The Whittier Experience

Consumer Information

ABA Required Disclosures — Consumer Information
About Whittier Law School Demographics Financial

ABA Reports

Curriculum Policies and Resources Employment/Bar Passage

About Whittier Law School

Whittier Law School was founded in 1966 as Beverly College School of Law to provide an intensive legal education program, especially for women and older students. In 1975, Beverly College joined Whittier College, a nationally recognized liberal arts college, forming Whittier College School of Law. The American Bar Association awarded full accreditation in 1985, followed by admittance to the Association of American Law Schools in 1987.

In 1997, Whittier Law School moved to Costa Mesa and on April 24, 1998, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony M. Kennedy formally dedicated the campus. Today, the Law School is proud of its 5,000 graduates in 48 states and 14 foreign countries, its extensive international outreach and experiential learning opportunities as well as its distinguished Centers for Children and Families, Intellectual Property Law, International and Comparative Law, Concentrations in Criminal Law, Business Law and Environmental Law.

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Accreditation and Memberships

Whittier Law School is accredited by the American Bar Association (ABA), the Western Association of Schools (WASC) and Colleges and is a member of the American Association of Law Schools (AALS).

ABA Accreditation

Whittier Law School was the first ABA accredited law school in Orange County. The American Bar Association granted provisional accreditation in 1978, and full accreditation in 1985.

For further information regarding American Bar Association approval, please contact:

Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar of the American Bar Association, 321 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60654-7598, 312.988.6738

WASC Accreditation

Whittier College was first accredited in 1949, and Whittier Law School has been included in that accreditation process since joining Whittier College in 1975.

AALS Membership

Whittier Law School became a member of the Association of American Law Schools (AALS) in 1987.

The Statement of Accreditation Status can be seen here.

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Physical Facilities

Whittier Law School, 3333 Harbor Boulevard, Costa Mesa, CA 92626, is conveniently located on 14 spacious acres in Orange County California, just two blocks off the Harbor Boulevard exit of the 405 freeway. The law school two miles from South Coast Plaza and five miles from Newport Beach. Our facility is comprised of four main buildings with a large outdoor quad in between.

Building 1 houses many of our administrative offices that include the Dean’s Suite with offices for the Dean and Associate Dean of Academic Affairs; and offices for Student and Alumni Relations, Communications, Bar Preparation and Academic Support departments. Building 2 houses faculty offices, the Admissions Office, the Registrar, Business Office, and the Office of Career and Professional Development. Buildings 3 holds classrooms, offices for our three clinics, a student lounge, student study area, student organization meeting rooms, and the cafeteria. Building four contains the Kiesel Advocacy Center, our new courtroom, a bookstore, and our public law library, which is the largest law library in Orange County in terms of volumes and square footage.

Facilities include:

  • Brand new state-of-the-art courtroom, jury deliberation room and judge’s chambers
  • 40,000 square foot Law Library with seating for 350 students, numerous individual study carrels, and 14 group study rooms
  • 14 classrooms with state-of-the-art technology including large tiered classrooms and smaller seminar-style classrooms
  • Campus-wide wireless internet access
  • Meeting rooms for student organizations
  • Outdoor space for barbecues and student events

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Whittier Law School Policies

For a complete handbook of 2015-2016 Whittier Law School Policies please click here.

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Admissions and Enrollment Data

Year Entering 2013 2014 2015
Application Count 1579 1352 1140
Matriculated 221 239 146
Of the students that were admitted and enrolled:
Year Entering 2013 2014 2015
Female 117 134 85
Male 104 105 61
Students of color* 116 129 74
75th percentile LSAT 152 150 150
50th percentile LSAT 149 146 148
25th percentile LSAT 145 143 146
75th percentile GPA 3.26 3.18 3.24
50th percentile GPA 3.0 2.9 2.85
25th percentile GPA 2.61 2.62 2.59
Median Age 25 25 24
**Age Range 21-56 21-57 21-48

LSAT/UGPA percentiles were calculated by the Law School Admission Council based on matriculant lists provided by Whittier Law School to the ABA.

*Students of color – represents all non-white/Caucasian students. This statistic EXCLUDES any students that decline to state their ethnicity. This statistic INCLUDES any students that specified more than one ethnicity/race where at least one ethnicity/race was non-white/Caucasian.

**Age – based on 09/01 of the entering year.

Information updated on 10-27-2015

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Student Body Diversity

  Full Time Students Part Time Students
Female 189 79
Male 137 51
Hispanic/Latino 97 34
American Indian or Alaska Native 3 0
Asian 38 14
Black or African American 17 11
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 4 0
White 143 64
Multi-Cultural 7 4
Race and Ethnicity Unknown 16 1
Non-Resident Alien 1 2

Information updated on 10-9-2015

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Class Year Involuntary* Transfer Voluntary Withdrawal
2013-2014 46 students 27 students 9 students
2014-2015 52 students 25 students 9 students

*Academic disqualification

Information updated on 10-27-2015

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Composition and Number of Faculty and Administrators

As of the Fall 2015 semester, Whittier Law School employs the following:

  • 34 full-time faculty members (full-time tenured, tenure-track, other, and administrators who hold any sort of faculty rank)
  • 17 part-time faculty members (adjunct professors)
  • 11 administrators (Deans or Directors who do not teach or hold faculty rank)
  • 1 Professional Librarian

For more information regarding our faculty, visit the Whittier Law School Faculty page. For more information regarding our administrative staff, visit the Whittier Law School Staff Directory.

Information updated on 9-18-2015

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Financial Aid Resources and How to Apply

Whittier Law School has a longstanding tradition of administering a financial assistance program to help students pay for their legal education. The Law School adheres to a “need-blind” admissions policy, admitting the best students regardless of family financial strength. Each year, the Office of Financial Aid delivers financial assistance to more than 80 percent of the student body with numerous resources such as scholarships, fellowships, work-study, and student loans. In addition to managing the delivery of all types of financial aid funds, we offer law students financial services in the form of loan counseling, advice on maintaining financial aid eligibility and specialty information workshops. Prospective and current students with any questions or financial aid counseling needs should contact the Office of Financial Aid for assistance.

Visit the Financial Aid page for more information on application procedures, tuition and aid, scholarship programs, fellowships and grants, federal work study program, loan programs, and external awards.

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Tuition, Fees, and Living Costs

Whittier Law, like many other law schools, uses a standard single budget for the cost of attendance which applies to all students. For the purpose of aid verification, the cost of attendance is normally based on a nine-month period for fall and spring semesters.

Please review the Financial Aid Tuition and Aid page for more information regarding living expenses and books and resources.

Updated 10-27-2015

Tuition Refund/Credit Policy

For detailed information regarding the tuition refund policy including a schedule, please visit the Business Office refund policy.

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Conditional Scholarships

Students Matriculating in # Entering with Conditional Scholarships # Whose Conditional Scholarships Have Since Been Reduced Or Eliminated
2015 0 0
2014 0 0
2013 0 0

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Curricular Offerings

Course Catalog

For detailed information regarding our course offerings, please review the Course Catalog.

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Academic Requirements

Whittier Law School has an innovative curriculum designed to prepare students for the practice of law at the highest levels of the profession. The first-year JD curriculum teaches students areas of legal doctrine traditionally taught in the first year, but in an innovative way that focuses on teaching methods of legal analysis and skills that all lawyers use.

For detailed academic requirements, please review Degree Requirements.

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Class Sizes and Offerings

Typical first-year section size (excluding Legal Research & Writing)   70
Number of course titles, beyond the first year curriculum, offered last year   137
Number of upper division classroom course sections with an enrollment
  Under 25   87
  25 to 49   36
  50 to 74   7
  75 to 99    
  Over 100    
Number of positions available in simulation courses   1742
Number of positions filled in simulation courses   1124
Number of seminar positions filled   109
Number of law clinics   8
Number of seats available in the law clinics identified above   56
Number of seats filled in the law clinics identified above   26
Number of field placement positions filled   164
Number of students who enrolled in independent study   22
Number of students who enrolled in law journals   196
Number of students who participated in interschool skills competitions   47

Information updated on 9/18/2015

Certificates and Concentrations

The law school offers Certificates in Legal Writing, Intellectual Property, Child and Family Law and International Law.

The law school offers Concentrations in Business Law, Criminal Law, Environmental Law and Trial and Appellate Practice.

For more information, view a full listing of our Centers and Programs

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Foreign Legal Study

Whittier Law School does not permit its students to study at foreign law schools, with the exception of courses offered by an ABA-approved law school through its study-abroad program including Whittier Law School’s three study abroad programs in China, Spain, and Israel.

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Policies and Resources

Students with Disabilities

Whittier Law School’s policy and practice is to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, and state and local requirements regarding students and applicants with disabilities. Under these laws, no qualified individual with a disability shall be denied access to, or participation in, services, programs and activities of the Law School.

It is the policy of the Law School that otherwise qualified students who have disabilities shall be given reasonable accommodations, including academic adjustment and auxiliary aids, where appropriate, necessary to ensure access to the school’s overall educational program. Individual students receive reasonable and necessary accommodations, including adjustments and aids, based on specific information and assessment data documented by a qualified professional.

For a full written policy about student with disabilities please visit the ADA Policy Manual

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Privacy of Student Records/FERPA

Whittier Law School fully abides by The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) which affords students certain rights with respect to their education records.

For full statement of FERPA and Whittier Law School policies please visit the Registrar’s site on FERPA Yearly Notification.

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Library Resources

Whittier’s Law Library is open more than 100 hours per week. The Library provides professional services for day and evening students.

The Library contains in excess of 350,000 volumes to aid students with instruction and research, and serves as a California state and federal depository. The collection includes materials in print, on laser disc, and on microform. Printers are available for the microform materials. Low-cost photocopiers are located in two alcoves in the library. For more information visit the Law Library website

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Policy of Non-Discrimination and Sexual Misconduct, Including Sexual Harassment

Whittier College and its Law School admits students of any race, color, sex, national or ethnic origin, disability or age to all the rights, privileges, and activities generally accorded to or made available to students at the school. It prohibits discrimination and harassment on the basis of race, color, sex, marital status, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, creed or religion, gender identity/gender expression, and military status in the administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, or other school‐administered programs. The College’s policy applies to all persons in the College and Law School community, prohibiting unlawful discrimination or harassment of, or by, any student or employee of the College, as well as vendors, independent contractors, suppliers, and any other persons. The Law School follows the Whittier College Non-Discrimination Policy.

Under the regulations promulgated under Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972, discrimination prohibited under that Act applies to, among other things, sexual misconduct which also includes sexual harassment. There are many types of sexual misconduct and sexual harassment, all of which constitute unacceptable behavior. For definitions of the type of behavior prohibited as well as grievance procedures and resources for counseling and other services, visit the Whittier College Sexual Misconduct Policy at As set forth in that Policy some examples of misconduct are:

  • Visual conduct, such as leering, making sexual gestures, the display of sexually suggestive objects or pictures, cartoons or posters.
  • Verbal sexual advances, propositions or requests, including unwanted verbal abuse of a sexual nature, graphic verbal commentaries about an individual’s body, sexually degrading words used to describe an individual, suggestive or obscene letters, notes or invitations.
  • Physical conduct including unwanted touching, assault, intentionally blocking normal movement or interfering with activities.
  • Creation or promotion of a hostile environment, including conduct of a sexual nature that has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with or altering the individual’s work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.
  • Quid Pro Quo – offering or demanding a benefit in exchange for sexual favors, or threatening a detriment for the refusal or failure to engage in sexual activity.

If any member of the Law School community feels that he/she is the victim of sexual misconduct, becomes aware of any violation or potential violation of this policy, or has questions about this policy or what might constitute prohibited sexual behavior, that individual is urged to contact Nidhi Parikh Vogt, Assistant Dean for Student and Alumni Relations at 714-444-4141 ext 122 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or Cynthia Joseph, the Whittier College Title IX Coordinator and Director of Human Resources at 562-907-4830 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

The Law School prohibits any form of retaliation against anyone who has filed a good faith complaint under this policy or for assisting in the investigation of a complaint. Anyone who feels that he/she has been retaliated against for filing a complaint or for participating in an investigation may also make use of the complaint procedure set forth in the Whittier College Sexual Misconduct policy. False or malicious complaints of harassment, discrimination or retaliation, as opposed to complaints which are not substantiated but are made in good faith, may be subject to appropriate disciplinary action.

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Campus Safety

The law school is committed to maintaining a safe working environment for all faculty, staff, students, alumni and visitors.

For a full procedure and protocol report surrounding all campus safety please visit the Facilities Management Website and the Campus Safety section of the policy manual.

Campus Crime Statistics:

  2012 2013 2014
Criminal Homicide 0 0 0
Sex Offenses 0 0 0
Robbery 0 0 0
Aggravated Assault 0 0 0
Burglary 0 0 0
Motor Vehicle Theft 0 0 0
Arson 0 0 0
Larceny/theft 0 0 0
Vandalism 0 0 0

Download the comprehensive Campus Safety and Security Report.

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Transfer of Credit Policies

For detailed information regarding transfer students and transfer credits, please review the Transfer Students page.

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Employment Summary Reports

Click here for Class of 2014 Employment Outcomes as reported to the ABA
Click here for Class of 2014 Employment Outcomes as reported to the NALP

Click here for Class of 2013 Employment Outcomes as reported to the ABA
Click here for Class of 2013 Employment Outcomes as reported to the NALP

Click here for Class of 2012 Employment Outcomes as reported to the ABA
Click here for Class of 2012 Employment Outcomes as reported to NALP

Updated as of 10/15/2015

Bar Passage Data

Month/Year California First-Time Pass Rate Out of State 1st Time Pass Rate
February 2015 30% 66.7%
July 2014 43% 43%
February 2014 76% 100%
July 2013 65% 89%
February 2013 55% 100%
July 2012 70% 70%
  • 10 students took the February 2015 Bar Exam in California
  • 3 student took the February 2015 Bar Exam out of state
  • 164 students took the July 2014 Bar Exam in California
  • 7 students took the July 2014 Bar Exam out of state
  • 17 students took the February 2014 Bar Exam in California
  • 184 students took the July 2013 Bar Exam in California
  • 9 students took the July 2013 Bar Exam out of state
  • 1 student took the February 2013 Bar Exam out of state
  • 142 students took the July 2012 Bar Exam in California
  • 8 students took the July 2012 Bar Exam out of state
  • 11 students took the February 2012 Bar Exam in California

Updated as of 8/4/2015