Online Law School Classes: Your Best Option

Online Law School Classes are growing in popularity, despite the difficulties in many states of being allowed to sit on the bar exam. (The American Bar Association is currently reviewing regulations and may finally grant accreditation to 100% Online Law School Classes, without which many states won’t let you take the test to become a lawyer.)

Online Law School Classes

Here are some advantages to Online Law School Classes:

  • Admittance – They’re easier to get in than traditional law schools
  • Convenience – You watch the class in your home during your free time. There’s no commute, no need to move-in to your school.
  • Affordability – Online Law School Classes are about one-third the cost of brick-and-mortar schools. You won’t have pay for dorm and living expenses beyond your norm.
  • Teacher Accessibility – Your online professor may actually be more available than the traditional teacher. Ask your question by email, and he’ll be back to you within 48 hours.
  • Interactivity Without Distraction – Chat rooms, skype and email make interaction with fellow students possible. But there’s no campus life distraction of parties.

Online Law School Classes are for dreamers. While the traditional law school tends to reject more than accept applicants (thus they attain prestige by enrolling only the “cream of the crop.”), Online Law School Classes are open for pretty much everybody.

Online Law School Classes are also great for:

  1. Those who want private practice (since the big law firms go pretty much only for top-tier law school grads.)
  2. Those who want to compliment their professional career with a law degree.

Check to see if Online Law School Classes are the best option for you. As you research, make sure to ask:

  • Total costs of the program
  • Options for taking the bar in your state
  • Bar passage rates of graduates
  • 9-month-after-graduation employment of graduates in law job

This video, the Trials of a Law School Trailer 1, shows the adversity facing traditional law school students. The online school takes less of a sink-or-swim approach to its students.

Arizona online law degrees: in the near future?

In Arizona online law degrees won’t get you a shot at passing the bar.

That may change if legislation introduced in February 2013 by Arizona state representative John Allen overturns archaic rules that admit only graduates from traditional law schools to the bar exam.

Allen’s efforts are part of a nationwide movement to embrace equality and undo privilege. Professors at traditional schools run a profitable monopoly unparalleled by just about any academic discipline.

Arizona Online Law Degrees

Arizona resident Sharon Garshak graduated from an online law school in 2011, passed the California bar (which doesn’t have Arizona’s rules of exclusion), but so far hasn’t been allowed to even try in Arizona, despite the fact that the California bar exam is widely considered the most difficult in the nation.

Despite working full-time at a demanding job, I was able to go to law school and learn the legal principles really well,” she told Cronkite New Service.

An ABA-commissioned national taskforce has urged re-engineering its accreditation process and law education in general. It remains to be seen if the changes they implement will include accrediting online law schools, and thus allowing their students to take the bar nationwide.

In the meantime, anyone interested in Arizona Online Law Degrees is urged to examine:

  • desired outcomes of online law degree – Depending on your career goals, you may not need to pass the bar!
  • bar policies in your state
  • cost analysis of online versus traditional – It should be at least one-third less!
  • options to appeal for a special permission to take the bar in your state – These are very technical, so get the facts straight!

The video basically talks about how the online education races forward by leaps and bounds. When will the miserly authorities ruling law education let it catch up?

Distance education law school in the wave of the future

Distance education law school is the wave of the future. Like it or not, distance education law school is going to disrupt brick and mortar schools. You’ll soon be able to get the best professors’ classes at a cheaper price with a better outcome.

I honestly believe the traditional law school won’t survive,” said the conference speaker at the 2000 CALI Conference for Law School Computing.

The distance education law school option is poised for success because:

  • Theory will be given by geniuses in streamed lectures from brand-name universities like Harvard or Yale
  • Practical legal skills — thinking like a lawyer — will be drilled by competent legal professors, not today’s over-paid faculty whose salaries and light workload are the envy of other academic departments.
  • Growth will explode geographical into areas where traditional law schools have never touched.
  • With the potential for greater enrollment, distance education will diversify student bodies.

Distance Education Law School

Even now, law education’s current structures teeters on the brink of self-destruction. Graduates from traditional schools typically owe $100,000 — an unmanageable debt on their average salary of $60,000. For the first time in 30 years, applications in 2013 are down — way down — to these brick and mortar institutions. Departments are freezing tuition (finally!), scaling back expansion plans and feverishly concocting survival strategies.

As an answer to the current crisis, distance education law school rides on the scene as a white knight. But its efforts — however legitimate they might be — have been rebuffed by the stodgy leaders of the ABA who are protecting their colleagues’ professors’ economic interests. Only California allows online law grads to even take the bar exam to become a lawyer (although you can appeal in other states).

Before you enroll in distance education law school, make sure you know:

  • bar passage rates
  • employment in legal employment percentages nine months after graduation
  • total costs and median salary of grads
  • number of years of study
  • number of hours weekly of study
  • access to professors via email, chat or video conferencing
  • options for taking the bar in your state

Online master’s of law degree

Online master’s of law degree represents a specialization, but some online schools are exploiting the traditional understanding of a master’s degree to offer many of their programs. They don’t give the traditional JD, which is key to aspiring bar passage.

They’re billing it a specialization become an expert in legal matter affecting:

  • business
  • education
  • health car
  • contracts
  • construction
  • environmental law
  • mediation
  • legal support
  • human resources
  • advocacy
  • international affairs
  • policy making

Online master's of law degree

So if you have your profession and want to increase your (earnings) potential by doing a lot of the legal work yourself, the online master’s of law degree could be your best option.

To understand the quirky US system (where you get a law “doctorate” before a “master’s), you have to first understand how most European countries do it: they confer legal degrees as an undergraduate majors (four years of study). So when the U.S. (following Harvard’s model) established a 3-year legal study system after completing undergraduate studies, it was touted as heavier on academics (compared to Europe) and named a “doctorate.”

Once you got your law “doctorate” what more was there to study? You had to “master” a specific branch of law, and so you got a “master’s” (called an LLM).

So now the online master’s of law degree (or “master’s of legal studies,” as in the video) programs are turning on its head the existing structure as they seek to exploit the changing face of national education with the advent of internet. It could be argued they’re exploiting the confusion with the degree order in law studies to mislead students. Before you enroll, make sure you’re clear about your goals and intended outcomes with online law degree.

Here’s what you should know about the online master’s of law degree (or variation thereof):

  • Tuition can be one-sixth the cost of normal law school
  • It allows for great flexibility
  • Completion can take four years
  • You will have interaction with professors and students via email and chat rooms
  • Most states won’t let you take the bar exam (until policies change)
  • California runs counter current and does allow you to take the bar
  • You can appeal with your state bar to be allowed to take the bar
  • You probably won’t have to take the LSAT to get in to a master’s in law program

Legal studies program online: an advance in your career

Legal studies program online has met resistance from traditionalists, but it is natural that education evolves and adapts to new realities. Just like when Gutenberg invented the printing press it totally revolutionized learning and knowledge, so too the internet has been disruptive to the hallowed halls of education.

Legal studies program online

A buyer-beware attitude is fine. As critics point out, top law firms probably won’t be beating down your door to give you a job upon graduation. Legal studies programs online have had difficulty with students passing the bar. A major obstacle has been that most states don’t even let you take the bar with an online degree (California is the notable exception!).

But what naysayers don’t tell you is that traditional schools aren’t free from problems. An April 2013 Los Angeles Times article reports that law students have sued their traditional law schools in about 20 different suits around the country for presenting misleading post-graduation job statistics. Grads who bussed tables were reported as “employed within nine months after graduation.”

A New York Times article documents how traditional law schools manipulate their data to rise in U.S. News & World Report’s rankings, which leads to more applications and more donations. In one case, a dean classified low LSAT students as “part time” to drastically improve his bar passage stats of “full time” students.

So if a buyer-beware attitude is to predominate, let it apply to the traditional schools also.

Good news appears on the horizon for the legal studies program online. The American Bar Association is currently re-examining its anti-internet bias as part of comprehensive changes that are being sparked by plunging applications to traditional law schools.

The advantages of the legal studies program online are:

  • Affordability – With the exception of Washington U.’s foray into the online market, tuition is one-third or one-fourth the cost of the brick-and-mortar schools.
  • Flexibility – Most classes are “asynchronous,” which means they are recorded and you watch them at your convenience.
  • Ease – You won’t have to change cities, pay dorm fees, etc., to “move in” to your school’s locale.
  • Adaptability – The legal studies program online allows for students who can’t just quit their job or abandon their parental duties.
  • Accessibility – Critics say the online student won’t have access to professors and other students, but this is not the case. They can email questions and get answers within 48 hours. Chat rooms provide interaction with other law students.

Do your research right before signing up. The legal studies program online has its deficiencies. But it may be the best option for you.

Distance education law degree: Is it as good as traditional law schools?

Distance education law degree under a microscope has its pros and cons.

Is a distance education law degree as good as one from a traditional law school? In this video, experts weigh in on the pros and cons of distance education (not just law degree).

Law education has evolved since its beginnings in Colonial America. Is distance education just part of the growth and change naturally occurring in education. A comparison with how law education has differed abroad could be illustrative.

Distance Education Law Degree

In England and most of the rest of Europe, a career in law starts in undergraduate studies, unlike the United States which basically christened the Harvard post graduate model for national implementation. But with the crisis of a glut of grads and a diminished job market, the ABA is re-examining its accreditation process which currently excludes online law schools. Expect them to relax policies in the near future.

As you explore the distance education law degree option, make sure to research your school’s:

  • first attempt bar passage rate
  • total costs of coursing the program
  • how many years will it take?
  • how many hours of study weekly?
  • rates of employment in legal careers 9 months after graduation for previous students
  • access to professors and other students through emails and chat
  • credentials of professors

Virtually every law school utilizes the same books and curriculum, so what makes a difference is how hard a student works towards learning the law,” said Chuck Katz, an online law degree grad.

Law study program online: the next logical step

Law study program online is growing in popularity, demanding equal access into the bar.

In the video, Alan Herrman, JD, discusses earning his online law degree, a Juris Doctorate, from California Southern University School of Law. Could a law study program online be your best option? An overview of the current market and a brief review of law education can shed light on your considerations.

Traditional jobs are currently down for lawyers, and employment experts are watching to see if the expected retirements among the baby boom generation will create new jobs.

For now, the needs for law studies are growing for:

  • Engineers, architects, real estate brokers and other professional supplement their expertise and salary with an online legal degree.
  • Legal service advising online.
  •  The poor and needy nationwide.

Studies of law started in colonial American with apprenticeships. Tapping Reeve turned the apprenticeship into more of a law school in Litchfield, Conn. in 1784. At the College of William and Mary, George Wythe became America’s first law professor. Yale University offered law courses as part of the undergraduate study.

Law Study Program Online

At Harvard, George Elliot took legal education to the next step by making it a post-graduate department from 1875 onward. Ironically, theory gained dominance over pragmatic practice through Harvard’s emphasis and the backup of the newly founded American Bar Association. Today, law firms lament the lack of practical application among students.

Law study program online, the next step

Today distance law studies are pressing forward, opening their own markets, clamoring for for validation. Is this the next logical step in the evolution of law degrees in the United States?

According to the 2009 annual report of the Association for Legal Career Professional, newly hired lawyers belong roughly to two groups: 34% earn $30,000 to $65,000 a year and 25% earn $160,000 or more a year.

Across the country, the need for legal services among those who cannot pay or have limited ability to pay has never been higher,” a California bar report says.

Law studies online: For those who won’t accept “no” to their dreams

Law studies online are the best option for the dreamer who won’t take “no” for an answer. You want to become a lawyer, but around you there are people who say it’s impossible:

  • Your need to work and study at the same time
  • Your obligations as a stay-at-home parent
  • Your age doesn’t favor you in a sit-in school
  • Your finances don’t allow for a traditional law school
  • Naysayers take dim view of the online option

Law studies online

To them, you say, “Yes, I can! Despite my limitations, despite the obstacles, I want to become a lawyer. Nothing is going to hold me back.”

Master’s law programs allow a mid-career professional to enhance his expertise and salary with such specialties as:

  • tax law
  • health law
  • environmental law
  • technology and internet law
  • criminology
  • elder law
  • When a student graduates, they should be equipped with the skills in order to make them successful.” — from the video

    In just about every case, if you want to become a lawyer, you need a JD (Juris Doctor). Pretty much only in California can you take the bar with an law studies online JD. Then you can transfer to another state and take their bar (rules vary from state to state so check with your state bar first).

    Because of the ABA’s stance of not accrediting law studies online universities, many programs are orienting themselves to the career professional who wants to compliment his expertise with real knowledge of law. Additional earnings are expected!

    Law studies online offer:

  • flexible classes (most classes are “asynchronous,” which means they are recorded and you watch them at your convenience)
  • affordable tuition (one-third of normal law school)
  • feedback with professors and fellow students via chat, email and scheduled video conferences
  • streamlined learning

    Online legal studies program: Gaining sway

    Online legal studies program is being defended by the cream of the crop. Top-tier Washington University broke ranks with the critics and joined the criticized when it offered a master’s in law (LLM) completely online in 2013.

    I think if we can deliver legal instruction online to people at a level of quality that mimics what we’re able to do in the classroom, it’s going to be an agent of change over the coming years, even if people don’t want it to be. And the best schools are going to face that, and are going to make what they do better in all their degree programs and instruction, and everybody else is going to be left behind.”
    — Kent Syverud, Washington Law School Dean, from Inside Higher Education

    Other traditional law schools to break into the online market are:

    • New York Law School
    • Loyola University
    • University of Alabama
    • Vermont Law School

    Online Legal Studies Program

    Most of the pioneers of distance law school are in California, where laxer rules allow online law grads to take the bar, widely considered the toughest in the nation.

    The Founding Fathers were trying to set up a society that was based on the theory that they did not want a tyrant.” — Lecturer on sample constitutional class at Abraham Lincoln University, one of the many law schools in online market today.


    Online legal studies programs stand up under fire

    Online legal studies program have been criticized for lacking in interaction with fellow students and face-to-face encounters with professors, deemed important for the traditional Socratic approach to law school. The American Bar Association has allowed only 12 units of online studies for accredited law schools, which rules on the total online legal studies program. Since most states require you to attend an ABA-accredited school to even take the bar, your options are uphill. Ironically the state with the toughest bar exam, California, is the only state that allows all comers to take the test. A number of online legal studies program students have passed the California bar.

    Check out the video: Online Law School – Constitutional Law Class Lecture


    Legal studies online graduates meet success

    Legal studies online graduate, Chris Kouboulakis, didn’t face skepticism about his credentials when he interviewed for his job in the Santa Clara County district attorney’s office.

    I thought they would be negative,” the former environmental engineer said to the Los Angeles Times, “but they’ve been great.”

    Like many of the other graduates, Kouboulakis, a stay-at-home dad, said internet was his only option for law school.

    Legal studies online work for people who can’t:

    • afford a traditional law school
    • pull up stakes and move to a a traditional law school
    • quit their job to study during typical law school hours
    • abandon parental duties but want to study at night

    In the video, practicing family attorney Larry David discusses how his education at Concord Law School equaled–and exceeded–traditional law schools.

    To be sure, legal studies online presents extra difficulties:

    • Many states don’t allow legal studies online students to take the bar, so you either have to pass California’s bar first and then try in your local state or you take the online classes only to compliment your current career.
    • Traditional law firms look first at students who attend brick and mortar schools.

    Why, if other areas of study have embraced the online option, has law education been so resistant? Part of the answer lies in simply protecting turf. The American Bar Association, which accredits schools, has a whole host of rules that favor, not the law student, but the law professor (maximum hourly teaching limits, high wages and perks for professors, etc.). In theory, these rules assure quality. In reality, they are excessive and stifle competition. They also make it impossible for law schools to charge anything but the highest tuition.

    Online legal studies: a way for those who otherwise can’t

    Online legal studies are the answer for your dream that, up until now, have been frustrated by lack of time, lack of finances, lack of whatever. You can now get your law degree from a number of excellent law schools that are entirely online. To be sure, this option is not without its difficulties. State high courts are currently re-visiting their policies and are expected to lift the ban on online students taking the bar. Do the research in your state by contacting the bar directly (California allows online students to take the bar.)

    It was just impossible to go to school at night and take care of the kids,” said a 46-year-old mother of two, who used her online law degree in the entertainment industry.

    Consider online legal studies:

    • Enrollment in online legal studies programs have exploded
    • Law schools online have steadily increased
    • Traditional law schools in 2013 are suffering declining enrollments
    • Online is quality, student-oriented education

    Online Legal Studies

    The American Bar Association, however, has taken a dim view of 100% online legal studies, allowing for traditional schools to give no more than 12 units online. The ABA has many similar rules for accreditation, which is needed in 49 states in order to take the bar. The ABA rules make law education excessively expensive, which is why law schools have raised their prices to beyond imagination. Nowadays, such rules make no sense. The job market is depressed, and with $100,000+ student loan debt from accredited law schools, students are understandably cutting back on applications to brick and mortar law schools.

    Online Law Schools: How to Become a Lawyer

    Online Law Schools are a great option for working students who dream of becoming a lawyer.

    You want to know everything you can about your options for law schools!

    But the profession is one of conducting research: so get started now checking out options in your state.

    Online Law Schools

    Here’s some facts you’ll need to know before paying for your online law schools:

    • Does my state allow me to take the bar with only online studies (California does)?
    • If not, what recourse do I have?
    • What is my goal with a Juris Doctor?
    • Is another degree what I want?
    • How much is the tuition? How does it compare to a regular law school?
    • How long will it take? (Most online schools take 4 years, as opposed to the 3-year live, in-the-classroom traditional school.)
    • What do I want to do with my law degree? Enhance another career (maybe you won’t need to pass the bar.)
    • What modifications to existing regulations is my state bar considering? When are they like to loosen bar-taking policies? Learn how to become a lawyer using online law schools, distance learning law schools, lawyer and apprenticeship programs.

    Accreditation from the American Bar Association is required in most states to take the bar. Online Law Schools, for the moment, do not qualify for ABA approval. That means you can only take the bar in California, which allows pretty much all comers to take its bar. Once you have passed the California bar, some states allow you to immediately take their bar, others require you to actually practice in California for a few years before requesting to take the local bar and transfer to your destiny state.