Completion of the J.S.D. degree requirements ordinarily takes three to five years. J.S.D. candidates are required to spend their first two years in residence. During the first year, students must successfully complete at least 12 credit hours of course work. After the first year, J.S.D. candidates are expected to devote their time to progressing on their dissertation and must enroll each semester for one unit of credit, for which they will receive a grade of “satisfactory” or “unsatisfactory” from their advisor. After the required two years of residency, candidates continue to work on their dissertation under the direction of a member of the Law School faculty, either in residence at Notre Dame or elsewhere.