Dean of Academic Affairs
Rules of the Law School
Information for non-law students
Colorado Law allows students to graduate a half-year early – in December – after five full semesters, rather than in May, after six semesters. With some planning, you can structure your schedule to accelerate your graduation date, and still experience much of the rich breadth of experience that the Colorado Law experience offers.
What are the Pros and Cons of Graduating in 2.5 Years?
How to Graduate Colorado Law in 2.5 Years
Students can obtain a JD in 2.5 years by earning the required 89 credit hours at an accelerated rate. Consider the following sample schedules:
Other variations are also possible; the key is to remember that the foundational first year classes comprise 30 credits and the remaining 59 credits, traditionally 15 credits per semester for a three-year degree, must be earned more quickly to graduate in 2.5 years. Taking more summer, Maymester, or January intersession classes allows lighter scheduling in the three second- and third-year regular semesters; taking heavier loads (17-18 credits) during the regular semesters leaves the summers free for work, externship, or other enriching activities.
You need not elect affirmatively to pursue the 2.5 year program; however, it is best to start planning during registration for spring electives, which happens in November of each year.
When is Graduation?
Students who complete their degrees in December can participate in either the May commencement ceremony that precedes their degree completion date or the ceremony in the May that follows. Many choose to participate in the commencement ceremony that follows their December degree completion date, in order to celebrate and "walk" with their incoming class.
Prospective students interested in discussing the program in advance, contact Kristine Jackson, Assistant Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid.
Current students with questions, contact Whiting Dimock Leary, Senior Assistant Dean of Students.