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Quick Facts and Frequently Asked Questions

Advanced Legal Education Program for Afghan Lawyers

The Afghan LL.M. Program combines intensive English instruction and LL.M. courses that allow participants to earn an LL.M. in Democratic Governance and Rule of Law and a Certificate of Legal English. There are 10 positions annually for each incoming class. The program will run for approximately three years. Merit-based selection includes consideration of education and relevant experience. TOEFL/IELTS scores are also considered, with successful participants within the 460/4 range.

The 18-month program begins in January and ends with commencement in May. Students will study six months of integrated English and legal studies, and 9 months of LL.M. courses, internships, and field studies at ONU Law.

All students reside in Ada, Ohio, a small university community in furnished, fully equipped two-bedroom apartments on campus. Students will also engage in numerous educational and cultural excursions off campus. The Afghan LL.M. Program is fully funded that includes all tuition and fees, housing, insurance, travel costs, and a monthly stipend.

Upon graduation from the program, alumni will have access to active job-placement assistance and alumni support through the program's Afghan program manager, and the extensive network of Afghan LL.M. graduates.

Frequently Asked Questions


Q:  When is the deadline for applying for the 2017 entering class?

A:  The deadline for applications for the 2017 entering class is September 1, 2016.  

Q: When will the selection process be complete?

A: Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis, and interviews for short-listed candidates will be scheduled for late October or early November 2016.  Decisions will be announced very shortly thereafter with an anticipated start date of January 1, 2017.

Q:  If I have a high TOEFL or IELTS score is it possible that I would be accepted for the LEVAS LLM program without joining the six months of advanced English class?

A: The mission of the LEVAS Program is to provide opportunities for Afghan lawyers with lower TOEFL/IELTS scores (460/4) to obtain both advanced English instruction and an LLM in Democratic Governance and Rule of Law.  Applicants with higher scores will be considered based on the possible availability of other scholarship funds or directed to apply directly to the Ohio Northern University College of Law LLM program.

Q:  If I cannot complete my application for this year or am rejected will there be other opportunities to participate in the program?

A:  Yes, this year is the second year of a three year project training Afghan lawyers in English and rule of law.  There will be one additional cohort starting in January 2018.

Q: When should I be prepared to come to Ohio Northern University?

A: Students who are accepted to the program should be prepared for travel to Ohio Northern University during the first week of January 2017.

Q: If I am selected, can my spouse accompany me for the duration of the program?

A: No, the program cannot accommodate spouses.


Q: What does the program scholarship cover?

A: For students who are admitted to the LEVAS program, costs covered by the  cooperative agreement between the United States State Department, Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs and Ohio Northern University include full tuition and fees, housing, books, insurance, travel and visas, and a monthly stipend of $825.  The program will arrange for each student to open a local bank account for direct deposit on stipends.

Q: How long does the program last?

A: The  program will run a total of 18 months. Starting in January, students will participate in 6 months of integrated English and legal studies, followed by 9 months of LLM courses, internships and field studies. At the conclusion of the program, students will have earned an internationally recognized LL.M. in Democratic Governance and Rule of Law.

Q: Will there be an orientation for the LEVAS Program?

A: Students will participate in an orientation session upon arrival to Ohio Northern University that will include introduction to the University and College of Law, the Ada community, and local legal and governmental institutions.

Q: What classes are offered in the program?

A: Students will be enrolled in a variety of required classes in the College of Law that will include instruction in American legal English, American Legal Systems, Comparative Constitutional Law, Comparative Administrative Law, Legal Issues of Transitional Democracies, International Protection of Human Rights, Competitiveness and Corruption, International and Comparative Law of NGOs, and the capstone  Rule of Law Seminar.  Students will also be able to take selected specialized classes in their areas of interest.

Q:  Are their opportunities for internships?

A:  Yes, the program includes opportunities for internships in a variety of legal,  governmental and NGO entities , including courts,  prosecutor offices, state and local agencies, bar associations, and academic institutions.

Q: What is the average class size?

A: Class sizes range from 10 to 30 students.  LEVAS LLM students will take classes with other international LLM students, as well as American law students at the University who are earning their Juris Doctorate concurrent with their LLM degree.

Q: Where can I buy textbooks for the program?

A: All materials required for the LEVAS Program will be made available at the Ohio Northern University bookstore at no cost to the LLM students.

Q: How will student performance be evaluated?

A: Student evaluations are based on written assignments as well as presentations, and midterm and final examinations.  The College of Law uses an A to F grading scale.


Q: Where is Ohio Northern University?

A: Ohio Northern University is located in Ada, Ohio. Ada is a small town in Northwest Ohio, with a population of about 6,000 residents (including 3,300 students).  Ada is about 80 miles away from the capital, Columbus, Ohio., as well as Dayton, Toledo, and Fort Wayne Indiana.  The small cities of Lima and Findlay are within 20 miles.

Q.  What services are available in Ada?

A:  Ada has all essential services including grocery and drug stores, numerous restaurants, banks, a movie theatre, and doctor and dentist offices.

Q: What accommodations will be provided by Ohio Northern for the duration of the program?

A: Ohio Northern will provide students with  two-bedroom, one bathroom apartments that are within walking distance from campus.  Each student will share an apartment with another LEVAS participate of the same gender. All apartments are fully furnished with kitchen appliances, cookware and dishes, cable TV and internet, heating and cooling, and linens, and blankets.