Academic Catalog

History and Law (M.A./J.D. Joint Degree)

The combined M.A./J.D. Program leads to the simultaneous receipt of a J.D. from the Law School and a M.A. from the Department of History. Students must complete at least 30 credits in History as well as all degree requirements for the J.D. Because the Law School may credit some of the non-law credits toward the J.D. degree, a student may be able to complete the combined M.A./J.D. program in one semester beyond the time usually required to complete the J.D. alone.

Admission Requirements

Applicants to this program must be admitted to both the Law School and Department of History M.A. program.

Law students may apply to the Department of History for admission to the M.A. program, and upon admission may enroll in history courses after successful completion of their first year of legal studies. Admission to this program is contingent upon admission to the Graduate School. Earning a graduate degree is an undertaking which requires a considerable commitment of time and financial resources. The Department of History expects applicants to its graduate program to arrive well-prepared to undertake a rigorous course of study. 

The department normally considers only applicants whose undergraduate grade point average is at least 3.00 overall and at least 3.25 in a minimum of eighteen semester credits in history and related subjects at the advanced undergraduate level. The department requires that all applicants submit a statement of purpose, a writing sample, two letters of recommendation from former instructors, a resume or curriculum vitae, and copies of transcripts from each college or university previously attended. Please consult the Department of History graduate handbook for detailed instructions for preparing application materials. 

Application deadlines are October 15 (for Winter admission) and April 15 (for Fall admission).

MA/JD joint degree students must complete all requirements for a JD as described in the Graduate Bulletin as well as 30 credit hours for the History MA (Plan B). Coursework for the History MA consists of 12 credits in three core courses, plus at least 18 credits of elective coursework, 8 credits of which can be in LEX classes and at least 10 of which must be in HIS classes. Students are encouraged to take a variety of History courses and to pursue research topics that have a legal and/or constitutional history focus. Neither the History Department nor the Law School can guarantee the availability of any required or elective course in any given semester.

History MA Requirements:
Methods and Research in History
Master's Essay Direction (on a topic related to legal or constitutional history, 3 cr.)
Seminar in Legal History (taken twice with different instructors, 6 cr.)
8 credit hours in LEX electives
At least 10 credit hours in HIS electives
JD Requirements: As specified in the current Graduate Bulletin
Back to top