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LLM in Dispute Resolution

Program Overview

School: School of Law
Cost: $53,430
Units: 26
Terms: 2 Semesters
Location(s): Malibu

The LLM in Dispute Resolution is considered the premier program in dispute resolution and offers students the most amount of flexibility in their dispute resolution education.  This 26 unit program is structured with a balance of theory and practice; students will focus on a variety of ADR mechanisms including negotiation, mediation and arbitration, as well as gain practice through the requisite Mediation Clinic and Externship program.  Students can follow a more general course of study without a concentration, or declare a concentration in mediation, arbitration or litigation.

Available Concentrations

Mediation

Students in the LLM in Dispute Resolution can pursue a concentration in Mediation. This concentration will allow students to use their electives to focus on aspects of the mediation process.

Students in the Mediation Concentration will be asked to declare their concentration prior to graduation, and must include three of the below courses:

Advanced Mediation
Mediation Clinic
Cross-Cultural Conflict and Dispute Resolution
Divorce and Family Mediation
Environmental and Public Policy Dispute Resolution
Selected Issues in Dispute Resolution: Apology, Forgiveness and Reconciliation
Related Thesis or Independent Study with advisor approval

Arbitration

Students in the LLM in Dispute Resolution can pursue a concentration in Arbitration. This concentration provides students with the flexibility to balance both domestic and international arbitration topics.

Students in the Arbitration Concentration will be asked to declare their concentration prior to graduation, and must include three of the below courses:

Arbitration Law or Arbitration Practice and Advocacy
International Commercial Arbitration Theory and Doctrine
International Commercial Arbitration Procedure and Practice
International Investment Disputes
Arbitration Law and the Securities Industry
Related Thesis or Independent Study with advisor approval

Litigation

Students in the LLM in Dispute Resolution can pursue a concentration in Litigation. This concentration focuses on understanding the U.S. legal process, and will give students the opportunity to take traditional practice-oriented law courses.

Students in the Litigation Concentration will be asked to declare their concentration prior to graduation, and must include three of the below courses:

Trial Practice and Settlement
Trial Practice
Advanced Trial Practice
Appellate Advocacy
Complex Litigation
International Ligation
Lawyering Process
Related Thesis or Independent Study with advisor approval

Quick Facts

  • 9Degrees/Programs Available
  • 50+Dispute Resolution Courses
  • 100%Applicants Considered for Scholarship
  • 63Countries Represented by Alumni

Testimonials

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I absolutely credit a large part of my career to the incredible education and opportunities that I received from Straus. Straus is an amazing place that seems to have the magic combination that allows its students to garner the skills, understanding, and support for a career in dispute resolution. I feel lucky to be a part of the Straus family.

FAQs

I have a foreign law degree, am I eligible for the LLM at Pepperdine Law?

International students that have the first degree of law required to practice law in their country are eligible to apply for the LLM in Dispute Resolution program.

Do I need to get my transcripts evaluated?

All foreign transcripts must be evaluated through an evaluation agency. Applicants for the LLM in Dispute Resolution can have their transcripts evaluated by LSAC's LLM Credential Assembly Service if they are applying online via LSAC. This is the recommended method of application.

Applicants applying using our paper application form will not be able to use LSAC's evaluation service without paying for all of their services. These applicants have the option to use WES to evaluate their transcripts.

Students applying to the Certificate or Master's in Dispute Resolution are also required to have their transcripts evaluated through WES. Applicants will need to select the course-by-course evaluation option.

Do I need to take an English Proficiency Exam?

The Straus Institute's academic programs rely heavily on class discussions, stimulating simulated exercises and written papers, so it is imperative that international applicants are able to demonstrate a proficiency in English. English proficiency is determined by the TOEFL or IELTS exam, as well as a Skype or in person interview.

Those that received the majority of their education in English and feel they meet our language requirements can submit a proposal to waive the English proficiency examination requirement. This proposal must outline the applicant's English education/training, describe how they feel they meet our language requirements and provide supporting documentation. This can be sent to dracademics@pepperdine.edu, and will be considered with a Skype or in person interview.

Pepperdine University School of Law has partnered with UCLA's American Language Center and UC Irvine's Extension Center to allow their international students to qualify for the graduate programs at Straus without the need for a TOEFL or IELTS score! Once the UC student finishes the highest level of English instruction in any of the above-referenced schools, the language proficiency requirement for applying to Straus is waived. Applicants opting to participate in the English Center Partner Programs may also apply for conditional admission that will allow applicants to take English courses prior to starting their LLM until they can demonstrate English Proficiency by completing the designated level at an approved partner. In other words, applicants will not be able to start their LLM coursework until they meet Pepperdine's language requirements. Applicants will be able to gain full admission after submitting a completion Certificate and participating in a Skype interview. Additional details can be found on the English Center Partner Programs website.

Will I be able to sit for the California or New York Bar?

International students with a foreign law degree are eligible to sit for the California Bar Exam with one year of advanced law study. Many graduates of the LLM in Dispute Resolution program have been able to sit for the CA Bar Exam. Additional information on these requirements can be found on the California Bar Exam or New York Bar Exam website.

Do I need to complete the program in one year?

All international students pursuing an academic program are required to maintain full-time status to qualify for an F-1 student visa. Most international students will complete their coursework in 2 - 3 semesters, but the minimum requirements to be considered a full-time student is 8 units per semester.

Working professional also have the option to commute for the program using our one week and two-weekend intensive formats. In addition to the commuting option, students can also choose to split their coursework over two summers.

Are courses only available in Malibu?

In addition to the Malibu program, Pepperdine has recently partnered with Heidelberg University to transfer 8 units of coursework to Pepperdine's LLM program. The Pepperdine-Heidelberg Collaborative allows German speaking students the opportunity to complete the LLM with only one semester of residence in California.

In addition to the Heidelberg program, Pepperdine is scheduled to start a pilot program at Pepperdine's London campus offering extended weekend courses in London, requiring a portion of the summer and two one-week intensives in Malibu.

I want to be a mediator. Should I participate in a training program or get a Certificate or LLM in Dispute Resolution?

If your interest is in volunteering at the courthouse, the Mediating the Litigated Case program will meet the minimum requirements of many courthouses without making the investment of an educational degree. If your interest is in going into private practice, the Certificate and LLM program will provide you with more credibility than any training program.
The academic programs provide an academic understanding of dispute resolution processes through the exposure to relevant literature as well as extensive conversations about practical skills and techniques. In addition to basic courses, elective courses include topics in Divorce and Family Mediation, Dispute Resolution Systems Design, Ombuds, Employment Dispute Resolution, and various other topics. Students in the LLM program are required to develop their mediation skills though the Mediation Clinic class where students are able to mediate cases at various courts within Los Angeles County.

I have a full-time law practice, what are my options as a part-time student?

The Straus Institute recognizes the schedule limitations for busy professionals, and offers the Certificate, MDR, and LLM programs with full-time or part-time options. Students can coordinate their participation in our academic programs with the pace of their professional and family commitments by taking advantage of one week, two weekend and evening courses at the Malibu campus.

I don't live in California, can I still participate in the program?

The Straus Institute's courses are offered in a variety of formats including one week, two weekend, and fifteen week formats. Students have commuted from various locations across the nation including Texas, New Jersey, Tennessee, Alaska, Hawaii, Utah, Alabama, South Carolina, North Carolina and Arizona. Many of these commuting students take advantage of the two weekend courses offered at the Irvine campus, which is across the street from the John Wayne Airport. Commuting students can also participate in the intensive summer programs and the weekend courses offered at the Malibu campus.

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Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution
Pepperdine Law
24255 Pacific Coast Highway
Malibu, CA 90263

310.506.4655

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