UCLA Law is a preeminent training ground for students committed to the practice of criminal law. Our rigorous criminal justice curriculum encompasses the basic substantive requirements for criminal liability; the procedural rules that accompany the trial process, as well as the doctrines, rules and policies governing the demonstration of facts in court; and the theoretical underpinnings of both criminal law and the U.S. criminal justice system.
Our clinical options enable students to develop crucial skills for prosecuting or defending individuals. Courses such as Trial Advocacy hone skills in doing fact analysis, preparing written motions, interviewing and counseling clients, conducting direct and cross examinations, making opening statements and closing arguments, using exhibits, and making and responding to evidentiary objections. In our Criminal Defense Clinic, students examine the role of the defense lawyer in the criminal justice process and work in teams to represent clients, collaborating with pro bono attorneys, nonprofit organizations and local public defender offices.
UCLA Law is the first law school to offer a national cyber-crimes moot court competition, in which students from around the country compete before a panel of renowned experts on issues in the rapidly developing and cutting-edge area of cyber-crime. And students have an opportunity to complete externships with high-profile prosecutors such as those in the L.A. County District Attorney’s Office.
UCLA Law connects you to a community of dedicated faculty and students passionate about criminal justice – and to an unrivaled network of support for launching a career as a prosecutor or defender.