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Admission Requirements

Students may apply for admission at any time. NWCULaw operates on a rolling enrollment system so that students start the law study program every month. Each term must be completed within one year of the students's start date. 

There is a non-refundable $25 application fee which may be paid online when the application is submitted.

Education Requirements

In accordance with the California Business and Professions Code and the regulations of the State Bar of California, students must meet one of the following education requirements for admission to law school:

Admission as a regular* student

1. Bachelor’s degree from a U.S. regionally accredited or state-approved college or university;

2. Associate of Arts or Associate of Science degree from a U.S. regionally-accredited or state-approved college or university;

3. At least 60 semester credits or 90 quarter credits applicable toward a bachelor’s degree from a U.S. regionally-accredited or state-approved college or university;

4. Evaluation of a foreign degree by an evaluation service approved by the State Bar of California which shows the degree is equivalent to options 1-3 above.

Admission as a special** student

1. Passing score on the College Composition CLEP exam, plus passing scores on:

(a) two additional CLEP exams each of which is recommended for at least 6 credits; or

(b) four additional CLEP exams each of which is recommended for at least 3 units; or

(c) three additional CLEP exams, one of which is of which is recommended for at least 6 units and two of which are recommended for at least 3 units.

*Regular students will be exempt from the Baby Bar requirement upon successful completion of the first year of studies.

**Special students are required to take the Baby Bar exam after they complete the first year of studies.

CLEP Exams

The College-Level Examination Program® (CLEP) is administered by The College Board, A passing score on CLEP exams is 50 or higher. The English Composition exam must not be the modular exam. The additional two to four exams may be for any of the following subjects: Composition and Literature (Humanities examination only), Foreign Language, History and Social Science, Science and Mathematics, and Business.

Applied Associate Degrees

The associate in applied arts degree and the associate in applied science degrees are considered vocational degrees and do not satisfy the California Bar’s eligibility requirements.

Master’s or Doctoral Degrees

Applicants with a masters or doctoral degrees who do not also meet one of the education requirements listed above are not eligible for admission.

Official Records of Education Requirements

NWCULaw requires each applicant to provide a complete educational history on the school application. The information provided on the application becomes part of the student's permanent record. 

Official transcripts, foreign degree evaluations, official CLEP score reports, or TOEFL or IELTS are required upon enrollment, before a student begins the term of studies. "Official" means the document arrives at the school office directly from the issuing institution or sealed in the issuing institution's original envelope; once a document has been opened, it is no longer official. 

Residency and Housing

Northwestern California University does not have or require on-campus residence or physical classroom instruction. Students from anywhere in the world can apply and participate in the law study program on the Internet.

Northwestern California University is an online distance learning school. Its program is offered entirely on the Internet. Accordingly, it does not provide dormitory facilities or housing for students.

Law School Admission Test (LSAT)

No Law School Admission Test (LSAT) scores are required for entry to the school.

Foreign Studies

Students who have completed coursework or graduated from institutions outside of the United States are required to have their transcripts evaluated by a foreign credential evaluation service approved by the California Committee of Bar Examiners. A list of approved evaluation services is available at:

English Language Requirement

All coursework at Northwestern California University is provided and completed in the English language. The school does not provide ESL (English as a Second Language) instruction. It is, therefore, essential that all enrolling students have a high level of comprehension and ability in oral and written expression in the English language.

International applicants who are non-native speakers of English must demonstrate English proficiency by one of the following:

1. Completion of at least two years of study at a college or university where the language of instruction was English,

2. Submitting a passing score from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), or

3. Submitting a pasing score on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).

A passing score on the TOEFL is at least 550 points (paper-based test), 213 points (computer-based test) or 79 (internet-based test). A passing score on the IELTS is 6 or higher for the overall band. There is no preference for one test over the other.

Transfer Students

Northwestern California University accepts transfer students from American Bar Association (ABA) approved law schools and law schools accredited by the Committee of Bar Examiners (CBE) of the State Bar of California, and grants credit for previous law school work in accordance with regulations established by the CBE. Transfer applicants are granted or denied the right to transfer in accordance with the discretion of the school's Dean.

Applicants may be allowed to transfer credits earned in unaccredited programs registered with the State Bar of California only if they have passed the California First-Year Law Students' Examination (FYLSX). If passed during the first three administrations after becoming eligible to take the examination, credit can be allowed for all courses taken prior to passing. Those who do not pass the examination within its first three administrations upon becoming eligible to take the examination, but who subsequently pass the examination, can receive credit for one year of legal study only.

Individuals who desire to transfer to Northwestern California University from another institution must submit an application for admission and submit official copies of transcripts from all law schools previously attended. In accordance with California State Bar guidelines, the school requires that the course of study for the J.D. degree be completed no later than eighty-four months after a student has commenced law study at the law school or a law school from which the law school has accepted transfer credit.

Award of Credit for Experiential Learning

Northwestern California University does not award credits for prior experiential learning or life experience.