The S.J. Quinney College of Law and the Department of Political Science have adopted the following program to enable students to pursue both a J.D. degree and an M.P.A. degree simultaneously.
a. Reduction in Overall Credit Requirement
The J.D./M.P.A. program is based on the assumption that, because there is complementary intellectual benefit from studying law and public administration in a coordinated program, a student enrolled in the joint degree program should be allowed to earn both degrees in less time and with a lower overall credit requirement than were that student enrolled in each school or program independently. Accordingly, students enrolled in the joint degree program may count up to 12 credit hours of College of Law class work towards fulfilling the 42 credit hour requirement of the M.P.A. degree, and may count up to 12 credit hours of M.P.A. class work towards fulfilling the 88 credit hour requirement of the J.D. degree. Upon completion of both programs, the student earns two separate degrees, a J.D. degree awarded by the College of Law and an M.P.A. degree awarded by the Department of Political Science.
Because the overall credit requirements for both degrees are reduced by 24 credit hours, a student enrolled in the joint degree program can expect to complete the two degrees in approximately eight semesters of full time study. However, as noted in § l. below, a student enrolled in the J.D./M.P.A. Joint Degree Program must complete all J.D. and all M.P.A. requirements before either degree will be awarded.
b. Application to the J.D./M.P.A. Joint Degree Program
Applicants interested in this program must submit separate admission applications to the College of Law and to the M.P.A. Program. Each program has its own independent admissions standards, and admission to one program does not ensure admission to the other.
Applicants interested in pursuing the J.D./M.P.A. joint degree are encouraged to apply to both programs at the same time. Nonetheless, a law student may apply to the M.P.A. program (and thus be eligible to earn a joint degree) prior to completion of the first year of law school. As noted in § c. below, an M.P.A. student who enrolls in the law program after matriculating in the M.P.A. program will have limitations imposed on those M.P.A. credit hours that can count towards the law degree.
c. Completion of First Year at the College of Law as Prerequisite for Law Credit for M.P.A. Courses
The College of Law will not give law credit for an M.P.A. course unless the applicant has first successfully completed the first year at the College of Law. This prerequisite means that applicants who start the joint degree program by doing work in the M.P.A. program before completing the first year of law school must delay taking the specific M.P.A. courses they intend to count towards their 12 hours of law credit until after they complete the first year of law school.
The College of Law strongly recommends that an applicant not take any M.P.A. courses during the first year of law school. The first year of law school is demanding.
d. Enrollment in the J.D./M.P.A. Joint Degree Program and Appointment of Faculty Advisors in Both Programs
A student who has been admitted to both the J.D. and to the M.P.A. programs and who wishes to pursue the joint degree program opportunity must file a Joint Degree Enrollment Form with the Registrar of each program. Upon filing this form and its being approved by the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Law and the M.P.A. Program Director in the Department of Political Science, a Faculty Advisor will be appointed in each program to assist the student in planning an overall program of study that takes advantage of the goals of the joint degree program.
e. Requirements for Cross Over Course Credit
To earn academic credit towards a law degree for coursework completed in the M.P.A. program: 1) an M.P.A. course must be pre approved by the College of Law Faculty Advisory, and that approval must be indicated on the “Request to Count M.P.A. Course Credit Toward J.D. Degree” Form; 2) the course must be a graduate level course; and 3) the student must receive a grade of 3.0 (“B”) or higher in the course.
To earn academic credit towards the M.P.A. degree for coursework completed in the College of Law: 1) the course may not be part of the law school’s first year curriculum with exception of Constitutional Law I; 2) the student must receive a grade of 2.7 (B-) or higher in the course; and 3) the course must address topics directly related to public law, public administration, or public policy. The student should consult with the M.P.A. Director or M.P.A. Program Manager for approval.
f. Notification to Associate Dean for Academic Affairs of Enrollment Only in M.P.A. Courses
A student in the J.D./M.P.A. Joint Degree Program who during any semester is enrolled only in M.P.A. courses shall notify the law school’s Associate Dean for Academic Affairs of that fact.
g. Notification to M.P.A. Program Manager of Enrollment Only in College of Law Courses
A student in the J.D./M.P.A. Program who during any semester is enrolled only in College of Law courses shall notify the M.P.A. Program Manager of that fact.
h. M.P.A. Major Research Paper or Thesis
The M.P.A. program requires that a student complete a major research paper. A research paper completed in a College of Law course may satisfy the M.P.A. major research paper requirement if the student’s M.P.A. Faculty Advisor determines that the paper meets the following requirements:
(1) The paper written in the law course meets all criteria for a major research paper set by the M.P.A. program in terms of length and significance;
(2) The law school paper receives a grade of “B” or better; and
(3) The subject matter of the paper has significance in the fields of both law and public administration.
In the event that a student in the M.P.A. program chooses to write the optional master’s thesis instead of a major research paper, the M.P.A. program will appoint the student’s College of Law Faculty Advisor as a member of the thesis committee.
i. College of Law Seminar Paper Requirement
The College of Law requires that every student write a seminar paper. This requirement will not be waived for students in the J.D./M.P.A. Joint Degree Program, and the M.P.A. major research paper will not satisfy this law school requirement. (However, as noted in § h. above, in certain instances the College of Law seminar paper may satisfy the M.P.A. major research requirement.)
Though students enrolled in the joint program are encouraged to select a seminar at the College of Law that involves subject matter of relevance to public administration, this is not required.
j. M.P.A. Comprehensive Oral Examination
The M.P.A. program requires that all joint degree students successfully complete a comprehensive oral examination during the last semester of their M.P.A. course work. The College of Law Faculty Advisor, or some other member of the College of Law faculty appointed by the College of Law’s Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, will participate as an examiner in this examination.
k. Work at the College of Law Meeting Other M.P.A. Requirements
In choosing the 12 credit hours taken in the law school that count toward completion of the required credit for the M.P.A. degree:
(1) The M.P.A. program will accept Law 7300 (Administrative Law) as satisfying the M.P.A. core course requirement Political Science 6230 (Administrative Law).
(2) The M.P.A. program will accept Law 6060 (Constitutional Law I) and Law 7410 (Constitutional Law II) as satisfying the M.P.A. core course requirement Political Science 6220 (Constitutional Law M.P.A.). Because both courses are required for all students at the College of Law, in most cases these two courses will constitute six of the 12 credit hours taken in the law school that count toward fulfilling the M.P.A. degree requirements.
(3) M.P.A. students who have not had adequate practical experience in public administration are required to complete an internship. Students in the joint degree program who are required to complete such an internship may fulfill the requirement in any of the following ways (whether for pay or for credit, but not for both) with the prior approval of the M.P.A. Program Director:
(i) Completion of a full time summer internship (three months) with a governmental agency or non profit organization.
(ii) Completion of a full time summer or semester legal clerkship with a public agency as part of a College of Law Clinical Program.
(iii) Completion of some other internship or clinical course at the College of Law which the M.P.A. Program Director determines to meet the requirement.
l. Completion of Both Programs Required for Award of Each Degree
A student enrolled in the J.D./M.P.A. Joint Degree Program, who wishes to count credits taken in one program toward fulfilling the degree in the other program, must complete all requirements of both programs before either degree will be awarded.
College Council – April 24, 2003