The Master of Studies in Law (MSL) program is a 24-credit program that will provide you with a deep understanding of legal research, reasoning, writing, and more. After completing the MSL program, you will have a master’s degree. The Certificate of Studies in Law (CSL) program is a 12-credit certificate program for anyone interested in learning legal studies and doctrine but who does not want to pursue a master’s degree and/or does not have the time or resources to devote to a full master’s program. Neither program will provide you the ability to be a practicing attorney or qualify to sit the bar exam.
No. In fact, the certificate is focused on providing a legal foundation to those who do not have any background or experience in law.
Yes. Currently, the required foundational courses are offered in person but with an online participation option. Some elective courses are always offered online.
Anyone who has completed a bachelor’s degree is eligible to apply to participate in the CSL program.
The CSL program is geared towards those interested in the law. This might be those at the beginning of their careers, or it might be established professionals who find themselves engaging with law, legal systems, policy, and lawyers and see the benefit to further understanding the law.
The CSL requires 12 credits to complete the certificate. There are three required foundational courses. Your remaining classes are electives and most courses that UC Law SF offers are available to you.
Yes. CSL students must take three foundational courses (totaling 6 credits). The three foundational courses are Legal Writing & Analysis, Introduction to Law, and Legal Research.
The CSL certificate is designed for you to pursue either a general course of study or you can focus on a specialization, for example Business Law.
Your three foundational courses are taken alongside masters students. Your remaining courses will be taken alongside JD, MSL, and international LLM students. As a CSL student, you are not graded on the UC Law SF curve.
Under American Bar Association rules, any credits taken as a CSL or MSL student cannot be applied to a JD degree. But you are welcome to apply for admission to the JD program, and your preparation may help you succeed if you join UC Law SF as a JD student.
Students, who wish to continue their studies after completing the CSL, may be eligible to transfer to the Master of Studies in Law (MSL) program. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about the transfer process. CSL students who wish to transfer to the MSL must:
- Complete a CSL Continuation to MSL Application form
- Have earned passing grades in all CSL courses
- Receive 2 letters of recommendation from UC Law SF faculty members who are familiar with candidate’s academic work