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Curriculum and Courses

Beginning in the first summer, AJD students receive a solid foundation for the study of law through exposure to the basic subject areas as well as techniques of legal analysis, fundamental legal skills, and perspectives on the origins, function, and development of the legal system.

Our accelerated program begins in May, and AJD students take courses during both summers. Unlike accelerated programs at many schools, our AJD students still have the opportunity to specialize in their field of choice. Choices from VLS's extensive list of course topics range from American Legal History to Women in Law to Energy Regulation, Markets, and the Environment.

Typical AJD students complete the course of study as follows:

AJD Summer I, 12-14 credits: Legal Writing I, Legal Research, Torts, Criminal Law, Legal Profession, plus one optional negotiation workshop.

AJD Fall and Spring I, 16 credits per semester, including:  Constitutional Law, Civil Procedure I and II, Contracts, Property, Public Law, plus upper level courses open to AJD students.

AJD Summer II, 10-12 credits:  AJD students can create their own curriculum from VLS's summer offerings, or can pick one of the suggested "AJD summer tracks," such as the Clinical/Experiential, the Environmental, or the Dispute Resolution tracks.

AJD Fall and Spring II, 17 credits per semester:  AJD students take a combination of required and upper elective courses to complete all JD requirements and graduate in May.

Co-curricular Activities

Vermont Law Review or the Vermont Journal of Environmental Law are open to AJD students.  Qualifying class rank is determined only on the first-year courses that all students have taken. AJD students are also eligible to participate in write-on competitions held by these journals for membership on staff.