Jump to content

Is it possible to do Law School and Graduate school at the same time?


Recommended Posts

An off topic query today. Is it possible to do your Phd and study another degree (like Law School) at the same time? Not at the same university, but perhaps in the same state (or in very close states). Do universities have a problem with it? I am an international student and I entered a Literature PhD program this year, but I have been thinking lately that I would like to study law as well. Help, opinions, everything is welcome. I am throwing a ball here.

Link to post
Share on other sites

It might be theoretically possible, but it would take a very long post to explain all the ways it's a bad idea. If you want to do law, leave your PhD program and go to law school. You certainly wouldn't be the first to make that decision. But don't do both, at least not at the same time.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Also I should say that as an international student, it might not be feasible. Your visa is sponsored and has limits on the amount of time you can work. While a second degree is not work, will your sponsoring dept allow you to take on this tremendous additional time commitment? Do the terms of your visa allow you to do this? I’m not sure but I’m doubtful.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Not to be a contrarian, but many universities that have both a law school and a graduate school do have some sort of an option for a Ph.D./J.D. dual degree program. That being said, the degree to which this is ad hoc and the fields one is allowed to pursue for the Ph.D. vary. Schools seem generally more open to a J.D. in conjunction with a Ph.D. in philosophy, political science, or economics (see NYU: https://www.law.nyu.edu/jdadmissions/dualdegreeprograms/jdma). I don't see many schools that really have a pathway for doing an English Ph.D. in tandem with a law degree.

Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Glasperlenspieler said:

Not to be a contrarian, but many universities that have both a law school and a graduate school do have some sort of an option for a Ph.D./J.D. dual degree program. That being said, the degree to which this is ad hoc and the fields one is allowed to pursue for the Ph.D. vary. Schools seem generally more open to a J.D. in conjunction with a Ph.D. in philosophy, political science, or economics (see NYU: https://www.law.nyu.edu/jdadmissions/dualdegreeprograms/jdma). I don't see many schools that really have a pathway for doing an English Ph.D. in tandem with a law degree.

Questions that follow include how high are the hurdles to getting approval for pursuing dual degrees, what do professors actually think about such opportunities, what is the rate of success, and how well do recipients of dual degrees do in the job market?

Link to post
Share on other sites
35 minutes ago, test12341234 said:

Yes, the best options here are probably JD/PhD, or putting the PhD on hold to get the JD, then resuming later.

If you go this route, do not be surprised if your program and school is reluctant to accept the work you did at law school when it comes to fulfilling course requirements.

I had a classmate with a law degree and he was increasingly not happy that he could not transfer credits from law school.

Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, Sigaba said:

If you go this route, do not be surprised if your program and school is reluctant to accept the work you did at law school when it comes to fulfilling course requirements.

I had a classmate with a law degree and he was increasingly not happy that he could not transfer credits from law school.

Oh, yeah, I don't see why courses from law school would ever get counted as overlapping with PhD credits. Joint degrees will definitely take longer.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I am also considering doing a PhD/JD program. I am interested in a Public Policy PhD, and with the close relationship to policy and law (policy often "manifest" itself as law) I feel it could be beneficial.

Harvard has a phD/jd option, as do a few other schools, like U of Maryland.

However, it does seem to boost the time for completion up to 6+ years.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 months later...

I went to law school first, now I am pursuing a PhD in English. It was my plan to do it in undergrad. Looking back I likely would still do it in the order I did it because I probably would not have gone to law school after the PhD. I didn't plan on practicing full time, so going first likely was the best option for me. In my experience, depending on the rigors of the law program, both at the same time sounds like torture. The way you analyze and write for law is the complete opposite of law school. I had to break from how I wrote in undergrad for English papers when I went to law school. By the time I finished, I had to do the same with legal writing. I feel like I can easily switch back and forth now, but trying to do it while in school sounds like a strenuous process. I'm not saying it can't be done (one of my classmates was in med school and law school at the same time), but it likely will add more stress that you won't need.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.