Jacksonville Law Programs
Near Jacksonville, FL, aspiring lawyers aren't the only ones that can find the educational programs they need to enter their chosen career; there are also options available to those interested in related fields like paralegal studies and law enforcement. Read about the required courses and learning experiences at three schools, and then review a comparison table with stats for each institution. Some additional program options at a fourth school in the area are discussed as well.
- Florida Coastal School of Law is located in Jacksonville about 13 miles from the downtown area. It offers law degrees, including the Juris Doctor (J.D.) and Master of Laws, in addition to a program that allows students to earn their J.D. and a business administration master's degree.
- The University of Florida's Levin College of Law is located in Gainesville roughly 53 miles from central Jacksonville. It offers a J.D. program along with several Master of Laws programs; students can also earn a doctoral degree in juridical science.
- Students who are interested in earning a degree or certificate for employment in a law-related field may want to consider Florida State College at Jacksonville. Situated around 18 miles from the city's downtown area, the school offers certificates in corrections, law enforcement and seaport security as well as an associate's degree in paralegal studies.
Comparison of Schools
After getting details on their law programs, explore the schools' settings, enrollment numbers, costs and even more in the table below. These stats and facts could help you decide which institution best suits your needs.
|Florida Coastal School of Law||University of Florida||Florida State College at Jacksonville|
|School Type||4-year, private for-profit*||4-year, public*||4-year, public*|
|Total Enrollment (2014)||1,115 (all graduate)*||49,459*||25,514 (all undergraduate)*|
|Campus Setting||Large city*||Midsize city*||Large city*|
|Tuition||$22,365 (2015-2016)**||In-state: $10,770 ; out-of-state: $27,335 (graduate; 2015-2016)*||In-state: $2,830; out-of-state: $9,944 (undergraduate; 2015-2016)*|
|% of Students Receiving Some Form of Financial Aid (2014)||N/A- Not reported||96%||77% (first-time, full-time undergraduates)*|
|Acceptance Rate||N/A - Not reported||46% for undergraduates (2014)*||Open undergraduate admissions (2016)*|
|Graduation Rate||N/A - Not reported||88% for undergraduates(2014)*||33% (undergraduate students who began studies in 2011)*|
Source: *National Center for Education Statistics, **Florida Coastal School of Law.
Florida Coastal School of Law
This for-profit private school offers a rolling admissions process and the option of a spring start date. In 2011, the student body was roughly split evenly between male and female students. In 2010, the school earned the American Bar Association's Smythe Gambrell Professionalism Award. Students can participate in clinical training and career preparation through externships, skills labs, and pro bono work.
Juris Doctor (J.D.)
First year students concentrate on gaining an understanding of the American legal system and how it works before taking specialized classes in their second and third years of study. Areas of study may include estate planning, tax, civil rights, criminal, environmental, maritime, and business law.
The joint Juris Doctor and Master of Business Administration degree program is offered through Florida Coastal School of Law in partnership with the Davis College of Business at Jacksonville University (JU). This degree program can be completed in as little as three years instead of five; admission requires completion of the LSAT and GMAT exams and application to both schools.
Master of Laws (LL.M.)
This is an online-only, 26-credit degree program intended for lawyers who earned their degrees outside of the United States and need to gain knowledge of comparative law. Students will prepare to take the bar exam so that they can practice law in the U.S. Applicants to the program may be eligible for scholarships.
University of Florida
The University of Florida's law school, Levin College of Law, was founded in the early 1900s. The school was ranked 48th overall by U.S. News and World Report. In 2012, there were 287 students in the entering class. The median LSAT score of entering students in Fall 2012 was better than 160, and the median GPA was more than 3.5. Levin College of Law offers six degrees. As of July 2012, Levin College of Law graduates had a 91.2% pass rate on the bar exam.
Juris Doctor (J.D.)
The curriculum develops students' legal knowledge, analytical skills, and communication skills. Students attend seminars and participate in clinical programs, simulations, and role-playing. First-year students study a standardized curriculum that covers important legal basics, and second- and third-year students can choose classes from an array of electives that cover more specific legal focuses.
Master of Laws (LL.M.) in Comparative Law
The Levin College of Law's LL.M. in comparative law degree is geared toward graduates of international law schools who are seeking advanced understanding of the U.S. legal system. The program covers the history and origins of the U.S. legal system as well as more complex concepts in contemporary U.S. law.
Master of Laws (LL.M.) in Environmental and Land Use Law
Interested students can study environmental and land use law in-depth. Students take graduate courses in areas like wildlife ecology or soil and water science in addition to law courses. Students in this program can also apply to study abroad in places like Belize or Costa Rica.
Master of Laws (LL.M.) in Taxation
The LL.M. in Taxation is a one-year full-time program. Graduates of this program can go on to become employed in government agencies, law firms or accounting firms.
Master of Laws (LL.M) in International Taxation
The LL.M. in International Taxation offers courses in areas like tax treaties, comparative taxation, and European taxation. This one-year program also includes courses in U.S. taxation and may provide students the opportunity to complete independent research projects.
Doctor of Juridical Science (S.J.D.) in Taxation
The S.J.D. in Taxation is the first program of its kind in the country. This 3- to 5-year program is intended for those who desire an academic career in the field of tax law. This program has limited admission.
Florida State College at Jacksonville
Florida State College is located in Jacksonville, FL. The school is a member of the Florida College System. Although Florida State College at Jacksonville does not have a law school, students interested in careers in the legal field may be interested in the school's paralegal studies degree. The college's Florida Coast Career Tech division also offers several certificate programs in the law enforcement field.
Associate in Science (A.S.) in Paralegal Studies
Students can prepare for a career in legal assisting through an Associate in Science degree program in paralegal studies. Students develop skills in areas like legal research and writing, critical thinking, and law-related technology that culminates with an internship experience. Graduates of this program are qualified to take the Certified Legal Assistant/Certified Paralegal credentialing exam offered by the National Association of Legal Assistants. This program is approved by the American Bar Association.
Law Enforcement Officer Certificate
The law enforcement officer training program prepares students for the state certification exam for law enforcement officers. Students receive training in areas like first aid, firearms, investigations, and vehicle operations.
Correctional Officer Certificate
This 4-month program provides students with the training needed to work as correctional officers or in related criminal justice fields. Students learn fundamentals like defensive tactics, emergency preparedness, and communication procedures and equipment use.
Other School Options
Stetson University is a 4-year private non-profit school located in Gulfport, about 100 miles from downtown Jacksonville. The Stetson University College of Law offers full- and part-time J.D. degree programs, LL.M. programs, and dual graduate programs (J.D./MBA, J.D./M.D., and J.D/M.P.H.).