Joint Degree and Cooperative Programs

Joint Degrees within Stanford University

Stanford Law School offers three types of joint degree—JD/Master’s, JD/MD, and JD/PhD—in 21 subject areas.


Our JD/Master’s programs are ideal for students who plan to practice law after graduation, though they may also be helpful for students interested in an academic career. Most JD/Master’s degrees can be completed in three years, although several may take longer, depending on the specific master’s degree.


Three of the world’s most high-impact fields — law, medicine, and biosciences — come together in Stanford Law’s JD/MD program. Stanford is one of just a handful of universities with top-ranked schools of both law and medicine as well as a robust program in biosciences. A university-wide tradition of encouraging and nurturing innovation and interdisciplinary collaboration — along with a location in Silicon Valley, with its thriving biotech and medtech industries — makes Stanford a particularly welcoming home for work that merges these three dynamic disciplines. See Law and Medicine for more info.


Students interested in an academic career—or those seeking greater depth in another discipline—may want to consider a JD/PhD. The length of time required for these degrees varies depending how long it takes to complete a dissertation, but under Stanford Law’s innovative programs, the typical JD/PhD can be completed in anywhere from 18 months to two years less time than required anywhere else. More important, a Stanford JD/PhD can be completed at one–third the cost of a similar joint degree anywhere else.

Because of the cross-crediting of units and because JD/PhD candidates are expected to spend only one year in full-time residence at the law school (the rest of their academic career is spent in the PhD department with full funding and with allowances made to register for courses at the law school), students need at most to pay for one year of law school.  In addition, entering JD/PhD students may also apply for University funding to cover some or all of their law school tuition fees that are not already included in our generous need-based scholarships.  This funding will be awarded on a competitive basis.  Eligibility to apply for this funding requires that applicants have gained admission to both degree programs.  The application is now available and is due back to the Office of Admissions ( no later than March 25, 2018.  Applicants should also make sure that that all required financial aid documents (CSS Profile and FAFSA) have been submitted to the Office of Financial Aid.

Note to applicants: The Knight-Hennessy Scholars program awards full funding to Stanford graduate students from all disciplines, with additional opportunities for leadership training and collaboration across fields. Joint Degree applicants are encouraged to apply to the KnightHennessy Scholars Program.  Please be aware that the Knight-Hennessy Scholars applications are due in early Autumn one year prior to enrollment. View dates and deadlines:

Cooperative Programs with Other Universities

Stanford JD students also have pursued degrees with other universities. For example, Stanford JD students have pursued degrees at Harvard Kennedy School, Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, and Princeton Woodrow Wilson School. The approval process begins after you are admitted, independently, to both programs you wish to pursue. Please note, you may enroll in either a joint degree among schools at Stanford or a degree from an external university, but not both.

Degree Requirements

    • Of the 111 quarter units required for the JD, you must earn at least 80 units at the Law School under a Law School course listing. You may fulfill up to all of the remaining 31 units via coursework taken in your other program, whether at Stanford University or another institution; however, restrictions may apply and you should check with the bar examiners of the state in which you intend to practice about any restrictions they may impose. (In the case of JD/PhD programs, Stanford Law School may award the JD degree upon completion of the JD degree requirements.)
    • You must spend 7 quarters of full-time study at the Law School.

Course Requirements

Both schools related to the joint degree must approve your curriculum choices. In some instances, you may work from a preapproved list of joint degree courses; in others, you may customize a course of study. In any case, however, you will be able to work with particular advisors from both schools to determine and obtain approval for your curriculum.

To the extent that courses under a joint degree program originate outside the law school but count toward the law degree, law school credits shall be permitted only in accordance with ABA accreditation standards. To learn more about course requirements, please see links to specific degrees.