The degree
Law is a key force in society. The law and society degree examines how the law shapes government, the justice system, crime and other social problems, as well as how social movements, officials, professionals, and ordinary people in every walk of life use law to bring change and improve society. 

According to the Mid-America Regional Council (MARC), law and society jobs are expected to increase by more than 1,200 in the Kansas City area from 2014-2024, with a significant demand among the region’s police departments. KU Edwards Campus is the only institution in the Kansas City area to offer this in-demand degree.

An ideal undergraduate degree if you are planning to go to law school, this program teaches about: 

  • Facets of the legal system and how they interact 
  • Legal policy
  • Legal and justice institutions
  • Crime and other social problems
  • Social movements and use of law for reform
  • Psychological attitudes and perceptions related to law
  • Managerial and organizational processes
  • How to develop effective written arguments and oral presentations

You also learn critical thinking and analytical skills – vital to professional success in law school and public agencies – in small classes utilizing discussion-oriented learning. Faculty mentors guide you through writing, research and career planning.


Career paths
Offered through KU’s nationally recognized School of Public Affairs and Administration, the Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of General Studies in Law & Society provides real-world experience through local internships, academic research, and experiential learning opportunities. After completing the program, you will be well prepared for graduate study in law, public administration or social work, or immediate employment in roles such as: 

  • Research analyst
  • Law enforcement officer
  • Probation officer
  • Judicial law clerk
  • Legislative analyst
  • Legislative post audit analyst
  • Corrections officer
  • Paralegal
  • Detective
  • Social worker
  • Nonprofit administrator

Explore opportunities in the legal field, law enforcement, corrections and more at organizations including:

  • Courts
  • Criminal justice organizations
  • Police departments 
  • Nonprofit associations
  • Governmental and political institutions
  • Policy think tanks
  • Human-rights and social-justice groups

For more information about potential career paths, visit career.ku.edu/lawandsociety.


Convenient class times and location 
Flexible course schedules allow full-time employees and nontraditional students to earn a bachelor’s degree without sacrificing the traditional classroom experience. Late afternoon and evening courses meet once per week, allowing you to balance work and family commitments with coursework.

If you are based in Lawrence, the 510 K-10 Connector bus takes you right to the KU Edwards Campus. 

Undergraduate Admission

Admission to KU

All students applying for admission must send high school and college transcripts to the Office of Admissions. Unless they are college transfer students with at least 24 hours of credit, prospective students must send ACT or SAT scores to the Office of Admissions. Prospective first-year students should be aware that KU has qualified admission requirements that all new first-year students must meet to be admitted. Consult the Office of Admissions for application deadlines and specific admission requirements.

Visit the Office of International Student and Scholar Services for information about international admissions.

Students considering transferring to KU may see how their college-level course work will transfer on the Office of Admissions website.

Admission to the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Admission to the College is a different process from admission to a major field. Some CLAS departments have admission requirements. See individual department/program sections for departmental admission requirements.

B.A. or B.G.S. in Law & Society

Core Courses (15)
LWS 330Introduction to Law & Society3
LWS 332Methods in Law and Society3
LWS 333The Pursuit of Rights: Law, Democracy & Power3
LWS 643Theoretical Foundations of Law and Society3
LWS 699Capstone in Law and Society3
Electives (0)
Complete 5 courses from the following:
The Black Experience in the U.S. Since Emancipation
Legal Issues and the African American
African American Urban Community and Class in the Midwest
Global Ethnic and Racial Relations
The Civil Rights Movement
History of the Black Power Movement
Independent Living and People with Disabilities
Ethical, Legal and Professional Issues in Applied Behavioral Science
Border Patrolled States
American Racial and Ethnic Relations
Gender, Culture, and Migration
Legal Aspects of Business
Topics in Public Administration: _____
Stereotyping and Prejudice Across Cultures
Psychology and Social Issues
Introduction to Public Administration
Hard Choices in Public Administration: _____
Conducting the People's Business Ethically
Metropolitics and Macroproblems: The American City in Local and Global Context
Crime and Punishment
Diversity in Public Administration
Concepts of Civil Society
Public Service Leadership
Principles of Sociology
Principles of Social Problems
Sociology of Deviance
Gender, Sexuality and the Law
Politics of Reproductive Policy
Gender, War, and Peace

Major Hours & Major GPA

While completing all required courses, majors must also meet each of the following hour and grade-point average minimum standards:

Major Hours
Satisfied by 30 hours of major courses.

Major Hours in Residence
Satisfied by a minimum of 15 hours of KU resident credit in the major. 

Major Junior/Senior Hours
Satisfied by a minimum of 30 hours from junior/senior courses (300+) in the major.

Major Junior/Senior Graduation GPA
Satisfied by a minimum of a 2.0 KU GPA in junior/senior courses (300+) in the major. GPA calculations include all junior/senior courses in the field of study including F’s and repeated courses. See the Semester/Cumulative GPA Calculator.

A sample 4-year plan for the BA degree in Law and Society is available by using the left-side navigation, or by clicking here.

A sample 4-year plan for the BGS degree in Law and Society is available by using the left-side navigation, or by clicking here.