The J.D. curriculum at Appalachian School of Law is designed to be rigorous and prepare students for a career in law where they can make a difference in their communities. Each year builds upon the last, and our faculty and staff support our students during their studies and after graduation. See a summary of what to expect from each year as a student at ASL.
First-year students take the traditional courses required by most law schools including Torts, Property, Civil Procedure, Criminal Law, and Contracts. Students also take a dedicated course in academic support designed to get new law students familiar with the unique challenges of law school.
In the summer between their first and second years, all students participate in a credit-earning legal externship. The externship provides an early opportunity to gain hands-on experience and to increase students’ practical understanding of the law.
Second-year students continue the core legal curriculum with a focus on the subjects tested on most state bar exams, including Criminal Procedure, Constitutional Law, Evidence, and Professional Responsibility.
Third-year students have the opportunity to take electives and seminars in the areas of the law that interest them most. Practicum courses, designed to give students practical experience in specific areas of the law, are also commonly taken during the third year. For instance, Trial Advocacy, a popular practicum, gives students a chance to develop and practice real litigation skills and can lead to membership on one of ASL’s award winning Trial Advocacy teams.
All third-year students participate in a Bar Exam Preparation program, which includes subjects covered on the Multistate Bar Examination and various state bar examinations. These courses include diagnostic and practice examinations with individual scoring and feedback.
ASL is there for its students, even after graduation. We continue to provide support and encouragement as students prepare to take the bar exam. For instance, our faculty serve as bar mentors, meeting with graduates as they prepare to take the bar exam in states throughout the region. ASL also has a dedicated career services office and alumni network to help students transition to practice after law school.