J.D./M.P.H.

Law is an important tool for improving the public’s health, through disease control, injury prevention, food and drug safety, and emergency response. In recent years, the public health field has become the subject of rapidly expanding legal and public health attention at the national, state, and local levels.

Leadership positions in the public health field increasingly require multi-disciplinary expertise in both law and public health. For attorneys and public health practitioners to effectively serve their communities, they must understand the multifaceted and often unique aspects of public health practice, research, and training as well as the complex and ever-changing legal and regulatory environment in which they operate.

Georgia State University professional and graduate students in law and public health may pursue a dual degree through a collaborative program between Georgia State’s College of Law and School of Public Health. Students may obtain concurrently both a juris doctor and a master of public health.

Admission

To participate in the J.D./M.P.H. dual degree program, you must apply separately for admission to the College of Law and the School of Public Health. You are strongly encouraged to apply to both programs simultaneously. However, there is some opportunity to apply and enroll in the dual degree program after admission to only one of the schools, if you have not proceeded too far in that school’s program.

You must take the LSAT to apply to the College of Law. The School of Public Health will accept the LSAT in lieu of the GRE.

Admission into one program does not presume admission to the other.

Faculty Advisement

After you are accepted into the College of Law and the School of Public Health, you will be assigned a faculty adviser from each school to advise you on course selection and potential career paths.

Graduation

Prior to graduation you will need to confirm with the registrar of the College of Law and the School of Public Health Office of Graduate Admissions and Academic Assistance that you have satisfied the requirements for both degrees. You must complete an online graduation application for each degree to be submitted to the Graduation Office.

Requirements

The J.D./M.P.H. enables you to earn both degrees in a shorter time than would be possible if you pursued each degree separately. Credit hours earned in one degree program satisfy some requirements of the other degree program.

No credit hours for the M.P.H. courses will be applied toward the J.D. requirements until you have completed the M.P.H. Similarly, no credit hours for the J.D. courses will be applied toward the M.P.H. requirements until completion of the J.D.

If interested in pursuing a J.D. /M.P.H., you must enroll in the dual degree program prior to completion of 30 hours of M.P.H. coursework or 60 hours of J.D. coursework. When admitted to the J.D./M.P.H. program, you must complete the first 30 hours of required courses in the J.D. program as soon as possible. After completion of these 30 hours of law courses, course enrollment in either college or both colleges concurrently is permitted.

You must complete your dual degree program within six years of the initial semester of enrollment. You should be able to complete both degrees in four years.

College of Law

To earn a J.D., you must complete a minimum of 90 credit hours, with 42 credit hours of required courses and at least 48 credit hours of electives. For the dual degree program, 12 credit hours of M.P.H. courses with a B or better will be credited toward J.D. requirements.

School of Public Health

To earn an M.P.H., you must complete a minimum of 42 credit hours, with 16 credit hours of core public health courses, three credit hours of a required public health research methods course, 18 credit hours of health management and policy concentration-specific public health courses, two credit hours of a required public health practicum, and three credit hours of a public health thesis or capstone project. You should consult with the School of Public Health regarding completing any prerequisites for 8000-level courses.

For the dual degree program, 12 hours of relevant health law electives, including LAW 7244 – Public Health Law and LAW 7240 – Health Law: Financing and Delivery, with a B or better will be counted toward the M.P.H. health management  and policy concentration requirement. In addition, three credit hours of an approved, relevant lawyering skills course (externship, clinic, summer fellowship for credit focusing on health law and/or policy) may be accepted in place of the two credit hours of a required PH 7960 – Public Health Practicum.

Contact Us

Stacie Kershner
Associate Director
Center for Law, Health & Society
Georgia State University
College of Law
P.O. Box 4037
Atlanta, GA 30302-4037
Phone: 404-413-9088
Fax: 404-413-9225
skershner1@gsu.edu
Lynette Reid
Admissions Coordinator
Office of Graduate Admissions
& Academic Assistance
Georgia State University
School of Public Health
P.O. Box 5060
Atlanta, GA 30302-5060
Phone: 404-413-1452
Fax: 404-413-1459
publichealthadvising@gsu.edu