Please refer to this section for answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about the Master in the Study of Law (M.S.L.) program. Prospective students are welcome to contact us with any further questions or concerns.
What is an M.S.L. degree and why is it beneficial?
The Master in the Study of Law (M.S.L.) degree is a graduate program for those who want to learn more about the law in order to strengthen their professional skills. It is an ideal program for those working in areas where a deeper understanding of the law could help advance their career.
What are the required qualifications to apply for the M.S.L. program?
It is expected that most M.S.L. students will have received a graduate degree in a discipline other than law by the time of matriculation into the M.S.L. program, or have satisfactorily completed a program of study amounting to 45 quarter hours or 30 semester hours toward their graduate degree prior to beginning their M.S.L. degree. This program is not intended for those who have recently completed a Bachelor’s degree and have not completed a significant portion of a graduate degree. Applicants may also apply simultaneously to the M.S.L. program and a Ph.D. program at Ohio State. In special cases, extensive work experience can replace the graduate degree requirement, but the standardized test requirement cannot be waived in these cases.
Am I eligible to apply for the M.S.L. program if I have only completed an undergraduate (Bachelor’s) degree?
No. The only exception to this requirement is extensive work experience (please see below). To be eligible for the M.S.L. program, you must have received a graduate degree in a discipline other than law by the time of matriculation into the M.S.L. program, or have satisfactorily completed a program of study amounting to 45 quarter hours or 30 semester hours toward their graduate degree prior to beginning their M.S.L. degree. Applicants may also apply simultaneously to the M.S.L. program and another graduate program at the University and be admitted with the same condition.
What does Moritz College of Law consider “extensive work experience”?
Typically, successful applicants have had over 10 years of relevant work experience in areas that intersect with law. The Assistant Dean and the Admissions Committee will evaluate this requirement on a case-by-case basis.
Are international students eligible to apply?
Yes! Interested international students are encouraged to apply. For more information, please see the “International Students” section on the M.S.L. Admissions Requirements page.
What are the required documents I must submit to apply for the M.S.L. program?
All applicants to the M.S.L. program need to submit online the following documents: along with . See below for more information about which application is appropriate for you.
- Appropriate Graduate and Professional Admissions application (See “Graduate and Professional Admissions Application Process” section for more information about which application is appropriate for you)
- Personal statement of 1,000 words or less addressing how applicant will benefit from program
- Two letters of recommendation
- All official (non-OSU) university level transcripts sent directly from the university of attendance
- Official standardized test scores. We accept GRE, GMAT, LSAT, MCAT, or other similar test scores. This test requirement may be waived based on extensive work experience with the approval of both the Administrator of the M.S.L. program and the Graduate Studies Committee. Please contact Assistant Dean Laura Fernández-Álvarez (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you would like to request a waiver.
- Further information on how to apply can be found on the M.S.L. Admissions Requirements page
How can I request to waive the standardized test score requirement? Is there a form to fill out?
There is no specific form to apply for the waiver. The Graduate Studies Committee would consider waiving the requirement for the standardized test for an applicant with an already completed graduate degree (and this would depend on the field of the candidate’s degree, the degree itself, the performance of the applicant during the degree, the university where the degree was obtained, and the experience of the graduate after the completion of the degree).If you do not have another graduate degree completed by the time of expected matriculation into the M.S.L. program, you will not be eligible to request a waiver.
If you think you meet these requirements, send your resume along with a short statement explaining your interest in the program, your background, and why you think you would deserve a waiver to Assistant Dean Laura Fernández-Álvarez (email@example.com).These documents will be shared with the Graduate Studies Committee for their review and the Committee will let you know whether they would recommend that you apply.
When is the deadline to apply?
The deadline for admissions, for both domestic and international students, is April 15 for fall semester and October 1 for spring semester.
Does Moritz College of Law accept transfer credits from other graduate degree programs or non-credit programs?
No. All 30 credits required to complete the M.S.L. degree must be earned at The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law during the program.
Is earning an M.S.L. degree an alternative to earning a J.D. for those that plan to take the bar exam or practice law?
No. The M.S.L. degree is designed for individuals who do not plan to take a bar exam or practice law. It’s a program for those who want to learn more about the law in order to strengthen their professional skills.
Can an M.S.L. student apply to transfer to the J.D. program at Moritz?
Because of the different requirements of the J.D. and the M.S.L. programs, including the different grading standards and requirements for academic standing applied to students in those programs, students cannot transfer from the M.S.L. program to the J.D. program. Accordingly, a student enrolled in the M.S.L. program who desires to enroll in the J.D. program would be required to apply to the J.D. program as an entering student and to meet all of the requirements for admission to the J.D. program. If a student formerly enrolled in the M.S.L. program were admitted to the J.D. program, that student would receive no credit toward the total credit hours required for the J.D. degree, as set forth in Rule 5.04, for law courses completed while enrolled in the M.S.L. program.
Can M.S.L students choose a specialization? If so, which areas of study are available?
Yes! M.S.L. students can choose a specialization in alternative dispute resolution, corporate law, criminal law and procedure, employment and labor law, intellectual property and technology law, or international law and comparative law. Students who receive specializations will receive an official transcript designation on their transcripts.
How long does it take to complete the M.S.L. degree?
To receive the M.S.L. degree, a student must satisfactorily complete 30 semester hours at the Moritz College of Law. A full-time student typically will be able to complete the program in one academic year. Part-time students generally will be expected to complete the requirements for the M.S.L. degree within four academic years.
How much are the tuition and fees for the M.S.L. program?
Information on tuition and fees can be found on the M.S.L. Program Costs page.
Are there fellowships or assistantships available for M.S.L. students?
The OSU Moritz College of Law does not provide scholarships or financial support for M.S.L. students in the form of assistantships or fellowships.
Whom should I contact for more information?
Assistant Dean Laura Fernández-Álvarez can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or via phone at (614) 688-5328.