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Curriculum and Planning Resources

The resources below will help you explore HLS course offerings and connect with others that can assist in planning your path through and beyond HLS.

General Curriculum Resources

Use the below links to explore the course catalog, keep up to date on the latest catalog changes, or peruse syllabi archive or Canvas pages.

Overview of the Course and Clinic Selection Process

Course and Clinic Selection at HLS is a multi-phase process with different periods and rounds throughout the year. LL.M. students generally register for the full year in the summer prior to matriculation. Upper-level J.D. students have various rounds in mid to late-fall and late-spring. 1L J.D. students are assigned a course schedule in the summer prior to matriculation, and then have JET and spring elective rounds in mid to late-fall.

Once each registration period concludes, all HLS students are generally able to add and drop courses and clinics until the add/drop deadline for a given term. Note that some courses and clinics may have add/drop deadlines earlier than the term deadline; if an earlier deadline exists, it will be reflected in the course catalog description.  In the fall and spring terms, the Firesale takes place immediately following the add/drop deadline, giving students one last chance to enroll in courses with open seats for which they have been on the waitlist.

Planning Your Time at HLS

Use the Handbook of Academic Policies, degree requirement quick-reference guide, and Programs of Study to plan your time at HLS. Additionally, use Amicus to connect with your faculty advisors, BSAs, other students, or mentors. Don’t forget to check on your degree progress with the Degree Audit (available in the Academic Records tab) in HELIOS!

Course Registration Procedures and Resources

The below resources can assist in guiding you through the registration process.

HLS Course Registration Procedures

Find out more about the process of each registration round, add/drop and waitlist functionality in HELIOS, the Firesale, and how the enrollment algorithm works.

Important Dates

  • Upcoming Registration Dates – AY2023-2024

    Clinical Selection

    • Opens Tuesday, March 28th at 9am
    • Closes Thursday, March 30th at 5pm
    • Results Available in Helios Monday, April 3rd by 5pm

    Multi-section Course Selection

    • Opens Tuesday, April 4th at 9am
    • Closes Thursday, April 6th at 5pm
    • Results Available in Helios Monday, April 10th by 5pm

    Legal Profession Course Selection (3L only)

    • Opens Tuesday, April 11th at 9am
    • Closes Wednesday, April 12th at 5pm
    • Results Available in Helios Friday, April 14th by 5pm

    Fall Elective Selection

    • Opens Saturday, April 15th at 9am
    • Closes Tuesday, April 18th at 5pm
    • Results Available in Helios Thursday, April 20th by 5pm

    *Course selection for winter 2024 and Spring 2024 elective courses will take place in mid to late Fall 2023.

  • Waitlist Processing, 2023-2024

    Waitlist processing will run daily through June 23rd after which time it will be paused for the summer until later in August. Waitlist offers are for 24 hours.

  • Add/Drop 2023-2024
    • Fall, Fall-Winter & Fall-Spring Clinics  –    August 18
    • 1L Fall Courses ADD Deadline (LLMs only)  – September 1
    • 1L Fall Courses DROP Deadline (LLMs only)  – September 11
    • Fall & Fall-Spring Courses  – September 11
    • Fall & Fall-Spring Firesale  – September 12
    • Winter & Winter-Spring Clinics  –   November 17
    • Winter 1L Jterm Courses  –  TBD
    • Winter & Winter-Spring Courses   – January 2
    • Spring Clinics  –  December 8
    • 1L Spring Courses ADD Deadline (LLMs only)  – TBD
    • 1L Spring Courses DROP Deadline (LLMs only)  – January 26
    • Spring Courses – January 26
    • Spring Firesale – January  29


    All term drop deadlines supersede any window for waiting list offers.
    Please note: Clinics and some courses may have different deadlines. Read the course descriptions for course-specific details.

  • Ask the Registrar (Spring 2023)

    Members of the Registrar’s Office will be available for  questions from 12:30pm to 1:30pm on the following days:

    Wednesday, March 29th: Hark Ramp

    Wednesday, April 5th: Hark Ramp

    Wednesday, April 12th: Hark Ramp

    Tuesday, April 18th: Hark Ramp


2023-2024 Course Information

View the courses that are part of an upcoming registration round or courses that will satisfy a particular graduation requirement.  The Course Reference Guide is a list of all courses, including scheduling and program capacities, to assist in the course selection process. Note that by-permission courses are not included in course preferencing registration rounds; these courses typically involve an application process and admittance is processed outside of HELIOS.

Clinic Registration

HLS offers a variety of in-house, externship, and other clinical opportunities that can enhance your legal education. Explore these opportunities and the clinical registration process through the links below.

Detailed information regarding the clinical curriculum and associated registration deadlines can be found on the Clinical Registration page. Please note that clinics and their associated clinical seminars and courses have earlier drop deadlines than regular classes.  Students enrolled in a clinic should pay special attention to the clinic’s drop deadline as they plan their schedules.  More information about these deadlines can be found in each of the clinic’s description in the HLS Course Catalog.

Students interested in clinics are encouraged to attend ClinicTalks or schedule an appointment with a clinical advisor.


Most LL.M. and upper-level J.D. students may cross-register at other Harvard schools, the Fletcher School at Tufts, and at MIT, which may complement your studies at HLS. The cross-registration petition and enrollment periods typically happen right before the beginning of each term. J.D. students eligible to cross-register may apply up to 12 credits toward the J.D. degree, and LL.M. students may apply up to six credits toward the LL.M. degree.

Written Work Registration

All J.D. and LL.M. students have a written work requirement for graduation, and in addition, can enroll in optional written work beyond the graduation requirement. Registration for writing credit and for the graduation requirement are paper processes completed outside of HELIOS.