Graduate Level & Foreign Language Credits

J.D. students who are not enrolled in a joint degree program may apply up to 6 credits of Penn State University graduate-level courses, or undergraduate-level foreign language courses toward their J.D. degree.

Eligible Graduate-Level Courses

  1. 500-level or higher courses; or
  2. 400-level courses, but only with the advance approval of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs upon a showing that the course is sufficiently rigorous to justify credit toward the J.D. degree.

Note: In some cases, graduate-level courses have been assigned a law course code (900 number). Law students should register for the law course code. Courses with a law course code are not considered co-curricular credits. All graduate-level courses without a concurrent law course code are considered co-curricular credits.

Eligible Undergraduate-Level Foreign Language Courses

  1. A student must obtain the advance approval of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs upon a showing that he or she intends to use the undergraduate-level course to acquire proficiency in a foreign language as part of his or her legal career objective.

Generally Applicable Rules

  1. Both graduate-level course credits and undergraduate-level foreign language course credits are considered co-curricular credits.
  2. Students may not apply less than all the credits earned in a course toward the six credits permitted under this rule.
  3. Students may take courses at either Penn State University Park or Penn State Harrisburg.
  4. Credits a student earned prior to matriculation to the J.D. program are not eligible.
  5. Graduate level Individual Studies (596) credits will not be applied to the J.D. degree.
  6. Credits will count toward the J.D. degree only if the student earns a grade of at least a B. Credits earned are not calculated into a student’s GPA. Note: this rule does not apply to a graduate-level course that has a concurrent law course code. See note above regarding student enrollment in graduate-level courses that are concurrently listed with a law course code.
  7. If a course is concurrently listed, having both a Law (900-level) and a graduate (500-level) course code, J.D. students are required to register for the course with the law course code.