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Law (MA and JD)

Dual Degree Program in Japanese Studies and Law

This program takes advantage of a long and distinguished history of Japanese law studies at the University of Michigan, and offers a unique opportunity to participate in a closely supervised program tailored to individual professional plans. Graduates of this program offer the professional community cross-cultural, transnational expertise in law.



Applicants interested in the MA/JD in Japanese Studies and Law must file separate applications, pay application fees to both schools, and be admitted by both schools.  Each program makes an independent evaluation of the application using its own criteria.  Only those applicants admitted to both programs may pursue the dual degree program.

Please indicate on the Rackham online application that you are also submitting an application to the Law School.  For more information on Law School admission, please contact the Law School Admission Office.  Applicants must take the LSAT for admission to the Law School and may take the LSAT or the GRE for admissions to the Center for Japanese Studies.  All applications to the Center for Japanese Studies must be received by January 10.  Applicants should contact the Law School Admission Office for the appropriate deadline.

This dual degree program is not open to students who have earned either the JD or MA in Japanese Studies degree.  Students registered in the first year of either program may apply.


All requirements for this joint-degree program can be completed in three to four years of concurrent enrollment, with the two degrees awarded simultaneously. Students should plan their program in close consultation with the appropriate advisors and faculty of the Law School and the Director of Graduate Studies at the Center for Japanese Studies.

JD Requirements

Credit Hours

The minimum requirement for the JD is 82 total credits toward the JD, at least 70 of which must be earned in regularly scheduled Law School courses.  Up to 12 credit hours earned in Rackham courses for the MA in Japanese Studies may be counted toward the JD.

Required Courses

Students must complete the required first year law (1L) curriculum.  Students must also complete Transnational Law and Introduction to Constitutional Law during their third or fourth terms enrollment in the law school.  In addition, students must complete courses that meet the professional responsibility and upper-writing requirements.

Rackham/Japanese Studies Requirements

Credit Hours

The minimum requirement for the MA is 24 credit hours of courses approved for graduate credit.  Up to 6 credit hours of appropriate Law courses may be counted in the 24 credit hours requirement with prior approval of the CJS Director of Graduate Studies.

Japanese Language Proficiency

Students must meet the Japanese language proficiency requirement.  Credit hours required to meet the language proficiency requirement do not count toward the credit hours for either degree.

Course Requirements

Students must meet the Core Courses, Distribution, and Research/Writing requirements of the MA degree.