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ABA Standard 306 and Interpretation 306-3

Interpretation 306-3:

Courses in which two-thirds or more of the course instruction consists of regular classroom instruction shall not be treated as "distance education" for purposes of Standards 306(d) and (e) even though they also include substantial on-line interaction or other common components of "distance education" courses so long as such instruction complies with the provisions of subsections (1) and (2) of Standard 306(c). (August 2002)


(a) A law school may offer credit toward the J.D. degree for study offered through distance education consistent with the provisions of this Standard and Interpretations of this Standard. Such credit shall be awarded only if the academic content, the method of course delivery, and the method of evaluating student performance are approved as part of the school's regular curriculum approval process.

(b) Distance education is an educational process characterized by the separation, in time or place, between instructor and student. It includes courses offered principally by means of:

1) technological transmission, including Internet, open broadcast, closed circuit, cable, microwave, or satellite transmission;
(2) audio or computer conferencing;
(3) video cassettes or discs; or
(4) correspondence.

(c) A law school may award credit for distance education and may count that credit toward the 45,000 minutes of instruction required by Standard 304(b) if:

(1) there is ample interaction with the instructor and other students both inside and outside the formal structure of the course throughout its duration; and
(2) there is ample monitoring of student effort and accomplishment as the course progresses.

(d) A law school shall not grant a student more than four credit hours in any term, nor more than a total of 12 credit hours, toward the J.D. degree for courses qualifying under this Standard.

(e) No student shall enroll in courses qualifying for credit under this Standard until that student has completed instruction equivalent to 28 credit hours toward the J.D. degree.

(f) No credit otherwise may be given toward the J.D. degree for any distance education course.

Source: ABA Web site