UT Law and MPAff

Dual Degrees in Law and Public Affairs

In conjunction with the School of Law, students may pursue a four-year dual degree program leading to the degrees of Master of Public Affairs (MPAff) and Doctor of Jurisprudence (J.D.). The program is designed to prepare students for careers at any level of government and in public policy-related areas of the private sector or legal profession.

Program Structure

The program is structured so that students can earn the MPAff and JD degrees simultaneously in four years rather than the five years the two degrees would otherwise require. Degrees are awarded when the required coursework in both schools is completed. In general, dual degree program students progress through the curriculum as follows:

  • Year 1: Full academic year in either school
  • Year 2: Full academic year in the school not attended in Year I, followed by a required summer internship with a governmental agency or other organization with a substantial public policy interest 
  • Year 3: Coursework in both schools 
  • Year 4: Coursework in both schools, including the preparation of a master's professional report 

Degree Requirements

Students must complete a minimum of 33 LBJ School credit hours and 70 credit hours in Law, including all the first-year core courses in each school. The 3-hour master's professional report is written under the supervision of both schools.

Public Affairs 

  • 21 hours of required public affairs core courses
  • 6 hours Policy Research Project
  • 3 hours professional report
  • 3 hours public affairs electives
  • Summer internship

Law 

70 hours, including eight first-year law courses, required courses in professional responsibility and advanced constitutional law, a writing seminar and approximately 30 hours of law electives, including six credits of electives designated as experiential.