Dual Degree Programs in History and Law

J.D.-Ph.D. dual degree program in History and Law:

This dual degree program allows accepted applicants to obtain a Ph.D. in History from the Graduate School of Arts and Science and a J.D. from the School of Law. Students must apply separately and be admitted to both programs, and they would normally apply concurrently. Students must complete all requirements for both degrees. By alternating enrollment in Graduate School of Arts and Science and the School of Law and by counting some courses toward both degrees, students are able to complete the two programs in 7 or 71/2 years. The Graduate School of Arts and Science awards funding to students for the History portion of the dual degree program under the MacCracken program . Students are considered separately for funding at the law school.

Graduates of the dual degree program would be prepared to pursue careers in both history departments and on law school faculties. NYU has a long tradition of excellence in legal history scholarship. Students can participate in the Legal History Colloquium, which convenes weekly and houses the Samuel I. Golieb Fellowship Program for post-doctoral studies in legal history.  Dissertation projects can be advised by committees composed of historians based both at NYU Law School and in the History Department.

NYU History faculty from diverse regional fields have expertise in legal history:

Lauren Benton: Comparative colonial legal history. 

Jane Burbank: Imperial Russian legal history.

Linda Gordon: U.S. political and legal history.

Daniel Hulsebosch: U.S. and English legal and constitutional history.

Leslie Peirce: Ottoman legal history.

Joanna Waley-Cohen: Chinese legal history.

Kostis Smyrlis: Byzantine legal history.

Other NYU History faculty with interests that overlap with legal history include:

Thomas Bender: U.S. cultural and intellectual history; comparative study of cities.

Fred Cooper: African history; colonization and decolonization; social sciences and the colonial world.

Maria Montoya:  History of the American West, Labor History, Latina/o History, Southwestern land grants.

Andrew Sartori:  Modern South Asia, Modern Intellectual History, Social Theory.

NYU Law School faculty with expertise in legal history include:

Barry Friedman

David Golove

Helen Hershkoff

Roderick Hills Jr.

Deborah Malamud

William Nelson

Richard Pildes

John Phillip Reid

J.D.-M.A. dual degree program in History and Law:

This dual degree program allows accepted applicants to obtain a M.A. in World History, the History of Women and Gender, or Archives and Public History from the Graduate School of Arts and Science and a J.D. from the School of Law. Applicants apply to each degree program separately. Students may apply to the History Department either concurrently with their application to NYU School of Law or during the first year of study at the Law School. Admission to one degree program does not depend upon nor guarantee admission to the second degree program; all admissions decisions are made distinctly. The J.D.-M.A. program enables students to complete a J.D. and earn a Masters degree in four years. Under some circumstances it may be possible to complete the program in seven semesters. The dual degree program is offered only on a full-time basis.

For further information about the J.D.-M.A. or J.D.-Ph.D. dual degree program, contact, in the History Department, Professor Lauren Benton (lauren.benton@nyu.edu) or, in the School of Law, Professor Daniel Hulsebosch (daniel.hulsebosch@nyu.edu). Please additionally visit the NYU Law School website at  for further information on the Legal History area of focus.