Skip to main content

Online JD

  • Online Coursework
  • Experiential Opportunities
  • Competitive Tuition Rates Nationally

Get More Program Details

  • Admission Requirements
  • Enrollment Support
  • Engaged Learning
  • Program Features
  • Current Step 1
  • Step 2
  • Step 3

Learn Law. Live Justice.

The Online J.D. (Juris Doctor) at Cleveland State University (CSU) is one of the few ABA-accredited Online J.D. programs in the country. It is nationally ranked and is the top ranked public part-time program in Ohio. It is designed for affordability and access without having to relocate — tuition rates are competitive for both in- and out-of-state students. With this world-class program, you can achieve your goal of earning an online J.D. degree part-time in as little as 3 years and 3 months while maintaining your professional and personal life.

The CSU College of Law’s Online J.D. is a rigorous program that provides integrated experiential learning opportunities to put classroom theory into practice. In your first year, you are paired with an alumni mentor to connect you directly to the profession and help guide your professional development. You learn core legal concepts, perform legal research and analysis, and hone your problem-solving and professional competencies for ethical practice. Specialized courses in the areas of health law, business law, corporate compliance, criminal law, cybersecurity, and space law are available. Certificates in Cybersecurity and Health Law are also available.

Your law school journey will begin with foundational concepts and skills that will prepare you for more advanced coursework and experiences. In both live and simulated experiences, you will have the opportunity to interact with clients, counsel and advise on trial strategy, prepare briefs, research client questions, and prepare legal arguments. You might choose a course that will allow you to help new businesses and give back to the community in ways that will serve as an example to others.

CSU law logo

CSU College of Law

Online JD program accredited by the American Bar Association Cleveland State University

American Bar Association


#111 Best Law Schools1

Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission

Higher Learning Commission



Whether you’re looking to expand your skill set to become more effective in your job or you want to fulfill your goal of becoming an attorney to advocate for others, CSU College of Law’s Online J.D. presents an affordable and flexible pathway to reach your goal.

Gain practical legal training through integrated, experiential learning opportunities.

  • Clinic programs provide legal practice in the service of real clients with real legal problems under the close supervision of a Clinical Professor.
  • Externships with a supervising attorney or judge provide practical learning in real-world legal settings.
  • Mentorship with a CSU alumnus to connect you directly to the profession and help guide your professional development.
  • 6 in-person weekend residencies on campus build skills in our technologically advanced trial classrooms and state-of-the-art learning commons, and connect in person with prominent lawyers and judges.

Achieve your goal of becoming an attorney while still engaged in your professional life.

  • 100% online coursework is synchronous and asynchronous.
  • Earn while you learn part-time — finish in as little as 3 years and 3 months.
  • Be fully prepared to take the bar exam and start your career as an attorney.

Learn from a leader in education with a legacy of justice.

  • U.S. News & World Report ranks CSU as No. 56 in Part-Time Law and No. 111 in Best Law Schools. Business/corporate law, criminal law, health care law and tax law specializations are ranked in the top 125.
  • Princeton Review ranks CSU No. 24 in Professor Accessibility 
  • The Brookings Institution ranks CSU No. 18 among U.S. public universities that fulfill a critical dual mission to provide upward mobility and conduct impactful research.
  • CSU graduates have a strong history in social justice, including women’s suffrage and civil rights.

Online J.D.

First Year Curriculum Sample

Torts consider injuries to persons and property, both intentional and unintentional, and may include physical, dignitary and economic harm. The course examines the three basic theories of civil liability — intentional torts, negligence and strict liability — and considers issues of duty, causation and defenses to liability. The course may also consider the overall goals of the torts system, the allocation of responsibility between judge and jury and the interplay of statutes and the common law process. Required for graduation. (3 credits)

Most of what we today term "law" is made, not in common law courts, but by legislatures (e.g., Congress) enacting legislation and regulatory agencies (e.g., the Environmental Protection Agency) adopting regulations and standards to implement that legislation. This course introduces students to the institutions and procedures used by the modern administrative state to make law. It examines how Congress and agencies work together to make laws and then examines how the agencies and the courts work together to apply them. The course also examines the justifications for modern regulation, the structure of the modern administrative state, the incentives that influence the behavior of the various actors, and the legal rules that help to structure the relationships among Congress, the agencies and the courts, including the role of courts in interpreting statutes and reviewing administrative actions when they are challenged by parties affected by those regulations. Required for graduation. (4 credits)

This course covers the general principles of the law of the United States Constitution, judicial function in constitutional matters, federal authority, separation of powers and the powers of the states, with particular attention to the commerce clause, due process and equal protection. Required for graduation. (6 credits)

This course introduces students to the rules that determine what information can be introduced by lawyers in trials. It is based on the Federal Rules of Evidence. The course covers basic evidentiary issues including relevance and prejudice, hearsay and hearsay exceptions, character evidence and privileges. Other matters covered may include inferences, burden of proof, judicial notice and expert testimony. Required for graduation. (4 credits)

Learn More

We’re here for you and ready to help you with enrollment and answer your questions about the program, including tuition, admission requirements, curriculum details and more.

The Legal Landscape by the Numbers

10 %
Projected job growth through 2031
35 %
Increase in job postings from 2020
Lawyer job postings in 2021

Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and Lightcast



Hands-on practice complements online coursework.

Engaged learning provides real-world opportunities to immerse yourself in the practice of law and apply your growing knowledge. Engaged learning relies heavily on teamwork skills and provides an arena where you work professionally with community partners, your peers and CSU faculty members. Engaged learning combines civic involvement with academic coursework in a way that benefits you and the community.


Frequently Asked Questions

Yes. The CSU College of Law is accredited by the American Bar Association (ABA). Cleveland State University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

This 10-semester program requires 90 credits of online coursework and practical, experiential learning hours. It can be completed part-time in as little as 3 years and 3 months.

CSU College of Law’s online J.D. program costs $1,155.45* per credit hour for in-state students ($103,990.50 total* + fees) and $1,156.45* per credit hour for out-of-state students ($104,080.50 total* + fees). Financial aid may be available to our online students. Students may also apply for external scholarships.

*Tuition rates as of 07/01/2023. Rates are subject to change. Visit for current rates.

Yes. You will complete 6-weekend residencies, earning in total 3 academic credits. Residency will usually begin on Friday and end on Sunday. Plan to be fully engaged for the whole weekend. 

1Cleveland State University College of Law was ranked as the #111 best law school nationally in 2023 by U.S. News and World Report.


Dedicated Student Support

A CSU enrollment advisor can answer your questions and guide you through the application process. Click the button below to fill out a form and start the conversation.

  • Admission Requirements
  • Curriculum Details
  • Experiential learning
  • Enrollment Support
  • Financial Aid
  • Tuition Costs