Office of Law Registrar & Academic Services

Office of Law Registrar & Academic Services

FAQs


Prospective Students

What degree(s) do you offer?
Currently we offer a Juris Doctor.

Do you have a part-time program?
We currently do not have a part-time program. Students are required to attend full time. Students must carry a minimum of 12 credit hours per semester. However, merely complying with the 12 credit hours per semester will not enable students to graduate in three years. A normal course load is 15 hours.

What is the academic residency requirement?
Yes. To receive a Juris Doctor degree, a law student must attend a law school for six semesters, four of which must be completed in residence while taking at least 12 credit hours each semester.

How many credits do I need to graduate?
90 hours are required for a Juris Doctor degree.

What is the minimum and maximum number of hours that a student can register for each semester?
A student must register for a minimum of 12 hours, but no more than16 hours per semester.

What courses are required for graduation?
Required First Year Courses for students entering Fall 2011 include:
  • Civil Procedure
  • Constitutional Law
  • Contract Law
  • Criminal Law
  • Introduction to the Legal Profession
  • Legal Research, Analysis, and Writing I and II
  • Property
  • Torts
Required Upper Level Courses for students entering Fall 2011 include:
  • Professional Responsibility
  • Professional Skills Course (beginning with students graduating in December 2010)
  • A Perspective Course (to be chosen from a list of courses)
  • A Writing Requirement Course or Legal Research Project (30 page paper required)

Does your law school have a grade normalization policy?
Yes, we have a grade normalization policy in order to maintain relative parity in grading among faculty, particularly among first year sections. Our grade normalization policy states:
  • For first year courses, the average grade in all classes shall fall within the range of 2.700 to 3.000.
  • For upper level courses, the average grade in classes of more than 25 students should fall within .25 points of the class mean of the enrolled students' GPA.

What is your grading scale?
A= 4.0; B+=3.5; B=3.0; C+=2.5; C=2.0; D+=1.5; D=1.0; F=0

Are students given a class rank? If so, how often?
All degree seeking students are ranked at the end of each major semester. The class ranks are based on the collegiate cumulative GPA at that time. Fall class ranks, which will include summer grades, are made available by March 1. Spring class ranks are made available by August 1.


Prospective Transfer Students

Do you accept transfer students?
Yes. Students may transfer from another ABA accredited law school to the University of South Carolina School of Law.

What courses transfer?
Most first year courses will transfer if a grade of "C" or better is earned. An official determination is made after the law school transcript is reviewed by the Law Registrar.

How many credit hours will transfer?
No more than 30 credit hours may transfer.

What happens to my GPA when I transfer?
The cumulative GPA is converted, if necessary, to USC's 4.0 scale. Numerical grades are converted to letter grades. A collegiate cumulative GPA is calculated based on the transfer GPA and GPA of courses taken at USC.

Once accepted, when do transfer students register?
Transfer students meet with the law registrar in late July/first of August to register.

Do transfer students have a class rank?
Transfer students receive a class rank after one year of attendance at USC.


Alumni

As an alumnus, where do I get an official transcript?
A request for an official transcript is submitted to the University Registrar's office located at 516 Main Street. The transcript request form is available at http://registrar.sc.edu. You may contact the University Registrar's office at 803-777-5555.

I need a bar certification form about my legal education completed. Who should I send it to?
Bar certification forms and/or character and fitness forms about your legal education must be submitted to the Office of the Law Registrar and Academic Services, Suite 137, 701 South Main Street, Columbia, SC 29208 to be completed. Although the form may instruct you to send it to the Dean of the law school, please send it to the law registrar instead. The law registrar will ensure that the Dean or Associate Dean signs the form.
Note: for undergraduate education verification, please send your form to the University Registrar's office at your degree granting undergraduate institution. This also applies to law alumni who attended the University of South Carolina as an undergraduate. We cannot verify your undergraduate degree, nor can we complete a form verifying your undergraduate degree.
If you have additional questions, please contact the Office of the Law Registrar and Academic Services at 803-777-5221.

As an alumnus, how do I request my final class rank?
To comply with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. ยง 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99), you must submit the request in writing. For your convenience, complete the alumni information request form that is available on the law registrar's website at http://www.law.sc.edu/registrar/. Note: your student ID is your SSN.
Submit the completed form by fax, scan/email, or mail to the Office of the Law Registrar and Academic Services.
Please allow at least 24 hours to process the request.

How do I request a letter certifying my degree or GPA/class rank?
To comply with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99), you will need to complete the alumni information request form that is available on the law registrar's website at http://www.law.sc.edu/registrar/. Note: your student ID is your SSN.
Please provide the name and address of the potential employer or office of bar admissions needing the information. Unfortunately, we do not provide generic letters or general "To Whom It May Concern" letters. Also, only one original letter is sent.
Submit the completed form by fax, scan/email, or mail to the Office of the Law Registrar and Academic Services.
Please allow at least 24 hours to process the request.

Can you email my letter?
Unfortunately we do not email letters. We will fax or mail letters.

How do I get another copy of my diploma?
You will need to contact the University Registrar's office, 803-777-5555.

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