J.D. Program

Dual Degrees

Increasingly legal employers are hiring candidates with advanced credentials in their specific areas of practice. At BU Law, you can gain a leg up on the competition—not to mention, enrich your studies—by pursuing one of 18 dual degrees, including five international programs. And because these programs are offered in conjunction with other Boston University graduate schools and through unique partnerships with international institutions, you can earn both your JD and your other advanced degree in as few as six semesters.

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Dual Degree Programs with Boston University:

JD/LLM in Banking & Financial Law

Though Dodd-Frank's effects have yet to be fully realized, one thing is certain: financial service lawyers will have tremedous opportunities in the near future. Students in BU Law's renowned Banking & Financial Law Program are learning the intracacies of this new legislation at the same as practicing professionals, as well as industry fundamentals, preparing them to succeed in an exciting career from the moment they graduate.

Highly motivated students can complete both the JD and an LLM in Banking & Financial Law on an accelerated basis through the six-semester or seven-semester enrollment options by taking qualifying courses during the second and third years of the JD program.

Students complete the following prerequisite courses in the JD program:

  • Corporations
  • Commercial Code or a combination of Negotiable Instruments and Secured Transactions or Sales and Secured Transactions
  • Government Regulation of Banking

In addition to the prerequisite courses, students in the accelerated program earn credit hours from the following courses and seminars:

  • Government Regulation of Banking
  • Insurance Law
  • International Business Transactions
  • International Commercial Arbitration
  • International Trade Law
  • Mutual Funds
  • Securities Regulation
  • Tax Aspects of International Banking

Learn more about the LLM in Banking & Financial Law.


JD/MA in English

"Law and literature" is an established scholarly field, the study of which can significantly benefit a student, regardless of his or her career path. Students who intend to practice law will benefit from the careful, critical approach to textual analysis taught in graduate literature courses, as well as enhanced writing skills, which are essential to law practice. Similarly, a student pursuing a career outside law, such as teaching literature, will benefit from the rigorous specialized training in the analysis of legal texts and issues that a JD degree provides.

The dual degree program, available through a partnership with the Graduate Program in English and American Literature, facilitates inquiry into the common terrain of the law and literature, including textual analysis and interpretative techniques, legal and literacy theory, rhetoric, and the role of law in literature.

JD/MA in English students can complete both the juris doctor and master of arts degrees in as few as six semesters—as opposed to the eight necessary to obtain each independently.

Learn more about the JD/MA in English.


JD/MA in History

The JD/MA in History facilitates inquiry at the two fields' intersection in legal history and can can improve students’ chances of securing academic appointments in law schools and, for those who pursue the PhD in history, in history departments. But whether interested in academia, legal work, or a different career path altogether, this dual degree program will enhance critical analytical and writing skills and offer a broader array of coursework than either degree independently.

Students can complete the JD/MA in History in six semesters, as some courses can be counted toward both degrees, thanks to a partnership with BU's Department of History. Required history courses include:

  • European Historiography
  • American Historiography
  • African Historiography
  • The Historian’s Craft

Learn more about the JD/MA in History.


JD/MA in International Relations

Recognizing the expanding role of international law and the increasing interrelationship between law and international affairs, the School of Law and the Boston University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GRS), Pardee School of Global Studies offer a JD/MA in International Relations. This course of study provides an essential background for those assuming international positions in national governments or international agencies, and it gives the international lawyer an essential perspective on the environment in which he or she will operate.

Students can complete the dual degree program in just seven semesters, taking the perscribed first-year foundational law school curriculum followed by a combination of law and IR courses in the remaining five semesters.

Learn more about the JD/MA in International Relations.


JD/MBA in Law & Health Sector Management

The vibrant and growing field of health care increasingly will require professionals who can navigate both the legal and management nuances of this economic sector. Ownership of electronic medical records, public health and environmental risks, ethics and intellectual property rights involved with gene therapy, and countless other issues demand advanced training, available through unique programs like BU's JD/MBA in Law & Health Sector Management.

Students can earn both the JD and MBA on an accelerated basis—9 semesters, rather than 10—through this dual degree program, offered in conjunction with BU's Questrom School of Business. A sample list of courses includes:

  • Drugs, Devices and Diagnostics: New Challenges, Strategies and Execution
  • Health Services Delivery: Strategies, Solutions and Execution
  • Bench-to-Bedside-Translating Biomedical Innovation from the Laboratory to the Marketplace
  • Health Information Technology
  • Managing and Improving Quality: Six Sigma Green Belt Certification
  • Intellectual Property Strategies in Life Sciences and Technology
  • Starting New Ventures
  • Competition, Innovation and Strategy
  • Health Sector Issues and Opportunities

Learn more about the JD/MBA in Law & Health Sector Management.


JD/MA in Law & Preservation Studies

Preservation studies is a rich integrative field involving individuals, private agencies and government departments operating in the complex areas of zoning, financing and community planning. For over thirty years, BU's Preservation Studies Program has provided the interdisciplinary training necessary for the effective and judicious management of cultural resources. Now highly qualified law students may apply to receive both a JD and MA in Preservation Studies in just seven semesters (as opposed to nine) through a School of Law/American & New England Studies Program partnership.

This dual degree program blends academic training and hands-on experience—including a three-month paid summer internship—to give students a well-rounded experience in the field. Specifically designed preservation courses in historic building conservation, preservation management, adaptive use of older buildings, and neighborhood conservation are combined with in-depth training in such fields as architectural history, archaeology, material culture, decorative arts, urban history and geography, urban affairs, and law.

Learn more about the JD/MA in Law & Preservation Studies.


Accelerated Three-Year JD/MBA in Law & Management

Fast-track your professional career in our Accelerated Three-Year JD/MBA dual degree program. Acquire both credentials in the same amount of time as a JD degree alone, while setting yourself up for career opportunities in the corporate, legal and public interest sectors. Take a full load of courses over seven semesters, including the summer following your first year, while taking advantage of all that BU Law has to offer in its clinics, law journals, Transactional Law concentration, and On-Campus Interviewing program. And you will still have the summer after you second year to complete an internship in a law firm or other legal setting.

Learn more about the Accelerated Three-Year JD/MBA


JD/MBA in Law & Management

The worlds of law and business are more intertwined than ever, and attaining successful management results requires careful attention to legal and regulatory issues, often on a global scale. The JD/MBA in Law and Management provides the legal and analytical tools for results-oriented decision-making. Graduates of this program go on to work in law firms that have corporate legal practices, join the in-house legal departments of corporations, enter investment banking or financial services, or advise start-up companies.

Because BU's School of Law and Questrom School of Business share many areas of focus, students can complete both degrees in four years rather than the usual five.

Learn more about the JD/MBA in Law & Management.


JD/MS in Mass Communications

jason zedeckThe growth of new communication technologies has created a need for lawyers with special training in the technological, marketing, and legal changes brought about by a wide spectrum of new media. Recognizing the dramatic impact of these changes, BU's School of Law and the College of Communication offer a dual degree program that allows the student to acquire a law degree and a master’s degree in mass communication (normally a three-year plus a year-and-a-half sequence) in an accelerated program of seven semesters.

Graduates of the program work as in-house counsel for new communication technologies companies, serve with government agencies concerned with communications law, or work with law firms practicing in that field. This program also provides a solid grounding for future journalists who wish to report on legal affairs.

Learn more about the JD/MS in Mass Communications.


JD/MD in Law & Medicine

The complex interactions of medicine and law combined with changes to health policy and government regulation and mandates have created a need for individuals trained in the nuances of each of the areas. Today those trained as both physicians and lawyers may find themselves at the juncture of these forces. Career paths for those holding both degrees may include working in health care administration, on a wide array of health law issues including legislation and programs to end health disparities, on intellectual property issues related to medical research and technologies, or in areas such as medical licensing.

Students earn both degrees one year sooner than they would if they pursued them independently. They complete the first three years of the medical school curriculum, then spend their fourth and fifth years fully integrated into the JD program at the School of Law. They fulfill their remaining medical and law course requirements in the sixth year of the program.

The program is conducted under the auspices of both Schools with simultaneous admission to both required for acceptance into the program. Matriculating students will be advised by faculty members from both Schools. Consistent with other JD/MD programs, over the six years students will complete the required coursework in both schools. This will begin with the first three years of medical school, including the eight core clerkships, to gain a foundation of clinical medicine. It then will proceed with the required 58 credits of courses in law over the next two years, and in the final year combine medicine and law electives consistent with the area of concentration of the student’s choice.

Students will pay tuition to the School of Medicine during years 1-3 and fall of year 6, and to the School of Law during years 4 and 5 and the spring of year 6. They will be eligible for financial aid through the law school during years 4 and 5 and the spring of year 6.

Learn more about the JD/MD in Law & Medicine.


JD/MA in Philosophy

Public life in constitutional democracies depends on a theoretical understanding of the nature and application of law—the focus of the dual degree in Law & Philosophy offered by BU Law and BU's Department of Philosophy.

Students can earn the JD/MA in Philosophy in as few as six semesters by taking courses in both the law school and philosophy department and by completing a master's thesis.

Learn more about the JD/MA in Philosophy.


JD/MPH in Law & Public Health

Just as law is central to protecting public health, knowledge of public health disciplines is essential to today’s health law practice. Protecting and enhancing the health of populations, as well as individuals, demands multidisciplinary training to identify and resolve complex problems of major social and economic importance. The JD/MPH program is designed to train qualified students for leadership roles in both the public and private sectors. Graduates of the program enter careers in federal and state government agencies and legislative offices, private law practices, universities, hospitals, insurers, biotechnology companies, and non-profit organizations.

The University’s outstanding faculty and research resources—including the country’s largest concentration of health law faculty and courses—provide a rigorous, integrated curriculum in law and public health. BU Law's top-5 program in health law, as ranked by U.S. News & World Report, complements BU's School of Public Health curriculum, which explores the nature and context of public health programs and the organizational, behavioral, legal and bureaucratic constraints they face. Students concentrate on:

  • developing and disseminating information on health and illness in various populations
  • recognizing the importance of psychological and social factors in illness and well-being
  • controlling and improving the physical environments in which people live and work
  • interpreting and implementing the results of research investigations and other scientific and statistical information
  • understanding and influencing governmental health policy and regulation
  • designing more effective and efficient methods for planning and delivering health care services.

Successful candidates receive the JD degree followed by the MPH—a sequence that can be completed in as few as seven semesters, rather than the minimum four and one-half years required to obtain each degree independently.

Please note: The MPH degree program will be modified for Fall 2016. Please check back for more details.

Learn more about the JD/MPH.


JD/LLM in Taxation

Employers seeking help in the tax area are increasingly citing the LLM in Taxation degree as a prerequisite. As one of the premier tax programs in the country—ranked 7th in the nation by U.S. News in 2016—BU Law's program offers an ideal balance between tax law theory and practical application. The breadth of the curriculum allows students either to gain exposure to all areas of taxation or to specialize in a particular area, such as business organizations and transactions, estate planning and wealth management, or international tax.

Highly motivated students can complete both the JD and an LLM in Taxation on an accelerated basis through the six-semester or seven-semester enrollment options by taking qualifying courses during the second and third years of the JD program.

Learn more about the JD/LLM in Taxation.


International Dual Degree Programs:

JD/LLM in Asian Legal Studies (Singapore)

The dual degree in Asian legal studies, the first of its kind among U.S. law schools, enables students in the program to complete a full year of study at the National University of Singapore (NUS). Through this program abroad, qualified 3L students have the opportunity to receive both the JD degree from BU School of Law and an LLM in Asian Legal Studies from NUS.

Ranked as one of the top-30 universities in the world by Times Higher Education, NUS affords students the unique opportunity to study in a city, island and country all at the same time. As Southeast Asia's legal and business hub, Singapore allows students to immerse themselves in international business and finance topics that relate to the region's rapidly growing economies.

The program, taught entirely in English, allows students to study in-depth the laws, legal systems, institutions and legal traditions of South, Southeast, and East Asia, and to focus on particular areas of law (e.g., commercial law, constitutional law and international law) as these are treated across Asia.

A selection of Specialized Asian Legal Studies courses offered at NUS includes:

  • Chinese Corporate and Securities Law
  • Comparative Constitutional Law
  • Competition Law in Asia
  • Human Rights in Asia
  • Law and Development in China
  • Law, Governance & Development in Asia
  • Ocean Law & Policy in Asia

Learn more about the JD/LLM in Asian Legal Studies.


JD/LLM in Chinese Law (Beijing)

josh katzBU Law students can take advantage of a unique opportunity to earn a JD degree from BU School of Law and an LLM in Chinese Law from Tsinghua University in just seven semesters. Students complete one fall semester in Tsinghua's LLM in Chinese Law Program—an English language program focusing exclusively on Chinese law and China's legal system—and one of the first of its kind in mainland China. After graduating from BU Law and within two years of your participation in the fall program, you can return to Tsinghua to earn your LLM degree.

Located in China's capital city, Tsinghua Law School has long been regarded as one of the top law faculties in the country, as well as one of the top 50 universities in the world, according to Times Higher Education rankings. The LLM program has a truly international feel, as all students come from foreign countries (not just the US), and many of the program’s faculty members have studied outside of China.

Learn more about the JD/LLM in Chinese Law.


JD/LLM in European Law (Paris)

parisStudents can now spend their entire third year abroad in Paris to graduate with a JD degree from BU Law and an LLM in European Law from the Université Panthéon-Assas (Paris II) in Paris, renowned for its excellence in international and comparative law.

Participants will take classes taught in English from Paris II's European College of Paris. Courses may include:

  • The Institutional and Decision-making Structure of the European Union
  • History of the European idea
  • Free Movement of Goods, Capital and Services
  • Competition
  • Company Law and Financial Markets
  • Private International Law and Commercial Dispute Resolution
  • Labour Law
  • Intellectual Property
  • Environmental Law
  • External Relations
  • Consumer Law
  • Human Rights

Learn more about the JD/LLM in European Law.


JD/LLM in Finance (Frankfurt)

Third-year students seeking to gain practical experience and advanced training in international financial services law have the unique opportunity to earn an LLM in Finance from the Institute for Law and Finance (ILF), one of Europe’s leading institutions for financial law studies, in Frankfurt, Germany. At the end of a full-year of coursework, BU Law students receive the BU JD degree and, upon completing the ILF program’s thesis requirement, an LLM in Finance from Goethe University, of which the ILF is a part. Specialized courses—taught in English by academics and experienced practitioners from Europe’s legal and financial world—cover the economic, transactional, and regulatory aspects of the global financial service industry. As part of the ILF’s LLM program, all students pursue six- to eight-week internships during the spring semester, arranged by the ILF, at prominent financial institutions in Frankfurt and elsewhere in Germany.


JD/LLM in International and European Business Law (Madrid)

madridStudents have the opportunity to receive both the J.D. degree from BU School of Law and an LL.M. in International and European Business Law from the Universidad Pontificia Comillas de Madrid (ICADE) by spending their 3L year abroad.

Since ICADE’s founding in 1956, the teaching of law at Comillas has been closely tied to the teaching of business and economics. Today, the Faculty of Law (Facultad de Derecho) at ICADE is still known for its focus on commercial law. One of the most attractive features of ICADE is its student-centered approach. The school’s philosophy is reminiscent of BU Law’s: the faculty is accessible and the administration is supportive. All visiting exchange students meet one-on-one with the vice dean and a faculty advisor to develop a customized study plan.

The year-long program, taught entirely in English, is focused on educating and preparing highly skilled legal professionals to fully understand the rules governing international business and the internal EU market. Students enrolled in this program will study four “modules,” in-depth, throughout their year at ICADE:

  • The institutional framework for EU business affairs
  • EU and international business regulation
  • EU market regulation International
  • and EU legal practice and enforcement.

The following list includes just a few of the many specialized courses offered through the International and European Business Law Program at ICADE:

  • International and EU Trade Law
  • EU Tax Law and International Tax Planning
  • International Contracts in the EU
  • EU Cross-Border Corporate and Financial Crime
  • EU Competition, IP and Trademark Law
  • Commercial Arbitration and Alternative Dispute Resolution
  • Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Legal Documents in the EU

Learn more about the JD/LLM in International and European Business Law.