The Lottery System
in (More or Less) Plain English
The Law School uses a lottery system as part of the course registration process for each term. When you “pre-register,” your selections are entered into the lottery for that term. The lottery system was determined by a faculty resolution called “Faculty Resolution on the Allocation of Scarce Instructional Resources.” Here’s an attempt to distill that information in very broad strokes.
- All students are divided into one of three categories (2Ls , 3Ls, and LL.M.s) and within each category are randomly assigned a lottery number. These numbers reverse in the Spring semester, so that if you got a high number in the Fall semester, you’ll get a lower number in the Spring semester, and vice-versa.
- Students fill out a primary choice and an alternate choice for each numbered slot in their registration forms. You may select up to 10 primary and 10 alternate choices, but the lottery system will only “pre-register” you for a total of 15 points.
- The lottery system runs through the registration forms, based on lottery number. For each choice, the lottery system attempts to assign the student to their primary choice. If that is not available, then the system waitlists the student for the primary choice and attempts to assign the student to their alternate choice. (BUT NOTE – If your alternate choice is full, you will NOT be assigned to a waitlist for the alternate choice.)
- The system first gives each LL.M. student two choices (numbers one and two on their registration form). However (unless the instructor has designated otherwise) not more than one-third of seats in a class may be LL.M.s.
- Then each 3L gets two choices, followed by 2Ls getting one choice.
- Next, in order, LL.M.s get a third choice, 3Ls get a third choice, LL.M.s get a fourth choice, 3Ls get a fourth choice, and 2Ls get a second, third and fourth choice.
We are here to assist in helping you select classes and register. Careful planning is recommended in the course selection, as the lottery system does not guarantee that students will be placed in courses.
Whew! Come by or call and we’ll attempt to explain it in more detail, in real English, and help you fill out your registration forms.