The Department of Economics and the UB Law School offer a collaborative program in law and applied economics that leads to a J.D. degree and an M.A. degree in economics.
Law and economics is a thriving and established school of legal theory, and the collaborative program is designed to meet a growing need for professionals with sound training in both areas for work as specialized attorneys, as management consultants, in government agencies, in academic settings.
The Department of Economics at the University at Buffalo is unique in offering an innovative and increasingly popular Master’s degree in Applied Economics, a terminal degree that also can serve as a foundation for future doctoral work.
The current M.A. program provides rigorous exposure to economic theory and to statistical methods with advanced electives in financial economics, law and regulatory economics, intellectual property, information and Internet economics, international economics, health care services, and urban/regional studies.
Many of the courses offered as part of the M.A. program have elements that overlap with the Law School curriculum. Although many perspectives come into play in the study of law, economics can provide a focal point. the Law School has consistently offered a course in Law and Economics, and concern for the economic effects of law guide much of the teaching and analysis.
The collaborative program in Law and Applied Economics is designed for students to obtain both the J.D. and the M.A. degree in three and a half (3.5) years or in three years plus two summer terms. Students must be matriculated in the Law School for a total of six semesters, or for five semesters plus two summer terms. Students typically are matriculated in the Department of Economics for one semester, and take a number of economics courses while in the Law School.
For the JD/MA program, students must complete a total of 108 credits including:
- 27 (or 24) credits in the Department of Economics totaling 108 credits.
- 81 (or 84) credits in the Law School totaling 108 credits
From the 30 credits required for the MA degree, at least 24 credits must be taken from Economics department. This consists of the five required Economics courses and three Economics elective courses.
The Graduate School allows course sharing for this collaborative degree. The total credit hours chosen from Law and Economics courses for sharing cannot exceed 12. To fulfill the JD/MA degree requirements, a student has three choices:
(a) Take the full 30 credit hours of M.A. economics courses.
(b) Take 27 credit hours of economics courses and share 3 credits from a Law course (thus allowing 9 credits of economics courses to count for the JD program).
(c) Take 24 credit hours of economics courses and share 6 credits from the Law courses (thus allowing 6 credits of economics course to count for the JD program).
For the M.A. portion of the JD/MA program, students must complete the following:
- 27 (or 24) Credits depending on their choice from (a), (b), or (c). Each course is three credits.
ECO 505 Microeconomics Theory
ECO 507 Macroeconomics Theory
ECO 580 Econometrics I
ECO 581 Econometrics II
ECO 576 Topics in Microeconomics
ECO Elective or outside approved elective***
Micro Comp Exam
Macro Comp Exam
***Outside approved electives towards the M.A. Economics degree are located on this here.
None of the nine courses listed above that are recognized by the Department of Economics for the MA degree can be used again for the JD degree.
Prospective students must submit separate applications and be admitted to UB Law School and the UB Department of Economics according to the procedures and standards of the respective schools. Application to both schools may be simultaneous, or students admitted to Law or the M.A. program may opt for the collaborative program after beginning their first year, and then seek admission to the Department of Economics and Law School, separately.
For M.A. Economics application information, please visit the application info page.
A student finishing in three and a half years will need to take an average of 15 credits per semester during seven semesters.
An accelerated three-year program requires an average of slightly more than 15 credits a semester for six semesters, plus six credits during each of two summer terms at the law school.
In order to satisfy the Law School residency requirements, students will need to begin with a full year in the J.D. program and start the M.A. courses in the second year.
Upon entering the program, students take the required 32 units in the core first-year program of the Law School. After the first year, students matriculate for one semester in the Department of Economics, completing 15 credits in Economics.
Subsequently, during four additional semesters (or three semesters, plus two summers) in the Law School, students take a mix of Law School and Department of Economics courses.
Students, by the appropriate selection of courses, will receive both degree after completion of 108 credits drawn form the core program and electives of both schools.