ONLINE MASTER'S DEGREE PROGRAM
The Master of Studies in Law degree (M.S.L., 30 credits) is for those who hold an undergraduate degree and seek a graduate degree specifically tailored to a career in ethics and compliance. It was offered 100% online for the first time in fall 2018.
This is a 21-month program operating in a cohort model and running five consecutive semesters, beginning in August and ending in May. Each cohort is limited to 25 students.
|Intro to Legal Reasoning (3 credits)||Compliance Programming (3 credits)||FCPA (2 credits)||Ethical Cultures (3 credits)||Cybersecurity and Hacking: Privacy, Ethics, and Evidence (3 credits)|
|The Effective Ethics and Compliance Professional (3 credits)||Risk Management (3 credits)||Investigations (2 credits)||Project Management (3 credits)||Executive Perspectives (3 credits)|
|White Collar Crime and Compliance (2 credits)|
Introduction to Legal Reasoning (3 credits)
Through this course, non-lawyers will gain a better understanding of the ways that attorneys are trained to navigate complex situations. Careful reading and analysis of case law and statutes will prepare students to address the ambiguity of many scenarios that arise in compliance work, emphasizing the importance of critical thinking and argument. The course will also introduce students to the common law method by which doctrine is created; the importance and authority of statutes, codes, and regulations; and the structure of the U.S. legal system and its various actors and venues. The U.S. doctrines of contract and tort liability will form the substantive underpinning for the course, both because a knowledge of these areas is foundational for many later law courses and also because professionals working in the compliance field encounter these areas of law.
The Effective Ethics and Compliance Professional (3 credits)
Many of the skills necessary for effective ethics and compliance leadership involve competencies that are not obvious but yet can be learned: thinking critically, identifying and navigating around nuances within one’s organization, clearly and concisely communicating to all levels of the organization in many different scenarios, and knowing and understanding how to document and apply the foundational ethics and compliance elements from the U.S. Federal Sentencing Guidelines to various industries and business models in line with best and ethical practices. Being proficient at these skills allows a compliance and ethics professional to create a program strategy that plugs into business strategy to prove the value proposition of an effective ethics and compliance program. This course will help students fine tune these nuanced skill sets to become self-aware, persuasive and trustworthy leaders who are able to create and achieve strategic program objectives that tie into the business needs of the organization.
Compliance Programming: Design, Operation and Performance (3 credits)
Compliance and ethics management is a complex management process that requires program design that supports management’s objectives, coordinated activities to be operated across functions and geographies, and performance measurement to reasonably assure effectiveness and a return on management’s investment. This course will engage participants’ personal knowledge and experience – in dialogue with instructors and guests from industry with law and business backgrounds – to explore the following themes: program design frameworks and key elements (including risk identification and assessment, communication and training, investigations and discipline, reporting and disclosure, auditing and monitoring, and remediation), leading practices relating to these program elements, and how to measure effectiveness (from the perspectives of both ethics and economics). The course will also use case method and other practical examples to explore the familiar distinction between compliance-based and integrity-based programs as a link to the course, “Ethical Culture.”
Risk Management (3 credits)
The recent economic crisis, along with a range of other looming challenges (climate change, unrest in the Middle East, health and food security concerns, demographic changes and social mobility), have presented global organizations with a daunting array of risks. Broadly, this situation presents organizations with the challenge of developing more comprehensive approaches to the management of risk. Key subjects of investigation in MGMT 751 will include: 1. Engaging Boards and Executive Management in order to get risk management onto their agendas. 2. Translating risk policy into risk management systems and structures. 3. Knitting together the existing technical specialist infrastructure. 4. Developing sufficient risk management competence among the entire organization. 5. Communicating relevant risk information to external stakeholders.
Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (2 credits)
This course focuses on international anti-corruption law, practice, and compliance. The course will review the history and substance of the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), the theoretical and political reasons for anti-corruption laws such as the FCPA, the interpretation of the FCPA by the courts and agencies that enforce it (the U.S. DOJ and SEC), the FCPA’s impact and influence on businesses, anticorruption compliance programs and investigation best practices, the proliferation of anticorruption laws and enforcement around the world, and arguments around FCPA reform.
Investigations (2 credits)
Conducting and supervising investigations have become growing responsibilities of many types of attorneys. The purpose of this joint course is to engage in a practical focus on the development of knowledge-based skills and practices that will benefit future lawyers in the acquisition and analysis of relevant facts to address and solve legal issues and problems. This experiential course will provide an opportunity for students to learn about criminal, civil, and internal investigations from a practical, hands-on perspective. Through individual and group exercises, each student will play multiple roles of government lawyer, criminal defense attorney, outside counsel, and in-house counsel.
White Collar Crime and Compliance (2 credits)
This course will expose each student to key types of white collar offenses within the context of a focus on ethics and compliance, all through learning how to investigate, prosecute, and defend white collar cases, as well as how to prevent or minimize such cases in any organization. Topics may include conspiracy, mail and wire fraud, bribery and computer and internet fraud, and money laundering. Guest speakers will participate on a regular basis. A critical component of the course will be experiential learning.
Ethical Culture (3 credits)
Cultures of economic competitiveness and legal compliance are necessary but not sufficient for corporate responsibility. This course will examine the elements of ethical decision-making and ethical corporate cultures from the perspective of an organization’s leadership. The premise of the course is that leaders are the architects of corporate culture – and that the moral agenda of leaders includes three practical imperatives: elucidating, institutionalizing and sustaining ethical values. The first two imperatives (elucidating and institutionalizing) involve placing moral considerations in a position of salience and authority alongside considerations of competitive strategy and compliance in the organization’s mindset. The third imperative (sustaining) has to do with passing on the spirit of this effort in two directions: to future leaders of the organization and to the wider network of organizations and institutions that make up the social system as a whole. The case method will be used to introduce frameworks for making reasoned, thoughtful ethical decisions and to diagnose both positive and negative cultural leadership. Students will learn to recognize and resolve ethical issues and identify practical ways (1) to enhance sound ethical cultures and (2) to remediate weak ethical cultures.
Cybersecurity and Hacking: Privacy, Ethics and Evidence (3 credits)
Built on a legal ethics framework, this course explains in understandable terms the real-time threats of hacking, the ever-present concerns about the security of client and personal data, and the growing amount of unlawful activity on the Dark Web. Students will analyze privacy and ethical considerations of data protection and data protection in light of fast-changing legal frameworks. The course will also explore the discovery and admissibility of electronically stored information (ESI) in the modern courtroom. The course focuses both on current practical skills and knowledge and also underlying core principles and concerns that will impact future considerations and changes in this realm.
Executive Perspectives on Ethics and Compliance (3 credits)
This course will provide students with an opportunity to learn about compliance from the perspective of executives and leaders in the industry. Practicing compliance executives will discuss goals, strategies, activities and challenges associated with their business. Students will have an opportunity to relate the philosophies and techniques developed in the MSL/LLM Compliance program to those presented. Through candid and in-depth conversations with participating executives, students will learn about compliance from a leadership perspective relevant to today’s complex business environment.
Project Management (3 credits)
The field of project management is young and constantly changing. Companies seek to reduce development cycles while increasing the technological complexity of their products. Corporate downsizing has increased the average workload and reduced the resources available for project development. Sound familiar? This course will discuss the fundamental basis for scheduling and project scope difficulties, and provide tools for creating practical solutions. We will become more aware of why we encounter similar pitfalls with each new project. Discover that you are not alone in encountering a chaotic project life-cycle, the complexity people bring, and the reasons why our organizations are continuing to become more chaotic. This course will examine the new phase development of project management. We will use numerous disciplines to create a more dynamic and flexible project management methodology. These disciplines include Industrial Behavior, Psychology, Human Behavior, Chaos and Complexity, Organizational Behavior, and Systems Theory to name a few. As project managers, we face impossible schedules, unrealistic specifications, and limited budgets. As leaders we face personnel issues, motivation requirements and organizational issues. This course will provide insight and practical examples of the areas of knowledge needed to practice effective project management in today's dynamic work environment.
Tuition for the online M.S.L. program is $39,975. Students also will be assessed a technology fee of $112.50/semester. There may also be costs associated with textbooks, copyright fees and commencement fees.
DEAN'S COMPLIANCE SCHOLARSHIP
The Dean’s Compliance Scholarship is awarded on behalf of the dean of the University of St. Thomas School of Law. For more detailed information on the Dean’s Compliance Scholarship, contact Colleen Dorsey, director of organizational ethics and compliance programs, at email@example.com or (651) 962-4864.
As a student in our Organizational Ethics and Compliance program, you will have the option of applying for student loans. To be eligible for financial aid in the fall or spring semester, you must be registered for a minimum of 6 credits. To be eligible for financial aid in the summer term, you must be registered in a minimum of 3 credits. More information is available from Graduate Financial Aid.
Our Admissions Committee thoroughly reviews every application to understand the strengths, skills and unique potential of each prospective student. All information you submit is considered, and we encourage you to be thorough and straight forward. We want to make sure that the University of St. Thomas School of Law is a good fit for you, and that you are a good fit for the School of Law.
You must hold a bachelor’s degree or higher degree to be eligible for admission. Standardized test scores are not required for admission, but you are invited to submit GRE, GMAT, LSAT or MCAT scores to supplement the admissions materials.
A completed application for this program includes:
- an application form,
- official academic transcript(s) from all colleges and universities attended,
- two letters of recommendation (no more than four),
- a written response to essay questions posed on the application form, and
- your resume or CV.
Feb. 1: Application available. St. Thomas operates on a rolling admissions basis.
April 15: Priority application deadline. (Applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis after this deadline, but priority is given to applicants applying by April 15.)
May 15: Priority registration deadline.
July 1: FAFSA priority filing date.
July 15: Final application deadline.
Aug. 19: Orientation week.
Aug. 26: Classes begin.
HOW TO APPLY
1. Complete the online application.
Includes: essays, resume or CV, and any necessary addendums
2. Ask at least two people to submit their recommendations to the Office of Admissions. Use the Letter of Recommendation Form LLM/MSL form provided.
3. Arrange to have official academic transcripts, from all universities attended, sent directly to the Office of Admissions.
Mailing address and contact info:
University of St. Thomas School of Law
Office of Admissions
1000 LaSalle Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55403-2015
(651) 962-4895 or (800) 328-6819 (Ext. 2-4895)