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JD/MA with the Department of Political Science

Politics and the law meet at an increasingly busy intersection. A strong navigator is on track for a career in the public policy sector or a law practice involving government agencies. The JD/MA dual-degree program offered by the School of Law and the Department of Political Science gives you the opportunity to combine the study of law with an exploration of the political context within which legal systems operate.

You will achieve all learning outcomes of both the JD and MA in Political Science degrees. Your studies in each program will be enhanced by designing a curriculum tailored to your interests and career goals.

Curriculum

You will work with your advisors to plot your course sequence based on admission time, career goals, and course availability. Here is a sample plan:

Year One

Fall and Spring Semesters

Full time Law Program, 29-30 credits

Year Two

Fall Term

8-10 credits of Law School coursework

  • Advocacy
  • Elective courses
6 credits of Political Science coursework
  • Research Design
  • Political Analysis I

Spring Term

9-11 credits of Law School elective coursework

6 credits of Political Science coursework

  • Political Analysis II
  • Course in Comparative Politics or International Relations

Year Three

Fall Term

12-14 credits of Law School coursework

3 credits of Political Science coursework (course in American Politics)

Spring Term

12-14 credits of Law School elective coursework

3 credits of Political Science coursework (course in American Politics or Political Theory) and written comprehensive examination

Degree Requirements

To earn a dual JD/MA in Political Science degree, you must complete a total of 96 credit hours, including 78 law school credit hours and 18 credit hours of political science credit. The dual degree can be completed in three years of concentrated study. You will spend your first year as a full-time law student. JD foundational course requirements and skills and experiential course requirements will be taken in the second and third years, concurrent with political science coursework. You must also pass a comprehensive examination in political science.

Admission

Students admitted to the School of Law are admitted automatically to the JD/MA dual-degree program in political science. Law students interested in the dual-degree program should complete an application for admission to the Graduate School and include a copy of the letter of admission to the School of Law.

Tuition and Fees

The School of Law and Loyola's Office of Student Financial Assistance are committed to helping students secure the necessary financial resources to make their legal education at Loyola affordable.

With proper planning, dual-degree students can benefit from adjustments to their tuition. The University's Student Business Office will calculate the tuition of each dual degree student. School of Law financial awards are applied to School of Law tuition only.

FAQs

Why would I want to consider a dual degree program?

By pursuing two degrees through the dual degree program, you may obtain both degrees simultaneously in less time than if you pursued the degrees separately. The dual JD/MA in Political Science program prepares students for careers in the public sector or law practices involving administrative agencies or processes, by combining the study of law with an exploration of the political context within which domestic and international legal systems operate. JD/MA students have gone on to pursue careers in politics, government, international affairs, law, the non-profit sector, journalism, business, education, and social services.

How does the academic advising system work?

At the School of Law, each dual degree student will be matched with an appropriate law school professor who will serve as the academic advisor for the student. Advising with respect to the MA program will be coordinated with the Department of Political Science.

What are the prerequisites for a dual degree?

Dual degree students must be admitted to each school. Once admitted to the School of Law, students complete their first year law courses. If you begin coursework in the political science program first, the School of Law will accept credits for non-law courses taken during the summer before your first year of law courses.

When do I need to do when I decide to enter the program?

Individuals admitted to the School of Law should declare their dual degree status at the earliest possible time:

  • Upon admission (at the Office of Admissions)
  • Upon entry into the law school (at the School of Law)
  • Later in your law studies (at the School of Law Registrar)
Students may be permitted to enter a dual degree program as late as the beginning of their final year of law studies, however they may not be eligible for the full range of benefits of the program. Students will not be permitted to enter a dual degree program in their final semester. In all cases, dual degree students must alert the School of Law's Office of Financial Aid.