Dual Degree Programs

Library & Information Science (JD/MLS)

The School of Information Science and Learning Technologies (SISLT) and the School of Law offer an integrated program in which students may obtain both an MA degree in library and information science from SISLT and a JD degree from the School of Law. Although an MA degree in library and information science normally requires two years of study, and a JD requires three, many students will be able to complete the program in four years.

The program outlined here meets requirements for the JD degree with 45credit hours in required courses, 38 credit hours in elective courses within the School of Law, and 6 elective credit hours in library and information science, for a total of 89 credit hours. Requirements for the MA degree in library and information science are met with 36 credit hours of courses within SISLT and 6 elective credit hours within the school of Law. The detailed program of study in library and information science is also subject to approval by the student’s SISLT advisor.

Application Procedure

Applicants to the Dual Degree Program must submit formal applications for admission to the School of Law and to the School of Information Science and Learning Technologies accompanied by a statement requesting permission to pursue the Dual Degree Program. Students must meet the requirements for admission to both programs. Contact the School of Information Science and Learning Technologies, and the School of Law for further information on admissions requirements. Both applications and the request must normally be submitted before a student has substantially completed the requirements of either program. However, petitions requesting admission to the Dual Degree Program from students at more advanced stages in either program will be considered.

Degree Requirement Summary

The program outlined here meets requirements for the JD degree with 83 hours of law credit, and 6 elective credit hours in library science, for a total of 89 credit hours. Requirements for the MLS degree in Library & Information Science are met with 36 credit hours of courses in the School of Information Science and Learning Technologies and 6 elective credit hours within the School of Law. The detailed program of study in library science is also subject to approval by the student’s advisor in the School of Information Science and Learning Technologies and by the Director of Graduate Studies in Library Science.

Curriculum

The curriculum has been designed so that law and essentials in library science are addressed, followed by specialized courses in the upper levels.  Students in the dual-degree program normally will spend their first year at the law school taking the traditional first-year law school curriculum.  During the remainder of the program, students will take courses both in the School of Law and the School of Information Science and Learning Technologies.

School of Law Required Courses

89 hours required for graduation

1st Year

5010, 5015 Civil Procedure (5)
5020, 5025 Contracts (6)
5035 Criminal Law (4)
5050 Property (5)
5070 Torts (5)
5080 Legal Research and Writing (2)
5085 Advocacy and Research (2)
5090 Legal Reasoning (if assigned) (1)
5095 Lawyering (2)

2nd Year

5220 Constitutional Law (4)
5260 Evidence (4)

2nd or 3rd Year

5240 Criminal Procedure (3)
5280 Professional Responsibility (3)

Recommended Law School Electives

Of the 89 hours of law credit required for graduation, 45 hours of which are required, students must take at least 83 hours of law credit. Therefore, of the 44 hours of elective credit in law remaining to fulfill the degree requirements, up to 6 hours may be elective IS< credit hours. Recommended law electives for the JD/MA include:

5310 Administrative Law (3)
5320 Advanced Legal Research (2)
5455 Copyright Law (2)
5495 Cyberspace Law (3)
5500 Digital Divide (3)
5535 Electronic Commerce Law (3)
5640 Intellectual Property (3)

5690 Jurisprudence (3)
5720 Law and Literature (2)
5735 Lawyering and Biography (3)
5740 Legal History (2-3)
5900 Software Law (3)
5875 Research (may be taken in conjunction with IS&LT 9400 Problems)

Library and Information Science Required Courses

42 hours required for graduation

IS&LT 7301 – Introduction to Information Technologies (3)
IS&LT 7312- Principles of Cataloging and Classification (3) OR IS< 7302 Organization of Information (3)
IS&LT 7313 – Managing Collections & Access (3)
IS&LT 7314 – Reference Sources and Services (3)
IS&LT 7315 – Management of Information Agencies (3)

Library and Information Science Electives

Students must take a total of at least 36 credit hours of IS&LT credit and 6 elective law credit hours. The detailed program of study is subject to approval by the student’s IS&LT adviser and by the Director of Graduate Studies. Library and information science electives must include 15 credit hours of courses at the 9000 level or higher. Recommended IS&LT 9000 level or higher electives for the JD/MA include:

9420 Information in the Disciplines (3)
9408 Information Policy (3)
9410 Copyright & Libraries
9423 Ethics & Information
9085 Problems (may be taken in conjunction with 5875 Research)

Towards fulfillment of these credit hours, JD/MA candidates may take IS&LT 9085 Problems (Independent directed study on a topic in information science and learning technologies) in conjunction with 5875 Research. The law faculty member overseeing 5875 Research shall be responsible for determining whether the project satisfies the requirements of 5875 Research, considering those requirements as they apply to all other law students. Generally, credit under 5875 Research is appropriate only for a paper of substantial length on a topic related to law.

Comprehensive Examination

All students write a comprehensive examination in their last semester. Students may be eligible to take the examination the semester before graduation upon approval from their adviser and the examination committee.

Law Library Practicum

JD/MA dual degree candidates are also required to take IS&LT 7381 Practicum in an Information Agency (3 credit hours). The practicum assignment must be in a law library. Students who successfully complete a graduate law library assistantship at the University of Missouri- Columbia School of Law Library are not required to take IS&LT 7381.

Sample Course of Study

The following course of study demonstrates how a student might design a program to complete the Dual Degree requirements in four years. This is not a contract. Actual course offerings and requirements are subject to change. Official course lists and requirements are available from the departments. Students are strongly advised to consult with academic advisers at both Schools before designing a personal course of study.

Year 1:

First year required law courses (31 credit hours)
Summer IS&LT courses (6 credit hours)

Year 2:

Fall/Winter IS&LT courses (21 – 24 credit hours)
Fall/Winter law courses (6 credit hours)
Summer law courses (6 credit hours)

Year 3:

Second year required law courses/electives (23-24 credit hours)
IS&LT 7381 Practicum in Information Agency
[Law Library] (3 credit hours) IS&LT course (3 credit hours)

Year 4:

Third year required law courses/electives
(23-24 credit hours)
IS&LT course (6-9 credit hours)

Policy

  1. Students whose prior background does not allow them to undertake the program specified above may be admitted contingent on their completing additional courses for which they may not receive graduate credit.
  2. A Dual Degree candidate who subsequently decides to pursue only one of these degrees must complete degree requirements subject to the same rules as a student not pursuing a dual degree.
  3. Law students who receive credit under the Dual Degree Program for taking IS&LT courses may not receive credit for taking other classes outside the School of Law.
  4. Student honors and class ranks at the School of Law will be computed based on classes enrolled in as law classes.
  5.  Student honors and class ranks at the School of Law will be computed on classes enrolled in as law courses.
  6. The School of Information Science and Learning Technologies and the School of Law reserve the right to limit participation in the program, including dismissal. Those interested are encouraged to submit a request for permission to participate in the program, along with applications for admission, at the earliest possible time.
  7. The listing of courses does not constitute a binding commitment that the courses will be offered during the student’s course of study or that the graduation requirements will remain unchanged.
  8. Students in the dual-degree program are subject to the same rules and regulations that apply to all students at the School of Law and the School of Information Science and Learning Technologies.