Learning at Elon Law
Our Approach to Legal Education
Elon Law’s groundbreaking curriculum prepares students for today’s rapidly evolving legal profession by providing deep legal knowledge, hands-on lawyering skills and a rich set of practice experiences.
- Emphasis on total student development, exceptional legal knowledge and skills, engaged learning, leadership and civic involvement
- Small school, emphasizing close relationships among students and faculty
- Outstanding faculty members recruited nationwide for their exceptional legal and teaching abilities, values and commitment to student success
- Top students recruited for their demonstrated aptitude, achievement and interest in civic engagement and leadership
- Access to learning opportunities through experiences with the area’s leading law firms, federal and state courts, businesses, government agencies and nonprofit organizations
- In-depth leadership studies, innovative courses and opportunities for community involvement
The American Bar Association requires that “a law school shall establish and publish learning outcomes.” Elon Law’s learning outcomes are outlined here by year.
Elon Law is leading innovation in legal education with an innovative curriculum that is both academically rigorous and highly experiential.
At the core of an Elon Law education are challenging courses taught by highly accomplished faculty members. Elon’s curriculum provides a breadth of legal knowledge in business law, criminal law, constitutional law, public interest law and trial and appellate advocacy, with the opportunity for students to concentrate in areas of law of greatest interest to them. The program emphasizes legal writing, oral advocacy and professional competencies, including leadership skills not traditionally emphasized in law schools.
Building on that strong foundation, Elon Law connects students to the legal profession through an unparalleled commitment to experiential learning. All Elon Law students spend a full term during their second year in a Residency-in-Practice guided by a residency host and a faculty member. Placements are in judicial clerkships, public and private law offices, or one of the school’s in-house legal clinics. In addition, students experience the practice of law through programs integrated throughout the curriculum, including:
- First-year lab courses
- Moot court and mock trial programs
- Team-based legal projects for nonprofits and public agencies
Research indicates that students who benefit from immersive practice experiences become more deeply engaged in their courses and identify career goals earlier. Elon provides students with a dynamic interplay between immersive experiences in practice and rigorous coursework to achieve exceptional learning outcomes and accelerated career development.
The traditional approach to law school includes a highly structured first-year, and increasingly less structure in the second- and third-years. Elon’s approach is more strategic and purposeful, providing:
- a foundational course in legal analysis, communication, leadership & professionalism
- core courses taught by professors with significant practice experience and deep engagement in their areas of expertise
- legal writing and communication courses in every trimester
- experiential learning woven into the entire curriculum
- intensive, final-year courses to reinforce the knowledge attained throughout law school, enhancing preparation for the bar exam and career success.
Elon Law benefits by its proximity to Greensboro’s legal and judicial offices and through the program’s close relationships with the North Carolina Business Court, the Center for Creative Leadership and other legal and business organizations. Instruction takes place in a technology-rich environment and is complemented with frequent interactions with professionals in law, business and government sectors. The degree program facilitates bar examination success and prepares students for leadership positions in their profession and communities. Recognizing that legal services in the 21st century are being provided in a marketplace that is increasingly global in scope, the law school offers coursework that helps prepare graduates for this environment. Elon’s JD degree program exceeds American Bar Association requirements, with 86 credits in a seven-trimester model that allows students to complete their studies in December, in time to prepare for the February bar exam and begin their careers in the spring.