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Joint Degree Programs in Bioengineering and the School of Law

The School of Law and the Department of Bioengineering offer joint programs leading to either a J.D. degree combined with an M.S. degree in Bioengineering or to a J.D. degree combined with a Ph.D. in Bioengineering.

The J.D./M.S. and J.D./Ph.D. degree programs are designed for students who wish to prepare themselves intensively for careers in areas relating to both law and bioengineering. Students interested in either joint degree program must apply and gain entrance separately to the School of Law and the Department of Bioengineering and, as an additional step, must secure permission from both academic units to pursue degrees in those units as part of a joint degree program. Interest in either joint degree program should be noted on the student's admission applications and may be considered by the admission committee of each program. Alternatively, an enrolled student in either the Law School or the Bioengineering Department may apply for admission to the other program and for joint degree status in both academic units after commencing study in either program.

Joint degree students may elect to begin their course of study in either the School of Law or the Department of Bioengineering. Faculty advisers from each academic unit will participate in the planning and supervising of the student's joint program. Students must be enrolled full time in the Law School for the first year of law school, and, at some point during the joint program, may be required to devote one or more quarters largely or exclusively to studies in the Bioengineering program regardless of whether enrollment at that time is in the Law School or in the Department of Bioengineering. At all other times, enrollment may be in the graduate school or the Law School, and students may choose courses from either program regardless of where enrolled. Students must satisfy the requirements for both the J.D. and the M.S. or Ph.D. degrees as specified in the Stanford Bulletin or elsewhere.

The Law School shall approve courses from the Bioengineering Department that may count toward the J.D. degree, and the Bioengineering Department shall approve courses from the Law School that may count toward the M.S. or Ph.D. degree in Bioengineering. In either case, approval may consist of a list applicable to all joint degree students or may be tailored to each individual student's program. The lists may differ depending on whether the student is pursuing an M.S. or a Ph.D. in Bioengineering.

In the case of a J.D./M.S. program, no more than 45 units of approved courses may be counted toward both degrees. In the case of a J.D./Ph.D. program, no more than 54 units of approved courses may be counted toward both degrees. In either case, no more than 36 units of courses that originate outside the Law School may count toward the law degree. To the extent that courses under this joint degree program originate outside of the Law School but count toward the law degree, the law school credits permitted under Section 17(1) of the Law School Regulations shall be reduced on a unit-per-unit basis, but not below zero. The maximum number of law school credits that may be counted toward the M.S. or Ph.D. in Bioengineering is the greater of: (i) 15 units; or (ii) the maximum number of units from courses outside of the department that M.S. or Ph.D. candidates in Bioengineering are permitted to count toward the applicable degree under general departmental guidelines or in the case of a particular student's individual program. Tuition and financial aid arrangements will normally be through the school in which the student is then enrolled.

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