Skills Curriculum Courses

Skills Curriculum Courses
The skills curriculum is a mandatory component of the Program of Study for all JD students. Through this unique experiential learning program, judges, practitioners and professors serving as skills instructors provide hands-on training to Loyola law students in the development of fundamental legal skills and the performance of discrete lawyering tasks typically required of practicing attorneys. The skills and lawyering tasks taught may be broadly applicable to a wide range of practice areas or narrowly tailored to advocacy in a particular field. Skills courses typically last for three hours over the course of one or two days, are ungraded, and appear on a student’s transcript under institutional coursework. To assist students in selecting topics of interest, skills courses are often categorized into Civil, Criminal, Maritime, Social Justice, and Transactional “career tracks." 

Academic Requirement

All students upon graduation must earn eight skill credits, including one skills credit in each of the following required skills competencies:

  • SKR1: Client Interviewing;
  • SKR2: Negotiation;
  • SKR3: Cultural Competence; and
  • SKR4: Law Office Management and Professionalism.

Students may satisfy this requirement through the wide variety of skills courses listed on the skills calendar each semester. Courses with the SKR designation at the beginning of the course number satisfy one of the four skills competency requirements.

Practice Tracks

Many skills courses are placed in one of five practice tracks: Civil, Criminal, Transactional, Maritime, and Social Justice. Students are not required to take skills courses in any particular practice track. Rather, the practice track designation (CIV, CRIM, TRAN, MAR and SOCJ) in the course number is for informational purposes only allowing students to select skills courses related to a particular area of interest.

Grading and Transcript

All skills courses appear on a student's official transcript under institutional coursework reflecting certain areas of skill development. Skills courses are ungraded. In order to receive skills credit, students must attend all sessions of a skills course and submit any assignments required by the skills instructor or coordinator on time.

The "Local Rules"

In the skills curriculum, “Local Rules” govern the procedure for enrollment, registration, attendance, withdrawal, grading, assignments and expectations. The "Local Rules" are designed to train students to understand procedural protocols similar to practice. Students are presumed to have read the “Local Rules” and understand all policies and procedures related to skill courses.

Earning Skills Credit through Continuing Legal Education

Students are able to earn skill credit by attending qualifying professional Continuing Legal Education presentations. To receive skills credit for attending a CLE, students must submit the proper application form and supporting documentation during the year in which they attended the CLE presentation.  The CLE presentation must meet all of the criteria established on the application form in order to qualify for skills credit. Students are encouraged to seek pre-approval of a CLE for skills credit as far in advance of the presentation as possible.

Earning Skills Credit in Academic Courses

Students are able to earn a skill credit in some academic courses. The courses that earn skill credit have been approved by a faculty committee and are published in an inventory on the skills website.

Earning Skills Credit in Clinic

One semester of LAW L897 Clinic Seminar earns three skills credits and fulfills skills competency requirements (1) Client Interviewing; (3) Cultural Competence; and (4) Law Office Management and Professionalism.  A second semester of clinic earns an additional three skills credits and satisfies all four skills competency requirements.

To view the Skills Calendar, Local Rules, course descriptions and relevant forms please visit