Tenley Campus - Warren Building

Five Specialty Programs Recognized Among the Nation's Best

March 20, 2018

American University Washington College of Law is pleased to have five specialty programs recognized by our peer institutions – through voting in the annual U.S. News and World Report rankings – as some of the top in the nation. Our Health Law and Policy Program is ranked for the first time at #20 in the Health Care Law category. We are ranked #4 for Clinical Legal Education, #6 for International Law, #7 for Trial Advocacy, and #9 for Intellectual Property – four programs in the top 10! We invite you to learn more about our specialty programs below.

Professor Robert Dinerstein

#4 - Clinical Legal Education

“The AUWCL Clinical Program, which has been nationally ranked for more than 25 years, is a place where students have the transformative experience of practicing law for the very first time. Supervised by the clinic’s highly respected faculty, student-attorneys represent real clients on real cases as they advocate on behalf of indigent and otherwise under-represented individuals and organizations in the D.C. region, nationally, and internationally.”

-Professor Robert Dinerstein, Associate Dean for Experiential Education and Director of Clinical Programs

The AUWCL Clinical Program is made up of 10 in-house clinics, with 23 faculty members that serve more than 200 students each year. With clinics focused on Immigrant Justice, Disability Rights, International Human Rights, Women and the Law, and Intellectual Property, among others, the Clinical Program has jump-started countless legal careers in its 45-year history. LEARN MORE


Professor Padideh Ala'i

#6 - International Law

“International and comparative law has long been central to the educational mandate of American University Washington College of Law, and we are proud that our innovative program has been consistently ranked among the top international programs in the nation. At AUWCL, students join an engaged community of faculty, alumni, and scholars, and have opportunities to enrich their legal understanding and broaden their perspectives by participating in dynamic programs at the law school and abroad.”

-Professor Padideh Ala’i, Director, International and Comparative Legal Studies

For over 20 years, AUWCL has grown its international offerings to include 20 programs, over 30 semester exchanges, and six dual degree programs. We continue to build in new areas of interest including transnational business law, international economic law, labor migration, and global regulatory cooperation, as well as explore new partnerships with law schools around the world. The law school’s more than 3,500 International Legal Studies Program alumni continue to provide countless connections for our students and graduates around the world. LEARN MORE


Professor Liz Lippy
Professor Liz Lippy

#7 - Trial Advocacy

“The Trial Advocacy Program is proud to consistently rank among the top ten of the nation’s best trial advocacy programs.  We dedicate our time and energy to make sure that AUWCL graduates excel in the practical skills necessary to win cases, whether it be in a courtroom, an arbitration, mediation, or other arenas that require excellence in advocacy.” 

-Liz Lippy, Associate Director, Stephen S. Weinstein Trial Advocacy Program

Through the Trial Advocacy Program, AUWCL students benefit from over 25 Trial Advocacy courses ranging from basic Civil and Criminal Trial Advocacy to advanced advocacy courses such as Litigating in a High Tech Courtroom, Scientific Evidence and Expert Testimony, Special Witnesses, and Victims’ Rights, to name a few.  For advanced students, the opportunity to compete on any of our championship Mock Trial, Moot Court, Dispute Resolution or Transactional Law competition teams is unparalleled.   More than 400 students each year take part in approximately 40 small class sections of AUWCL’s trial advocacy courses. LEARN MORE


Professor Michael Carroll
Professor Michael Carroll

#9 - Intellectual Property

“Our consistent strength in the national rankings reflects our deep commitment to meaningful research and scholarship and to helping students succeed in their study and practice of intellectual property, communications, technology, and privacy law. We bring lawyers working on cutting-edge issues to the law school through national and international events, and we send our students out into the world through externships, summer programs, competitions, and other opportunities. There really is no other place to get trained and to get connected in these fields like American University Washington College of Law.”

-Professor Michael Carroll, Director, Program on Information Justice and Information Property

The AUWCL Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property (PIJIP) has continued to expand over the last decade. With 32 faculty members (16 full-time) and more than 40 courses offered in a wide range of intellectual property topics, AUWCL offers an unparalleled course of study. AUWCL’s Glushko-Samuelson Intellectual Property Clinic was the first of its kind in the country, and our strong network of highly accomplished alumni help us provide unparalleled experiential opportunities through externships and employment. PIJIP takes advantage of AUWCL’s Washington location to convene national and international meetings that cover the wide range of emerging and important issues in our field. LEARN MORE


Professor Lindsay Wiley
Professor Lindsay Wiley

#20 - Health Care Law

“We’re honored to be recognized as one of the best health law programs in the country. Through our course offerings, externship program, student-run publication, competition teams, and networking events, we’re working hard to ensure our students graduate practice-ready and connected to opportunities in the Washington, DC area and beyond. Our alumni are practicing law at the top of their field and giving back to students by coaching them in competitions and on the job market.”

-Professor Lindsay F. Wiley, Director of the Health Law and Policy Program and President of the American Society of Law, Medicine, and Ethics

The Health Law and Policy Program’s conferences and networking events connect leading experts from across the country with movers and shakers in the nation’s capital.  Last October, the program sponsored a nationally televised conference, “Next Steps in Health Reform,” featuring former U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary, and current American University President, Sylvia M. Burwell’s first remarks on health policy since leaving office. This June will mark the 10th anniversary of the Program’s Health Law and Policy Summer Institute, where nationally recognized practitioners lead intensive, practice-focused courses on subjects like Health Care Business Transactions and Digital Health. LEARN MORE


In 1896, American University Washington College of Law became the first law school in the country founded by women. More than 120 years since its founding, this law school community is grounded in the values of equality, diversity, and intellectual rigor. The law school's nationally and internationally recognized programs (in clinical legal education, trial advocacy, international law, and intellectual property to name a few) and dedicated faculty provide its JD, LL.M., and SJD students with the critical skills and values to have an immediate impact as students and as graduates, in Washington, DC and around the world. For more information, visit www.wcl.american.edu