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JD/PhD in Psychology

The School of Law and the Department of Psychology in the College of Arts and Sciences offer a joint and integrated J.D./Ph.D. Program in Law and Psychology. The program melds two already ongoing successful endeavors, the J.D. degree in the School of Law and the Ph.D. in clinical psychology in the Department of Psychology, thus further enhancing Drexel University’s leadership in multidisciplinary education. Students in the program complete all 85 credits required for graduation from the law school and all 91 credits required to complete the Ph.D.  The program provides those students who wish to pursue professional degrees in both law and psychology with a more efficient plan of study. The program is designed to be completed in seven years, which includes:

  • Required psychology practica
  • One-year internship in an American Psychological Association accredited pre-doctoral mental health/forensic setting
  • Master's thesis
  • Doctoral dissertation
  • 50 hours of pro bono service in law

The School of Law is fully accredited by the American Bar Association and the clinical psychology program is fully accredited by the American Psychological Association. While a few other universities may offer degrees in law and psychology, these are often on an ad hoc, nonintegrated basis. Thus, the Drexel program is a unique interdisciplinary endeavor.


Program Goals

Within the broad framework of the program’s philosophy, the J.D./Ph.D. Program in Law & Psychology has three specific goals:

  • Develop scientist-practitioners who will produce legally sophisticated social science research to aid the legal system to make better empirically based decisions;
  • Produce lawyer-psychologists who will participate in the development of more empirically and theoretically sophisticated mental health policy by legislatures, administrative tribunals, and the courts; and
  • Educate highly trained clinicians who can contribute to the advancement of forensic psychology in such areas as criminal law, domestic relations, and civil commitment.
  • The required existing core program in law and psychology at both schools;
  • Interdisciplinary courses; e.g., Mental Health Law, Behavioral Sciences and the Law, Expert Witnesses, Law and the Mind Sciences;
  • Supervised psycho-legal research experience under the guidance of a faculty member;
  • Legal clinics and psychology practica and internships that combine knowledge from both fields in a practical setting;
  • Electives in both fields, e.g., Bioethics, Education Law, Health Law, Health Psychology, Employment Discrimination, Neuropsychology;
  • Pro bono service in legal settings; and

Key Elements:

  • The required existing core program in law and psychology at both schools;
  • Interdisciplinary courses; e.g., Mental Health Law, Behavioral Sciences and the Law, Expert Witnesses, Law and the Mind Sciences;
  • Supervised psycho-legal research experience under the guidance of a faculty member;
  • Legal clinics and psychology practica and internships that combine knowledge from both fields in a practical setting;
  • Electives in both fields, e.g., Bioethics, Education Law, Health Law, Health Psychology, Employment Discrimination, Neuropsychology;
  • Pro bono service in legal settings; and
  • Employment for at least one summer in a legal setting, e.g., public interest law firm, governmental agency, private law firm, nonprofit association.

Prospective Students


Current Students


Course Information