Law and Public Administration: JD/MPA

The Washington College of Law (WCL) and AU's School of Public Affairs (SPA) jointly offer a dual degree program designed for students interested in examining the integral relationship of law to public administration and management. This unique combination of degrees is especially attractive for students intending to use their law degrees in the political, government or non-profit realms. The program provides a broad theoretical grounding in public administration and management, while also providing students with a practical education in the analysis and implementation of policy and law at all levels of government.

The program is designed such that both degrees can be completed in eight semesters, for a total of 104 credit hours.

Admission to the Program

Candidates for the dual JD/MPA must satisfy the admission requirements of both the School of Public Affairs (SPA) and the Washington College of Law (WCL) to be admitted into this dual degree program. SPA accepts LSAT scores in place of the GRE normally required for admission. For entering law students, applications for this program are first reviewed by the law school. Upon admission to the law school, the application is forwarded to the School of Public Affairs for that school’s review and decision. Students may begin their studies in SPA after completing one year or the equivalent of full-time study at WCL; currently enrolled law students may apply to SPA during their studies at the law school.

Admission to either WCL or SPA does not guarantee admission to the other. Students who have been admitted to the MPA program may apply to WCL. For specific admission criteria employed by SPA, see the graduation admission and degree requirements for the Master of Public Administration.

•104 credit hours of approved graduate work (if earned as separate degrees, students must complete 42 credit hours for the MPA degree and 86 credit hours to earn the JD degree; however, dual-degree students may apply up to 18 credits from WCL courses to the MPA and up to 6 credits from SPA courses to the JD)

•Comprehensive written examination

•The research requirement is satisfied by completing two of the following courses with grades of B or better:
•PUAD-605 Problem Solving for Managers or PUAD-601 Methods of Problem Solving I
•PUAD-610 Management Analysis
•PUAD-630 Public Managerial Economics
•LAW-516 Legal Rhetoric I and LAW-517 Legal Rhetoric II (4)

Course Requirements
•PUAD-605 Problem Solving for Managers (3) or PUAD-601 Methods of Problem Solving I (3)

•PUAD-610 Management Analysis (3)

•PUAD-612 Public Administration in the Policy Process (3)

•PUAD-630 Public Managerial Economics (3)

•PUAD-653 The Individual and the Organization (3)

•Two courses from the following:
•PUAD-609 Topics in Public Management (3)
•PUAD-611 Government and Non-Profit Institutions (3) or PUAD-696 ITEC 636 MIS for Public/Nonprofit Organizations (3)
•PUAD-615 Public-Private Partnerships (3)
•PUAD-617 Project Management (3)
•PUAD-650 Leadership in a Changing Workplace (3)
•PUAD-652 Facilitation and Team Development (3)
•PUAD-665 Human Resource Management Strategies

•One WCL course, if pre-approved by MPA Advisor
•One course in public finance, budgeting or financial management from the following, with other options provided by the MPA advisor: PUAD-631 Financing Government Services (A or B) (3); PUAD-632 Budget and Cost Analysis (3); or PUAD-633 Financial Aspects of Public Management (3)

•Area of concentration (15-18 credit hours)
Students should consult their MPA advisor about selection of these courses. This requirement may be completed through courses at the law school, so long as the approved SPA graduate credits add up to at least 24. Students may also design their own concentration by consulting with faculty and their academic advisor. Areas include: law and government; public financial management; state and local administration; international management; policy analysis; human resource management; policy analysis; human resource management; arts management; non-profit management; informational systems management; management consulting; and public management.

Students just beginning their careers are strongly encouraged to participate in a supervised internship through either the Department of Public Administration and Policy or the Law School.

Required Law Coursework
•LAW-601 Administrative Law (3-4)
•Completion of 80 credits of coursework required for the JD