Law and Religion


LLM candidates in law and religion will be residents at Emory Law and in the Center for the Study of Law and Religion.

While resident in the center, candidates will interact with law and religion faculty, staff and students, are invited to participate in the center’s public forums and research projects and will be eligible to apply for center research fellowships and internships.

The Center for the Study of Law and Religion is dedicated to studying the religious dimensions of law, the legal dimensions of religion and the interaction of legal and religious ideas and institutions, norms and practices. This study is predicated on the assumption that religion gives law its spirit and inspires its adherence to ritual and justice. Law gives religion its structure and encourages its devotion to order and organization. Law and religion share such ideas as fault, obligation and covenant and such methods as ethics, rhetoric and textual interpretation. Law and religion also balance each other by counterpoising justice and mercy, rule and equity, discipline and love. This dialectical interaction gives these two disciplines and dimensions of life their vitality and their strength. Without law, religion slowly slides into shallow spiritualism. Without religion, law gradually decays into empty formalism.

The center has emerged over the past 27 years as a major scholarly initiative. Its work is interdisciplinary in perspective, seeking to bring the wisdom of religious traditions into greater conversation with law, public policy and the social sciences. It is interreligious in inspiration, seeking to compare the legal teachings and practices of various religious traditions, especially Judaism, Christianity and Islam. And, it is international in orientation, seeking to situate American debates over interdisciplinary legal and religious issues within an emerging global conversation.

Besides the LLM concentration in law and religion, Emory offers:

  • Doctor of Juridical Science (SJD)
  • Three joint-degree programs (JD/MDiv, JD/MTS, JD/PhD)
  • 35 courses (listed below)
  • Nine major research projects
  • Two to four annual public forums
  • A triennial international conference
  • Two book series
  • 300-plus published volumes
  • 95 Emory senior fellows and associated faculty from 20 fields of study
  • 1,600 corresponding members from around the world

 

Open to:

  • U.S. JD degree holders
  • Foreign-educated attorneys

Requirements


Degree Requirements

  1. Two semesters of residency as a full-time student
  2. 24 credit hours including:
  • At least 12 credit hours must be law and religion courses selected from the menu of courses below
  • Students have the option of taking up to six additional credit hours to complete a major research paper written under the academic adviser, with a presumption of 15 double-spaced pages of original writing per hour of credit
  • The balance of credit hours can be taken from the law and religion course menu below, the broader JD curriculum, or from any other graduate level courses offered at Emory University approved by the LLM supervisor 

 

Law and Religion Courses

The following courses are offered under the aegis of the Center for the Study of Law and Religion and can be taken to complete the degree requirements for the LLM or SJD in law and religion:

Historical Studies

  • American Legal History I
  • American Legal History II
  • English Legal History
  • European Legal History
  • History of Christian Theological Ethics 
  • History of Church-State Relations in the West  
  • History of Law, Religion and Family in the West 
  • Later Roman Empire: Law, Religion and Society
  • Roman Family Law
  • Roman Law

 Moral, Methodological, and Philosophical Themes

  • Contemporary Theological Ethics
  • Jurisprudence
  • Law and Morality
  • Law and Theology
  • Love and Justice
  • Morality and Constitutionality
  • Morality and Society
  • Seminar in Thomas Aquinas and Law
  • Sociology of Religion 
  • The Morality of Peace and War

Religion, Human Rights, and Religious Freedom

  • Advanced Religious Liberty
  • American Constitutional Law: Religion and State
  • Child, Parent and State
  • International Human Rights  
  • International Law and Ethics
  • Law, Morality & International Human Rights
  • Religion and Human Rights

Religious Legal Systems

  • Canon Law
  • Islam and Democracy
  • Islam and Politics
  • Islamic Law
  • Islamic Modernism
  • Jewish Law
  • The Book of Deuteronomy
  • The Ten Commandments

Pathways


Path #1:  U. S. JD Degree Holders

Required Courses

  • Foundation Course #1 - 3 hours
  • Foundation Course #2 - 3 hours
  • Foundation Course #3 - 3 hours
  • Foundation Course #4 - 3 hours

Elective Courses  

  • Research paper option (1-6 credits) - 3 hours
  • Elective Course #1 - 3 hours
  • Elective Course #2 - 2 hours
  • Elective Course #3 - 3 hours
  • Additional elective at student's option

Total Credit Hours Taken:  24

Minimum Credit Hour Requirement:  24

Note:  Minimum hours required per semester for full-time student - 12

Path #2:  Foreign-Educated Attorneys

Required Courses 

  • Foundation Course #1 - 3 hours
  • Foundation Course #2 - 3 hours
  • Foundation Course #3 - 3 hours
  • Foundation Course #4 - 3 hours
  • Introduction to U. S. Law/1st Semester - 2 hours
  • American Legal Writing, Analysis & Research/1st Semester - 2 hours
  • Professionalism Workshop/January - none
  • Professionalism Workshop/August - none

Elective Courses

  • Research paper option (1-6 credits) - 3 hours
  • Elective Course #1 - 3 hours
  • Elective Course #2 - 2 hours
  • Additional elective at student's option

Total Credit Hours Taken:  24

Minimum Credit Hour Requirement:  24

Note:  Minimum hours required per semester for full-time student - 12

Path #3:  Foreign-Educated Attorneys - New York Bar Exam Educational Requirements

Required Courses + number of credit hours counted towards NY Bar Exam + is course content tested on the NY Bar Exam (see List A and B below)

  • Foundation Course #1  - 3 hours, no
  • Foundation Course #2 - 3 hours, no
  • Foundation Course #3 - 3 hours, no
  • Foundation Course #4 - 3 hours, no
  • Introduction to U. S. Law/1st Semester - 2 hours, no
  • American Legal Writing, Analysis & Research/1st Semester - 2 hours, no
  • Legal Profession/1st Semester - 3 hours, yes
  • Professionalism Workshop/January - none
  • Professionalism Workshop/August - none

Elective Courses + number of credit hours counted towards NY Bar Exam + is course content tested on the NY Bar Exam (see List A and B below)

  • Research paper option (1-6 credits) - 0, no
  • Elective Course #1, NY Bar Tested Content - 3 hours, yes

Total Credit Hours:  22

Minimum Credit Hour Requirement for New York Bar:  24

Note:  Minimum hours required per semester for full-time student - 12

Qualifying Foundational Courses

Check availability of courses each semester.

Historical Studies

  • American Legal History 1
  • English Legal History
  • European Legal History
  • History of Christian Theological Ethics
  • History of Church-State Relations in the West
  • Later Roman Empire:  Law, Religion and Society
  • Roman Family Law
  • Roman Law

Ethical, Methodological and Philosophical Themes

  • Civil Rights and the Black Consciousness Movement
  • Contemporary Theological Ethics
  • Health Care Ethics
  • Jurisprudence
  • Law and Morality
  • Law and Theology
  • Love and Justice
  • Morality and Constitutionality
  • Morality and Society
  • The Morality of Peace and War
  • Religion, Violence and Peacebuilding
  • Seminar in Thomas Aquinas and Law
  • Sociology of Religioin
  • Theological Proposals for Criminal Punishment Reform
  • Theology of Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • The Wrathful God:  Religious Extremism in Comparative Perspective

Religion, Human Rights and Religious Freedom

  • Advanced Religious Liberty
  • American Constitutional Law:  Religion & State
  • Child, Parent and State
  • International Human Right
  • International Law and Ethics
  • Law, Morality and International Human Rights
  • Religion and Human Rights

Religious Legal Systems

  • The Book of Deuteronomy
  • Canon Law
  • Islam and Democracy
  • Islam and Politics
  • Islamic Law
  • Islamic Modernism
  • Jewish Law
  • The Ten Commandments

Disclaimer:  Only the New York Board of Legal Examiners has the authority to make a final determination about whether a student has met the educational requirements to be eligible to sit for the New York Bar Exam.  This checklist is intended to provide guidance for LLM students, but does not guarantee eligibility to sit for the New York Bar Exam.

List A:  Elective courses that are LIMITED or EXCLUDED in the 24 credit hours of LLM work required by the New York Bar Exam.

LIMITEDThese courses may count toward the 24 hours required by the New York bar, but only in limited amounts.  All credit hours earned for these courses will typically be counted toward the Emory LLM.

  • Clinics (e.g. International Humanitarian Law Clinic, Barton Clinic, Juvenile Defender Clinic) - 4 maximum hours
  • Courses related to legal training taught by law school faculty or affiliated faculty - 6 maximum hours

EXCLUDED:  Students may take these courses as "extra" hours.  They will typically count toward your Emory LLM, but will NOT count toward the 24 hours required by the New York Bar Exam.

  • Directed research projects/independent study
  • Externships
  • Any distance, correspondence or online course
  • Courses not taught on the campus of a U. S. university, even if taught by a U. S. faculty member.

List B: New York Bar Exam Tested Content Courses

Review www.nybarexam.org/content/contentoutline.htm for additional information.

Course/Hours

  • Business Associations - 3 or 4 hours
  • Civil Procedure - 4 hours
  • Constitutional Law - 4 hours
  • Contracts - 4 hours
  • Criminal Law - 3 hours
  • Evidence - 3 or 4 hours
  • Family Law 1 - 3 hours
  • Legal Profession - 3 hours
  • Legislation & Regulation - 2 hours
  • Property - 4 hours
  • Secured Transactions - 3 hours
  • Torts - 4 hours
  • Trusts & Estates - 4 hours