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JD/MA in Diplomacy and International Commerce

If you are interested in a career in international law, public or private, in international business or in government service in the international sector, you should consider the JD/MA dual degree program offered by the University of Kentucky's Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce and the UK College of Law.

UK's JD/MA dual degree program is one of very few such programs in the country. The program enables you to gain both degrees in a total time period of 3 to 4 years. Graduates of the JD/MA dual degree program will have a significant advantage in today's global economy and in the practice of international law.

UK's Masters in Diplomacy and International Commerce (MA) degree is a three-semester, 30-hour degree program that is offered through UK's Graduate School. The Juris Doctor (JD) Degree is a three-year, 90-hour degree program of the UK College of Law that is accredited by the ABA. Under the dual degree program, each school accepts some credits earned in the other school, allowing you to complete the JD/MA degree after only 21 credit hours of Patterson School course work and 87 credit hours of Law course work.

 

Program of Study

To earn the JD/MA joint degree, you must satisfy the requirements of both the Patterson School and the College of Law. From the perspective of the Patterson School program, approved JD course work relating to international law satisfies 9 hours of electives toward the Masters degree. From the College of Law perspective, approved course work in the Patterson School satisfies 3 hours of electives toward the JD degree. You are expected to complete this dual program of study in four years or less.

Once admitted, you may elect to begin course work in either the Patterson School or the College of Law. In order to avoid scheduling conflicts, you are advised not to mix Patterson School and College of Law classes during any one semester.

You may follow one of two tracks:

 

Track A

Year 1: 21 - 24 credit hours of required courses at the Patterson School.
Year 2: 29 credit hours of required first-year Law courses, including Legal Research & Writing.
Years 3 & 4: Law electives. During years 3 and 4, you must take Professional Responsibility (Law 835), complete a substantial writing project as required by the College of Law and take at least 3 law electives that have an international orientation, as determined by the Patterson School. You may take the Patterson School comprehensive exams in the same semester that you are taking the final law course required for the Patterson School or later, but not before.

 

Track B

Year 1: 29 credit hours of required first-year Law courses, including Legal Research & Writing.
Year 2: 21 - 24 credit hours of required courses at the Patterson School.
Years 3 & 4: Law electives. During years 3 and 4, you must take Professional Responsibility (Law 835), complete a substantial writing project as required by the College of Law and take at least 3 law electives that have an international orientation, as determined by the Patterson School. You may take the Patterson School comprehensive exams in the same semester that you are taking the final law course required for the Patterson School or later, but not before.

 

Admissions

To be admitted to the JD/MA dual degree program you must apply independently to both the College of Law and the Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce, and meet the admission standards of each. Admission standards will be the same as if you were applying solely to one program however, you should note on all application forms that admission is being sought for the JD/MA dual degree program. The dual degree program is not suitable for part-time MA students. There is no part-time program at the College of Law.

If you are currently enrolled in either the College of Law or the Patterson School, you can be considered for admission to the JD/MA dual degree program. You will be eligible for consideration as a current student only if you have completed no more than one full-time semester in either program. Your application for admission must be accepted by the program in which you are not enrolled. The JD/MA dual degree program is not available if you already have earned one of the degrees.

 

Advising

The Director of Graduate Studies of the Patterson School and the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs of the College of Law serve as an advising team for you, each in their respective schools.

 

Student Status

During your period of study in the Patterson School, you will have graduate student status and must comply with the rules and regulations of the Graduate School. Your student fees/tuition will be paid at graduate school rates.

During your period of study in the College of Law, you will have law student status and must comply with the rules and regulations of the College of Law. Your student fees/tuition will be paid at law school rates. Eligibility of law students for the law journals, Moot Court, Order of the Coif, and other College of Law activities and honors are determined at the discretion of the College of Law.

 

Graduation Requirements

Grade Point Average 

Grade point averages for both programs are calculated independently by the College of Law and the Graduate School. You must satisfy the College of Law requirement of maintaining a minimum GPA of 2.00 for course work counted toward the JD degree. MA courses accepted for law school credit are assigned a pass/fail grade. The Graduate School requires a minimum of a 3.00 GPA on course work counted toward the MA. Additionally, a C is the lowest passing grade accepted by the Graduate School, and students with three Cs will be dismissed from the MA program.

 

Comprehensive Examination

As a JD/MA student you will be eligible to sit for final comprehensive examinations for the MA degree during the semester that you take your final classes for the MA degree, including the required classes at the College of Law.

 

Granting of JD/MA Degrees

Upon satisfactory completion of all degree requirements of both schools, you will be granted both the JD and MA degrees.

 

Failure to Complete JD/MA Requirements

The JD/MA dual degree is granted only upon successful completion of all course work and examinations.

If you find it impossible to complete the law component, you will have the option of completing the standard MA program requirements and receiving only the MA degree.

College of Law credit given for MA course work is provisional upon your completion of the dual degree program. If you are unable to complete the MA requirements, you will have the option of completing the JD program requirements and receiving only the JD degree, but you will not be credited with any hours of MA course work toward the JD degree.

 

Application Process

To apply, send a Graduate School application, official GRE scores, two official transcripts from each undergraduate school attended, the application fee and official TOEFL scores (for international students) to:

Graduate School Admissions
201 Gillis
University of Kentucky
Lexington, KY 40506-0033
Phone: (859) 257-4613
Fax: (859) 323-1928

You also need to send a Patterson School application, four letters of recommendation, copies of transcripts for all institutions attended, and copies of your GRE/ TOEFL scores by February 1 to:

Director of Graduate Studies
The Patterson School
455 Patterson Office Tower
University of Kentucky
Lexington, KY 40506-0027
Phone: (859) 257-4666

You also will need to arrange for an on-site or telephone interview with Patterson School officials by no later than February 1.

For the College of Law, you need to follow the admissions guidelines as set forth on this web site and in our admissions Bulletin.