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Legal Studies

Master of Arts

The Master of Arts in Legal Studies offers you a better understanding of the law as it relates to your legal or non-legal career. It is not intended for practicing law, but rather to build upon your existing knowledge of the law by further expanding your comprehension of legal doctrines, legal concepts, and workplace legal issues. This master’s degree helps prepare you to pursue career opportunities in government, business, and other industries where knowledge of the law and ethical issues can be a career advantage.

Note: Although some states do not require a Juris Doctor degree for Bar entry, this program does not prepare you for the practice of law or admission to the Bar of any state based solely on your completion of this program.

Program Courses

The curriculum for this online master’s program is reviewed by an advisory council of industry experts for relevancy to today’s marketplace. Course topics include:

  • U.S. criminal law and the justice process
  • Research, analytical, and writing skills needed for legal work
  • Property, contract, tort, constitutional, and international law
  • Immigration, media, admiralty, sports, and space law
  • Legal and ethical issues of management and education
  • Nonprofit law, governance, and ethics
  • Laws, policies, and ethics of emergency management
  • Homeland security and cybersecurity
  • Evidence rules, admission, exclusion, and presentation
  • Public policy, judicial politics, and policy-making

The legal studies capstone seminar will be your culminating requirement to earn this degree. Through the capstone, you will create a research proposal and write a thesis to prove your proficiency in the subject.

View all courses.

Program Objectives

In addition to the institutional and degree level learning objectives, graduates of this program are expected to achieve program specific learning outcomes and be able to:

  • Analyze the constitutional, juridical, philosophical, and ethical perspectives of the law.
  • Generate analytical and critical thinking in legal writing.
  • Evaluate and identify areas and issues needing study and analysis using legal research.
  • Assess the relationship between the social organization of legal institutions and the legal profession in society.
  • Evaluate the complex relation between the law and justice as dictated and mediated by societal conditions and forces.

Degree at a Glance

Admission Requirements

Please be prepared to submit a legible copy of your valid government-issued photo ID (civilian students) or government issued JST or CCAF transcript (military students) upon request.

An AMU admissions representative will contact you with further details about how to submit the required documentation after you complete the enrollment application.

Need help?

Selecting the right program to meet your educational goals is a key step in ensuring a successful outcome. If you are unsure of which program to choose, or need more information, please contact an AMU admissions representative at 877-777-9081 or info@apus.edu.


Graduate Tuition Rates 

Per credit hour: $350 | $325 with military grant*

View Tuition and Fees Details  

*To help minimize out-of-pocket costs, AMU offers a tuition grant for U.S. active-duty servicemembers, Guard, Reserve, military spouses and dependents, and veterans. See all military-affiliated student benefits.

Paying for School

Because our university is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), (the same as the Ohio State University, Univ. of Chicago, and U.S. Air Force Academy, to name a few), we can accept the following forms of financial aid and payments:

Ways to Save

Transfer Credits 

Accelerate your degree completion by taking full advantage of our transfer credit options, including credit for your previous college courses, military service schools, American Council on Education (ACE) and College Level Examination Program (CLEP) tests, and prior learning experiences.  

Employer Contributions

AMU has educational partnerships with many employers and associations. Be sure to accurately enter your employer information when you complete our admissions application. Your employer might also offer a tuition reimbursement plan as one of your benefits.


School of Security & Global Studies

This program resides in the American Military University School of Security & Global Studies where many of the university’s flagship programs were created by experts from the Departments of State, Defense, and Homeland Security, the intelligence community, and private businesses throughout the world. The programs taught in the School of Security & Global Studies truly embody our Educating Those Who Serve motto because many of our students come from active-duty military and federal, state, and local government agencies.

The AMU faculty is committed to helping you apply educational theories to real-world challenges in preparation for leadership opportunities in criminal justice, public safety, public administration, national security, and more. Many of our professors are highly credentialed and respected leaders in their fields and currently work in the U.S. government.

At AMU, we understand your need for flexibility because most of our students are working adult learners who balance school around work and service commitments. This is why we offer 8-week or 16-week online courses that start monthly. Through an online virtual classroom, you’ll communicate with classmates and professors in forum communities as you work to complete your weekly assignments on your own schedule from anywhere in the world. And with our mobile application, you can work offline and upload your assignments when you reconnect – a strong benefit for deployed personnel.

We encourage you to browse the School of Security & Global Studies webpage to learn more about our what’s happening in the school and to find a program that’s right for you