Dedman School of Law

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
SMU Dedman School of Law
SMU Dedman Law.png
MottoVeritas Liberabit Vos
The Truth Shall Set You Free
Parent schoolSouthern Methodist University
School typePrivate
Endowment$1.633 billion (parent institution for FY 2019)
DeanJennifer M. Collins
LocationDallas, Texas, U.S.
32°50′47″N 96°47′10″W / 32.8464°N 96.7861°W / 32.8464; -96.7861Coordinates: 32°50′47″N 96°47′10″W / 32.8464°N 96.7861°W / 32.8464; -96.7861
Faculty50 full-time; 10 emeritus; 94 adjunct
USNWR ranking58th (2023)[1]

SMU Dedman School of Law, commonly referred to as SMU Law School or Dedman School of Law is a law school located in Dallas, Texas. It was founded in February 1925. SMU Law School is located on the campus of its parent institution, Southern Methodist University.

SMU’s Law School was renamed SMU Dedman School of Law in February 2001 in honor of its late benefactors, Robert H. Dedman Sr. and his wife, Nancy Dedman. SMU Law School was the only law school in Dallas until UNT opened its law school in 2014, and it is one of ten law schools in Texas. The current dean of the law school is Jason P. Nance.

Academic profile[edit]

SMU Dedman School of Law offers Juris Doctor, Master of Laws, and Doctor of Juridical Science degrees.[2] The school offers two joint degree programs, a J.D./M.A. in Economics and a J.D./M.B.A. The J.D./M.A. in Economics is offered in connection with the SMU Department of Economics in Dedman College and the J.D./M.B.A. is offered in connection with the Cox School of Business.

Aerial view of the SMU Campus with downtown Dallas

The class that enrolled in the fall of 2019 has a median LSAT score of 161 and a median undergraduate GPA of 3.7. LSAT/UGPA medians were calculated by the Law School Admission Council based on matriculant lists provided by the law school to the American Bar Association.[3]

Each JD student must complete 87 credit hours. Thirty-one of these hours comprise the mandatory first-year curriculum. After the first year, students must complete a course in professional responsibility, two upper-level writing courses (including an edited writing seminar in which an extensive scholarly, expository writing project is reviewed and critiqued by the professor), Constitutional Law II, and a practical skills course. All students are required to perform 30 hours of public service before graduating.

Programs and resources[edit]

Dedman Law is home to four independent law journals: The SMU Law Review, Journal of Air Law and Commerce, The International Lawyer, and the SMU Science & Technology Law Review.

Dedman Law offers several law clinics for upper-division students. The law clinics include: the W.W. Caruth, Jr. Child Advocacy Clinic, Civil Clinic, Criminal Justice Clinic, Family Immigration Detention Clinic, Federal Taxpayers Clinic, First Amendment Clinic, Consumer Advocacy Project, Small Business Clinic & Trademark Clinic, Judge Elmo B. Hunter Legal Center for Victims of Crimes Against Women, Innocence Clinic, Patent Law Clinic, and Vansickle Family Law Clinic.

Dedman Law offers a summer program at the University of Oxford in Oxford, England, numerous international programs, and Underwood Law Library.

SMU Underwood Library

Underwood Law Library[edit]

SMU’s Underwood Law Library is the largest private academic law library west of the Mississippi River .[4] Its collections include approximately 662,465 law-related volumes and equivalents, ranking the library among the top 20% of all law libraries in the United States.[4]


In 2020, SMU Dedman School of Law was ranked No. 56 in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.[5]


Dedman School of Law Graduates

According to SMU's official 2018 ABA-required disclosures, 80% of the Class of 2018 obtained full-time, long-term, JD-required employment nine months after graduation.[6] SMU's Law School Transparency under-employment score is 10.8%, indicating the percentage of the Class of 2018 unemployed, pursuing an additional degree, or working in a non-professional, short-term, or part-time job nine months after graduation.[7]


The total cost of attendance (indicating the cost of tuition, fees, and living expenses) at SMU for the 2020-2021 academic year is $83,464.[8] The average amount borrowed for law school by members of the 2014 graduating class was $124,617.38.

Notable faculty[edit]

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ "Southern Methodist University (Dedman)". Retrieved 31 March 2022.
  2. ^ "SMU Dedman School of Law - Joint Degrees". Archived from the original on 2009-08-15. Retrieved 2009-07-31.
  3. ^ "FAQs | SMU Dedman School of Law | Dallas Texas". Retrieved 2019-12-19.
  4. ^ a b "Library Facts". Archived from the original on 2016-08-14. Retrieved 2016-07-13.
  5. ^ "Best Law School Rankings | Law Program Rankings | US News". Archived from the original on 2015-03-11. Retrieved 2014-03-11.
  6. ^ "SMU Dedman School of Law - Employment Statistics". Archived from the original on 2014-07-04. Retrieved 2014-07-10.
  7. ^ "Southern Methodist University". Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  8. ^ "SMU Dedman School of Law - Fast Facts". Archived from the original on 2014-07-14. Retrieved 2014-07-10.
  9. ^ "Raleigh Brown". Southern Methodist University.
  10. ^ "Judge Jeff Cox". Archived from the original on May 17, 2014. Retrieved April 26, 2014.
  11. ^ "Todd Hunter's Biography". Retrieved March 15, 2014.
  12. ^ "Stephen N. Limbaugh, Jr". Federal Judicial Center. Retrieved 16 May 2013.
  13. ^ "Barbara M.G. Lynn". Federal Judicial Center. Retrieved 16 May 2013.
  14. ^ "State Rep. Kenneth Sheets District 107 (R-Dallas)". The Texas Tribune. Archived from the original on March 23, 2014. Retrieved March 21, 2014.
  15. ^ "William Steger". Federal Judicial Center. Retrieved 16 May 2013.