
Personal Expenses $2,278
Transportation $3,106
Books $1,526
Cost of Attendance* $46,411

The priority application deadline for scholarship consideration is Feb. 15. To be considered for need-based scholarships, grants and loans, you must complete the FAFSA.

*Costs for room and board, personal expenses, transportation and books are estimates determined by the KU Office of Student Financial Aid.

International Scholar Scholarships

International students applying for the 2-Year-JD program are automatically considered for the International Scholars Scholarship, which provides up to $5,000 per year for qualified applicants. The Admissions Committee will consider candidates for the award based on the following criteria:

  • Strong academic performance as evidenced by transcripts and TOEFL results
  • Geographic diversity


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