Law and Technology program

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The University of Pennsylvania Law School and School of Engineering and Applied Science (SEAS) have launched an innovative program whose goal is to graduate lawyers and engineers able to address issues at the intersection of law and technology. A joint degree is ideal for those with no prior degree in engineering or computer science but who are interested in the practice of information technology.

Students pursuing either the JD/MSE (Master of Science in Engineering) or the JD/MCIT (Master of Computing and Information Technology) joint degree will typically spend their first year at the Law School and second at Penn Engineering. In years three and four, students will take classes in both schools and participate in a capstone course on Technology and Policy co-taught by faculty from both schools. 

To receive both degrees, students must complete the independent degree requirements of each program. 

For Penn Engineering:

Joint degree students may count one Law course from an approved list toward the requirements for the MSE or MCIT.

For Penn Law:

  • Students must complete a minimum of 86 semester hours, 52 of which must be advanced credit completed in the second and third years of Law study. 
  • Students enrolled in the joint degree program are not eligible to participate in Study Abroad Programs.
  • Students must also satisfy the pro bono requirement of the Public Service Program and fulfill their senior writing (through the Degree Synthesis Requirement) and professional responsibility requirements (more on these requirements can be found in the Law Student Guide to Policy and Procedures). 
  • Joint degree students may count two Engineering courses (from an approved list), taken during the second or third year of Law study, as 6 semester hours of advanced credit towards the JD requirement.  These classes will count as two of the four courses that Law students generally may apply from outside of the Law School towards the JD degree.

Students must select the appropriate Engineering Master’s degree program based on their education and experience.  Applicants with the pre-requisite Engineering background may apply for the MSE degree.  Students with no prior educational background in Engineering and Computer Science may apply for the MCIT degree.

Students must take the LSAT for consideration as a Law candidate.  The GRE is required for the application to Engineering.

Financial aid decisions are made independently by each school.  Financial aid decisions are typically made by the school to which tuition will be paid in any term. Note that Penn Engineering does not offer any financial aid for students pursuing the master’s degree.

How to apply

There are two methods of applying to the joint degree program:

  • Students may apply to both schools during the same application cycle.  Only students accepted independently by both schools will be admitted into the joint degree program. In general, joint degree candidates are expected to apply initially to Penn Law and to apply to Penn Engineering after they have been accepted by Penn Law.
  • Students already enrolled at Penn Law or Penn Engineering may submit an application to the other program.
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