Columbia Law School: LLM, Ranking, Acceptance Rate, Fees and Application Deadline

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If you are looking for a prestigious and rigorous legal education in the United States, then Columbia Law School is one of them. It’s one of the top-ranked law schools in the world, offering various programs and degrees for aspiring lawyers. In this blog, we will focus on the LL.M. (Master of Laws) program, which is designed for students who have already completed a first degree in law and want to deepen their knowledge and skills in a specific area of law. Read on to find out!

Founding year1858
AffiliationColumbia University
LocationNew York City, USA
Programs OfferedJD, LLM, JSD, Certificate in Law (undergraduate)
Acceptance Rate12.2%
Tuition Fees$67,550 – $79,320 per year
Student-Faculty Ratio4.9:1
% of Students Receiving Financial Aid74%

Columbia Law School: Overview

Columbia Law School is a part of Columbia University, one of the Ivy League universities in USA.  Founded in 1858, Columbia Law School (CLS) boasts a rich history and is consistently ranked among the top law schools in the US. In the U.S. News & World Report’s 2024 rankings, CLS sits at #6, solidifying its reputation for academic excellence.

It primarily focuses on graduate-level legal education, offering the standard Juris Doctor (JD) degree and specialized Master of Laws (LLM) programs in various legal fields. It also caters to aspiring legal scholars with the Doctor of the Science of Law (JSD) program. For undergraduates enrolled at Columbia University, a Certificate in Law program is also available.

Columbia Law School: LLM Courses

Columbia Law School’s Master of Laws (LLM) program provides an excellent opportunity for lawyers from around the world to deepen their knowledge and expertise in a specific area of law. With its numerous programs, renowned faculty, and diverse community, CLS attracts ambitious lawyers seeking to elevate their careers.

CLS offers 12 specialized LLM programs, each catering to a distinct legal field:

  • American Law
  • Banking, Corporate & Finance Law
  • Environmental Law
  • Human Rights Law
  • Information Technology Law
  • Intellectual Property & Antitrust Law
  • International & Comparative Law
  • International Criminal Law (joint program with Amsterdam Law School)
  • Law & Economics
  • Legal History
  • Taxation
  • Transnational Law

Columbia Law School: Ranking

According to the QS World Ranking by Subject 2023, Columbia Law School stands at #8 worldwide for its law courses. THE World Rankings 2024 place Columbia’s Law courses at #=4. US World and News Report also rank CLS LLM courses at #8 among the best global universities.

Columbia Law School: Acceptance Rate

The acceptance rate of Columbia Law School is 12.2%, indicating the highly selective and competitive nature of the institute and its course. Incoming students have impressive credentials, with a median LSAT score of 173 and a median undergraduate GPA of 3.9. The student body is also diverse, with 40 countries represented and 52% of the JD class being women. So students need to have an exceptional academic record to be admitted to this hallowed institution. 

Columbia Law School: Fees

The tuition fee for international students at Columbia Law School depends on the program you’re interested in applying to. Here’s a list of all the law degrees at CLS along with their tuition fees:

ProgramTuition Fees
Juris Doctor (JD)$79,320 per year
Master of Laws (LLM) $67,550 – $69,100 per year
Doctor of the Science of Law (JSD)$5,290 (cost per credit hour)

Columbia Law School: Application Deadline

The application deadlines for LLM courses at Columbia Law School for the 2024 academic year have already passed. The deadlines typically fall in the fall and spring of the previous year, and the 2024 deadlines were as follows:

Intake PeriodDeadline
Fall 20241 December 2023
Spring 20251 July 2024
Fall 20251 December 2024
Spring 2026 1 July 2025

Entry Requirements

Here’s what you need to know to apply for an LLM program at Columbia Law School:

Academic Requirements

  • A bachelor’s degree in law or a related field from an accredited institution.
  • A GPA of 3.5 (or above) on a 4.0 scale. 
  • A median LSAT score of 173

English Language Requirements

Here are the minimum scores for English Language proficiency for aspiring law students:


Additional Requirements

  • Personal Statement
  • Letters of Recommendation
  • Resume/CV
  • Academic Transcripts
  • Financial Aid Documents

Application Process

Here’s a step-by-step guide to applying for an LLM program at Columbia Law School:

  • First, decide which LLM program aligns with your goals. 
  • Ensure you meet the academic and English language proficiency requirements.
  • Create an account and complete the online application form through the LLM Admissions website.
  • Pay the non-refundable application fee ($85).
  • Upload transcripts, CV, letters of recommendation, and optional test scores through the online portal.
  • Request your transcript providers to send official copies directly to Columbia Law School.
  • Submit financial aid documents if seeking assistance.
  • Although not mandatory, consider requesting an interview to showcase your personality and suitability. Interviews are conducted virtually or in person, depending on location.
  • Applications are due on 1 December for the following fall semester. Early applications are encouraged.
  • You’ll receive confirmation of receipt within two weeks and a status update by mid-March.

Documents Required


Q1. What is the LL.M. program at Columbia Law School? 

Ans: The LL.M. program is a 1-year, full-time course of study for students who have already completed a first degree in law and want to deepen their knowledge and skills in a specific area of law. 

Q2. How competitive is the admission process for the LL.M. program? 

Ans: The admission process for the LL.M. program is highly selective and holistic, receiving about 8000 applications each year from applicants within the United States and around the world, and admitting about 12% of them.

Q3. How much does it cost to attend the LL.M. program? 

Ans: The tuition and fees for the LL.M. program for the academic year 2023-2024 are $78,278. This does not include living expenses, health insurance, books, and other costs.

We hope that this blog gave you a complete overview of the Columbia Law School. Start following Leverage Edu today for more such content on universities to study abroad. Thank you for reading!

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