JSD Application

Those admitted to the highly selective program must demonstrate analytic and research ability, possess outstanding academic credentials, and have completed the LLM at an accredited U.S. law school. The successful candidate will also have excellent English reading and writing ability, a demonstrated commitment to developing the skills and background of a successful scholar, and have a research interest in one of the College of Law’s specialty programs.

JSD Program Overview

To apply, please complete the application available at either LSAC or the University of Illinois Graduate College. All JSD applicants must also complete and submit the Declaration of Finances form.

JSD Application – Illinois Graduate College
Declaration of Finances

Application Requirements

Application requirements include:

  • Completion of an LLM degree from an accredited U.S. law school
  • 5-10 page research proposal with evidence of preliminary research on the topic and anticipated research methodology
  • Personal statement indicating career goals, relevant past experience, and reasons for selecting the Illinois program
  • Current curriculum vitae
  • Three letters of reference, including at least one from an accredited U.S. law school
  • Copies of academic transcripts
  • Statement of financial resources available to support this program
  • TOEFL/IELTS score
  • An oral interview may be required

English Proficiency

All applicants from countries where English is not the official language are required to submit the scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Preference will be given to applicants with a TOEFL score of 95 internet-based or higher or an IELTS score of 7.0 or higher. Test must be taken within two years of program term of entry (August).

Application Timeline

Admission to the JSD program is for the fall semester only. Applications will be considered on a rolling basis starting October 30. To receive maximum consideration, interested candidates must submit a completed application by February 15. 

Applications completed after February 15 will be considered as space allows.

Annual Security and Fire Safety Report

The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Annual Security and Fire Safety Report is available. This report includes statistics from the previous three years concerning reported crime that occurred on campus, in certain off-campus buildings or property owned or controlled by the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign campus and statistics for fires in on-campus student housing. The report also includes institutional policies concerning campus security and other safety information along with fire safety policies and procedures. You may obtain a hard copy of this report by contacting the Division of Public Safety or by accessing the following website