Deadlines & Application Instructions

Due to visa requirements, the LL.M. Programs have an earlier application deadline for all international applicants who need to request a visa.
Fall Admission Deadlines
Student Type Date
International students May 1
U.S. Citizen/Permanent Resident Students July 1*
Hybrid LL.M. August 1
Deadlines for Spring Admission
Student Type Date
International Students October 1
U.S. Citizen/Permanent Resident Students November 1*
Hybrid LL.M. December 1
*Under certain circumstances, the program can extend the application deadline for U.S. citizens and Permanent Residents. Please contact the Office of Graduate Admissions directly to see if you qualify for this exception. Due to visa processing times, any applicant requiring a visa must adhere to the posted deadlines.

Our History

Applicants must submit official transcripts or notarized full-sized copies of all law, graduate, and undergraduate schools attended, including a record of all courses, examinations, and marks.

"Official" means a copy of the original document certified by an officer of your school or by a notary public. Faxed copies and photocopies of academic records will not be accepted. Transcripts must be written in the native language of the school. If this language is not English, the documents must be accompanied by a certified translation. Institutions must send the required documents directly to the Office of Graduate Admissions.

International applicants applying online through LSAC have the option of submitting transcripts through LSAC's Document Assembly Service. This service is included in LSAC's $75 registration fee for using the online services. Additionally, international applicants using the LSAC system can choose (not required) to register for LSAC's International Transcript Authentication and Evaluation Service for an additional fee of $125. By using this system, LSAC will authenticate and evaluate international academic records.

Although not required, the LL.M. Programs also accept transcripts and certified copies of academic documents from EducationUSA and WES. The applicant should contact WES directly to arrange submission. Find more information about EducationUSA and WES online.

Applicants must submit at least two letters of recommendation from law professors, employers, or others familiar with the applicant's academic and professional qualifications. Personal references will not be accepted. The applicant should familiarize references with the LL.M. Program and have each reference specifically address the applicant's aptitude for undertaking graduate legal study. The applicant should also explain that the admissions committee gives considerable weight to the letters. The recommendation letters may either be sent in sealed and signed envelopes along with the application or sent directly to the Office of Graduate Admissions.

Applicants must submit a 1-2 page single spaced essay that addresses the following:

  • Why you wish to pursue an LL.M. at American University Washington College of Law.

  • How you think the LL.M. will help you achieve your short-term and long-term professional and personal goals.

  • What employment and other experiences you believe are particularly relevant to your application.

Each application for admission must be accompanied by a $55 application fee which can be paid online through the online application form. The application fee is non-refundable. If necessary, a check or U.S. money order payable to "Washington College of Law" may be sent to the program by mail. All checks must be drawn on a bank that has a branch in the United States. American Express, Thomas Cook, and Barclay's traveler's checks are also acceptable forms of payment. Cash cannot be accepted.

Note that LSAC may charge additional fees separate from the Washington College of Law $55 application fee.

Regardless of citizenship, applicants whose first language is not English must take a TOEFL, IELTS, PTE, or Kansas exam and meet the minimum scores indicated below.

Exceptions to this policy will be granted to applicants who:

A. Hold a first degree in law from an institution where English is the language of instruction and an official language of the country in which the university is located is English, (see complete list of countries eligible for exception below)
or
B. Hold a bachelor's, master's, or doctoral degree from an institution that is accredited by a U.S. regional accrediting agency (see complete list of acceptable accrediting agencies below).

English language test scores may not be more than two years old. Please visit the sites below to arrange for a test date or to request scores to be sent to American University.

English Language Minimum Scores

To be considered for admission, the minimum required scores are as follows:

  • TOEFL                       84 ibt or 563 paper based

  • IELTS                         6.5

  • PTE Academic            56

  • Kansas                        70 or higher on each subsection; 350 or higher on the total score

Please note: The scores above are the minimum scores for admissions consideration. Meeting the minimum score requirement does not guarantee admission to the program. If you do not meet the minimum requirement, please contact the Office of Graduate Admissions regarding English Language Programs available through American University.

I. List of Countries Eligible for Exception


  1. Anguilla
  2. Antigua & Barbuda
  3. Australia
  4. Bahamas
  5. Barbados
  6. Belize
  7. Bermuda
  8. Botswana
  9. British Virgin Islands
  10. Cameroon*
  11. Canada*
  12. Cayman Islands
  13. Dominica
  14. Gambia
  15. Ghana
  16. Grenada
  17. Guyana
  18. India
  19. Ireland
  20. Jamaica
  21. Kenya
  22. Kiribati
  23. Lesotho
  24. Liberia
  25. Micronesia
  26. Montserrat
  27. Namibia
  28. New Zealand
  29. Nigeria
  30. Pakistan
  31. Philippines
  32. Saint Kitts and Nevis
  33. Saint Lucia
  34. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
  35. Seychelles
  36. Sierra Leone
  37. South Africa
  38. Swaziland
  39. Tanzania
  40. Trinidad and Tobago
  41. Turks and Caicos Islands
  42. Uganda
  43. United Kingdom
  44. Zimbabwe

* Applies to applicants whose post-secondary degree is from a university in which English is the language of instruction.

II. List of Acceptable Accrediting Agencies

  1. Middle States Commission on Higher Education

  2. Middle States Commission on Secondary Schools

  3. New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education

  4. New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Technical and Career Institutions

  5. New York State Board of Regents, State Education Department, Office of the Professions (Public Post secondary Vocational Education, Practical Nursing)

  6. North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement, Board of Trustees

  7. North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission

  8. Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities

  9. Oklahoma Board of Career and Technology Education

  10. Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education

  11. Pennsylvania State Board of Vocational Education, Bureau of Career and Technical Education

  12. Puerto Rico State Agency for the Approval of Public Post secondary Vocational, Technical Institutions and Programs

  13. Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges

  14. Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges

  15. Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Accrediting Commission for Schools

  16. Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Senior College and University Commission