Pepperdine University School of Law

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Pepperdine University School of Law
Pepperdine University Malibu Canyon Entrance Gate.JPG
Motto Strengthening Lives for Purpose, Service, and Leadership
Parent school Pepperdine University
Established 1969[1]
School type Private
Parent endowment $850 million
Dean Deanell R. Tacha[2]
Location Malibu, CA, US
Enrollment 598
Faculty 107[1]
USNWR ranking 65[1]
Bar pass rate 78% (July 2014 CA Pass Rate)
ABA profile Pepperdine University School of Law

The Pepperdine University School of Law is an ABA accredited law school, nestled in the hills of Malibu, California overlooking the Pacific Ocean. The campus is 30 miles from Downtown Los Angeles, the heart of entertainment, media, and sports law. Pepperdine Law also has a West LA campus, which tailors flexible course schedules to mid-career professionals in conjunction with their Malibu campus offerings.


Pepperdine School of Law provides a superior legal education with an emphasis on societal responsibility. In addition to degree programs, they offer experiential learning, mentorship, and continuing education to prepare practitioners to bring their best to their work and to the world. Pepperdine offers six joint degrees, and several LLM and master's degrees, including those offered in conjunction with the Straus Institute of Dispute Resolution, Pepperdine Law's #1 ranked Institute. (View full list of LLM degrees here). Pepperdine Law also offers certificates in Dispute Resolution, and in Entertainment, Media, and Sports Law.

Pepperdine Law's other institutes include: the Parris Institute for Professional Formation, the Byrne Judicial Clerkship Institute, Nootbaar Institute on Law, Religion, and Ethics, and the Palmer Center for Entrepreneurship and the Law.

Pepperdine Law is known for providing excellent mentorships to its students, and pairs students with a practicing attorney or judge their 1L year. It also provides excellent practical training via clinics and externships, as well as its global programs where students can learn international law studying in London, non-profit and advancing the rule of law in Uganda and India, and study at the epicenter of law building, Washington, DC.

Current News & Events can be found on The Surf Report, where students, faculty, rankings, and events are reported on.

Pepperdine Law placed 65th among the nation's "Top 100" law schools according to the 2017 U.S. News and World Report rankings.[1] Pepperdine Law is tied with Loyola Marymount School of Law as the fourth highest ranked law school in Southern California, after UCLA, USC, and UC Irvine. The school had an 78% California bar passage rate in July 2014, giving it the seventh highest California bar passage rate after Stanford, (88%); Berkeley, (88%);University of Southern California, (87%); UC Davis School of Law, (86%); UCLA Law, (82%); and Loyola Marymount School of Law, (80%).[3][4] Pepperdine Law is best known for its entertainment law,[5] and its dispute resolution program, which is ranked #1 in the nation.[6]

The school offers a Juris Doctor (J.D.), Masters of Law (LL.M.) in dispute resolution, and joint degrees with J.D./M.B.A., J.D./M.Div., J.D./M.P.P., and J.D./Master of Dispute Resolution(M.D.R.).

Deanell Reece Tacha, former Chief Judge of The United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, became Dean on June 1, 2011, and retired on December 31, 2016. Pepperdine professor and tax law expert Paul Caron will become dean on June 1, 2017.


The total cost of attendance (indicating the cost of tuition, fees, and living expenses) at Pepperdine for the 2015-2016 academic year is $79,800.[7] The Law School Transparency estimated debt-financed cost of attendance for three years is $301,845.[8]

Accreditation and post-graduation employment[edit]

Pepperdine University School of Law is approved by the American Bar Association (ABA) since 1972,[9] holds membership in the Association of American Law Schools (AALS),[10] and is accredited by the Committee of Bar Examiners, State Bar of California. Graduates are eligible to apply for admission to practice in any state.

Pepperdine University is accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

Employment Outcomes: According to 2013 ABA data, 53.1% of graduates obtained full-time, long term positions requiring bar admission (i.e., jobs as lawyers), 9 months after graduation, ranking 124th out of 200 law schools.[11]

Herbert and Elinor Nootbaar Institute on Law, Religion and Ethics[edit]

The purpose of the Nootbaar Institute on Law, Religion, and Ethics is to bring the redemptive capacities of religious faith and moral insight to law, to find ways in which persons trained in law can serve “the least of these” throughout the world, and to explore how the practice of law might be a religious calling. We seek to do so at a theoretical level through seminars, conferences, and scholarship. We also seek to put theory into action, working with governments and human rights organizations to bring peace, justice, and the rule of law around the globe.

The Nootbaar Institute includes three initiatives:

  1. Scholarship with respect to issues at the intersection of law and religion;
  2. Domestic Justice Initiatives, such as the Legal Aid Clinic and the Asylum and Refugee Clinic; and
  3. the Global Justice Program.

Global Justice Program[edit]

The Global Justice Program[12] touches all corners of the globe through its initiatives in

  1. international human rights and religious freedom,
  2. advancement of the rule of law, and
  3. global development. Through these initiatives, students and faculty collaborate to seek justice and create a lasting impact in some of the world's most vulnerable places. Under the umbrella of the Herbert and Elinor Nootbaar Institute for Law, Religion, and Ethics, the Global Justice Program is growing rapidly in response to student interest and demand from global partners.

Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution[edit]

Pepperdine University School of Law’s Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution[13] provides professional training and academic programs in dispute resolution including a Certificate, Masters in Dispute Resolution (MDR) and Masters of Law in Dispute Resolution (LLM). Straus provides education to law and graduate students, as well as mid-career professionals in areas of mediation, negotiation, arbitration, international dispute resolution and peacemaking.[14] The Straus Institute has consistently ranked the number one Dispute Resolution school in the nation for the past 8 years, and has remained among the top 10 schools over the last decade.[15]


  • Pepperdine Law Review[16][17]
  • Dispute Resolution Law Journal
  • Journal of the National Association of Administrative Law Judiciary (NAALJ)
  • Journal of Business, Entrepreneurship, and the Law (JBEL)

Each year the Pepperdine Law Review hosts one or two symposia that bring well-known speakers to campus. Written contributions to each symposium are published in the Law Review.

Joint degree programs[edit]

Joint degree programs include the JD/MPP degree in conjunction with the Pepperdine University School of Public Policy, the JD/Masters of Dispute Resolution degree in conjunction with the School of Law's number one ranked Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution[18] and the JD/MBA degree in conjunction with the Graziadio School of Business and Management.

Notable people[edit]


Visiting faculty[edit]

Guest speakers[edit]

Notable alumni[edit]

Honor societies[edit]

The School of Law attained membership in the Order of the Coif in 2008.[30][31]


  1. ^ a b c d "U.S. News & World Report, "Best Law Schools: Pepperdine University"". Retrieved April 14, 2011. 
  2. ^ "Deanell Tacha Named Dean of the Pepperdine University School of Law". Retrieved 2014-03-08. 
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ "California Bar Exam Pass Rates by School (July 2010 Exam)". Law Riot. Retrieved 2014-03-08. 
  5. ^ "Best Entertainment Law Schools and Sports Law Schools". Retrieved 2014-03-08. 
  6. ^ "Best Graduate Schools – Education – USNews". Retrieved 2014-03-08. 
  7. ^ "Tuition and Expenses". 
  8. ^ "Pepperdine University Profile". 
  9. ^ "ABA-Approved Law Schools by Year". ABA website. Retrieved April 20, 2011. 
  10. ^ "AALS Member Schools". Retrieved 2014-03-08. 
  11. ^ Full Rankings: Bar Admission Required, Full-Time, Long Term - For the latest Employment Summary Reports from the American Bar Association, Section of Legal Education, see
  12. ^ "Global Justice | School of Law | Pepperdine University". Retrieved 2014-03-08. 
  13. ^ "Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution | School of Law | Pepperdine University". Retrieved 2014-03-08. 
  14. ^ "Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution, Pepperdine Law School". Retrieved 2014-03-08. 
  15. ^ [2] Archived March 8, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
  16. ^ "Pepperdine Law Review | School of Law | Pepperdine University". Retrieved 2014-03-08. 
  17. ^ "Pepperdine Law Review | School of Law | Pepperdine University". Retrieved 2014-03-08. 
  18. ^ "USNEWS Rankings". Retrieved 2014-03-08. 
  19. ^ "Obama nominates two Las Vegas lawyers to Nevada federal bench". Las Vegas Review-Journal. Retrieved 7 December 2012. 
  20. ^ "Gov. Perry Appoints Boyd to the Supreme Court of Texas". Office of the Governor Rick Perry. Retrieved 7 December 2012. 
  21. ^ "Jeffrey Boyd Appointed to Texas Supreme Court". Pepperdine University School of Law. Retrieved 7 December 2012. 
  22. ^ "Attorney Mark Caruso - LII Attorney Directory". Retrieved 8 June 2015. 
  23. ^ "Assemblyman Brent A. Jones". Nevada Legislature. Retrieved February 6, 2016. 
  24. ^ "Eileen C. Moore, Associate Justice - 4DCA". Retrieved 8 June 2015. 
  25. ^ "Chipotle Investor Relations – Biography". Retrieved 8 June 2015. 
  26. ^ "Senate Confirms Judge Beverly Reid O'Connell for California's Central District ourt". Press Release of U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer. Retrieved 10 March 2014. 
  27. ^ "Doug Peterson Sworn in as 32nd Attorney General of Nebraska". 8 January 2015. Retrieved 9 January 2015. 
  28. ^ "Brian K. Tester Judge Profile –". Retrieved 2014-03-08. 
  29. ^ "Justice For All - Pepperdine Magazine | Pepperdine University". 2015-05-02. Retrieved 2016-09-20. 
  30. ^ "Pepperdine Law School Press Release". Retrieved 2014-03-08. 
  31. ^ Anesha Smith. "Order of The Coif Membership List". Retrieved 2014-03-08. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 34°02′38″N 118°42′34″W / 34.04399°N 118.70932°W / 34.04399; -118.70932