Academic Requirements


To receive the MSL degree, a student must earn a total GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in no fewer than 30 semester credit hours of law school courses. Full-time students can complete the program in roughly nine months. Part-time students have the flexibility to complete their degree over two years or more.

There are two required courses for MSL students:

  • Legal Research and Writing (3 credits): The course provides MSL students with a foundation in conducting legal research, reading legal materials, and analyzing those materials. The course will help students learn how to find, read, and use cases, statutes, and secondary materials. Students will also develop an understanding of how to review contracts by learning contract drafting style and conventions, key types of provisions (such as declarations, covenants, and representations and warranties), and important contractual provisions. Finally, students will hone their writing skills by learning how lawyers communicate and how to communicate like lawyers, both informally (through, for example, email correspondence) as well as in more formal persuasive writing.
  • Introduction to the US Legal System (3 credits): The course provides an introduction to the basic structure of the US legal system, starting with the Constitution, the separation of powers, and federalism. The course introduces students to legal methodology, including deductive and analogical reasoning in caselaw and statutory interpretation and the development of legal arguments. The course provides an introduction to the various systems at work in the US legal system as a whole. The course also describes the adversary system, the state and federal court systems, and the legal profession generally.

There are elective courses available specifically for MSL students:

  • Negotiations (3 credits): This highly interactive course is designed to familiarize students with theories, skills and ethics involved in legal negotiation. Through simulations and role-play exercises, students will gain first-hand experience in applying negotiation techniques. This course will aim to provide students with tools to prepare for, conduct, and analyze negotiations. Instructor: Kwame Christian
  • Regulatory Compliance (3 credits): This course will analyze the legal, ethical and policy foundations of regulatory compliance: the effort to translate statutory requirements into compliant corporate and individual behavior. Instructors: Brian Hirsch and Kevin Grether
  • Law of Cyberspace (3 credits): The Law of Cyberspace course is designed to allow students with varying backgrounds to confront the cutting-edge legal issues that arise from technological change and the Internet. In many areas of the law, traditional legal concepts must be modified for the ever-changing structures, threats, and opportunities posed by the online world. This course will explore these issues in several different areas, including contracts, torts, criminal law, privacy law, the First Amendment, eCommerce, and intellectual property. There are no formal prerequisites, and no technical background is required. Instructor: Jackie Ford

For the remaining credits, students can design their own curriculum, or complete a specialization in  one of the following areas. Click on the subject areas below to view courses on the Moritz Course Explorer (note that not all courses are offered every year):

Students who receive specializations will receive an official transcript designation on their transcripts. Program administrators will work individually with students on course selection to ensure the curriculum is meeting their personal and professional goals.

Text adapted from the Moritz Faculty Rules, section 3.08.