Joint Degree Programs
With formal programs encompassing 28 joint degrees, combined with additional opportunities to seek approval for other joint degrees and limitless possibilities to customize your own academic path, Stanford Law School has taken the concept of interdisciplinary education to a new level.
Our wide-ranging joint degree program is inspired by the world in which our students will ultimately work—a world in which no one works alone or in just one discipline, and in which it is imperative to understand and master a variety of skills.
Joint degrees are not only for students with clearly chosen career interests—nor do they constitute a specialized education. Law school teaches you how to "think like a lawyer"—a valuable and transferable skill that explains why lawyers are able to succeed in so many different arenas. But this is only one skill, and the skills and conceptual tools taught in other disciplines are also transferable. A student who learns, in addition to thinking like a lawyer, how to work with numbers or understand science or think in a sophisticated way about risk will have received a broader education that opens more doors and creates more opportunities even if he or she ends up on an unexpected career path.
Intellectual property lawyers must be able to translate law into terms scientists can understand, negotiate with other lawyers, and translate the work of scientists into legal documents. Stanford prepared me to do all three, with a joint degree that captures the critical art of communicating across fields. – Noah Richmond, JD/MS in Law and Bioengineering, '08
Stanford's JD/MBA is among the nation's oldest and most successful joint degree programs, and its graduates have achieved remarkable career success, whether they pursue law or business. The reasons for this success are clear. In addition to gaining knowledge of both disciplines, JD/MBA students experience two complementary intellectual cultures: the problem-spotting, analytical culture of law, and the problem-solving, practical culture of business. The combination is an unbeatable formula.
Our strategy is to apply this successful model of cross-cultural immersion to other disciplines that fit or underlie the many career paths future lawyers may pursue–from management science and computer science to sociology, economics, environmental policy, bioengineering, education, health policy, politics, and more.
Throughout my career, I've had to do cutting-edge deals, create new business relationships, invent what had never been done before. My Stanford JD/MBA helped me be more creative, more agile. I'd recommend it to anyone who wants to do interesting work, solve sophisticated problems, and understand the complex environment that organizations must navigate to succeed. – Miriam Rivera, JD/MBA '95, former Vice President and Deputy General Counsel, Google