Welcome to Yale Law School! This is the Sterling Law Building, constructed from 1929 to 1931 and modeled on the English Inns of Court. During this virtual tour, we hope you will discover the rich academic environment available at the Law School, gain an insight into student life, and get a glimpse of the many academic and professional opportunities available here.
Yale Law School’s distinctive approach to legal education is rooted in a commitment to academic excellence, a restless desire to innovate, and a passion for service. Here in New Haven, our remarkable students are taught by world-class faculty and backed by a wide-ranging curriculum that affords extraordinary opportunities to think deeply, practice, and serve.
The Law School occupies a full city block in the heart of Yale University in downtown New Haven, a lively, urban center. We are located on the Connecticut coast between New York and Boston. New Haven is home to vibrant neighborhoods, a tantalizing variety of restaurants for all tastes and budgets, and a bountiful arts and culture scene.
During the academic year, the main hallway buzzes with activity as students travel between classes or head to events and talks. At the base of the main staircase is “The Table,” a central meeting place for the YLS community and a great place to talk to students about their Law School experience.
Yale Law School students are at the center of a dynamic community. Whether attending classes, organizing conferences and events, or volunteering to work for myriad organizations, our students are campus and community leaders who bring idealism and passion into every aspect of their lives.
Lillian Goldman Law Library
The Lillian Goldman Law Library holds nearly one million print volumes as well as unparalleled access to domestic, foreign, and international law databases. Many students have carrels in the main reading room, an impressive space dominated by large Gothic windows with stained glass medallions.
Books aren’t the only thing you can check out — the Library offers board games, bike pumps, soccer balls, Frisbees, and DVDs, among other items.
Yale Law School provides significant support to students interested in pursuing independent academic and research projects, as well as other student-led initiatives. In addition, the Law School provides generous funding for summer and post-graduate public interest work, as well as a generous loan repayment program.
Sol Goldman Courtyard
The Sol Goldman Courtyard is the heart of the Sterling Law Building. Students study and share meals here, and even play whiffle ball or have a snowball fight. In the spring, a beautiful magnolia tree blooms and marks the change of seasons. After Commencement, graduates and their families traditionally have a reception in the Courtyard.
The Sterling Law Building houses classrooms of all sizes, scaled for large lectures and small seminars. Room 127 is the largest lecture hall in the Sterling Law Building and hosts larger classes as well as special events.
Our world-renowned faculty members teach a wide array of courses, both highly theoretical and intensely practical. There are also countless opportunities for independent research, writing, and student-organized reading groups. Students are encouraged to learn deeply and investigate their own ideas about the law. Every student works closely with the faculty to complete two major research papers, and many students go on to publish their work.
The Law School’s graduate programs are truly global — both in the breadth of resources available through Yale Law School and in the composition of our student body. Our graduate students enjoy the intimacy of a small program and a close relationship with our faculty. The Law School offers LL.M., J.S.D., M.S.L., and Ph.D. in Law graduate programs.
Seminar Room 109
Clinics, small classes, and student groups often meet in seminar rooms like this one to work on collaborative projects.
Yale Law School has a large and varied clinical program. Law students write briefs, prepare witnesses, try cases, negotiate settlements, argue appeals, draft legislation, and engage in transactional and policy work. Our clinical faculty members are highly skilled lawyers and teachers, as well as leading scholars.
More than 90% of students participate in at least one clinic, and more than one-third participate in more than one during their time at the Law School. Read more about the impactful work of Law School clinics on our clinic news page.
The Student Lounge can be found at the midpoint of the main hallway, and it is a central gathering place where students hang out, watch TV, and relax between classes. Next to the Student Lounge is the Alumni Reading Room, a quiet space to read and study.
The Office of Student Affairs assists students and student organizations during their time at the Law School.
Ruttenberg Dining Hall
The Ruttenberg Dining Hall provides a large space for students to gather to share meals. Ruttenberg serves a variety of meals throughout the day, including sandwiches, salads, coffee, and a variety of beverages, snacks, and desserts. In the past, events and receptions have also been held in the Dining Hall, including a visit by the Red Sox World Series Trophy and some alumni weddings!
Calabresi Faculty Lounge
Named for Judge and former YLS Dean Guido Calabresi ’58 LLB, the Calabresi Faculty Lounge hosts events with speakers from around the world, workshops where cutting-edge scholarship is discussed, and faculty meetings.
The regular curriculum at Yale Law School is augmented by a host of events that enrich legal education and scholarship. Distinguished speakers — lawyers, judges, public figures, government officials, scholars, and other prominent individuals — are invited by faculty members, student organizations, and a thriving network of centers and workshops to give talks or participate in panel discussions on a wide variety of topics throughout the year.
Baker Hall Entrance and Courtyard
On September 20, 2018, Yale Law School dedicated Robert C. and Christina Baker Hall, the School’s first permanent physical expansion since 1931.
Baker Hall is a modern extension of the Law School campus, and includes 61 apartments for Law School and other Yale graduate students. The building holds a number of smaller classrooms for seminars, a student lounge and other common spaces, as well as conference rooms where students can study, meet, and make calls. The courtyard at Baker Hall features great outdoor spaces to study and socialize.
Baker Hall Foyer
The modern architectural details of Baker Hall can be seen as you walk the halls of the first floor, where large glass rooms predominate. Baker Hall also features artwork — paintings, photographs, and sculptures — that reference and reflect on social justice issues.
Notably, Baker Hall returned residential living to the Law School campus for the first time in decades. The 61 apartments, mostly two-bedroom units, offer modern design and flexible spaces for students to live and learn.
Baker Hall also includes nine residential lounges and 13 quiet study workspaces located throughout the building.
Paul Tsai Lecture Theater
The Paul Tsai Lecture Theater is located on the ground floor of Baker Hall and is the building’s largest teaching space. It provides cutting-edge technology and features a clean, modern design.
Yale Law students and graduates are among the most sought after in the nation by employers of all types, and each one has the choice to follow the career path that is right for them. Our graduates find multiple and meaningful ways to contribute to their communities. A degree from Yale Law School opens doors across the United States and around the world, including in public interest careers of all kinds; at law firms big and small; in business as founders, lawyers, and executives; in the judiciary as clerks and judges; and in the academy as scholars and teachers.
Our Career Development Office provides a variety of resources to help students and alumni develop an effective career plan. The counselors can identify helpful resources, support the job search, and forge connections among students, faculty, and alumni.