Assistant Dean Sowle’s Announcements, January 17 - January 21, 2022

Welcome Back! I hope your break was restful and that you have a productive and enjoyable Spring semester.

Seventh Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Forum. Please join us for Chicago-Kent's Seventh Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Forum on Thursday, January 20, 4:00 pm - 7:00 pm. The topic will be "The Intersection of the Criminal Justice System and the Education System: Transforming Schools to Protect our Youth."  The forum will be held virtually and will start with a documentary film screening, followed by a short break and a panel discussion of legal experts, activists, and local leaders. Watch the trailer "On These Grounds" here. You can register for the documentary film screening and/or the panel discussion here. This event is hosted by the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, the Law Library, and these student organizations: ACLU, ACS, APALSA, BLSA, Criminal Law Society, DALSA, HLLSA, Lambdas, MLSA, NLG, PACCK, REAA, Women in Law, and SBA.

Accessing Your Fall 2021 Grades. Fall grades are due no later than this Friday, January 21. Grades are released as they are received. You can access your grades by logging into Web for Students, then clicking on the Fall 2021 link under the Grades and Rank heading. After all grades are in, we will process Fall GPAs and class ranks as quickly as possible. Please note: students do not receive class ranks until they have been here for two semesters, so if you are a first-year student, you will receive your first class rank at the end of this Spring semester.

Spring 2022 Semester Information. The Spring 2022 Quick Guide page has most of the information you will need in advance of the start of the Spring semester. Alternatively, click on the individual links below to go directly to the indicated documents.

Initial Reading Assignments and Course MaterialsPlease note: Not all professors submit initial assignments. Even if a course is not listed in this document, please check for materials in the Bookstore.

Revised Spring ScheduleThis version of the schedule includes classroom assignments and exam information. Please click here for a list of all changes since the original schedule was issued last month. 

Applications for Graduation. J.D. students who plan on graduating at the end of the Spring semester must submit an online Application for Graduation form no later than Tuesday, February 1. To complete the form, go to Web for Students at and click on "Application for Graduation" under "Online Forms" in the lefthand menu. Please complete every field in the form, and click Submit when done. You will receive a confirmation e-mail once a graduation audit has been performed.

Please note that any changes you make to your schedule after the audit may affect your graduation requirements. You should check with the Registrar's Office prior to making any changes. Also note that, although the Registrar's Office does conduct graduation audits on all applications, it is your responsibility to make certain all requirements for graduation are met. If you have any questions, please contact the Registrar's Office at

Adding and Dropping Classes. You may add an open course without special permission until the end of the first week of Spring classes; during the second week, however, you may add an open course only with permission of the instructor. You may not add a course after Tuesday, February 1, 5:00pm.

You may withdraw from any course except a required course, a clinical course, Law Review, Moot Court, or an intersession class at any time prior to the date of the final exam or final paper (see §3.10(c) of the Student Handbook). There is no tuition penalty if you drop a course during the first two weeks of classes. You will not receive a tuition refund, however, if you drop a course after Tuesday, February 1, 5:00pm.

Applications to be All-Online. Most Spring 2022 classes will be held in person. Students may request remote attendance if they have specific personal circumstances related to the COVID pandemic. This includes, but is not limited to, situations involving accommodations under the ADA. If you wish to request  remote attendance and haven't already done so, please complete this form by Wednesday, January 19, 5:00pm.

Pass/Fail Elections. Pass/fail elections for the Spring semester must be made online no later than Tuesday, February 1, 5:00pm. Please review section 2.4 "Pass/Fail Election" in the Student Handbook if you have any questions regarding your pass/fail elections. In order to make your election, you should:

  1. Log into Web for Students.

  2. Select the "Take Class Pass/Fail" option under the "Online Forms" heading

  3. Select the course you would like to take on a pass/fail basis

  4. Submit your selection

The Registrar's Office will review your request and inform you if there is any problem with your request.

Legal Writing 4 Equivalency Class. Students this semester who take Criminal Litigation 2 or are doing a Judicial Externship in the Spring semester may satisfy the Legal Writing 4 requirement either by taking a regular Legal Writing 4 class, or by taking the Legal Writing 4 Equivalency Class (0 credits) this semester. Important note: You must register for the Legal Writing 4 Equivalency Class this semester (listed on page 2 of the Schedule of Classes), in addition to participating in the qualifying course or activity, in order to place out of taking a regular Legal Writing 4 class -- it is not sufficient just to participate in the qualifying course or activity. The Equivalency Class must be taken in the same semester as the course or activity that qualifies you to take the Equivalency Class -- you may not defer the Equivalency Class to a later semester.

Academic Calendar for Spring 2022. The academic calendar is available here.

•Graduating Students: Reduced Loads and Tuition Discounts. J.D. students graduating at the end of the Spring semester who need fewer than the minimum number of hours to graduate may take fewer credits without special permission. Taking a reduced load may affect your eligibility for financial aid; please contact the Financial Aid Office if you have questions about this.

In addition, if you will be graduating at the end of the Spring semester, and you will be taking more than the 87 credits required to graduate, you may receive a 50% discount on each credit you take over the required 87 credits. If this affects you, please contact me by email no later than Tuesday, February 1, and I will arrange for the credit to be applied to your account. Please note: Financial aid is not available for any courses you take that are not necessary for you to reach the required 87 credits.

•Experiential Course Requirement. All J.D. students are required to complete a total of six credits from an approved list of experiential courses (click here for the list). Most students will already satisfy four of these credits through the required sequence of Legal Writing 3 and Legal Writing 4. However, students who opt for the Legal Writing 4 Equivalency Class (see page 2 of the schedule for information about Legal Writing 4 Equivalency) should consult the list of approved courses to determine whether the qualifying activity counts toward the experiential requirement. Law Review does not count toward the requirement. 

•64-Credit Classroom Course Requirement. At least 64 of the 87 credits required for graduation must be in courses that require attendance in regularly scheduled classroom sessions or direct faculty instruction. Clinical coursework counts toward the 64-credit requirement, but externships, extracurricular activities (including credits earned for participation in a law journal, moot court competitions, trial advocacy competitions, or as a Teaching Assistant), and courses taken in another academic unit (e.g., the Stuart School of Business) do not count toward the 64 credits.

Building and Library Hours. The building and library hours for Spring 2022, starting Monday, January 24, are available by clicking here

Dean's Certificates for February 2022 Illinois Bar Exam. We will mail a Dean's Certification form to the Illinois bar examiners for every Fall J.D. graduate prior to the deadline later this month. We compile the list of graduating students from the list of those who submitted Applications for Graduation listing Fall 2020 as their final semester. Important note: University policy does not allow the certification of any student to the bar examiners if the student has an outstanding balance owed to the school.

July 2022 Illinois Bar Applications. Applications for the July 2022 Illinois bar exam are due by February 15, 2022. You may file a late application up to May 15, but penalty fees apply. The forms and instructions are available on the bar examiners' web site: All information you disclose on the bar application should be consistent with answers to questions on your Application for Admission to the law school. Please note, however, that the bar application asks for a considerable amount of information that you were not asked to provide on our Application for Admission. You only need to be concerned about the consistency of your answers for questions asked on both forms. You can amend your Application for Admission, if necessary, by addressing a letter to me setting forth the details of the omission or misrepresentation and the reason for it.

Dean's Certificate: The law school sends a “Certification of Juris Doctorate” to the Illinois bar examiners for every student who graduates in December or May. Please be sure to file an Application for Graduation (see information above for how to file one) at the beginning of your last semester so we will know you plan to graduate at the end of that semester. Important note: We will not certify any student to the bar examiners if the student has an outstanding balance owed to the school.

Bar Exams in Other States. If you plan to take a bar exam outside of Illinois, you should provide the Registrar with appropriate forms for the Law School to complete as soon as possible (by email to 

MPRE: Registration Information for 2022 Test Dates. The Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam (MPRE) is required for admission to the bars of most jurisdictions, including Illinois. Students planning on taking the Illinois bar exam may take the MPRE at any time during or after law school. Click here for a list of 2022 test dates and deadlines for applying. The first 2022 test administration is March 23 or 24, with an application deadline of January 21, 2022. 

Employment Limitation. Subject to the limitation for full-time first-year students mentioned just below, students may work more than 20 hours a week if they take 13 or fewer credits in a regular semester (Fall or Spring). Students are prohibited from working more than 20 hours a week if they take 14 or more credits.

Full-time first-year students are prohibted from working more than 20 hours a week even if they take 13 or fewer credits (e.g., full-time summer-start students, who take only 13 credits in the Fall, are still limited to working no more than 20 hours a week).

Academic Counseling. I am available for counseling about course selection, certificate programs, bar preparation, academic rules and regulations, and other academic matters. If you are interested in a particular area of law, I can also arrange for you to meet with a faculty member who specializes in that area. You may contact me by email ( or by phone at (312) 906-5282.

Counseling Services.  This is a reminder that the university provides counseling services free of charge for students. Click here for details on the available resources, including individual counseling through Skylight Counseling Services. In addition to resources available through the university, the Lawyers Assistance Program also provides assistance to law students. LAP provides free and confidential assistance to members of the Illinois legal community, including students, and can help you with issues of addiction, stress, anxiety, depression, focusing, worries about the character and fitness process, and having a successful first-year transition. Click here for more information about LAP and the services it provides.

Joke of the Week. Do you really appreciate igneous rock? Or do you just take it for granite?