Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

Arthur Rubloff Building
375 East Chicago Avenue
Chicago, IL 60611-3069
United States

LL.M. for International Students facts

Northwestern - Pritzker - Full Profile

The Law School

The business world and legal profession have undergone radical changes over the past 20 years. Today, business and legal practices are not based solely on culture or geography — they are universal, having crystallized around Anglo-American and common law conventions and rules. International lawyers who master the principles of U.S. law and understand its role in business will succeed no matter where in the world their offices are located or where their clients do business.

Northwestern Pritzker School of Law prepares international lawyers for this exciting new world better than any leading U.S. program by offering a wide variety of degree programs for international students. International students can choose among several LLM programs as well as a two-year JD program for international lawyers. Students also have the option to earn an LLM over the summer in Northwestern Law's Executive LLM Chicago program (formerly the Accelerated LLM program). Students may also choose to enroll in an International Executive LLM program, which Northwestern offers in Tel Aviv, Israel; Seoul, Korea; and Madrid. Executive LLM programs allow legal professionals to obtain an LLM from Northwestern Law while continuing their work commitments in their home countries.

The Program

Executive LLM Chicago
This unique Executive LLM Chicago (ELLMC) program—formerly named the Accelerated Summer LLM—makes it possible for a foreign lawyer or recipient of a law degree from an accredited foreign institution to earn an LLM from an American law school over the summer. Specifically designed for graduates of non-U.S. law schools working in their home countries, the Executive LLM Chicago program emphasizes the importance of the role of the lawyer as a strategic adviser in business. Classes involve lively discussions, with problems and case studies as well as the use of leading educational technologies. For more information about the Executive LLM Chicago program, please contact Janet Garesche.

General LLM
The LLM (Masters of Laws) degree at Northwestern Law is an internationally recognized post-graduate law degree that provides a sound grounding in American law. The nine-month general LLM program offers graduates of foreign law schools an opportunity to expand their knowledge of American law and legal processes, continue their studies in international law, and engage in comparative legal research. Graduates of this program represent more than 50 countries and hold prominent positions in many areas of practice, including attorneys, professors, judges, corporate counsel consultants, human rights advocates, bankers and civil servants.

Graduate Program in Law and Business (LLM/Kellogg)
In the Fall of 2016, the LLM/Kellogg program was indefinitely suspended. This 12-month program is designed for business lawyers educated outside of the United States and offers students a rare opportunity to study both business law and management techniques at two of America’s leading schools Northwestern Law and the Kellogg Business School of Management. Students take several core business law courses that emphasize corporate, commercial, and transactional studies and complete a significant portion of the first-year MBA curriculum, which covers principles of management, marketing and finance.

LLM Program in International Human Rights
This program has been designed for those with career interests in international human rights, as well as those from transitional democracies interested in the application of human rights law to circumstances in their home countries. Students undertake in-depth study of the norms and methods of international human rights law and its implementation in domestic legal systems. Past graduates of the LLM Program in International Human Rights currently work for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, the Bulgarian Parliamentary Committee on Human Rights, and the Indonesian Human Rights Monitor.

LLM in Taxation
The LLM in Taxation students develop a solid foundation in required core courses that cover each of the four principal areas of modern tax law – Taxation of Property Transactions, Corporate Taxation, Partnership Taxation, and International Taxation. Students are immersed on a daily basis in the Code, its legislative history, and the Regulations as well as exposed to the crossover and multi-faceted nature of current transactional problems. Full-time tax faculty teach all of the core courses. Leading tax practitioners from the Chicago area assist the full-time faculty in teaching advanced courses, thereby allowing students to apply core tax concepts to complex cutting-edge transactions. Aside from completing the required courses, students are free to design their own program of study from the Tax Program’s many electives.

JD-LLM Joint Degree in Taxation
The Joint Degree in Taxation Program allows both Northwestern and non-Northwestern JD students to obtain both the JD and LLM Tax degrees in less than the eight semesters of study necessary if each degree is earned sequentially. Students typically complete one half of the requirements for the LLM Tax degree during the fall semester of their third year and then complete the requirements for the LLM Tax degree on either a full-time or a part-time basis following receipt of the JD degree. One of the benefits of the structure of Northwestern Law's LLM Tax curriculum is that joint-degree students are exposed to the four foundational areas of the modern tax law during the fall semester of their third year.

International Executive LLM Programs
Northwestern Law continues to expand its international reach by offering Executive LLM programs for working legal and business professionals through partnerships with the KAIST Graduate School of Management in Seoul, South Korea; IE Law School in Madrid, Spain; Tel Aviv University in Tel Aviv, Israel. Courses are scheduled to allow students to continue to work while they study. As they learn, students can apply the broad range of legal and analytical skills they have mastered toward their everyday work. Most applicants are practicing lawyers who are poised to seek positions of maximum responsibility in the near future. Other legal professionals, as well as executives and managers whose work brings them into frequent contact with legal or regulatory situations, would also benefit from participating in the Executive LLM Program.

The Faculty

With a low student-faculty ratio and small classes, students establish one-on-one relationships with distinguished scholars who are world authorities on today’s leading legal, academic, and public policy issues. Northwestern Law faculty members are internationally renowned scholars in the areas of corporate and criminal law, international trade, international human rights, business associations, and contracts.

The faculty includes a past chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, a former deputy assistant attorney general in the U.S. Department of Justice, the former U.S. Ambassador at large for War Crimes Issues, and the first American attorney to argue a case before the European Court of Human Rights.


One of America’s centers of commerce and government, Chicago provides an ideal setting for the study of law, and students take advantage of the location through visits to courts, law firms, and corporations. Chicago is home to dozens of the nation’s largest corporations and law firms, as well as the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, the Chicago Stock Exchange, and the Chicago Board of Trade. Almost every federal and state agency and every level of trial and appellate court have offices in the city.

The Law School itself is located in one of the city’s most exclusive and beautiful neighborhoods — the Gold Coast. Surrounded by residential buildings and offices, the campus is within two blocks of a major supermarket and the famed Magnificent Mile, a stretch of Michigan Avenue that boasts department stores, restaurants, and boutiques. It is adjacent to Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management and down the street from Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

Student Life

International students make up about 15 percent of Northwestern Law’s total student body. Many are lawyers with several years of work experience who are interested in gaining valuable hands-on experience in American law and business. Each year, more than 100 LLM students from more than 30 different countries enroll in our various LLM programs in Chicago, and about five percent of recent entering JD and JD-MBA students came from outside the United States.

In our close-knit environment, LLM students are fully integrated with JD students both in and out of the classroom. They select an LLM representative for the Student Bar Association, the student governing organization, and participate in more than 40 student organizations. The Student Services team ensures that international students have an exciting and successful experience academically and personally. The director of International Programs assists students in taking full advantage of their time at Northwestern Law and in Chicago. The school also provides special programs and activities for students’ spouses and families.

Programs at Northwestern - Pritzker


Winter/Spring, Fall
9 months
9 months
  • The program is designed for students with STEM backgrounds.


Winter/Spring, Fall
24 months
  • Tuition based on 24 credit hours.
4 months
  • Executive LLM may be completed in one or two summers.
February, September
24 months
  • Program in collaboration with KAIST Moon Soul Graduate School of Future Strategy in Seoul, South Korea.
  • Most classes will be taught in Seoul and there will be a Chicago session held in August.
12 months
  • Program awards a dual degree of Master of Law in the fields of Public Law and International Law.
  • The program consists of two semesters in Tel Aviv and four weeks in Chicago.
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