Independent Study

Independent Studies must be arranged prior to the beginning of term, and the completed Independent Study Form submitted to the Office of the Registrar by the Friday of the first week of classes. Please refer to the regulations for Independent Study in the Student Handbook and on the back of the Authorization form. Students must be in the top 75% of their class in order to be eligible.

Independent Study Registration Policy

  1. No student may take more than 2 credits of IS during the entire course of law school. This could be either one 2-credit IS, or two 1-credit IS.
  2. Faculty members may supervise a maximum of three independent studies per semester.
  3. Students will be expected to engage in at least 42 hours of research and writing for each IS credit, and to produce a high quality paper in the range of 15-20 pages for 1 credit, and 20-30 pages for 2 credits.
  4. Students and supervising faculty members will complete a form contract that contains:
    • Topic statement and description of the project
    • A statement of the student’s objective in pursuing the IS
    • A mutually agreed upon weekly meeting schedule (regular day and time)
    • Presumptive deadlines for completion of:
      • topic development
      • consultation with assigned librarian
      • bibliography (a list of possible sources on the topic)
      • thesis statement
      • research plan
      • outline
      • draft(s)
      • final paper deadline
    • Credit allocation and grade or pass/fail designation
    • Signature of the research librarian who will work with the student (to be assigned by the Library Director)
    • Signatures of student, supervising faculty member, and associate dean (if necessary)