JD/MPA (Public Administration)


This program allows the student to obtain a J.D. and a Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree in four years and two summers. It is of special interest to law students who intend to practice in communities where they might be called on to perform legal services for the municipality, as city attorneys or otherwise, and to students preparing for positions in city management.

The program provides preparation for positions in such agencies as leagues of municipalities or state governmental authorities and serves as a training ground for the rapidly developing field of court administration.

Admission to both the School of Law and the School of Public Affairs & Administration in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences is required.

Contacts for prospective law students:

Contacts for current students:


JD/MPA Program Information

Learn more about admission requirements, degree requirements and the typical program format for the JD/MPA joint degree program using the tabs below.

Admission Requirements

Applicants for the JD/MPA program must meet admission requirements of the School of Law, the School of Public Affairs & Administration and the Graduate School. Applicants should apply and be admitted to each school separately prior to enrollment in the first year of the joint program.

Students should begin their course work in the School of Public Affairs & Administration no sooner than the second year of the matriculation of the law school.

The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) is the only required entrance examination for applicants.

A student who decides to enter the program while enrolled in the first year of the JD curriculum, must consult and obtain approval from the School of Law and the School of Public Affairs & Administration as soon as possible.

Degree Requirements

The tables below outline the requirements for this joint degree program.

Total Credit Hours

Degree Requirements - total credit hours
Credit Hours Required:For JDFor MPA
Law courses required of all J.D. candidates430
MPA required courses037
LAW elective courses350
MPA credit allowed for J.D.12-
Law credit allowed for MPA-6
Minimum hours required9043

J.D. Requirements

The following law courses are required for all J.D. candidates. Learn more about J.D. Program Degree Requirements.

Law courses required for all J.D. Candidates
CourseCredit hours
First-Year Courses
LAW 804 Civil Procedure4
LAW 806 Introduction to Constitutional Law4
LAW 809 Contracts4
LAW 814 Criminal Law4
LAW 820 Lawyering Skills I2
LAW 821 Lawyering Skills II3
LAW 826 Property4
LAW 831 Torts I4
Upper-Level Courses
LAW 972 Professional Responsibility must be completed by the time a student finishes 60 hours.2
3 courses from among the following:
LAW 892 Business Organizations4
LAW 881 Conflict of Laws3
LAW 837 Contracts II/UCC Sales3
LAW 878 Criminal Procedure3
LAW 908 Evidence3
LAW 909 Family Law3
LAW 845 Jurisdiction3
LAW 873 Commercial Law: Secured Transactions3
LAW 996 Trusts and Estates4
In addition to all the JD/MPA program course requirements, students must satisfy the law school's Upper-Level Writing Intensive Course Requirements and the Experiential Course Requirements.

Students must complete all required first-year courses (29 credit hours) during their first year of law school enrollment. In addition to these course requirements, the School of Law has an upper-class writing requirement, a residence requirement, and a time limit for completion of the degree. Please refer to the current School of Law academic catalog for details.

JD/MPA Joint Degree Candidate Requirements

In addition to the 43 credit hours of coursework required of all law students, JD/MPA students must complete an additional 6 credit hours from the following law courses:

Law courses required for JD/MPA joint degree candidates
CourseCredit hours
6 credit hours from the following law courses:
LAW 850 Administrative Law3
LAW 939 Labor Law3
LAW 956 Local Government Law3
LAW 954 Legislation and Statutory Interpretation3

Master of Public Administration Degree

The School of Public Affairs & Administration is home to the Edwin O. Stene Graduate Program in Public Administration and offers a Master of Public Administration degree. The Edwin O. Stene Master's program is one of the oldest and most respected programs in the United States, with our local government leadership program dating to 1948. Since 1998, our tradition of excellence in educating students at the masters’ level has been recognized by U.S. News and World Report with a #1 ranking in local government. The MPA degree may be obtained through course work in Lawrence, Topeka (as enrollment allows), and the KU Edwards Campus in Overland Park.

The KU MPA offers 2 tracks:

  1. The MPA track is designed for 1) working professionals seeking to strengthen their leadership skills for careers in public service professions or advance in their current profession without a career interruption and 2) full-time students who wish to complete the curriculum and specialize in other sectors of public service. MPA track students may attend part-time or full-time. MPA track students may begin in the summer, fall or spring semester.
  2. The City/County Management Fellows track is designed for students who are willing to commit to one year of full-time study and a second year in a full-time internship to prepare themselves for careers primarily in city, or county, management. The Fellows program requires additional application materials. City/County Management Fellows begin the program in the summer semester and completed the majority of their coursework over three semesters (summer, fall and spring).

MPA Degree Requirements

The Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree is awarded after successful completion of 43 credit hours of course work. This includes 19 hours (6 courses) of required core courses (including the student's choice of an experiential learning course to serve as a final reflective course) that all students complete, and 18 hours (6 courses) tailored to the student's interests and/or track (fellow or MPA track). In addition, all students must pass a written master's examination (final paper) to complete the requirements for the MPA degree. Once a student begins the program, all degree requirements must be completed within seven years.

The MPA core coursework includes the following courses (16 credit hours):

MPA core coursework
CourseCredit hours
PUAD 824 Creating Good Public Policy3
PUAD 835 Managing Public Money3
PUAD 836 Data Driven Decision Making4
PUAD 841 Context, Ethics and Legal Environment of Public Administration3
PUAD 845 Managing Public Organizations3
PUAD 895 Leadership, Professionalism and Citizen Engagement3
OR
PUAD 898 Leading to Create a Culture for High Performance3

City/County Management Fellows will take the following courses to complete the program:

City/County Management Fellows courses
CourseCredit hours
PUAD 825 Urban Policy & Administration3
PUAD 834 Human Resources Management3
PUAD 837 Advanced Public Budgeting & Finance3
PUAD 851 Infrastructure Management3
PUAD 892 Public Administration Internship3
PUAD 894 Professional Development Seminar I3

MPA track students will complete the required core courses and select a graduate certificate within the School of Public Affairs & Administration to complete 6 electives (18 hours) to complete the program. Graduate certificates only require 12 credits, so there is additional flexibility in elective content for MPA track students.

Typical Program Format

MPA track students have more flexibility to complete MPA coursework as it is scheduled around law school enrollment requirements.

The University of Kansas Graduate School Catalog states specifically that all coursework toward any master’s degree requires a B (or 3.0) cumulative grade point average for the award of the degree. Students should understand that the grades received in any law courses that are credited toward fulfillment of the MPA degree requirements are incorporated into the MPA grade point average, which ultimately must be B (3.0) for the award of the MPA.

All joint degree students also must fulfill the Upper-Level Writing Intensive course requirements and the Experiential course requirements in the School of Law. Please see the current School of Law academic catalog for details.

Typical program format for Fellows-track joint degree students:

Typical program format
 LawMPATotal
First Year29029
Second Year31031
Third Year183149
Fourth Year-66
 
Total Credit Earned7837115
Law Credit Allowed-66
MPA Credit Allowed12-12
Total Credit Required9043133

 

Admission Requirements

Applicants for the JD/MPA program must meet admission requirements of the School of Law, the School of Public Affairs & Administration and the Graduate School. Applicants should apply and be admitted to each school separately prior to enrollment in the first year of the joint program.

Students should begin their course work in the School of Public Affairs & Administration no sooner than the second year of the matriculation of the law school.

The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) is the only required entrance examination for applicants.

A student who decides to enter the program while enrolled in the first year of the JD curriculum, must consult and obtain approval from the School of Law and the School of Public Affairs & Administration as soon as possible.

Degree Requirements

The tables below outline the requirements for this joint degree program.

Total Credit Hours

Degree Requirements - total credit hours
Credit Hours Required:For JDFor MPA
Law courses required of all J.D. candidates430
MPA required courses037
LAW elective courses350
MPA credit allowed for J.D.12-
Law credit allowed for MPA-6
Minimum hours required9043

J.D. Requirements

The following law courses are required for all J.D. candidates. Learn more about J.D. Program Degree Requirements.

Law courses required for all J.D. Candidates
CourseCredit hours
First-Year Courses
LAW 804 Civil Procedure4
LAW 806 Introduction to Constitutional Law4
LAW 809 Contracts4
LAW 814 Criminal Law4
LAW 820 Lawyering Skills I2
LAW 821 Lawyering Skills II3
LAW 826 Property4
LAW 831 Torts I4
Upper-Level Courses
LAW 972 Professional Responsibility must be completed by the time a student finishes 60 hours.2
3 courses from among the following:
LAW 892 Business Organizations4
LAW 881 Conflict of Laws3
LAW 837 Contracts II/UCC Sales3
LAW 878 Criminal Procedure3
LAW 908 Evidence3
LAW 909 Family Law3
LAW 845 Jurisdiction3
LAW 873 Commercial Law: Secured Transactions3
LAW 996 Trusts and Estates4
In addition to all the JD/MPA program course requirements, students must satisfy the law school's Upper-Level Writing Intensive Course Requirements and the Experiential Course Requirements.

Students must complete all required first-year courses (29 credit hours) during their first year of law school enrollment. In addition to these course requirements, the School of Law has an upper-class writing requirement, a residence requirement, and a time limit for completion of the degree. Please refer to the current School of Law academic catalog for details.

JD/MPA Joint Degree Candidate Requirements

In addition to the 43 credit hours of coursework required of all law students, JD/MPA students must complete an additional 6 credit hours from the following law courses:

Law courses required for JD/MPA joint degree candidates
CourseCredit hours
6 credit hours from the following law courses:
LAW 850 Administrative Law3
LAW 939 Labor Law3
LAW 956 Local Government Law3
LAW 954 Legislation and Statutory Interpretation3

Master of Public Administration Degree

The School of Public Affairs & Administration is home to the Edwin O. Stene Graduate Program in Public Administration and offers a Master of Public Administration degree. The Edwin O. Stene Master's program is one of the oldest and most respected programs in the United States, with our local government leadership program dating to 1948. Since 1998, our tradition of excellence in educating students at the masters’ level has been recognized by U.S. News and World Report with a #1 ranking in local government. The MPA degree may be obtained through course work in Lawrence, Topeka (as enrollment allows), and the KU Edwards Campus in Overland Park.

The KU MPA offers 2 tracks:

  1. The MPA track is designed for 1) working professionals seeking to strengthen their leadership skills for careers in public service professions or advance in their current profession without a career interruption and 2) full-time students who wish to complete the curriculum and specialize in other sectors of public service. MPA track students may attend part-time or full-time. MPA track students may begin in the summer, fall or spring semester.
  2. The City/County Management Fellows track is designed for students who are willing to commit to one year of full-time study and a second year in a full-time internship to prepare themselves for careers primarily in city, or county, management. The Fellows program requires additional application materials. City/County Management Fellows begin the program in the summer semester and completed the majority of their coursework over three semesters (summer, fall and spring).

MPA Degree Requirements

The Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree is awarded after successful completion of 43 credit hours of course work. This includes 19 hours (6 courses) of required core courses (including the student's choice of an experiential learning course to serve as a final reflective course) that all students complete, and 18 hours (6 courses) tailored to the student's interests and/or track (fellow or MPA track). In addition, all students must pass a written master's examination (final paper) to complete the requirements for the MPA degree. Once a student begins the program, all degree requirements must be completed within seven years.

The MPA core coursework includes the following courses (16 credit hours):

MPA core coursework
CourseCredit hours
PUAD 824 Creating Good Public Policy3
PUAD 835 Managing Public Money3
PUAD 836 Data Driven Decision Making4
PUAD 841 Context, Ethics and Legal Environment of Public Administration3
PUAD 845 Managing Public Organizations3
PUAD 895 Leadership, Professionalism and Citizen Engagement3
OR
PUAD 898 Leading to Create a Culture for High Performance3

City/County Management Fellows will take the following courses to complete the program:

City/County Management Fellows courses
CourseCredit hours
PUAD 825 Urban Policy & Administration3
PUAD 834 Human Resources Management3
PUAD 837 Advanced Public Budgeting & Finance3
PUAD 851 Infrastructure Management3
PUAD 892 Public Administration Internship3
PUAD 894 Professional Development Seminar I3

MPA track students will complete the required core courses and select a graduate certificate within the School of Public Affairs & Administration to complete 6 electives (18 hours) to complete the program. Graduate certificates only require 12 credits, so there is additional flexibility in elective content for MPA track students.

Typical Program Format

MPA track students have more flexibility to complete MPA coursework as it is scheduled around law school enrollment requirements.

The University of Kansas Graduate School Catalog states specifically that all coursework toward any master’s degree requires a B (or 3.0) cumulative grade point average for the award of the degree. Students should understand that the grades received in any law courses that are credited toward fulfillment of the MPA degree requirements are incorporated into the MPA grade point average, which ultimately must be B (3.0) for the award of the MPA.

All joint degree students also must fulfill the Upper-Level Writing Intensive course requirements and the Experiential course requirements in the School of Law. Please see the current School of Law academic catalog for details.

Typical program format for Fellows-track joint degree students:

Typical program format
 LawMPATotal
First Year29029
Second Year31031
Third Year183149
Fourth Year-66
 
Total Credit Earned7837115
Law Credit Allowed-66
MPA Credit Allowed12-12
Total Credit Required9043133