Public Affairs (JD/MPA)

Students completing the following course of study will be eligible to receive the JD degree from the School of Law and the MPA degree from the Harry S Truman School of Public Affairs. This course of study may be completed in four years.

Normally, students require three years to complete the requirements for the JD degree and two years to complete the requirements for the MPA degree.

Application Procedure

Applicants to the Dual Degree Program must submit formal applications for admission to the School of Law and to the Harry S Truman School of Public Affairs accompanied by a statement requesting permission to pursue the Dual Degree Program.

Students must meet the requirements for admission to both programs. Contact the Truman School 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 law credit hours, and 6 elective credit hours in public affairs, for a total of 89 credit hours. Requirements for the MPA degree are met with 30 credit hours of core courses, 6 credit hours in an area of specialization and 9 hours of elective course work (which include the 6 hours of Law electives).


The curriculum has been designed so that law and essentials in economics 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 Truman School of Public Affairs.

School of Law Required Courses

89 hours required for graduation

1st Year5010, 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)
5095 Lawyering (2)

2nd Year

5220 Constitutional Law (4)
5260 Evidence (4)

2nd or 3rd Year

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

Law electives – 38 credits
Public Affairs electives – 6 credits

*Students who are dismissed and readmitted or who otherwise are placed on probation at the end of the fall semester will be required to take Legal Reasoning, a course designed to assist students in meeting the graduation requirements. Those students in Legal Reasoning will not take Advocacy & Research until their second year.

Recommended Law School Electives

Of the 89 hours required for graduation, at least 83 hours of credit must be law school credit, including 45 hours of required course work. Six credit hours in elective courses at the Truman School of Public Affairs will be counted toward the 89 total hours required for graduation. JD/MPA students must take at least 9 hours of elective law credit from the following list:


5310 Administrative Law (3)
5745 Legislation (3)

Plus 3 hours of the following:

5323 Advanced Torts:  Dignitary and Economic torts
5332 Advocacy and Gov’t Agencies
5330 Advocacy, Family Violence and public Policy
5335 Agricultural law
5340 Antitrust
5450 Conflict and Conflict Management
5415 Constitutional and Civil Rights Litigation (2-3)
5485 Cross Cultural Dispute Resolution
5532 Election law
5540 Employment Discrimination (3)
5545 Environmental Law
5591 Food law and Policy
5590 Freedom of Speech and Association
5605 Government Information and Privacy

5615 Health Care Law: The Doctor-Patient Relationship (3)
5695 Labor law
5700 Land Use Controls (2-3)
5715 Law & Economics (3)
5750 Local Government Law (3)
5765 Mediation (3)
5793 Missouri Administrative Law
5810 Negotiation (3)
5840 Public Policy Dispute Resolution
5847 Race-based Remedies
5865 Religious liberty and Church State Relations
5905 Sports Law (3)
5910 State Constitutional law

Public Affairs Program of Study

45 hours required for graduation

Required Courses (12 Credits)

PUB AF 8150 Collaborative Governance
PUB AF 8160 Organizational Dynamics and Leadership
PUB AF 8170 Public Policy Processes and Strategies
PUB AF 8180 Research Methods and Inquiry in Public Affairs I
PUB AF 8181 Research Methods and Inquiry in Public Affairs II
PUB AF 8190 Economic Analysis for Public Affairs
PUB AF 8210 Public Service and Democracy*
PUB AF 8211 MPA Capstone: Applied Project
PUB AF 8280 MPA Internship**
PUB AF 8530 Strategic Management of Public Service Organizations: People, Information and Money

Area of Specialization Courses

Public and Nonprofit Management

PUB AF 8720 Financial Management in the Public and Nonprofit Sector
PUB AF 8520 Human Resource Management and Development in the Public and Nonprofit Sector

Public Policy

PUB AF 8420 Public Program Evaluation
PUB AF 8430 Public Policy Analysis

Elective Courses

Two Law School Courses (totaling at least 6 credit hours)
One additional elective agreed upon with the faculty advisor

*LAW 5280 can be substituted for PUB AF 8210
**LAW 5570 can be substituted for PUB AF 8280


  1. The School of Law cannot award credit for any class taken before matriculation at the School of Law.  Dual degree candidates must, therefore, enroll at the School of Law before taking the 6 credits of Public Affairs courses to be counted toward the JD degree.
  2. As soon as possible, students should file a Statement of Intention to pursue the JD/MPA Dual Degree Program with the Associate Dean of the Law School and the Director of Graduate Studies, Truman School of Public Affairs. The Statement of Intention may be a short letter simply stating the intention to pursue a dual degree. Students who have not submitted a Statement of Intention may not be considered Dual Degree candidates eligible to receive the benefits of the course of study outlined in these pages.
  3. A Statement of Intention ceases to be effective when the student no longer intends to pursue the Dual Degree course of study. If a student wishes to withdraw from the Dual Degree Program, he or she should notify both the Associate Dean at the School of Law and the Director of Graduate Studies, Truman School of Public Affairs. Dual degree candidates who subsequently decide to pursue only the MPA or the JD degree must complete the degree program in its entirety and subject to the same rules and requirements as students not pursuing a dual degree.
  4. Law students who receive credit under the dual degree program for taking Public Affairs courses may not receive credit for taking other classes outside the School of Law.
  5. Student honors and class ranks at the School of Law will be computed on classes enrolled in as law courses and any cross-listed Law/Public Affairs course enrolled in as a law course.
  6. 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.
  7. 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 Truman School of Public Affairs.