Admission to the LL.M. program

Admission to the program is limited to applicants who have attained the juris doctor or equivalent degree from an approved law school and who have a law school GPA of at least 2.7 on a 4.0 scale. Applicants who wish to obtain an LL.M. degree but who do not have the required grade point average may be permitted to enroll as non-degree candidates. They may be considered for later admission to the degree program on the basis of performance in courses taken as a non-degree candidate.

An LL.M. admission application, application fee and official law school (if applicable) and undergraduate transcripts must be submitted for admission. There is no formal application deadline, but early submission of applications is recommended. The LL.M. in Lawyering requires a personal statement and one letter of recommendation. The application deadline for the LL.M. in Lawyering is March 1.

International students whose first language is not English or whose law instruction was not in English also must provide an office TOEFL or IELTS score, literal English translations of academic credentials that are not in English, a copy of the biographical information page from the applicant’s passport, and an original or certified copy of a financial statement proving financial ability to pay the first year of educational and living expenses. If a letter of support is provided for the financial proof, the letter must be notarized and must explain the relationship between the sponsor and the applicant. Documents that are not in English must be accompanied by an English translation. International students also must have an interview with the Director or Associate Director of the LL.M. in Lawyering as part of the application process.

Program of study

Degree requirements In order to receive the LL.M. degree, students must:

  1. Complete 24 credit hours, including an approved jurisprudential course and a thesis, as developed in consultation with the student’s faculty adviser
  2. A cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 is required for the LL.M. (Urban Affairs), at least 2.7 for the LL.M. (Taxation), and 2.0 for the LL.M. in Lawyering.
  3. Enroll in a minimum of 2-4 credit hours each semester
  4. Successfully complete all coursework within three years from the beginning of the course of studies leading toward the degree

There is no mandated curriculum. Upon enrollment in the graduate program, a student is assigned a faculty adviser. In consultation with the adviser, the student develops a plan of study that meets the requirements for the degree. The adviser must approve enrollment in all courses.


A minimum of four and a maximum of eight credit hours may be given for a written thesis on a subject approved by the student’s thesis committee. The thesis must show substantial evidence of original research or development of the principles of at least one interdisciplinary field related to the student’s thematic goal; be at least 75 pages in length; and be of high scholastic quality, suitable for publication as a lead article in a scholarly journal. The thesis committee, consisting of the thesis adviser and the Graduate Studies Committee, must approve the topic and the final form and substance of the thesis.

Courses outside the law school

The Graduate Studies Committee may approve up to six credit hours of courses in other schools and departments of the University related to the student’s thematic goal. Generally, students may not take required or basic bar examination J.D. courses for graduate credit.

Administrative rules and regulations

Attendance, examinations and grades, and withdrawal from courses

The administrative rules and regulations set forth for the Juris Doctor degree program covering these matters also apply to the master of laws degree programs.

Scholastic probation and dismissal

A student will be placed on scholastic probation whenever the student’s GPA falls below 3.0. A student on probation must attain an overall 3.0 by the end of the next semester of coursework, or, unless an exception is made by the Graduate Studies Committee, the student will be dismissed from the program for academic deficiency.

Financial information

Tuition and fees

Educational fees and student program/use fees are set by the University of Missouri Board of Curators. For the most current fee schedule, contact the UMKC Cashier’s Office at 816-235-1365 or visit them online.

Financial aid

For information on financial aid, contact the UMKC Financial Aid and Scholarships Office at 816-235-1154 or visit them online.


Arthur Mag Graduate Law Fellowship

In recognition of Arthur Mag’s service to the University of Kansas City and UMKC, the Edward F. Swinney Trust has provided a grant for the establishment of Arthur Mag graduate fellowships to support full-time graduate study at UMKC. Arthur Mag Fellows work closely with distinguished professors in their graduate degree programs. These professors serve as mentors throughout the fellows’ graduate work. One of these fellowships is designated for the School of Law, and is provided each year to an outstanding student in the UMKC School of Law’s LL.M. program.

The Arthur Mag Graduate Fellowship in Law includes a stipend of $10,500; remission on non-resident fees, if applicable; and remission of 18 hours of graduate law educational fees, for a total possible compensation of nearly $28,000.

Applicants must be U.S. citizens who are planning to pursue the graduate program on a full-time basis. More information, including a “generic” application form that may be copied and used and a faculty recommendation form, may be obtained/downloaded from the School of Graduate Studies website.

John B. Gage Memorial Fellowships

Fellowship awards are provided annually to outstanding students entering as full-time LL.M. degree candidates from a fund endowed by friends of alumnus John B. Gage, a teacher of law, former mayor of Kansas City and eminent lawyer.

Minority Graduate Student Fellowships

The UMKC School of Graduate Studies annually awards up to three Minority Graduate Fellowships of $600 each, applicable to the student’s graduate educational fees. The fellowship is renewable for one additional year provided the student maintains a 3.0 grade point average and the law school certifies that the student is in good standing and making normal progress toward the degree. Those eligible for nomination for these fellowships at the law school include students who are African American, Hispanic, Native American or Asian American and who are degree-seeking LL.M. students admitted or enrolled at UMKC for the ensuing academic year and who are U.S. citizens. Fellows must maintain a minimum enrollment of six credit hours per semester.

This page is designed to give a general overview of the LL.M. Requirements. For an authoritative description, visit the official UMKC School of Law Catalog