The UCLA School of Law is extending a program that guarantees tuition rates for incoming J.D. students will remain among the lowest of any top 20 law school for the next three academic years.
The tuition guarantee, launched in the 2015-16 academic year, is designed to give students and their families certainty about total law school costs at a time when most top schools are increasing tuition by 3%-to-5% every year.
UCLA School of Law tuition costs for the 2017-18 school year will be approximately $45,700 for California residents. The school is guaranteeing that incoming California resident students will pay no more than $141,000 in total for the three years it takes to earn a J.D., even if the costs of operating the law school increase during that time.
Most other law schools ranked in the top 20 by U.S. News and World Report currently charge tuition of more than $60,000 per year. Given the average annual rate of tuition increases among law schools, the total tuition costs for a UCLA Law student entering in the 2017-18 academic year will be $40,000 to $55,000 less than if he or she earned a J.D. at most comparable institutions. Further details about how UCLA's tuition compares to other schools.
"UCLA School of Law has long been ranked among the best law schools in the country because of its exceptional faculty, innovative curriculum and dedication to developing great lawyers and leaders," said Dean Jennifer L. Mnookin. "We are deeply committed to both access and excellence, and this tuition guarantee means that next year's entering students can have certainty about the total costs of their education from the start.""
Although students who are not currently California residents pay about $6,500 more in tuition during their first year than California residents do, most U.S. residents are able to qualify for California resident tuition in their second and third years of law school.
If factors outside of the law school's control – such as an increase mandated by the University of California – raise the costs of law school tuition above the guaranteed amount, the school will provide students with scholarships to cover the difference.
"Prospective students consider many factors when choosing a law school, and cost and excellence both matter a great deal," said UCLA Law Dean of Admissions Robert Schwartz. "We want to assure our students that an education here will be both exceptional and within their means."