Peking University School of Transnational Law (STL) is the only law school in the world that combines an American-style Juris Doctor degree (J.D.) with a China law Juris Master degree (J.M.). STL provides an academically rigorous, bilingual four-year program of legal education that prepares students for the mixture of Common Law, civil law, and Chinese legal traditions increasingly characteristic of the global economy.
Founded in 1898, Peking University was the first national university covering comprehensive disciplines in China, and has been a leading institution of higher education in China since its establishment. At the end of the 20th century, the Chinese government put Peking University at the top of its agenda for promoting higher education, with the aim to build a world-class university in the 21st Century. Peking University has continually played the essential role of pioneers in the course of China’s modernization. The university’s traditional emphasis on patriotism, progress, democracy, and science, together with its educational standards of diligence, precision, factualism, and innovation, have been passed down from generation to generation.
Students and Faculty
Students at STL represent the highest-qualified candidates from a range of backgrounds and disciplines. International students at STL are classmates with students who are among the most academically talented in China.
STL has assembled a distinguished multinational faculty of leading scholars and practitioners from China, the U.S., the E.U., and elsewhere. The faculty includes scholars of international trade law, food safety policy, public international law, investment treaty arbitration, intellectual property, securities regulation, comparative corporate governance, law and economic development, Chinese legal history and philosophy, Chinese environmental and administrative law, innovation in legal services, China civil law, and several other important fields.
STL’s curriculum emphasizes lawyering skills and knowledge for the 21st century: (i) transnational law and practice, (ii) cross-cultural competence, (iii) the ability to contend with the complex legal and factual issues characteristic of advanced economies based on technological innovation and global financial services, and (iv) the professional responsibilities of lawyers in these contexts.
STL equips students with deep knowledge and understanding of Chinese and Western legal, commercial and cultural traditions, knowledge that is essential for leadership in today’s inter-connected world and that is prized by the world’s leading law firms, companies, government offices, NGOs and universities.
Shenzhen–A Dynamic City
STL is located in Shenzhen, renowned as China’s “Silicon Valley” and one of the world’s leading centers of innovation and finance. Shenzhen is a coastal city in South China. It is located on the eastern bank of the Pearl River, neighboring Hong Kong. Shenzhen has been a touchstone for China’s reform and opening-up policy.
From 1979 to 2018, Shenzhen has skyrocketed from a tiny border town with a population of more than 30,000 to a metropolis with a population of more than 10 million. It has become a prosperous, chic, innovative, harmonious and beautiful city and established many firsts in the history of world industrialization, urbanization and modernization.
The Economist marveled at the “Miracle of Shenzhen,” saying China’s most extraordinary practice since its reform and opening up 40 years ago is the establishment of special economic zones and calling Shenzhen the biggest success of more than 4,000 SEZs in the world.
As one of the most important international cities in China, Shenzhen is one of the most economically dynamic cities in the world. The city is the high-tech and manufacturing hub of southern China as well as a State-level innovative city.
Shenzhen is the best example of China’s historic leap from “getting on its feet” to “becoming prosperous.” Its GDP has grown from 197 million yuan in 1979 to 2.24 trillion yuan in 2017, ranking only after Beijing and Shanghai, equaling Hong Kong and is among the top 30 cities in the world.
Shenzhen is home to seven Fortune Global 500 companies — Huawei, China Merchants Group, Ping An Group, Tencent, Vanke, Amer International Group and Evergrande. It has attracted more than 200 of Fortune 500 companies to invest here.
Shenzhen offers best public cultural services, hosts cultural exhibitions and performances regularly and enjoys a beautiful environment. It has nearly 1,000 parks. The enviable “Shenzhen Blue Sky” and its developed volunteer culture have made Shenzhen a paradise for entrepreneurs and makers from all over the world. It has been called as “a city without winter” and won the title of “2017 Amazing China — The 10 Most Attractive Chinese Cities for Foreigners.”
STL’s four year J.D. and J.M. dual degree program is rich in cutting-edge courses designed to equip STL graduates of all nationalities for law practice and leadership in advanced economies based on technological innovation, global financial services, and internationalization. J.D. courses are taught in English and China law J.M. courses are taught in Chinese. International students have the option to pursue the J.D. program only and graduate within three years.
How to Apply
- Applicants must be non-Chinese citizens with a valid passport, and have attained a bachelor’s degree.
- Applicants whose first language is not English must provide evidence of English proficiency—TOFEL or IELTS scores.
- Applicants must take the LSAT or GRE before March 2019.
All application materials must be submitted by March 31, 2019, 24:00pm, Beijing Standard Time. We recommend applying by March 1, 2019 to avoid the application fee and the rush of last minute applications.
- Please apply online using the PKU portal (http://www.studyatpku.com/member/login.do). After you successfully complete your application you will receive a confirmation report. Please print a copy of the report for your records. You will need to provide a copy of this report when you submit your hard copy application.
- In addition to the online application, please send all application materials to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include a copy of the confirmation report mentioned immediately above in #1.
- Please also send the materials listed in the “Application Checklist” below to the following address (please track delivery):
J.D. and J.M. Admissions Office, Room 410
STL Building, Peking University Shenzhen Graduate School
University Town, Xili, Nanshan District, Shenzhen 518055, CHINA
Tel: (86 755) 2603 2287
Applicants must submit the materials listed below. Applications will only be reviewed after all materials are received. All documents should be prepared in English. If the documents are not in English, they must be accompanied by a notarized English translation.
- Peking University School of Transnational Law Application Form (download form from PKU portal, complete and sign).
- Personal statement. Please explain your reasons for pursuing a J.D. and J.M. degree at STL and why you believe STL’s program will advance your professional goals (no more than 1200 words, please).
- Academic Records. Official transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions, and official degree certificates (original or notarized documents with English translations if documents are not in English).
- Resume or Curriculum Vitae.
- Letters of Recommendation. At least two signed letters of recommendation from professors, employers, or others familiar with your academic and professional qualifications.
- Proof of English Competency. Copy of results of TOEFL or IELTS. Alternatively, you may attest that English is your native language or that you attended university and received your received your undergraduate degree in an English speaking country.
- A copy of LSAT or GRE score.
- Proof of Chinese-language competency sufficient for graduate-level academic work if also applying for STL’s China law Juris Master program.
- Copy of passport or identification card.
The application fee is 800 RMB. Please note that the fee is waived for applications received by March 1, 2019.
Deadline for Application
The deadline to apply for AY2019-20 admission to STL is March 31, 2019.
The Admissions Committee will review each application and decide whether to invite the applicant to interview with the Committee. Interviews typically occur in person in Shenzhen, but the Committee has arranged video interviews for students unable to travel to China.
The Admissions Committee will make decisions on a rolling basis.
Accommodations and Services
Most international students choose to live on Peking University’s modern and attractive graduate school campus, which permits convenient access to the many on-campus community, dining, and sports opportunities, as well as close proximity to the STL Building and mass transportation serving the entire city and region. Single and double rooms are available in graduate student housing. Students may also choose to live off campus.
Tuition and Costs
The tuition fee for STL’s J.D. and J.M. degree is 120,000 RMB per year. The cost of living on campus is low in comparison to top university programs outside of China. For example, the current annual cost for a single room with private bathroom and small balcony is 12,000 RMB.
Applicants also are encouraged to consider scholarships for which they are qualified.
Kim Zhong, Director of Admissions
Peking University School of Transnational Law
Tel: (86 755) 2603 2287
- Would late-submission of my LSAT score put my application at a disadvantage?
No, if early notice of late-submission is given, applicants will be given equal consideration.
- How is the LSAT score weighed in the admission application?
A: A student’s LSAT score is a critical part of the application. Along with the GPA, it serves as a standardized, objective measure of applicants. While higher scores are preferred, STL does not have a fixed index of how it is weighed in the final decision.
- Is it possible to waive the LSAT requirement?
A: Currently, there is no policy of exemption from taking the LSAT. LSAT is a required part of our admissions process and is valued as an important part of evaluating the candidates. All the candidates are required to take LSAT without exception.
- Do I need to take IELTS or TOEFL?
If your first language is English, or you have graduated from a university whose language of instruction is English, IELTS or TOEFL score is not required.
- What kind of recommendation should I provide, academic or professional?
Both academic or professional recommendations are accepted.
- Can international students apply for scholarships?
Yes. International students are eligible to apply to all scholarships, except those that are limited to Chinese students.
- Are there any other ways to receive financial aid other than scholarships?
There is a loan program held by US Ministry of Education, which permits eligible U.S. students to borrow federal student aid to help pay their education expenses while attending an approved institution located outside the U.S. The borrower is obligated to repay the loan at a later date. At present, Peking University is applying to restore its status as an approved institution outside the U.S., under which American students who attend Peking University can become eligible to borrow money from the U.S. Government to pay their PKU tuition.
- Can I take J.M. courses?
Yes, but international students are required to provide proof of Chinese language proficiency (HSK, the Chinese proficiency test), personal statement and other supplemental materials to apply for the J.M. program at the end of the first academic year. The tuition fee for the three-year J.D. is 120,000 RMB per year but J.M. requires a fourth year of extended academic study, which is an additional 20,000RMB for the fourth year. Payment can be made in accordance with SZPKU’s finance department’s policy.
- Will I be interviewed after the submission of all the application materials?
For international students, telephone interviews may be conducted if the admissions team has any additional questions or requires clarification about application material. However, face-to-face interview is preferred if the student is able to travel to Shenzhen. For most applicants, admission decisions are based mostly on application materials without interviews.