1. University of Virginia
  2. Arts & Sciences

JD-MA in Law and English

Graduate Record 2012-13, Entry for JD-MA Degree (revised) :

The Law School offers programs in conjunction with the University’s Graduate School of Arts & Sciences that lead to the J.D. and the Master of Arts degrees. You may apply for admission to receive the M.A. in English, history, philosophy or government and foreign affairs. You must be admitted separately to both the Law School and the program of your choice in the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences, and credits may be double-counted toward your degree, depending on the program.

• English The J.D.-M.A. Program in English was instituted in 1994 by the School of Law and the Department of English.

Administration of the Program Management of the program and advising of participant students are entrusted in the Law School side to Professor George Rutherglen, and in the Department of English to its director of graduate studies.

Admission to the Program Students are required to secure admission separately to the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and the Law School through the normal admissions processes in the two schools. Students must meet the same standards as any other applicant, and candidacy for the joint program is not considered at this stage. Once admitted to the two schools, the student may apply to the Program Committee for admission to the combined program. Students may seek admission to the Graduate School and initiate the dual-degree program after they have begun matriculating in the Law School. Graduate Admissions | Law School Admissions

Curriculum The joint J.D.-M.A. program normally takes four years to complete. It may be possible to complete the program in less time, however, by carrying a higher than average load. In brief, the program consists of the complete first-year program in the School of Law, followed by three years of courses taken from the curricula of the two schools and, in appropriate cases, from other graduate offerings at the University.

Students are required to meet all of the requirements set by the respective departments for the award of both the J.D. and the M.A. degrees. In the School of Law this means that the student must complete the required curriculum, meet minimum academic standards, and earn a minimum of 86 credits and six residency semesters in the School of Law. In the English department, requirements for the M.A. degree vary from program to program. There are currently two: the M.A. in English and the M.A. in English and Medieval Studies. The programs’ different requirements appear in the department’s regulations for graduate studies, and all applicants should thoroughly familiarize themselves with these rules.

With the approval of the Law School representative on the program committee, students may receive up to 12 of 86 credits required for their J.D. degree in appropriate graduate-level work in the Department of English or other departments at the University. Graduate school courses in literary theory or cultural studies are the most likely candidates for such credit; Law School credit is not usually given for literature courses. When directly relevant to a particular student’s Law School program of study, however, the Law School representative may grant Law School credit for literature courses containing a significant component of cultural studies, literary theory, or cultural, intellectual, or social history. In all cases, the Law School representative must approve credit for any English course taken outside the School of Law before the student takes the course. Similarly, with the approval of the director of graduate studies of the English Department, a student may receive up to nine of the credits required for the M.A. in appropriate work in the School of Law. Whether a student may receive the full nine credits varies from program to program within the English department.

Change of Status At any point in the program, the student may terminate plans for a joint program and continue towards a single degree at either school. The student then must satisfy the normal requirements of the school elected, which may include credits completed in the other school, as determined by the appropriate officials.

Financial Aid During the first year, financial aid is available to law students on the usual basis by application to the School of Law. Financial aid during remaining years may be available from each school under that school’s normal procedures in proportion to the number of credits taken in each school and depending on the availability of assistance.

Tuition and Fees During the first year of the program, the student is treated for these purposes as a regularly matriculated student at the School of Law. During the remaining years, the student pays the higher of the tuitions of the two schools, plus the required fees, plus the special fees exacted by both schools. For any semester during which a student is in full-time residence in the Department of English, however, he or she is treated for these purposes as a regular student in that department.

Extracurricular Activities The student is eligible to participate in the extracurricular activities of both schools to the extent that time permits, but should be alert to the possibility of over-commitment, and should seek the counsel of the program committee before undertaking any formal extracurricular activities of a time-consuming nature.

Grading Standards The student is required to meet the grading standards of both schools independently to remain in good standing.

For More Information Contact the Law School faculty advisor, Professor George Rutherglen.