Joint MPA/JD | Political Science | SIU

Southern Illinois University



College of Liberal Arts

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Joint MPA/JD

The School of Law and the MPA Program allow students to study concurrently for the MPA and JD degrees. Students interested in pursuing careers in government agencies and for nonprofit organizations will greatly benefit from this dual degree education. Employment opportunities include State Attorney General offices, municipal legal affairs departments and national agencies such as the EPA or NASA.

The student must be admitted separately by the two programs but may apply some course work toward both degrees. This reduces the time necessary to receive both degrees by approximately one semester.  


The SIU School of Law is a 90-hour degree program while the MPA Program is 40 hours.  The School of Law applies 9 hours of coursework taken in the MPA Program to its 90-hour requirement.  The MPA Program applies 3 hours of law school classes toward its 40-credit hours.  Graduate students register as law students with a minor in public administration.

In addition, concurrent study students must complete either the MPA internship or the applied study project, as well as a comprehensive exam. To earn a concurrent MPA/JD degree, a student cannot graduate from one program before completing the other.


Law students should make their interest in the concurrent degree program known to the SIU Carbondale School of Law Registrar during or after completion of the first year of law school.  Applications are made to the School of Law Registrar directly.

Students interested in pursuing the concurrent law and MPA degrees should consult with the MPA program director or MPA field representative for advice on an appropriate program of study.  The combined application to apply to the MPA Program and Graduate School can be found at: