Taking Classes at William & Mary

Some notes on what to expect when you arrive

Registration

Final course registration will take place during the orientation week before classes begin.  You will first meet with a William & Mary faculty advisor to discuss your selections, then be registered for the courses you've chosen.  To find what courses are being offered, enrolling students may log into Banner to view the current course catalog. Class in Session

MyLaw

Many of your professors will use an online tool called MyLaw to post information about your courses. You may find your syllabus, course documents, and other relevant information on this site. (You will also use MyLaw to submit your final exams at the end of each semester.) After logging in with your W&M user ID and password, you will see a list of the courses in which you are enrolled. Click the course name to navigate to the specific information for that course.

Credits

To complete your LL.M. degree, you must earn a minimum of 24 credits within two regular academic semesters, either fall and spring or spring and fall, and maintain a minimum GPA of 2.0.  Your credits may be divided as you like over the course of the fall and spring semesters; note, students must register for a minimum of 10 credits per semester and may not register for more than 17 credits in any one semester.  If you are interested in the subject matter of a course and want to be in the class but not take the exam (or receive credit), you may audit the course, with the instructor’s permission. If you do not specify during the registration period that you plan to audit the course, then you will be expected to take the exam and will receive graded credit.

Class Structure

Most classes will be taken with American J.D. students. Many LL.M. students choose the first-year J.D. courses, such as Criminal Law, Civil Procedure, and Torts. Most classes will be lectures, but you may also take some seminar courses, which have smaller class sizes and are discussion-based.

Exams are held at the end of each semester, following the last day of classes. Exams are written and may consist of essays, multiple choice questions, or a combination of both. Your professor will provide more specifics regarding the exam format. If you are from a country where English is not the national language, you will be given additional time to complete your exam.

Grading Policy for LL.M. Students

LL.M. students may elect, in any semester, to be graded on an Honors/Pass/Fail scale, rather than on a letter-grade scale, for all coursework in that semester.  Such an election must be made by 4:00 p.m. on the last day of Add/Drop week in that semester and, once made, is irrevocable. The option must be exercised with respect to all coursework in a semester.

LL.M. students who wish to avail themselves of the Honors/Pass/Fail grading option must communicate that intention by the end of the Add/Drop week by submitting a Grading Election Form to [[dmshelton, Donna Shelton]].  If a form is not submitted by the deadline, the student will be subject to the standard grading scale in all courses that semester.

Courses that are offered to all students only on a Pass/Fail basis will not award Honors grades.

LL.M. students may also, pursuant to Law School policy, convert one grade in a course taken during any semester at the Law School except the final semester of study to a Pass/Fail grade. Students wishing to convert a grade must communicate that intention by submitting a Grade Conversion Form to Donna Shelton during their final semester of study at the Law School. The deadline for submitting a Grade Conversion Form is November 1 if the final semester of study is the fall semester and April 1 if the final semester of study is the spring semester.

Students considering either of these grading options should be aware that eligibility for admission to a state bar, for admission to a J.D. or other educational program, for third-party funding, or for other programs may be affected by the number of courses taken for other than a letter grade.

Questions should be directed to Prof. [[jsstevenson, Jennifer Stevenson]], Assistant Dean of Graduate Programs and Associate Director of the LL.M. Program.