In 1997, Temple University established a Master of Laws degree (LL.M.) program in Beijing to educate Chinese judges, prosecutors, government officials (including NPC and State Council legal staff), law professors, and lawyers in U.S. and international legal principles. This 15-month program, which operates in collaboration with Tsinghua University School of Law, is the first foreign law degree granting program approved by the Chinese Ministry of Education.
To qualify for admission to this program, applicants must have:
- earned their first law degree (LLB or equivalent) or advanced degree (LLM or higher) outside the United States, or
- Chinese bar membership and at least three years of practical legal experience.
Those admitted will have excellent school records, strong letters of recommendation, and English competence. The Admissions Committee carefully examines all parts of the application. The Beijing LL.M. program does not require applicants to take the LSAT, however we do require the TOEFL or equivalent English assessment exam (see Application Procedure below for specific requirements).
The Admissions Committee carefully examines all parts of the application. The committee reads all files thoroughly and considers each application on an individual basis. All committee decisions are final. Interviews will be conducted at our discretion. We will contact the applicant if the Admissions Committee feels that an interview is necessary.
Applications and all supporting documents must be postmarked by May 15 of the year in which you would like to enroll. Applications and materials postmarked after May 15 will be considered depending on the space available. The program begins in late July; LL.M. candidates are not permitted to start the program at any other time.
The Admissions Committee mails admissions on a rolling basis. We will review applications as quickly as possible. Once an admissions decision is reached, the applicant will be notified immediately via email and postal mail. We will also send materials by fax when requested. Applications that are completed prior to the May 15 deadline will receive priority review.
Step 1: Apply Online
Step 2: Submit Required Documents
Please send the completed application form (or print-out of the online form if you have applied online) and other required documents directly to the Office of Graduate and International Programs at Temple Law. We will not review your application until all of your materials have been received; therefore we highly recommend that you mail the above documents in one complete package in order to expedite the review by the Admissions Committee.
This form must be completed and signed. If you apply online, please send us a print-out of your application.
All applicants must take an English assessment exam and arrange to have the testing agency send an official score report directly to Temple Law. There are three options for this test:
- For applicants who take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), a score of at least 570 (paper-based exam), 230 (computer-based exam), or 88 (internet-based exam) points is required for admission consideration. Temple Law’s TOEFL report code number is 2906-03.
- For students who take the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), a minimum band score of 6.5 is necessary for admission, with no score below 6.0.
- Temple administers an English Assessment Exam (EAE) for purposes of this Program. The Temple EAE is generally offered during the first weekend after the May 15 application deadline in Beijing. The Temple EAE is based on the Michigan Test of English Language Proficiency (MTELP) and its Listening Comprehension Test (LCT).
Official transcripts (final grade reports or mark sheets) and certificates of law degree completion must be submitted to Temple Law. A certified English language translation must also accompany transcripts that are not issued in English. An acceptable official transcript is one that has been submitted directly to Temple Law from the issuing overseas university under seal in an envelope sealed by your university. Transcripts that have been opened and handled by the applicant are not considered acceptable.
A carefully worded personal statement must be provided. This statement should include any additional information you think might be helpful to the Admissions Committee concerning your personal history, professional interests, and abilities. The committee wants to know you as a person and as a professional. Sign your name and write the date at the end of this statement to certify that the essay is true and your own work product.
Students must submit two letters of reference from either law professors or legal employers well acquainted with your academic abilities or professional skills. Applicants should provide reference forms to the person serving as referee. The referee may send the letters to Temple Law directly. The Confidential Letter of Reference forms are included in the downloadable Application Form.
Each application for admission must be accompanied by a RMB 200 yuan application fee. The application fee is nonrefundable.
Taking the Bar Exam
Most U.S. states require applicants to hold a J.D. degree to seek admission to the Bar. However, a few U.S. states have historically permitted graduates of an LL.M. program, who do not hold a J.D.degree, to sit for the bar examination if they meet other requirements related to both their prior degree and the types of credits earned during the LL.M. program. A separate Board of Law Examiners for each state establishes and periodically revises the requirements for admission. In addition to a bar examination, there are character, fitness, and other qualifications for admission to the bar in every U.S. jurisdiction.