Students may take relevant courses in other programs and apply credit toward the J.D.; a maximum of 6 hours in the school of credits may be applied. The following joint degrees may be earned: J.D./M.B.A. (Juris Doctor/Master of Business Administration).
The Walter F. George School of Law offers concentrations in legal writing, research and drafting certificate program, and law and public service program. In addition, clinics include Death Penalty Clinic, a three-credit course that places second- and third-year students under the joint supervision of the staff attorneys of Georgia Capital Defenders and a professor; the Public Defender Criminal Defense Clinic, worth 3 credits; the Habeaus Project for second- and third-year students, also worth 3 credits. Each student must elect at least 1 seminar in the third year or 2 credit hours. Approximately 12 seminars are offered each year on a range of subjects from legal ethics to mass media. Supervised internships of 1 to 3 credit hours may be arranged under the Public Interest Practicum Program. Judicial Field Placement, a three-credit course for second-year students, places students with federal and state court judges to serve as clerks. There is a weekly classroom component as well. Mercer offers numerous lecture series including the John James lecture, Law Review Symposium, and Ethics and Professionalism symposium. Study abroad programs are available in conjunction with Stetson University Law School. An academic tutorial program offers one-on-one mentoring to any student in academic difficulty. Minority programs include Mercer’s BLSA organization, which conducts minority orientation prior to the first year. Various minority groups on campus visit HBC schools during the year and work with BLSA and minority student organizations. Mercer Pro Bono Clinic and Public Interest Foundation provide volunteer services for local legal aid organizations. The most widely taken electives are Business Associations, Criminal Procedure, and Domestic Relations.
To earn the J.D., candidates must complete 91 total credits, of which 59 are for required courses. The following first-year courses are required of all students: American Constitutional System, Contracts, Criminal Law, Introduction to Law Study, Introduction to Legal Research, Jurisdiction and Judgments, Legal Analysis, Legal Profession, Legal Writing I, Property, Sales, and Torts. Required upper-level courses consist of Civil Lawsuits, Evidence, Introduction to Alternative Dispute Resolution, Introduction to Counseling, Law of Lawyering, Legal Writing II, and Statutory Law and Analysis. All students must take Introduction to Counseling and Introduction to Dispute Resolution courses. Each student also must elect at least 1 course from a list of advanced skills courses that use simulations of law practice situations.The required orientation program for first-year students is a 1-week, Introduction to Law Study course, taught before the start of regular first-year courses. It carries 1 hour of credit, has an exam, and is graded. Additional information is offered in a 3-day session before the start of classes.
In order to graduate, candidates must have completed the upper-division writing requirement.