1. I have no legal background. Will this program be right for
The certificate program is open to lawyers and nonlawyers alike. In either case, there is an application process to ensure an adequate professional and educational background to succeed in the program. These are law courses, however, and an understanding of basic American legal principles and real estate transactions is necessary for most of them. We encourage nonlawyers interested in the Certificate Program to take an elective course, Introduction to American Law, that is offered every semester. Nonlawyers may also benefit from the basic course in Real Estate Transactions and Finance. Either or both of these courses may be required as a condition of admission for some students.
2. I have never taken an online course before.
What is it like?
Many people who have not taken an online course are skeptical, and those doubts are sometimes reinforced by online CLE or CPE courses in which hundreds of people watch a webcast with minimal opportunity (if any) to ask questions or receive feedback. Our online courses are generally conducted live with small enrollments, and both the instructor and the students have microphones and webcams so they can see and hear each other. The classes are interactive, with constant opportunities to ask questions, participate in discussion, and receive feedback from the instructor. Students evaluations overwhelmingly praise both the quality and the convenience of our online classes.
3. Are these courses graded?
All courses in the Certificate Program are graded and a minimum GPA of 2.5 is required to earn a Certificate. However, because these courses mix lawyers, law students, and nonlawyer professionals, the standards for grading vary. For lawyers and law students, the relevant standard is whether they have an appropriate grasp of the material given the goal of practicing law and advising clients. For nonlawyer students, the grading standard is whether the student has mastered the legal material in a manner adequate to knowledgeably discuss the legal issues with an attorney, to understand legal advice, and to ask penetrating questions.
4. Can I apply a course toward more than one
No. Students can earn more than one Certificate, but each course may be counted toward only one Certificate.
5. Can I apply Certificate courses toward an
LL.M. in Real Estate at NYLS?
Yes. For those who already hold a J.D., courses taken toward a Certificate can be transferred into the LL.M. program and count toward the LL.M. degree. Note, however, that admission to the Certificate Program does not guaranty admission to the LL.M. program. The two programs have separate admissions processes and standards.
6. Is there financial aid for students?
Financial aid is generally not available for students enrolled in the Certificate Program, nor are government loans available for certificate (rather than degree) programs. However, the costs of the Certificate Program will be tax deductible for many legal and real estate professionals (consult your tax adviser).
7. Are there
discounts for multiple students?
Yes. If an institution is paying for two or more students enrolled concurrently in the Program, tuition is discounted by one-third for each student after the first. Special programs can also be designed for the specific needs of different business or governmental organizations. Please contact the Program Director, Prof. Marshall Tracht, to discuss.
Voted #3 specialty LL.M. program in New York by readers of the New York Law Journal!