Legal & Justice Studies

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Legal and Justice Studies Degree Program Overview

Legal Studies is a Pre-Law School course of study.This pre-law degree programs prepares students for Law School and their LSATsLegal and Justice Studies goes beyond your typical Criminal Justice degree programs.

Offers understanding into how society does and does not work to support human endeavors and how engaged citizens can help shape their world. The degree program consists of courses in history, politics, law, economics, and the environment taught by professors, lawyers, and community activists. Study in this major leads to the acquisition of information essential to understand institutions and ideas that shape society and, to conserve or change it. The Legal and Justice acts as a Pre-law course of study for preparation for law school.

Students in the Legal and Justice Studies program are encouraged to participate in the activities of the Institute for Civic Engagement. Founded with the mission of informing students and the community on timely issues and thereby fostering community involvement with those issues, the Institute welcomes to Burlington College on Wednesday evenings experts who lecture, debate and discuss topics important to the health and well being of our society.

Established to further the mission of Burlington College to help students to develop the information, skills and passion for the lifelong engagement of an informed citizen of the world, the Legal and Justice Studies program prepares students for meaningful employment in law, politics, business, government, non-governmental organizations, mediation, and community agencies, environmental policy and community programs. The major also helps prepare students for law school or graduate school.

Legal and Justice Studies Degree Requirements

All students are required to complete an upper-level internship in the major including participation in the Action Learning Seminar; typical placements include the Pro se Legal Clinic, community non-profits, activist organizations, state and local governmental positions, and law offices and organizations. In addition, all students are required to complete a course in research methods, and a 6-credit capstone degree project.

Every Bachelor of Arts degree candidate must complete Burlington College's General Education requirements and earn 120 credits to achieve a degree. The following course requirements are specific to the Legal and Justice Major. Other coursework may be substituted with permission of academic advisor. All courses are 3-credits unless otherwise noted.

Entry Level: 3 Credits
LJS101 - Politics: The Art of the Possible and the Impossible

Intermediate Level: 6 Credits
COR/IAS225 - U.S. History: Reconstruction to the War in Iraq
PLS228 - Constitutional Law

Intermediate Electives: 6
COR205 - Great Ideas
PLS205 - Legal Research and Writing
PLS210 - Family Law and Family Court
LJS/PLS214 - Comparative Law, Politics and Government
PLS220 - Criminal Law
PLS230 - Legal Ethics: Theory and Practice
IAS240 - The Government Palace and the Street:
Convergences in South American History
COR/IAS261 - The Creation of the New World
COR263 - Campaign Fever
COR273 - Civic Scholar Seminar

Upper Level Required: 3 Credits
WAL331 - Search and Research 3

Upper Level Electives: 12 Credits 
COR300 - City and History
COR313 - Moments in Revolution: The American, French & Russian Revolutions
COR/IAS323 - U.S. Foreign Policy Since 1898
IAS340 - The Government Palace and the Street:
Convergences in South American History
COR/IAS370 - Globalization and Pirates
COR/TPS371 - Arts and Social Change
Other approved course work or guided independent study

Action Learning Seminar and Internships: 6 Credits

Degree Projects I & II : 6 Credits

General Education Requirements

  • Demonstration of proficiency in academic computing
  • Vision and Revision (or assessment of writing sample)
  • Research and Reflection

Evidence of proficiency in the four fundamental learning skills 

  • Writing
  • Oral Communication
  • Critical Thinking
  • Researching

3 credits in each of the following areas of the liberal arts 
  • Creative Expression
  • Cultural Awareness
  • Historical Consciousness
  • Media Literacy
  • Quantitative Reasoning
  • Responsible Action
  • Scientific Thought
  • Social Awareness



Offers understanding into how society does and does not work to support human endeavors and how engaged citizens can help shape their world.