J.D./M.S.W.

 

The S.J. Quinney College of Law and the College of Social Work propose the following program to enable students to pursue both a J.D. degree and an M.S.W. degree simultaneously.

1. Reduction in Overall Credit Requirement

The J.D./M.S.W. program is based on the premise that, because there is complementary intellectual benefit from studying law and social work in a coordinated program, a student enrolled in the dual degree program should be allowed to earn both degrees in less time and with a lower overall credit requirement than a student enrolled in each school or program independently. Accordingly, students enrolled in the dual degree program may count up to 12 credit hours of College of Law course work towards fulfilling the 60 credit-hour requirement of the M.S.W. degree, and may count up to 12 credit hours of M.S.W. course 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.S.W. degree awarded by the College of Social Work.

Because the overall credit requirements for both degrees may be reduced by up to 24 credit hours, a student enrolled in the dual degree program can expect to complete the two degrees in approximately eight semesters of full-time study. However, as noted in § 2.10 below, a student enrolled in the J.D./M.S.W. Dual Degree Program must complete all J.D. and all M.S.W. requirements before either degree will be awarded.

2.  Regulations Governing the J.D./M.S.W. Dual Degree Program

2.1 Application to the J.D./M.S.W. Dual Degree Program

Applicants interested in this program must submit separate admission applications to the College of Law and to the College of Social Work. Each program has its own independent admissions standards, and admission to one program does not ensure admission to the other. However, each program may inform the other when it learns that a prospective student has been admitted to its program.

Applicants interested in pursuing the J.D./M.S.W. dual degree are encouraged to apply to both programs at the same time. Nonetheless, a law student may apply to the M.S.W. program (and thus be eligible to earn a dual degree) prior to completion of the first year of law school. As noted in § 2.2 below, an M.S.W. student who enrolls in the law program after matriculating in the M.S.W. program will have limitations imposed on those M.S.W. credit hours that can count towards the law degree.

2.2 Completion of First Year at the College of Law as Prerequisite for Law Credit for M.S.W. Courses

The College of Law will not give law credit for an M.S.W. course unless the applicant has first successfully completed the first year at the College of Law. This prerequisite means that applicants who start the dual  degree program by doing work in the M.S.W. program before completing the first year of law school must delay taking the specific M.S.W. courses they intend to count towards their 12 hours of law credit until after they complete the first year of law school.

2.3  Enrollment in the J.D./M.S.W. Dual 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.S.W. programs and who wishes to pursue the dual degree program opportunity must file a Dual Degree Enrollment Form with the Registrar of each program. Upon filing this form and its approval by the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Law and the M.S.W. Program Director in the College of Social Work, 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 dual degree program.

2.4 Requirements for Cross-Over Course Credit

A.  To earn academic credit towards a law degree for coursework completed in the M.S.W. program:

  1. an M.S.W. course must be pre-approved by the College of Law Faculty Advisor or be included in a list of pre-approved courses adopted by the College of Law’s Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, and that approval must be indicated on the Request to Count M.S.W. 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 each course.

Pre-approved College of Social Work Courses that may be counted towards J. D. Requirements shall include up to four (4) credits for completion of the Social Work Advanced Field Practicum II, provided the practicum is completed in a pre-approved Law Clinic placement site and meets all requirements for the law school clinic and the M.S.W. field placement.

B.  To earn academic credit towards the M.S.W. degree for coursework completed in the College of Law:

  1. a College of Law course must be pre-approved by the College of Social Work Faculty Advisor or be included in a list of pre-approved courses adopted by the College of Social Work’s MSW Director, and that approval must be indicated on the Request to Count Law Course Credit Toward M.S.W. 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 each course.

In addition to the courses that are pre-approved under 2.4.B.1, the following College of Law courses have been approved for M.S.W. degree credit and can be substituted for M.S.W. courses otherwise required for the M.S.W. degree:

a)      Administrative Law (Law 7300) will exempt the student from the M.S.W requirement of Advanced Social Work Administration/Supervision (3 credits; SW 6132/42/52/62).

b)      A Law Seminar course (Law 7800) will exempt the student from the M.S.W. requirement of Advanced Social Work Policy (3 credits; SW 6231/41/51/61) & Advanced Social Work Research II (2 credits; SW 6432/42/52/62). The student must coordinate with the College of Social Work Faculty Advisor to ensure that the Law Seminar work includes a social policy research focus.

If a student withdraws from either program, only credits completed within the remaining program will count toward that degree. The remaining program may approve credit earned from courses taken in other colleges according to the remaining program’s otherwise applicable policies.

2.5(a)  Notification to Associate Dean for Academic Affairs of Enrollment Only in M.S.W. Courses

A student in the J.D./M.S.W. Dual Degree Program who is enrolled only in M.S.W. courses during any semester shall notify the law school’s Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.

2.5(b)  Notification to M.S.W. Program Manager of Enrollment Only in College of Law Courses

A student in the J.D./M.S.W. Program who is enrolled only in College of Law courses during any semester shall notify the M.S.W. Program Manager.

2.6 M.S.W. Major Research Paper or Thesis

The M.S.W. program does not currently require that a student complete a major research paper. If such a paper is required in the future for completion of the M.S.W. degree, a research paper completed in a College of Law seminar course or other directed research project may satisfy the M.S.W. major research paper requirement if the student’s M.S.W. Faculty Advisor determines that the paper meets the following requirements:

1) The paper written in the law seminar course (Law 7800) meets all criteria for a major research paper set by the M.S.W. 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 social work.

If a student in the M.S.W. program chooses to write a master’s thesis, the M.S.W. program may appoint the student’s College of Law Faculty Advisor as a member of the thesis committee.

2.7 College of Law Writing Requirement

The College of Law writing requirement will not be waived for students in the J.D./M.S.W. Dual Degree Program, and the M.S.W. major research paper will not satisfy this law school requirement. (However, as noted in § 2.6 above, in certain instances the College of Law seminar paper may satisfy the M.S.W. major research requirement.)

2.8 Completion of Both Programs Required for Award of Each Degree

A student enrolled in the J.D./M.S.W. Dual 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.

M.S.W./J.D. Dual Degree

Typical Curriculum and Timeline

 

A student completing courses as indicated below should be able to satisfy both degree requirements in four (4) years. The program will reduce  approximately 24 credits (one full-time year) from completing a two-year M.S.W. program and a three-year J.D. program separately.

Graduation requirements:

College of Social Work:                60 credits

College of Law:                              88 credits

1st Year

College of Law First year courses                                                            30 credits

2nd Year

College of Social Work foundation courses (including practicum)    30 credits

3rd Year

Completion of Social Work 2nd year core requirements

Fall

SW 6431/41/51/61       Advanced SW Research I                                       2 credits

SW 6031/41/51/61       Advanced SW Practice I                                          3 credits

SW 6521                        Advanced Field Placement I                                   4 credits

Spring

SW 6032/42/52/62      Advanced Practice II                                               3 credits

SW 6522                       Advanced Field Placement II                                4 credits

Completion of Constitutional Law II in the College of Law

3rd and 4th Years

Completion of College of Law writing and skills requirements and the Legal Profession course and completion of College of Law and Social Work electives