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If you ask any scientist which country in the world has the best system of legal education, in many cases, you will get the answer – in the United States of America. Indeed, legal education is one of the objects of American pride. The number of foreign law students in the United States exceeds the number of all foreign law students studying in all countries combined. The Studying program is quite comprehensive, that’ why as a student I chose to write my paper with help of qualified professionals.
LAW SCHOOLS IN THE UNITED STATES
Legal education in the United States is different from other countries. In different countries, a student, to get a law degree, must immediately enroll in the first year of the university in this course. To enter most universities, students only need to provide a certificate of secondary education. In the United States, education is built quite differently. The system of legal education and law itself in the United States is regarded as a professional and academic field, it is the equivalent of master’s degree programs at most universities in the world. This means that students can enter universities for law majors only after completing a bachelor’s degree. Law in the United States is not taught in bachelor’s degree programs.
Law schools in the United States are part of for-profit and public universities and provide students with the opportunity to obtain a Juris Doctor (J. D.) degree. The Juris Doctor (J. D.) program lasts 3 years (inpatient training) or 4 years (correspondence training). The most difficult stage in the training is the first year because of the specialized subjects, exams, and the Socrates method, which is used in teaching Law to students. The Socrates method attracts many foreign students to study law at US Universities. Most students do not really like this method, as it is very difficult, causes a certain tension, and creates confusion. But it is this method that helps students develop unique legal thinking and easily master the practical skills of a lawyer.
The Socratic method consists in the form of teaching through the study of court cases and legal issues. Students read the case before the lesson, then they are invited to explain it themselves. The professor never explains anything, but instead demands explanations from the student, asking him questions. However, the professor does not just ask questions, but does it according to a certain system, as a result, his questions more and more clarify the student’s thinking, pay attention to nuances that the student did not initially assume existed. The idea of the method is that the student develops his logic of proof and convinces himself that a certain decision of the judge, in this case, is the best.
THE US LAW EDUCATION SYSTEM
The American legal education system consists of 5 main stages:
1. Bachelor’s degree from a university or college (4 years)
2. Preparation for the test, and passing the LSAT law test
3. School of Law, Juris Doctor program – (3 years)
4. Bar Exam-qualification exam for the assignment of the status of a lawyer
5. Obtaining a certificate for legal practice, based on a completed exam
HOW TO ENROLL IN A LAW SCHOOL IN THE USA
Many students do not understand the complexity of entering a law school. The admission process is very complex and lengthy, so there are several preparatory points that every foreign student should take into account. Every year, the competition for admission in law schools is growing due to the popularity of the direction.
What you should pay attention to if you want to become a student of a prestigious law school:
* Good, even excellent grades first of all. Schools of law pay special attention to the average score of a bachelor’s degree – GPA. Therefore, students should provide the highest possible grades.
* Passing the LSAT profile exam. The result of this exam is very important for admission, so do not be lazy, it is advisable to start preparing as early as possible. We also recommend that students take an additional course on taking the test directly in the United States. This will allow you to prepare faster and successfully pass the test. LSAT is an entrance exam to law schools.
* High level of English. To enroll in US universities, law schools, you will need to pass the TOEFL test. We recommend taking this test for further study in the United States.
IMPORTANT! International students who are planning to enroll in the school of law should know that not all universities accept foreign students for this course. The studying of law students is regulated by the legislation of each specific state.
WHAT DOCUMENTS MUST BE PROVIDED FOR ADMISSION
To enter the university for the Juris Doctor program, you must provide the following set of necessary documents:
1. Bachelor’s degree (4 years) in any specialty;
2. Registration in the Law School Data Assembly Service – LSDAS)
3. The result of the LSAT test
4. 2 letters of recommendation from university teachers
5. TOEFL test result
6. Financial documents that confirm your solvency. In this case, students (or the sponsor) must provide certificates from the bank about the availability and status of the account. The account must have an amount that corresponds to the cost of tuition and accommodation for one academic year
LLM (MASTER OF LAW DEGREE) PROGRAM
Many universities, in addition to a bachelor’s degree, may require an additional master’s degree in law – LLM (MASTER OF LAW DEGREE). This is a one-year program that is an introduction to the Juris Doctor program, but in no case replaces it. It is necessary to check the need to pass the LLM (Master of Law Degree) program before submitting documents.
THE COST OF STUDYING AT THE J. D. PROGRAM.
Studying at the law faculties of universities is not a cheap pleasure. You need to count on the amount of $ 35,000 or more per year. Tuition at the most prestigious and rated schools ranges from 55 to 70,000 US dollars per year. Scholarships in this area are provided extremely rarely, or they are not available at all, especially foreign students should not expect a scholarship.
Law is considered one of the most expensive courses (after medicine) in US universities. This is because the level of earnings in this area is very high and in a few years, you can get back the money you spent.
The United States of America is known for its strict immigration rules for students. Everything is not so difficult, you just need to understand your rights as a student and the conditions for obtaining a visa to study.
Foreign students who are going to receive higher, language, or secondary education in the United States of America belong to international students “International Student” and can receive one of 3 categories of US student visas: F1 Visa, J1 Visa, or M1 Visa. Student visas of the category F1 Visa, J1 Visa allow students to work during their studies, the M1 Visa does not provide such an opportunity. Before entering the university, you need to familiarize yourself with these types of visas, with the requirements for obtaining and the rules for staying in the United States in these categories.
TYPES OF STUDENT VISAS IN THE UNITED STATES
F-1, Visa for academic purposes
The F-1 visa is issued to students who are studying academically in the United States of America. That is, to obtain this type of visa, you must be a student, and is studying under one of the following programs:
* Language schools: English language courses from 2 weeks;
* Preparatory programs for university admission;
* Bachelor’s Degree program at a US university;
* Master’s Degree program at a US university;
* Two-year study programs at community colleges with the USA;
* Short-term professional training programs;
* Summer vacation programs for schoolchildren and students;
F-1 is the most popular type of student visa for international students who study in the United States. The condition for obtaining this type of visa is, first of all, enrollment in a training program with an academic load of 20 hours per week. The F-1 visa allows students to work 20 hours a week on the campus of an educational institution during the study period (this permit is valid only for programs lasting at least 6 months). In addition, after graduation, students can extend their stay in the United States for a year under the Optional Practical Training program.
J-1, students participating in exchange programs
Cultural exchange programs allow students to study in the United States of America for certain types of programs. There are 15 categories of J-1 Type visas: Au pair and EduCare, Camp Counselor, Exchange Student, Government Visitor, International Visitor, Alien physician, Professor, Professor, Research Scholar, Short-term Scholar, Specialist, Summer Work Travel, Teacher, Trainee, Intern, Secondary school student.
This type of student visa applies to non-academic or professional training. A visa does not allow you to work during your studies.
To obtain a student visa of any of the above categories, you must meet the following requirements:
1. Confirm the academic level: each of the educational or educational programs in the United States has its requirements for applicants.2. Financial guarantees: you must prove that you can afford to pay for your studies, as well as you have funds for living and expenses in the United States.
3. Medical insurance: The requirement to provide medical insurance for the period of study does not apply to all types of student visas.