The Doctor of Jurisprudence (JD) law degree, sometimes called the Doctor of Legal Studies degree, is an intermediate graduate-entry professional level degree in legal studies and one of many Doctor of Law degrees. In most common law countries, Australia, Canada, and the United States, the Doctor of Jurisprudence are earned through completion of law school. But in others like Hong Kong, Malaysia, Thailand, and Singapore, students who pass a special exam for this degree are allowed to enroll in the program without completing their law school training or law school certification.
Students of the JD Law degree take courses that prepare them for specific types of legal careers such as court and criminal law, family law, civil law, corporate law, real estate law, international law, white collar crime law, and environmental law. They will study both traditional and non-traditional curriculum for these law programs.
Most of the JD degree courses will cover theories of law such as constitutional law, judicial interpretation of the law, criminal law, civil law, commercial law, and probate law. In some cases, students may complete a full course of study and obtain a JD degree from an accredited institution before they move on to a more specialized Juris Doctor.
Many students who are just finishing up their studies with an undergraduate degree earn their first Master of Law or Doctor of Science of Law or Doctor of Legal Studies in Jurisprudence. This is because the degree can be completed after a student has already graduated from a law school. Graduates of this degree program may choose to further their education by obtaining a Certificate in Jurisprudence (CLEP).
In addition to completing a course of study and passing a CLEP, students must also complete a dissertation before they can receive their degree from this degree program. Some schools require at least three years of on-campus clinical work in the field of the student's choosing before granting an Associate's, Bachelor's, or Master's Degree in Law. In some states, however, some requirements are waived for students who have completed courses and received diplomas within the last two years.
Graduates of the JD degree program will have gained knowledge of important topics in the areas of personal injury, contract law, divorce, family law, juvenile law, and real property law. in addition to legal history, legal terminology, court procedure, and the workings of the legal system.
The coursework required for the JD is quite varied. A typical course will cover such areas as civil procedures, personal injury, corporate law, contract law, divorce, civil rights, family law, probate law, civil rights, international law, family law, and property law, landlord and tenant law, white collar crime, and corporate bankruptcy law. Students may also elect to specialize in a particular area of law such as labor law, criminal law, intellectual property, international law, employment law, immigration law, criminal law, or criminal defense. Students can choose to specialize in one or more of these areas.
Many graduates find that they want to enter the field of legal practitioners so they can practice under an established law firm or can work for an attorney who practices in that field. For example, if the lawyer practices in criminal defense, his or her experience in that field may help the lawyer to prepare a successful case for the client. Lawyers who practice family law may advise their clients how best to file a claim or fight a case in court.
Many law school students get the opportunity to work for law firms where they receive real-world experience in the field of law. They can then move forward to another firm and gain more real-world experience. Graduates of the JD degree program will have learned so much that they may decide to practice as lawyers in their own firms. Graduates of the JD degree program may also pursue legal jobs in the private practice of law such as personal injury attorneys.
Other JD law school students choose to become professors in a law school. Law professors must teach legal classes as well as writing books, articles, and conduct research. The curriculum that would allow them to present lectures and teach seminars for students, seminars, and discussions about the legal issues in the field.
There are many different schools that offer this program. However, it is necessary to look at the credentials of the law school in which you wish to enroll. Some schools offer only a part of the program, while other schools offer all the required courses in order to earn your degree.