May 29, 2024  
2024-2025 Undergraduate Catalog 
2024-2025 Undergraduate Catalog

Legal Studies (B.A., B.S.)

33 Major Hours, 120 Degree Hours

Students in this major must also complete the requirements for a degree in the College of Arts & Sciences .

The interdisciplinary major in Legal Studies allows students to explore the history and impact of the law, its underlying theoretical and philosophical framework, and the political, economic, and cultural forces that affect its development. Graduates with a B.A. or B.S. in legal studies are prepared to pursue graduate or professional study in law, the humanities, or other disciplines, and to begin careers in business, human resources, journalism, public policy, social work, and other fields.

Nondepartmental Requirements (12 hours)

Core: B.A./B.S. to Public Administration MPA Accelerated program (fast-track)

Students in Political Science, Criminal Justice, International Studies, or Legal Studies degree programs who are interested in public service careers may apply to the fast-track of the Master of Public Administration program. Students would apply to the USD Graduate School during the spring of their junior year and be admitted to the USD Graduate School contingent on receipt of their undergraduate degree. After completing 90 hours (senior status), students may take 12 graduate hours that will count toward their undergraduate degree and also count toward the NASPAA-accredited Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree. After receiving their undergraduate degree and satisfactory progress in the four graduate courses, students would continue to pursue coursework leading to the MPA degree. Additional information about the accelerated degree can be found on the accelerated program catalog page  for the M.P.A. in Public Administration.

Four-Year Program Guides and Costs

USD encourages students to take 15 credits per semester or 30 credits within the year in order to graduate in four years. To help students complete their academic degree program in four years, we provide a sample academic plan. Please work with your academic advisor to confirm your plan.


State Authorization - It Matters Where You Live

If your learning placement course (internship, externship, clinical, rotation, practicum, independent study, study away, etc.) or your online course will be taken outside South Dakota, please reference USD’s State Authorization webpage.

State Authorization