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Undergraduate Certificate in Law, Justice & Culture

Students from All Majors Invited To Apply

Application Deadline for Certificate: Oct. 7, 2019

The Center for Law, Justice & Culture invites Ohio University undergraduate students from all majors to apply for the Certificate in Law, Justice & Culture.

The certificate program brings together interdisciplinary coursework from African American Studies, Anthropology, Criminology, English, History, Interdisciplinary Arts, Political Science, Social Work, Sociology, and other departments across the social sciences and humanities to provide students with intellectual training in a "law and society" perspective. It also provides opportunities for faculty mentoring through research projects, internships, study abroad, and career guidance.

Enrollment in the certificate program is a competitive process modeled after selection for law and graduate schools. Students with an overall GPA of 3.4 or above are eligible for 25 slots per year. Those who do not meet the GPA requirement may submit an optional essay explaining their qualifications.

Once accepted into the program, Law, Justice & Culture students enroll in LJC 2000: Core Course in Law, Justice & Culture, offered annually in the spring. They are required to take at least one LJC elective course outside of their majors to ensure that they are exposed to interdisciplinary perspectives. As they proceed through the certificate coursework, LJC students participate in the intellectual life of the Center and engage in practice-oriented learning opportunities such as internships and research projects, all dealing with issues of democratic governance, social justice, and human rights.

The program will be appropriate for students who plan to pursue professions in law, rights advocacy, justice administration, public policy, government, nonprofit organizations, and academic research and teaching.

For more information, contact Dr. Haley Duschinski at

2018 Essay Prompts for Application

The Law, Justice & Culture Certificate program provides students with undergraduate training in law and society studies. Through the program, students learn to think critically about law in relation to society, culture, politics and power, in U.S. and international contexts.

On the application form for the Law, Justice & Culture Certificate, students will be asked to write a 300-word essay in response to one of following prompts:

  • Read W.H. Auden's poem "Law, Like Love." Following Auden, how might we imagine law to be like love, and what are the implications of this relationship? 
  • You have been appointed as chair of a special commission tasked with addressing any major issue dealing with law, justice, and culture in the United States. You must invite two of the following experts to join your commission: an author, an engineer, an economist, a lawyer, a psychiatrist, a social worker, a historian, a journalist, and a social scientist. (a) What issue would you choose, and why? (b) Which two types of experts would you choose, and why?
  • Identify a fictional book, movie, documentary, or television show that relates to law, justice, and culture. In your essay, interpret this item of popular media, with special attention to what it reveals about the relationships among law, justice, and culture.
  • Present an image that relates to law, justice, and culture. It could be a photograph that you have taken, or from another source; an artistic representation; or another image, object, or structure that evokes law. In your essay, interpret this image, with special attention to what it reveals about the relationships among law, justice, and culture.

Certificate Requirements

Required Courses

  • POLS 2200 The Politics of Law
  • SOC 2600 Criminal Justice
  • LJC 2000 Core Course for Certificate in Law, Justice & Culture.

Elective Courses

Students are required to take nine credits from the following list of courses that address law’s formative and constitutive role in cultural, political, and social life. In order to ensure that students receive interdisciplinary training in law, justice, and culture, the certificate requires students to take three courses at the 3000 or 4000 level distributed across two different programs.

The three advanced courses must be distributed across two different major programs, with at least one course outside the student's major(s).

  • AAS 3680 African American Political Thought
  • AAS 3691: US Constitutional Law: Pre-Civil Rights Movements
  • ANTH 3530 Anthropology of Violence and Peace
  • ANTH 4590 Legal Anthropology
  • ANTH 4620 Human Rights, Law and Justice
  • COMS 4604 Responsibilities and Freedom of Speech in Communication
  • ENG 3570: Law and Literature
  • HIST 3270: Slavery in the Americas
  • HIST 3520 Roman Law & Society
  • HIST 4536: Eternal Rome: Power and Piety
  • PHIL 4420 Philosophy of Law
  • POLS 4010 American Constitutional Law
  • POLS 4210 The Politics of Law and Sexuality
  • POLS 4040 Civil Liberties
  • POLS 4550 International Law
  • POLS 4555 Transitional Justice
  • POLS 4565 International Human Rights
  • POLS 4751 Critical Race Theory
  • POLS 4752 The Politics of Intersectionality
  • POLS 4753 American Whiteness
  • POLS 4754 Black Political Thought
  • POLS 4757 Race, Violence and Human Security
  • POLS 4770 Legal Theory and Social Problems
  • POLS 4902: Special Topics in Law and Politics
  • SOC 3600 Criminology
  • SOC 3630 Juvenile Delinquency
  • SOC 3640 Police and Society
  • SOC 3650 Sociology of Mental Illness
  • SOC 3660 Punishment and Society
  • SOC 4620 Sociology of the Courts
  • SOC 4640 Law in Societies
  • SOC 4680 Crimes Against Humanity
  • SOC 4710: Gender and Justice
  • SW 3602 Social Welfare Policy
  • T3 4070: Sin and Sex in Western Legal History
  • T3 4691: US Constitutional Law: Post-Civil Rights Movements

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