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Legal Studies

Legal Studies Program & Certificate

The Legal Studies program is open to students of any major who are interested in studying the development, logic, interpretation, perception, and application of law. As part of the program, you will take law-related courses from different departments throughout the university. Upon graduating, you will be awarded a “Legal Studies Certificate” in addition to your Bachelor’s degree.

Program Goals

Earning a Legal Studies Certificate will show that you have in-depth knowledge of the legal system. It also will show that you understand law from a variety of perspectives. This could provide a valuable background for a variety of future pursuits, including: graduate school, social work, community and government service, law school, law enforcement, and many others.

Program Requirements

POSC Legal Studies Certificate Requirements Worksheet

To earn the Legal Studies Certificate, you must complete a total of 8 courses (24 units). You can double-count these courses toward major, minor, general education or other academic requirements. However, no more than 4 courses (12 units) from your major may be used toward the Certificate.
The courses must be distributed as follows:

You must choose 1 course (3 units) from the following list:

CRJU 350 (Constitutional Criminal Procedure)
HIST 308 I(Law and Civilization)
HIST 479 (US Constitution: Origins & Early Development)
PHIL 352I (Philosophy of Law)
POSC 311 (Constitutional Law: Powers)
POSC 312 (Constitutional Law: Rights)


You may choose the remaining 7 courses from the following list. These courses should be chosen in consultation with the program adviser, and they must be taken from three different departments.

ASAM 346. Asian Americans and the Law
AFRS 332. Civil Rights and the Law
AIS 485. Indians and the Law
BLAW 220. Intro. to Law and Business Transactions
BLAW 320/520. Legal and Regulatory Environment of Business
CHLS 362. Chicanos and the Law
CLSC 410I. Law and Literature in the Classical World
COMM 441I. Issues in Freedom of Communication
CRJU 301. Criminal Courts and Judicial Processes
CRJU 340. Substantive Criminal Law
CRJU 350. Constitutional Criminal Procedure
CRJU 420. Legal Aspects of Corrections
CRJU 430. Criminal Evidence and Trials
ECON 355. Law and Economics
HIST 308I. Law and Civilization
HIST 479. U.S. Constitution: Origins and Early Development
HIST 480. Law and Fundamental Rights in American History
HIST 489. Selected Topics in Legal History of the United States
JOUR 430. Law of Mass Communications
PHIL 352I. Philosophy of Law
PHIL 451I. Liberty and Justice: Race, Ethnicity, and Gender in American Law
POSC 311. Constitutional Law: Power
POSC 312. Constitutional Law: Rights
POSC 322. Parties, Campaigns and Elections
POSC 376. International Law
POSC 412. Law and Social Change
POSC 414. Jurisprudence
POSC 419. Senior Seminar in Public Law
POSC 423. The American Presidency
POSC 424. The Legislative Process
PSY 495. Psychology and the Law
SOC 342I. Criminology
SW 350. Social Policy: Law and Court Decisions
WGSS 308. Women and the Law

In place of 1 of the above courses, you may choose to write a Project Paper. The paper must be written during your senior year under the supervision of any faculty member who teaches one of the above courses.

Political Science Department

For more information on the program click here.