Law and Public Policy (JD/MPP)
The University of Michigan School of Law and the Ford School of Public Policy offer a joint degree program, leading to the Juris Doctor (JD) and Master of Public Policy (MPP) degrees. The joint program takes four years to complete by allowing students to reduce the total number of credit hours required for both degrees by double counting 27 credit hours.
This program is designed primarily for persons seeking responsible policy and administrative positions in the public sector. The program is highly selective, admitting only three or four students a year.
Many Michigan JD/MPP students pursue the joint degrees because of an interest in joining a government relations law practice or other policy-oriented organization. One Michigan law student had the opportunity to test his interest via a summer internship in Washington, D.C., during which he worked with attorneys who represented a major manufacturing firm in the reauthorization of the Clean Air Act. As an intern, he was able to demonstrate skills in statistics, economics, and quantitative analysis that most law students lack.
Course of Study
The normal sequence of studies is one year full-time in the Law School, completing required first-year courses, and one year full-time in the Ford School. These two years are followed by two years of mixed enrollment. When courses from both schools are taken in one term, tuition will be assessed at either the Law School or the Rackham rate, whichever is higher.
Students admitted to this joint degree program must satisfy the following:
Juris Doctor (JD):
- Students entering the Law School must complete the required first-year law curriculum.
- With the exception of a small number of joint degree students who are currently completing their requirements for graduation, students admitted to the Law School prior to May 2005 are required to earn a minimum of 80 credits toward the J.D. degree, at least 64 of which must be earned in regularly scheduled Law School courses.
- Students admitted to the Law School in May 2005 or later must earn a minimum of 82 credits toward the J.D., at least 64 of which must be earned in regularly scheduled Law School courses.
- Law students are required to complete a seminar, a course in professional responsibility, transnational law, and an upper-class writing requirement.
- Nine (9) credit hours may be taken from the satisfaction of requirements for the M.P.P. Law School credit for non-law courses should be requested via completion of the External Enrollment Form, a link to which is located on the CTools site for joint degree students. When completing the form, students should indicate that they are joint degree students in the "Comments" section of the form.
Students will not receive credit towards the JD for non-law course work taken prior to admission at the law school.
Master of Public Policy (MPP):
- 30 hour core public policy courses
- 18 credits that may be satisfied by appropriate courses taken in the Law
School (excluding first-year Law School courses)
- A ten week public sector internship with a governmental agency, law firm,
or other organization which has a substantial interest in the public sector,
customarily undertaken during the summer following the second year of academic
- Participation in the Integrated Policy Exercise
- *Beginning with the entering class of September 2012 and for a 2-year trial, students are allowed to replace the second IPE with enrollment in a 1-credit Project Skills Workshop, PubPol 778, which is offered both Fall and Winter semesters. Learn more about the trial.
Students must file separate applications to and be admitted by both schools. An application fee must accompany each application. The LSAT may be submitted in place of the GRE for the Ford School.
The combined degree program is not open to students who have earned either the JD or MPP degree. Students registered in the first year of either program may apply for admission to the joint program in the fall term.
For more information or an application, please contact:
The University of Michigan School of Law
Office of Admissions
Phone: (734) 764-0537
The Ford School of Public Policy
Office of Admissions
2236 Weill Hall
Phone: (734) 764-0453
Click here to e-mail us.