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Second- and third-year law students and master's degree candidates are eligible to participate in the Clinical Education Program if they have an overall GPA of 2.3 or higher, and receive approval from Professor Peterson, Director of Externships. Externships exist in the government, criminal law, entertainment, public interest and judicial sectors, as well as in the dispute resolution field, and are generally accompanied by workshops on campus.

JD Externships

The externship inquiry should begin with a meeting with Professor Peterson. The Career Development Office should be consulted for descriptions of approved externships. New externships, however, can be approved if they provide a significant opportunity not otherwise available, meet the clinical program's educational objectives, and afford adequate field and faculty supervision. Private law firms are not approved unless they are nonprofit public interest entities (cf. section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code) and the student is unpaid.


Each unit of externship credit requires 52.5 hours of work in the field. Working with their field supervisors and externship faculty, students determine the credits they will earn at the beginning of the semester. Hours spent in work on-site or with lawyers in the field placement count for credit; travel time, breaks and work off-site do not count toward credit. Students can earn up to 10 units per semester in an externship, although entertainment and in-house placements typically are limited to 4 units. Students can earn up to 18 units of out-of-classroom credit toward graduation; these units include credit earned for externships, journals and advocacy teams.

Reporting requirements

The reporting requirements consist of time sheets, evaluations (see description below), and journals. Timesheets are due in the Clinical Programs office weekly, by either email to clinicallaw@pepperdine.edu, mailed, faxed to 310.506.6596, or left in the drop box outside of the Clinical Programs office. Keep copies for your records. Evaluations are also submitted to the Clinical Programs office. The journals must be submitted to the Clinical Programs office by the due dates found in the syllabus.

Workshop requirements

Contemporaneous enrollment in an Externship Workshop is required for all first time externs. Students who cannot attend a workshop due to distance or schedule conflict, must meet with a faculty advisor approved by the Director of Externships.

Faculty advisors

Faculty advisors are required for law student externships for which the student cannot attend a workshop due to distance or schedule conflict. Faculty advisors will receive copies of the journals and must meet with the students bi-weekly, either in person or on the phone. Additional readings or research may be required to supplement the externship. Faculty advisors must be approved by the Director of Externships.


Field supervisors complete midterm and final evaluations of their externs. The midterm evaluation is intended to follow discussion between the extern and supervisor about the externship direction and progress. The final evaluation is completed by the supervisor alone. At the same time, externs must type a confidential student evaluation form regarding the field assignment. That form is available on this web site under "Forms" or in hard copy from the Clinical Programs office.

Further information

For more information about Externships, please contact Professor Peterson at 310.506.4407 or the Clinical Program Manager in the Clinical Programs Office at 310.506.7449, or by e-mail at clinicallaw@pepperdine.edu.