Curriculum Roadmap

This Roadmap is designed to assist U.S.-trained students with selecting courses for the LL.M. degree in Securities & Financial Regulation. It consists of two parts. Part I provides introductory information. Part II provides sample course clusters of particular relevance to students in three different areas of practice: Dispute Resolution and Enforcement; Business Transactions; and Regulation. It also lists several advanced courses that do not fit neatly in any one area.


Academic Counseling

For assistance in selecting courses, please contact Professor Russell Stevenson at or 202-661-6593.

Course Prerequisites

Most courses in the specialization list have one or more other courses as prerequisites. If you have taken the listed course at Georgetown or an equivalent course at another school, then you have met the prerequisite and you do not have to request a waiver. If you have not taken the prerequisite course but believe that you nonetheless possess the requisite knowledge,you may request a waiver from the professor. For courses as to which you need to request a waiver, if you are registering over the summer, you may tentatively select that course. However, you will eventually need to get the professor's approval to waive the prerequisite. It may be possible to do this by email during the summer (you may contact a professor by going to the"Our Faculty" tab of the Georgetown Law website or link to it from the course description in the Curriculum Guide. Alternatively, you may discuss the prerequisite issue with your academic advisor when you arrive or with the faculty member during the first week of classes.

Securities Regulation. Many courses in the curriculum list Securities Regulation as a prerequisite. Graduate students who received their J.D. from a law school in the United States will generally have taken a basic course in securities regulation before matriculating in Georgetown's Securities & Financial Regulation LL.M. program. All such students will be deemed to have satisfied the Securities Regulation prerequisite. (A domestic student who did not take a basic course in securities regulation during his/her J.D. program must enroll in Securities Regulation as soon as possible after matriculating at Georgetown Law. The two-credit version of Securities Regulation does not satisfy this requirement for on-campus domestic students.)

Corporations. Most securities-related and business law courses list Corporations as a prerequisite. U.S.-trained students will typically have taken Corporations, Business Associations, or an equivalent course during their J.D. program and are thus deemed to have satisfied this prerequisite.

Researching Course Selections

Students normally begin their course selection by consulting the online list of courses that meet the specialization requirements for the Securities & Financial Regulation LL.M. degree. You can access a list of those courses divided by the semester in which they are offered here. For each course, you will see the number of credits, the names of the professor(s), the day and time the course meets, whether the course requires an exam or paper, and whether the course is offered online for distance-learning students. You can click on the course title to get a description of the course. You may also wish to click on the name(s) of the faculty teaching the course to get an idea of their background. The Law Center's adjunct faculty are extremely accomplished and all bring to their classes a perspective based on extensive experience.

Many students find it helpful when selecting courses to consult student evaluations of courses that have been offered in previous years. The evaluations are available online at A university NetID is required to login and view these evaluations. NetIDs are mailed to admitted students in May or early June. Hard copies of these evaluations are also available for your review at the circulation desk of the Edward Bennett Williams Law Library.

Papers, Seminars and Writing Requirements

There is no graduate thesis or other specific writing requirement for the Securities & Financial Regulation LL.M. degree. However, graduate students are strongly encouraged to take at least one course that will hone their legal writing skills. Clear and persuasive legal writing is one of the most important skills for success in sophisticated law practice. Courses that help students develop their writing skills include drafting courses, seminar courses (which usually require a two-credit research paper), courses with "workshop" in the title, and Graduate Independent Research projects. Courses listed as having "special requirements" ("SR") generally involve the submission of one or more short writing assignments during the semester.


The careers that most students in the program wish to follow can be divided into three general categories: Dispute Resolution and Enforcement; Business Transactions; and Regulation. This is obviously a gross simplification, and many careers do not fit neatly into one of these categories. Moreover, within each of these categories there are various subspecialties. It is nevertheless useful to many students to begin their curriculum planning with some idea about the general type of practice they wish to engage in after graduation.

The discussion below is intended to give you a starting point for thinking about what courses you may want to take. You should not consider it a set of rigid requirements; many of the courses appear in two or three clusters, and you may want to take courses from different clusters to fit your particular interest.

There are three basic subjects that are important for any of these course clusters: Corporations (or Business Associations), basic Securities Regulation, and Accounting. In many cases, students will already have had an introduction to these subjects before coming to the LL.M program. Students who consider themselves adequately prepared should not feel they have to take another course in the subject as part of their LL.M program.

The discussion below organizes courses in four clusters: Dispute Resolution and Enforcement; Business Transactions; Regulation; and Advanced Courses. The latter cluster includes more advanced courses that do not fit neatly into one of the other clusters. In many cases, a particular course can fit into two or more clusters and some courses are offered in more than one class, in which case they are listed multiple times.

Dispute Resolution and Enforcement (PDF)

Business Transactions (PDF)

Regulation (PDF)

Advanced Courses (PDF)

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