Certificate in Disability Legal Studies: Frequently Asked Questions

These are some of the most frequently asked questions about the program.  If you have others, please write to dls@pitt.edu.

Are Certificate in Disability Legal Studies Program courses regular law school courses?

With the exception of “Introduction to Law and Legal Reasoning,” all of the courses in the Disability Certificate Program are the same courses you would take if you were studying to become a lawyer in the JD program.

Who will benefit from the Certificate in Disability Legal Studies Program?

This certificate program is geared toward those working in the administration and provision of disabilities programs. Administrators, educators, health practitioners, advocates, social workers, architects, city planners, attorneys and business leaders, among others, could benefit from this program's instructional content.

Who May Enroll in the Certificate in Disability Legal Studies Program?

The Certificate in Disability Legal Studies is not open to JD students. Students in other graduate or professional degree programs may enroll in it, and professionals not currently in a degree program may enroll in it.

Are there required courses in the Certificate in Disability Legal Studies Program?

Are there required courses in the Certificate in Disability Legal Studies Program?

These four courses total 12 of the 15 credits needed for the certificate. Additional information and descriptions are available here.

Will I get any advice and guidance in the courses I should take?

Yes. The director of the certificate program will serve as your faculty advisor and will work with you on your course selections.

Do I have to go to school full time, or may I obtain the certificate on a part-time basis?

Students in the certificate program can complete the certificate requirements in one year or students electing to complete the certificate on a part-time basis will have up to 3 years to complete the requirements.

When are courses offered?

Courses are offered during the day in the fall and spring semesters. Courses are not offered in the evening or on weekends or during the summer.

How much work will there be for students in this certificate program?

All courses require students to engage in rigorous class preparation and study. Classes meet for 50 minutes per credit each week, so that a 2-credit course meets for one 100-minute period; a 3-credit course usually meets for two 75-minute periods, and a 4-credit course meets for 3 75-minute periods. A rule of thumb is that students are expected to spend about three hours of preparation for each hour of class. Attendance is required at a minimum of 80% of class meetings.

What is the grading system for students in the certificate program?

An Honors/Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory grading system is used. Students must attain a grade of Satisfactory or better in all of their coursework.

What is the tuition for the certificate program?

Students taking between 1 and 8 credits pay part-time rates.  Students taking 9 or more credits per semester are charged at the full-time rate.

Please view the tuition rates for AY 2020-21. Students taking between 1 and 8 credits pay part-time rates.  Students taking 9 or more credits per semester are charged at the full-time rate.

                                                                     Full-Time                                                    Part-Time*

                                             In-State             Out-of-State                  In-State                    Out-of-State

Tuition

$34,962

$44,996

$1318/credit

$1971/credit

Law Exam Fee

$20

$20

$20

$20

Activity Fee

$48

$48

$24

$24

Wellness Fee

$360

$360

$180

$180

Security/Transportation Fee

$180

$180

$90

$90

Computer Fee

$350

$350

$175

$175

Total**

$35,920

$45,954

 

 

*Students taking between 1 and 8 credits pay part-time rates; Students taking 9 or more credits per semester are charged full-time rates

**Books average $200/class.

Is there financial aid for the Certificate in Disability Law program?

Yes. There are loans available for those who qualify. View the financial aid page for additional information.

What are the requirements for admission to the certificate program?

Applicants must submit:

  • Complete application form
  • Official transcript of all college, graduate, and professional studies whether a degree was obtained or not
  • At least two letters of recommendation
  • An essay on how you expect to use the knowledge acquired in the certificate program
     

Decisions about admission will be made on the basis of the above information and the applicant's entire academic and employment record. A personal interview may also be required.

How do I apply for the certificate program?

Apply Now

What is the application deadline?

Completed applications are first considered on December 1, and thereafter on a rolling basis.