Five In-Demand Concentrations

Choose from five concentrations tailored to meet employer demand: Business Law, Health Law, Human Resources Law, Intellectual Property Law and Public Law and Policy.

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Personalized Career Coaching

Every Northeastern student has access to a career coach. The career coach works with MLS students to create a Career Action Plan to help students achieve their own professional goals and to support them in their career exploration and job search processes.

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Learn From Distinguished Faculty

Professors in the Master of Legal Studies program include Northeastern Law faculty and industry practitioners

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Consideration for Merit-Based Scholarships

In addition to financial aid options, you are considered for merit-based scholarships.

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Program Fast Facts

  • Upcoming Start Date:
    September 4, 2024
  • Number of Starts Per Year:
    3 (Fall, Spring and Summer)
  • Tuition Per Credit Hour: $1,132
  • Total Tuition: $33,960

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To learn more about Northeastern Law’s online Master of Legal Studies, fill out the form to download a free brochure. You can also call us toll-free at +1 877.375.9638 or at +1 617.655.6735 to talk with one of our admissions counselors.

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Online Master of Legal Studies Overview

Our courses—customized around content critical to specific disciplines—are taught by law school faculty and industry experts who give students the practical knowledge they need to more effectively address legal issues in their industries.

The Master of Legal Studies offers concentrations in Business Law, Health Law, Human Resources Law, Intellectual Property Law and Public Law and Policy. Or, choose a general course of study to complete the program.

  • The Business Law concentration prepares you to utilize the law within industries like finance and contracts. Coursework includes Financials Transactions, and Regulation and Global Business Strategies.
  • The Health Law concentration benefits those who work with the healthcare system, and includes courses such as Patient Records, Privacy and Security, and Healthcare Regulations and Compliance.
  • The Human Resources Law concentration was created to help HR leaders deal with legal issues in their field. Courses include Antidiscrimination Law, and Wages and Benefits.
  • The Intellectual Property Law concentration focuses on the legal aspects of creations of the mind, such as inventions; literary and artistic works; designs; and symbols, names and images used in commerce. Coursework in this concentration includes Identifying and Securing Intellectual Property Rights, and Intellectual Property and Media.
  • The Public Law and Policy concentration gives students a space to build the analytical skills needed to research, digest and analyze cases, law and regulations. Coursework prepares students with the tools to influence public policy.

We also offer certificate programs that focus on building legal frameworks in specific industries. To learn more about the curriculum and requirements of each certificate, please visit our graduate law certificate programs page.

MLS graduate speaking in light blue blazer to clients.

Industries That Utilize Legal Studies Knowledge

The law impacts virtually every industry. In particular, our program attracts students from the following fields:

  • Compliance
  • Communications
  • Contract Management and Procurement
  • Financial Services
  • Government
  • Healthcare
  • Higher Education Administration
  • Human Resources Management
  • Intellectual Property
  • Institutional Advancement
  • Insurance and Claims
  • Journalism
  • Lobbying and Government Affairs
  • Nonprofit Organizations
Woman sitting on a coach providing career coaching.

Become an Expert for Your Industry’s Legal Needs

Watch our video to learn more from students and faculty members about the online experience in the Master of Legal Studies program.


Online MLS Admissions Requirements

The Master of Legal Studies admissions committee reviews applications on a rolling basis, and applicants are notified as soon as an admission decision has been made. We highly recommend you submit your application and supporting materials as early as possible.

Summary of Admissions Materials

  • Online application
  • Professional resumé
  • Transcripts from all previous undergraduate and graduate institutions
  • Personal statement
  • One letter of recommendation
  • Official TOEFL scores (non-native English speakers only)
Person seen through glass walking by a Master of Legal Studies building with Law written on the side.

“Everything I do at work is related to my MLS degree. This became clear in my very first class with Dean Hackney. My major regret is that I got a legal education so late in my career. I really wish I’d embarked on this adventure many years ago!”

Mike Furst, MLS '19

Online MLS Curriculum

The MLS curriculum was developed specifically for working, non-lawyer professionals across several highly regulated industries. Foundation and core courses will give you a broad and solid legal background.

After gaining a general grounding in the law, you will focus on legal issues in specific industries through elective courses. We offer concentrations in Business Law, Health Law, Human Resources Law, Intellectual Property Law and Public Law and Policy. Professionals in other industries can choose a general course of study and access a wide array of electives.

For more information about the program curriculum and to view a full list of courses, please visit the curriculum page. To get an overview of a specific certificate’s curriculum, visit our graduate law certificate programs page.

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Foundation and Core Courses

Regardless of concentration, all MLS students take two foundation courses: Introduction to Legal Studies I and Introduction to Legal Studies II. In these classes, you will learn about legal processes and the significance of law in various settings.

You are also required to take four out of five core courses. Core courses include Information and Records, Law and Strategy, and Regulation and Compliance.

Five Concentrations

Each of the five concentrations provide a unique set of courses. The Business Law concentration features classes such as Regulation and Global Business Strategies. The Health Law concentration includes Healthcare Regulation and Compliance. Human Resources Law features a course called Wages and Benefits. Intellectual Property Law features coursework such as Identifying and Securing Intellectual Property Rights. And Public Law and Policy features coursework in Current Issues and Legal Foundations.

In addition, you can choose a general concentration, which will give you a broad perspective on legal studies.

Graduate Certificates

The concentrations in Business Law, Health Law, Human Resources Law and Intellectual Property Law can be completed as certificates. There is also a fifth certificate that students can get in Healthcare Compliance, which provides insight into compliance protocol in the healthcare setting.

Career-Focused Learning

Northeastern’s renowned experiential approach provides you with real-world knowledge that you'll put into practice via case studies, scenarios and other immersive experiences. This approach assures that you acquire the most relevant skills applicable to your chosen professional path. Master of Legal Studies students also have access to career workshops and tools designed for distance learners and graduate students, giving you access to a network of fellow professionals.

Why a Master of Legal Studies?

Due to rapidly expanding forms of regulation and an increasingly complex legal environment, professionals across various fields are experiencing a growing need for a grounding in the law. If you are in a highly regulated industry, Northeastern Law’s Master of Legal Studies gives you the unique opportunity to learn legal concepts, without having to spend three years in a full-time program to obtain a Juris Doctor.

In this program, you’ll gain broad knowledge and understanding of the law and become an expert in legal issues within your own industry. The customized curriculum will provide you with the flexibility to understand, analyze and interpret your professional environment through a legal lens, equipping you with the expertise to navigate complex legal issues and advance your career.

What Can You Do With an MLS?

A Master of Legal Studies is intended to help non-lawyers gain a better understanding of the law to use within their own industries. Below are some of the jobs you can pursue with each of these concentrations.

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Concentration Career Opportunity
Business Law Director of partnerships
Senior contract negotiator
Health Law Contracts manager
Compliance specialist
Human Resources Law Human resources director
Human resources manager
Intellectual Property Law Associate scientist
Clinical trial manager
IP manager
Public Law and Policy Legislative director
Advisor to elected representative
Government, nonprofits
General (no concentration) Director or litigation research
Paralegal manager
Procurement manager
Senior compliance assurance officer
Senior project manager

Learn more about the careers that you can pursue (including salary information) with a Master of Legal Studies degree on our careers page.