Accelerated Law Degree Program

NIU offers an accelerated law program for high-achieving students. These six-year integrated course sequences lead to both an undergraduate degree (B.A. or B.S., depending on the program) and a J.D. As a result, you will finish both your bachelor's degree and your J.D. degree in six years instead of the usual seven, saving both time and money. Accelerated programs are available in in any one of nearly a dozen degrees.

Accelerated B.A./J.D. and B.S./J.D. Programs

The six-year integrated sequence leads to both the B.A. in Art History and J.D. degrees.

  • You must identify yourself as early as possible to the art history department as a major who wishes to complete the accelerated program.
  • All undergraduates who major in art history and have completed at least 90 semester hours of undergraduate course work with a minimum GPA of 3.25 are eligible to apply.
  • You must complete all the requirements for the Art History B.A. degree as well as all general education requirements (90 credit hours in total) by the end of your junior year.
  • Beginning with the first semester of your senior year, you will start taking classes at the College of Law. These courses will count toward the final 30 credits of your undergraduate degree. The final two years of the program will follow the standard College of Law timetable.

The six-year integrated sequence leads to both the B.S. in Business Administration and J.D. degrees. 

  • You must identify yourself as early as possible to the Department of Management as early as a major who wishes to complete the accelerated program.
  • All undergraduates who major in Business Administration and have completed at least 90 credit hours of undergraduate course work with a minimum GPA of 3.25 are eligible to apply.
  • You must complete all the requirements for the B.S. Business Administration degree as well as all general education requirements (90 credits in total) by the end of your junior year.
  • Beginning with the first semester of your senior year, you will start taking classes at the College of Law. These courses will count toward the final 30 credits of your undergraduate degree. The final two years of the program will follow the standard College of Law timetable.

The six-year integrated sequence leads to both the B.S. in engineering and J.D. degrees.

  • You must apply for the combined degree program through the College of Engineering and Engineering Technology’s Office of the Senior Associate Dean.
  • The program is open to all undergraduate students majoring in engineering who have senior standing and have finished at least 100 credit hours of undergraduate course work with a minimum GPA of 3.25.
  • General education and engineering requirements fill the schedule during the first three years of the program. When you are admitted to the program, you will need to take a minimum of six semester hours of engineering courses in the summer following your third year and up to six additional semester hours of engineering courses in the summer following your fourth year.
  • Beginning with the first semester of your fourth year, you will be completing your B.S. degree and will begin taking classes at the College of Law. The final two years of the program will be comprised only of College of Law courses.
  • When admitted to the integrated Engineering and Law program, you will receive up to nine semester hours towards your B.S. degree technical elective requirements as a result of successful completion of your first-year law courses. In addition, up to six semester hours of 400-level engineering courses will be counted towards your law degree.
Additional Requirements
  • Once you have been accepted into the integrated program and have matriculated in the College of Law at the beginning of Year 4, you must have your schedule approved by the College of Law associate dean for student services each semester until you have completed all courses ordinarily required of first-year law students.
  • To be eligible to continue in the program, you must receive your B.S. degree no later than December of Year 5 (the second year of law school).

The six-year integrated sequence leads to both the B.S. in engineering technology and J.D. degrees.

  • You must apply for the combined degree program through the College of Engineering and Engineering Technology’s Office of the Senior Associate Dean.
  • The program is open to all undergraduate students majoring in engineering technology who have senior standing and have finished at least 100 credit hours of undergraduate course work with a minimum GPA of 3.25.
  • General education and engineering technology requirements fill the schedule during the first three years of the program. When you are admitted to the program, you will need to take a minimum of six semester hours of engineering courses in the summer following your third year and up to six additional semester hours of engineering courses in the summer following your fourth year.
  • Beginning with the first semester of your fourth year, you will be completing your B.S. degree and will begin taking classes at the College of Law. The final two years of the program will be comprised only of College of Law courses.
  • When you are admitted to the integrated Engineering Technology and Law program, you will receive up to nine semester hours towards your B.S. degree technical elective requirements as a result of successful completion of your first-year law courses. In addition, up to six semester hours of 400-level engineering courses will be counted towards your law degree.
Additional Requirements
  • Once you have been accepted into the integrated program and have matriculated in the College of Law at the beginning of Year 4, you must have your schedule approved by the College of Law associate dean for student services each semester until you have completed all courses ordinarily required of first-year law students.
  • To be eligible to continue in the program, you must receive your B.S. degree no later than December of Year 5 (the second year of law school).

The six-year accelerated program leads to both the B.A. in English and J.D. degrees.

  • You must identify yourself as early as possible to the English department as a major who wishes to complete the accelerated program.
  • Undergraduates who major in English and have completed at least 90 semester hours of undergraduate course work (including all general education and major requirements) with a minimum GPA of 3.25 are eligible to apply.
  • You must complete all the requirements of the English B.A. degree as well as all general education requirements by the end of your junior year.
  • When you are accepted into the College of Law pursuant to the special provisions of this program, you will matriculate in the College of Law in the fall of your senior year. Up to 30 hours of law courses will count toward the final 30 credits of your undergraduate degree. The final two years of the program will follow the standard College of Law timetable.

The six-year accelerated program leads to both the B.A. in French, German or Spanish and J.D. degrees.

  • You must identify yourself as early as possible to the Foreign Language Department as a major who wishes to complete the accelerated program.
  • Undergraduates who major in French, German or Spanish and have completed at least 90 semester hours of undergraduate course work (including all general education and major requirements) with a minimum GPA of 3.25 are eligible to apply.
  • You must complete all the requirements of the French, German or Spanish Language and Literature degree as well as all general education requirements by the end of your junior year.
  • When you are accepted into the College of Law pursuant to the special provisions of this program, you will matriculate in the College of Law in the fall of your senior year. Up to 30 hours of law courses will count toward the final 30 credits of your undergraduate degree. The final two years of the program will follow the standard College of Law timetable.

The Department of History's Accelerated Law program will enter the undergraduate catalog in Fall 2018, but you can begin your journey now. Contact the undergraduate advising staff or the pre-law advisor (mogren@niu.edu) in the Department of History for more information.

The six-year integrated sequence leads to both the B.S. in Management and J.D. degrees. 

  • You must identify yourself as early as possible to the Department of Management as a major who wishes to complete the accelerated program.
  • All undergraduates who major in Management and have completed at least 90 credit hours of undergraduate course work with a minimum GPA of 3.25 are eligible to apply.
  • You must complete all the requirements for the B.S. in Management degree as well as all general education requirements (90 credits in total) by the end of your junior year.
  • Beginning with the first semester of your senior year, you will start taking classes at the College of Law. These courses will count toward the final 30 credits of your undergraduate degree. The final two years of the program will follow the standard College of Law timetable.

The six-year accelerated program leads to either the B.A. or B.S. in Philosophy and J.D. degrees.

  • You must identify yourself as early as possible to the Department of Philosophy as a major who wishes to complete the accelerated program.
  • All undergraduates who major in philosophy and have completed at least 90 credit hours of undergraduate course work (including all general education and major requirements as well as the requirements for a B.A. or B.S. degree, with the exception of the senior capstone requirement in philosophy) with a minimum GPA of 3.25 are eligible to apply. If the senior capstone requirement in philosophy has not been completed at the time of enrollment in the College of Law, it must be completed no later than the end of the fourth year.
  • When you are accepted into the College of Law pursuant to this program, you will start taking law classes at the beginning of your fourth year. Apart from the completion of the senior capstone in philosophy as part of the course load during the fourth year, if needed, the remainder of the program will follow the standard College of Law curriculum. Up to the first 30 credit hours of law courses will be counted toward the bachelor’s degree.

The six-year integrated sequence leads to both the B.S. or B.A. in Political Science and J.D. degrees.

  • You must identify yourself as early as possible to the Political Science Department as a majors with a politics and governance emphasis who wishes to complete the accelerated program.
  • All undergraduates who major in political science and have completed at least 90 credit hours of undergraduate coursework with a minimum GPA of 3.25 are eligible to apply.
  • You must complete all the requirements for the Political Science B.A. or B.S. degree as well as all general education requirements (90 credit hours in total) by the end of your junior year.
  • Beginning with the first semester of your senior year, you will start taking classes at the College of Law. These courses will count toward the final 30 credits of your undergraduate degree. The final two years of the program will follow the standard College of Law timetable.

The accelerated sequence leads to either a B.S. or B.A. in sociology and J.D. degrees.

  • You must identify yourself as early as possible to the Department of Sociology as a major who wishes to complete the accelerated program.
  • This program is open to undergraduates who have completed at least 90 credit hours of undergraduate course work, including all requirements for the sociology B.A. or B.S. degree, as well as all general education requirements, with a minimum GPA of 3.25.
  • You must complete all the requirements of the sociology B.A. or B.S. degree as well as all general education requirements by the end of your junior year.
  • When you are accepted into the College of Law pursuant to the special provisions of this program, you will matriculate in the College of Law in the fall of your senior year. Up to 30 hours of law courses will count toward the final 30 credits of your undergraduate degree. The final two years of the program will follow the standard College of Law timetable.

Application Requirements

Both current NIU undergraduate students and transfer students are eligible to participate in the Accelerated Law Degree program.

You can apply to the College of Law during your junior year. If you are accepted to the accelerated J.D. program, you will begin first-year law classes during your senior year.

Application requirements include:

  • See your applicable program above for academic requirements
  • Electronic Application Form
  • Personal Statement
  • LSAT Score (you must receive a score above the 50th percentile of the previous year’s matriculating law class)
  • Transcript(s) and CAS Report
  • One letter of recommendation – one is required, but up to four can be received
  • A resume is strongly recommended but not required 
  • You are also strongly encouraged to upload a letter from your advisor at the time of application submission that indicates you have completed all major and general education requirements necessary for consideration for the accelerated J.D. program.

Applications must be submitted no later than February 15 of your junior year.

Admission to the College of Law will be on a competitive basis. The likelihood of admission will depend on the number and quality of applicants to the program and the number and quality of applicants to the College of Law in general as well as other factors normally considered in admissions decisions by the College of Law.

Merit-based scholarships and financial aid are always available for competitive applicants.

For more information, email the College of Law's Office of Admissions at law-admit@niu.edu. If you are a current NIU student, please contact Associate Dean Marc Falkoff at mfalkoff@niu.edu.

Contact Us

Admissions
Swen Parson Hall 151
815-753-8595
law-admit@niu.edu
Dean's Office
Swen Parson Hall 270
815-753-1068