Vermont Law School Essays

The application process for online degrees is identical to the application process for on-campus degrees, though there may be slight differences in application requirements. To apply for an online degree program, see How to Apply for Master's Programs or How to Apply for LLM Programs. Relevant differences in application requirements will be noted on those pages.

Opportunities and Options

If you have any questions about the following, please contact the admissions team via the information at the bottom of this page.

Duration and Start

Most students pursue the online Master's and LLM 30-credit programs on a part-time basis and have up to five years to obtain their degree.

Financial Aid Opportunities

Vermont Law School offers tuition scholarships to exceptional Master's and LLM candidates each year. In addition to possessing strong academic records, scholarship recipients must demonstrate a commitment to environmental law and policy and public service. There is no separate application process for scholarships; all admitted candidates will be given full consideration. See Tuition & Financial Aid for all scholarship opportunities for Master's and LLM candidates.

Joint Degree Opportunities

If you are interested in pursuing a joint degree, see How to Apply to Joint Degree Programs for more information. Please note that admission to a Master's or LLM program does not ensure admission to a joint degree program.

Dual Degree Opportunities

If you are interested in pursuing a dual degree, see How to Apply to a Dual Degree Program. Please note that admission to a Master's or LLM program does not ensure admission to a dual degree program.

Transfer Credits

Credits received at other institutions transfer at the discretion of the VLS Registrar.

Application Evaluation Criteria

Applicants will be evaluated based on their overall ability to do graduate work. Factors that will be considered in the application review include:

  • GPA from undergraduate and any graduate schools
  • Successful work history after completion of the baccalaureate degree
  • Essays as described below
  • Legal writing sample, in English (LLM only)
  • Letters of recommendation from professors or professional or volunteer experience supervisors
  • OPTIONAL: Official GRE Score

Neither the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) nor the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) is required for applicants to the Master's programs. However students who have taken the exam may submit their scores to support their application. Scores should be sent directly to the school (GRE & LSAT Code: 3946) for consideration.

Application Requirements

Check-List of Materials

  • Completed application form
  • $60.00 (USD) application fee
  • Professional resume or curriculum vitae
  • Essays as described below
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Official transcripts from all schools attended
  • Legal writing sample, in English (LLM only)
  • OPTIONAL OR UPON REQUEST: Official LSAT Score (LLM only)
  • All applicants whose native language is not English and have not lived or studied in an English-speaking country for at least two years must submit TOEFL, PTE or IELTS scores

Application Form

To apply for our Online Master's or LLM Programs, please use the VLS Web Application.

Application Fee

Vermont Law School has an application fee of $60.00 (USD)

Required Essays

  • Describe the goals that are motivating you to pursue a Law/Master's or LLM degree. How do you think the skills and experiences you will gain at Vermont Law School will help you achieve these goals?
  • How have you tried to effect change in relation to an issue of personal, local, or national significance?

Optional Essay

Give a realistic appraisal of your academic work since graduation from high school. Please note any inconsistencies in your record and the reasons for them.

Letters of Recommendation

It is preferred that one letter of recommendation be academic in nature. If an applicant has been out of school for a number of years, two professional letters will be accepted.

Recommenders should email their recommendations to or send directly to the admissions office. Letters received directly from applicants will not be accepted.

International Applicants

If you are currently enrolled at an institution which has an established International Dual Degree partnership with VLS, please work through your home-institution's processes in order to apply for an opportunity to learn at VLS. For individuals outside of the United States who are not currently enrolled at another institution, or who are enrolled at an institution that VLS does not have a formal partnership with, please note the following additional application requirements:


  • All international transcripts must be evaluated by an official evaluation agency. Recommended evaluation agencies include Educational Credential Evaluators ( and World Education Services (


  • TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE score is required of all students for whom English is not the primary language spoken. Applicants who have studied in the U.S. or at an English-speaking institution for more than two years may be waived from this requirement.
    • TOEFL minimum score: 600 paper-based, 250 computer-based, 100 Internet-based
    • IELTS minimum score: 6.5
    • PTE minimum score: 68

Applicant Notification

Vermont Law School reviews applications on a rolling basis. The Admission Committee reviews all complete applications and applicants are notified promptly of the admission decision. Vermont Law School does not share information or provide any feedback regarding admission decisions.

Acceptance of Offer for Admissions

An applicant offered admission must make a total non-refundable tuition deposit of $750 by the deposit deadlines indicated in the offer of admission in order to secure a place in the incoming class. The deposit will be applied in full toward the student's tuition upon enrollment.

Contact Us

Please contact the Admissions Office if you have questions about admissions or programs.

Toll free: 888-277-5985
Phone: 802-831-1239

Please submit all physical application materials to:

Vermont Law School Office of Admissions
164 Chelsea Street, PO Box 96
South Royalton, VT 05068

Combining Northeastern’s top ranking for practical training with Vermont Law School, home to the country’s premier environmental law program, this partnership is uniquely positioned to train problem solvers equipped not only for today’s challenges, but also tomorrow’s crises. This joint program offers students an array of environmental courses with a strong foundation in law, policy, science, economics and ethics. This multidisciplinary approach constructs the critical skill-sets that will be required for the next generation of environmental leaders.

The carefully sequenced JD/MELP three-year curriculum allows some courses at each school to count for credit in both programs. JD/MELP students take the regular course of law study at Northeastern during their first year. MELP classes at Vermont Law School will generally occur during the summer following the student’s second year. Students complete four co-op work experiences before they graduate, one of which counts as a MELP internship. Students can also pursue independent research projects.

To be admitted to the dual-degree program, students must be admitted to both the Northeastern University School of Law JD program and to the Vermont Law School MELP program. Admission to Northeastern University School of Law does not guarantee admission to the Vermont Law School MELP program.

More Details

Unique Features

  • Earn two valuable degrees in three years
  • Students complete four co-op work experiences including a MELP internship
  • Optional independent research projects
  • NU School of Law ranked #1 for practical training

Accreditation Description

Northeastern University School of Law was accredited by the American Bar Association in 1969 and admitted to membership in the Association of American Law Schools in 1970. Since reopening in 1968, we have received wide recognition, both for the success of our innovative program and the leadership of our graduates.

For more information, please contact:

Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar
American Bar Association
321 N. Clark Street, 21st Floor
Chicago, IL 60654
Phone: 312.988.6738

Northeastern University does not condone discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, religious creed, genetics, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, national origin, ancestry, veteran or disability status. Moreover, the university will not ignore any form of discrimination or harassment, including sexual harassment of any member of the Northeastern community. Nor will Northeastern condone any form of retaliatory activity against any person who brings a complaint of discrimination or harassment, or who cooperates in a complaint investigation.


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