As the highest degree offered in the field of law, the SJD offers candidates an intellectually challenging opportunity for academic specialization. Candidates for the SJD conduct advanced research and produce original scholarship under the guidance of IPLP’s internationally renowned faculty.
Candidates spend one year in residency with the Program, taking part in course work equal to a minimum of 24 credit hours. With the guidance of the candidate’s faculty advisor, each SJD student is expected to enroll in courses related to his or her specialization. There are no courses mandated for the SJD residency requirement. Upon completion of the one-year residency requirement, candidates typically spend one to two years completing dissertation research and writing. SJD students have a maximum of 3 years to complete their dissertation. During this time, candidates may either remain at the law school or complete their dissertation elsewhere, but must enroll in three credits of dissertation each semester.
Criteria for Admission
This highly competitive program is open only to applicants who have attained a JD from an ABA accredited law school or foreign equivalent, and have completed an LLM or foreign equivalent. Students who are currently enrolled in an LLM program at the Rogers College of Law can also submit applications for the SJD program.
Approximately 2-4 students are accepted each year into the SJD program, which is open only to applicants who have attained a JD from an ABA accredited law school or foreign equivalent, and the completion of an LLM or foreign equivalent. Students who are currently enrolled in an LLM program at the Rogers College of Law can also submit applications for the SJD program.
We have moved to an on line application process and as of June 1, 2010, we no longer accept paper applications. The on line application is located at:
The system will require you to create an account and complete a profile information section. You will also be asked to pay the $65 application fee as part of the on line process.
To apply for the SJD program, select the link for the Law - SJD program. There is one application for both SJD programs, the IPLP and the International Trade. As you complete the application process, you will be asked which of the two programs you are applying to. Select Indigenous Peoples Law & Policy (IPLP) Program
In addition to the on line application itself, prospective students should submit directly to the IPLP Program office (IPLP Program c/o Melissa Tatum, The University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law, P.O. Box 210176, Tucson, Arizona 85721-0176 U.S.A.):
Applications are accepted and admissions decisions are made on a rolling basis beginning September 1. The annual application deadline is March 31st for the Fall Semester, although applications may be considered on a limited basis up to July15th (conditional on available space). Earlier applications are strongly encouraged, as only 2-4 students are accepted each year. Financial support awards are made in April. The Admissions Committee ordinarily will not consider applications until all required information has been received.
Please note: Our experience with respect to student immigration matters confirms the importance of the March 31st deadline, as international students can experience a lengthier admissions process due to changing immigration regulations. International applicants are strongly encouraged to apply as early as possible to avoid delays in the immigration paperwork process.
Candidates who accept the offer of admissions are required to pay a non-refundable US $250.00 seat deposit. This deposit will be credited to your tuition account. All students born after December 31, 1956 are required by UA to verify measles/rubella immunity. Important details pertaining to proof of immunization can be obtained from the UA Campus Health Care web site. Without proof of measles/rubella immunity on file with Campus Health Services, students will not be permitted to register for classes.
The Indigenous Peoples Law & Policy Program continues to be one of the best values in legal education. Students enrolled in the program receive both classroom and "hands on" training. For more information on tuition and fees, please see the Bursar's office page on the Law School's web site.
* Tuition and fees are subject to change.
Federal financial aid may be available for U.S. citizens in the LLM program. Some forms of aid are need-based and others are not based upon financial need. Applicants are encouraged to look at the Rogers College of Law Financial Aid section for instructions on how to apply for financial aid, information on deadlines for applying for financial assistance, and information on how to apply for private non-governmental loans.
Additional information regarding the various financial aid programs available through the University of Arizona Office of Student Financial Aid.
To assist students in obtaining financial aid, Keyshia Conner serves as Senior Financial Aid Counselor for prospective and enrolled students at the Rogers College of Law. Ms. Nash is located in Room 118 of the College, and can be reached at 520.626.8101 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
Scholarships & Fellowships
Because University and College of Law financial aid funds are extremely limited, full scholarships and fellowships in general are rarely available to students enrolling in the program. Partial awards (in the form of grants or tuition waivers) can be offered to a few LLM and SJD students each year. Applicants must find most of the financial assistance necessary for their travel, living and educational expenses from outside sources. To be considered for a scholarship/fellowship, please submit (with your application) a 1-2 page letter requesting to be considered for a scholarship and providing information you think is relevant to your financial situation.
The Graduate College has a number of links to extramural fellowships, searchable databases for grants and scholarships, and to other University resources that provide financial assistance.
Additionally, the International Student Office has a number of links that will lead to information on scholarship, internships and grant opportunities for international students.
International degree candidates are responsible for ensuring that they meet the requisite student visa requirements and regulations to effect their entry into the United States. The requirements vary depending upon the country of residence and citizenship. It will include proof of financial capacity for the candidate and/or dependents. This also includes, to meet IPLP admissions policy, a TOEFL score of 600 or above (or the computer based equivalent). While the immigration process is initiated by the issuance of an I-20 form by UA, it is the international candidate’s responsibility to secure proper documents to perfect their immigration status. Once you have received your I-20, please direct your questions relating to your immigration requirements to Melissa Tatum, IPLP Program Associate Director, in conjunction with Joanne Lagasse-Long, Director, Office of International Student Programs and Services.
Mandatory Student Health Insurance
International degree candidates are required to enroll in the UA Campus Health Care plan. A variety of options are available and international candidates must consult with the available services. The UA Health Care website contains important student health care plan information and health care premiums/rates.
The rules regarding a Social Security Number (SSN) have changed. You are only eligible to obtain an SSN if you are holding an F-1 visa and you have actual employment. Employment will need to be verified by the employer as well as the Designated School Official (DSO) at the International Student Programs and Services (ISPS) Office, located at 915 N. Tyndall. If you are an F-1 student and plan to be employed, you wil need the following documents to apply for an SSN:
You may download any of the required forms to be included with your SSN application at the ISPS home page.
If you are an F-1 student receiving a scholarship, stipend, fellowship or any other type of monetary award that is over and beyond the cost of tuition and/or registration fees, you are not eligible for an SSN. This does not constitute employment. It is considered a cash award. If this is the case, you will need to apply for an Individual Tax Payer's Identification Number (ITIN) from the IRS. This number can be obtained by completing a Form W-7, "Application for IRS Individual Taxpayer Identification Number" and submitting it, in person, along with the documents listed on the instructions. The ITIN is only for tax filing purposes. More information regarding an ITIN can be found at http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p1915.pdf.
The rules for obtaining an SSN are different if you hold a J-1 student visa. Please contact the ISPS at 520 621-4627 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Summer Session: Introduction to American Legal Systems
International candidates from the common wealth and civil law jurisdictions are encouraged to take a two unit course during the Summer Session, titled, “Introduction to the U.S. Legal System.” Credits from this course will be applied to the minimum 24 credit requirement for graduation. This course is subject to registration and tuition fees.
Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) & The Center for English as a Second Language (CESL)
Proficiency in English
International students must demonstrate proficiency in English as one of the conditions for admission to the IPLP LLM or the SJD Program. Submission of a minimum score of 600 (or an equivalent computer-based score) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is required for all applicants whose native language is not English.
International students must arrange for their testing and test reporting through TOEFL Services.
Pursuant to the Graduate College admissions policy at the University of Arizona, applicants who have completed two years of full-time, upper division, academic study in the U.S., or who have received a bachelor's or graduate degree from institutions in the United States, English-speaking Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, or New Zealand are exempt from submitting TOEFL scores.
However, if the student has been residing outside these countries since completing study or earning a degree, he or she may be required to submit current TOEFL scores as part of the admissions process.
The Center for English as a Second Language (CESL)
Prospective students who lack college-level English proficiency or who would like to increase their English ability can attend full-time English language training on campus at the Center for English as a Second Language (CESL). Full semester or summer term sessions carry no college credit. However, students can meet the Graduate College's English proficiency requirement for admission by completing a full-time day program at CESL and obtaining written verification from the Director of CESL that they have attained satisfactory proficiency in the English language.
Further information can be requested from:
The Center for English as a Second Language
1100 E. James E. Rogers Way
The University of Arizona, P.O. Box 210024
Tucson, Arizona 85721-0024, U.S.A.
Web Link: www.cesl.arizona.edu