The LSU Law Center and the LSU School of Social Work offer a dual degree program through which a student may receive both a Juris Doctor (J.D.) and a Master of Social Work (M.S.W.) degree. Students successfully completing the dual degree program receive two separate degrees: a J.D. awarded by the Law Center and a M.S.W. awarded by the School of Social Work.
Although the two programs remain independent, the dual degree program accelerates the completion of both degrees because of each school’s recognition of credit hours earned for course work completed in the School of Social Work as elective credits toward the J.D. degree and the School of Social Work accepts 9 credit hours completed in the Law Center as elective credits toward the M.S.W. The recognition of concurrent credit allows students to earn both degrees in approximately four years of full-time study (including summers).
Students wishing to participate in this program must meet the admission requirements for both the Law Center and the School of Social Work. Students must apply separately to the LSU Graduate School and the LSU Law Center, with appropriate LSAT scores provided. Students may begin the program in either the Law Center or the School of Social Work, but students must complete both the first year of the J.D. program at the Law Center and the first year of the M.S.W. program at the School of Social Work during the first two years of study. Thereafter, students may take a combination of Law and Social Work courses, provided that they meet the degree requirements of each program.
Students participating in this program are required to complete a graduate thesis in the School of Social Work. Students may fulfill the Law Center’s upperclass writing requirement with the satisfactory completion of a graduate thesis on a topic with a substantial legal component. Satisfaction of the upperclass writing requirement in this manner requires advance permission of the Law Center’s Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. In addition, at least one member of the Law Center faculty must serve on the committee under whose direction the thesis is completed. Students whose theses do not involve a substantial legal component must fulfill the upperclass writing requirement in the Law Center’s prescribed manner.