Cardozo offers a traditional three-year program leading to the degree of Juris Doctor (J.D.). The program of study consists of 84 credits completed in three years. Students in the January Alternative Entry Program can complete the six semesters in two and a half calendar years.
The first-year program consists of 30 credits, all in required courses. Second- and third-year courses are largely elective. However, all students must take Professional Responsibility, Advanced Legal Research, and one course that involves a substantial written project. In addition, students must meet minimal distribution requirements, taking at least two courses in each of three categories: Law and the Regulatory State, Private Ordering Through Law, and Adjudication and Systems of Justice. Students must also take one course of a jurisprudential, international, or comparative nature.
A normal course load during the second and third years is 13 or 14 credits per semester. Students must take a minimum of 12 credits per semester to qualify as full-time. Students must maintain a cumulative grade point average of 2.4. (A grade of "C" is equal to a 2.0.)
To graduate, students must complete all requirements within five years of the date of matriculation, excluding time lost for service in the Armed Forces; must have the approbation of the faculty; and must file an Application for Degree during the semester prior to completing all requirements.
General Conditions of Enrollment and Graduation
The admission of a student, continued enrollment, receipt of academic credits, and graduation are all subject to the disciplinary powers of the school, exercised through the dean or the dean's designee, and to the student’s maintaining high standards of ethical conduct. Students are expected to familiarize themselves and comply with the rules and regulations, academic and otherwise, of Yeshiva University and the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law. The Student Handbook, containing complete information on academic requirements, is available at orientation or from the Office of Student Services.