LL.M. students submit course preferences for the entire academic year during a process that takes place in July and August, before their arrival at Harvard Law School. Preliminary schedules, reflecting the courses in which each student is enrolled as well as information on courses in which he or she is waitlisted, was sent to students by email on August 14, 2015. During Orientation, each LL.M. student will review his or her schedule in a course counseling meeting with his or her LL.M. Advisor. All students will then have the opportunity to finalize their schedules during periods for Add/Drop and Waitlist Processing held throughout the academic year (see “Add/Drop and Waitlist Processing” below).
Course Counseling Sessions: Every LL.M. student has been assigned an LL.M. Advisor, and is required to meet with his or her advisor during Orientation to discuss course selections and to confirm schedules. Counseling sessions will be held throughout Orientation. Students sign up for course counseling appointments through an online process; the instructions for signing up were issued by email in mid-August.
The Components of Course Registration
During Orientation, information will be provided on the following technical components of registering for Law School courses:
- Open Courses
- Waitlisted and Oversubscribed Courses
- Add/Drop and Waitlist Processing
- Courses Requiring Permission
Students will refer to this information throughout the academic year. (Please also see “Cross-Registration” below.)
A. OPEN COURSES
Open courses are those course sections that have not yet been filled and can be added without waitlisting or instructor permission. In some cases, there may be a large number of spaces available, while in other cases there may be only very few spaces available. It should be noted that an “Open” course can become a “Waitlisted” course once students enroll in the available spaces. Further information about access to and parameters for Open Courses in HELIOS, the Law School’s student information system, will be provided during Orientation.
B. WAITLISTED AND OVERSUBSCRIBED COURSES
Courses that have been filled, and that do not require instructor permission to enroll, will have waitlists. Waitlist size varies by course. The most popular courses will typically have the fewest spaces available and/or the longest waitlists, and are referred to as “Oversubscribed.” If you are registered for an oversubscribed course and decide to drop it, you are strongly encouraged to do so by no later than the end of the day after the first meeting of the class. You should also check individual course descriptions for special deadlines and requirements.
C. WAITLIST PROCESS
The process for adding your name to a waitlist, removing your name from a waitlist, or enrolling in a course from a waitlist will be described in detail during Orientation, and will be clarified in separate documentation. If your name is on a waitlist it will remain there, in priority order, until a space in the course or seminar becomes available.
During designated Waitlist Processing periods (see “Add/ Drop and Waitlist Processing” below), seats in courses with waiting lists will be offered to students as space becomes available. Students who are offered a space in a waitlisted course will be given a fixed time period in which to add the course to their schedules. Students who fail to respond during that specified time frame, after having been notified that the space is available, will lose their chance to add the course and will be dropped from the waitlist. Occasionally, students have reported that waitlist offers were mistakenly caught as spam. Therefore, students should routinely check the “spam” folders on their HLS email accounts to help ensure that they do not miss any waitlist offers that have been issued.
D. COURSES REQUIRING PERMISSION
Courses requiring special permission from the instructor for admission may be added only after the student registering for the course obtains approval (in the form of an e-mail or other written permission) from the course instructor. In all cases, students should carefully review course descriptions to comply with special prerequisites or restrictions.
Credit Maximums and Schedule Changes: LL.M. students may not register for more than 26 credits over the course of the academic year (not including the one credit assigned for completion of the portion of the Legal Research, Writing and Analysis course that takes place during Orientation); most students will not register for more than 24 credits. LL.M. students wishing to register for 25 or 26 credits are encouraged to consult with Nancy Pinn. If you are registered for the 26-credit maximum and wish to add a course to your schedule, you must first drop a course.
Any alteration is subject to course availability. Please note that extensive alteration of your schedule may result in lost or missed class time.
All course changes made during the designated Add/Drop and Waitlist Processing periods must be made in HELIOS. Detailed instructions on how to view waitlists and how to accomplish these changes using HELIOS will be provided during Orientation.
Add/Drop and Waitlist Processing
The Add/Drop/Waitlist period for LL.M. students will begin on Monday, August 24, 2015 at 12 noon. Students will use HELIOS to:
- add themselves to courses that have not yet been filled
- add themselves to waitlists for courses that have already been filled
- add themselves to courses with waitlists after they receive an enrollment offer
- drop themselves from waitlists for courses in which they are no longer interested
- drop themselves from courses they no longer wish to take
Waitlist Processing—the process by which students on waitlists may be offered the chance to enroll in a particular waitlisted course if a seat becomes available—for all fall, winter, and spring courses will begin on August 24th and continue until the Add/Drop deadline for each respective term (listed below). As soon as a space in a course becomes available, an offer will be issued to the next person on the waitlist. Students offered a place in a waitlisted course will have 24 hours from when the offer is issued to accept. Any student who does not respond within this 24-hour window will be completely removed from the waitlist for the course.
Students may continue to make course schedule changes in HELIOS until the following deadlines, subject to publicized blackout periods during which the system will be unavailable:
- September 8, 2015, at 11:59 p.m.: last day for Waitlist Processing for and changes to fall-term 1L courses. Add/Drop and Waitlist Processing for other courses continue.
- September 14, 2015, at 11:59 PM: last day for Waitlist Processing for and changes to fall and full-year (fall-spring) courses. Add/Drop and Waitlist Processing for winter and spring courses continue.
- January 5, 2016, at 11:59 PM: last day for Waitlist Processing for and changes to winter term courses. Add/ Drop and Waitlist Processing for spring term courses continue.
- January 29, 2016, at 11:59 PM: last day for Waitlist Processing for and changes to spring term courses.
LL.M. students may cross-register for courses outside the Law School with permission of the Committee on Graduate Studies and the prior approval of Nancy Pinn, the Director of Administration and Student Affairs (acting on the Committee’s behalf ). LL.M. students may cross-register for up to six Law School credits in approved cross-registered courses during the LL.M. year. With the exception of language courses, cross-registration credits count towards the credit requirements for the LL.M. degree once the student obtains a passing grade as determined by the school or department in which the course or seminar is taken. No Law School credit is awarded for language courses.
First-year S.J.D. students who have not waived the LL.M. degree (see “Course Work,” Section III) may also cross-register for courses outside the Law School as long as the course pertains to their fields of study and approval is obtained from the faculty supervisor and the Committee on Graduate Studies.
For S.J.D. students, cross-registered courses, if any, should be listed in the S.J.D. study plan to be submitted no later than September 30 of the first year.
Students are normally granted approval to take courses in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences (in fields such as anthropology, economics, government, history, and philosophy), the Kennedy School of Government, the Business School, the School of Education, other divisions of the University, the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Cross-registration information can be found online at:
Students hoping to pursue one of the curricular concentrations, as described in Section II, must go through the regular course registration process. Students who are admitted and elect to proceed with one of these concentrations will be automatically granted spaces in required courses and seminars, as follows:
- Corporate Law, Finance and Governance Concentration: Corporate Governance and Finance of the Public Firm and Comparative Corporate Governance seminar. Students pursuing this concentration must register separately for Corporations (any fall-term section); placement in this course is not automatic.
- International Human Rights Concentration: Human Rights in the UN Treaty Bodies seminar and International Human Rights
- Taxation Concentration: Taxation, Taxation of Businesses, Tax Law, Policy and Practice and one of the following three courses: U.S. Aspects of International Income Taxation; Taxation of Corporations, Mergers, Acquisitions, and Divisions; and Tax Law, Finance, and Strategic Planning
Students must follow the regular registration procedures for all other course work. Additional information on how the requirements of each concentration apply towards the LL.M. degree, please consult the information in Section II of this Handbook.
Deadlines for Course Changes
If you do not drop a course from which you intended to withdraw within the specified Add/Drop and Waitlist Processing periods (i.e., by the last day of the Add/Drop period for a particular term), a designated notation of WD (Withdrawn After Deadline) will appear on your permanent transcript in the “grade” section. It is therefore very important that you pay close attention to deadlines (see above) and carefully review your online academic schedule to verify your course enrollment status.