The University of Miami School of Law and UM's Frost School of Music - ranked one of the top music business schools by  (http://www.billboard.com/ biz/articles/news/record-labels/7534379/12-elite-music-business-schools-shaping-the-industrys-future/?utm_source=twitter)Billboard  Magazine     and by the Hollywood Reporter - offer the first ever joint degree program in law and music industry. Upon completion of this program, a student earns the Juris Doctor degree from the School of Law and a Master of Arts in Music Industry degree from the Frost School of Music (http://www.miami.edu/frost/index.php/music_business/).

In this specialization, students not only learn the essentials of law, but also the common practices of music industry– essential skills for becoming a successful attorney in the music industry.

Through this joint program, students can complete both degrees in less time (3 to 4 years) while studying at a top law school and one of the best music schools in the country. And, as one of the four major music cities in the U.S. and as the music center for the Latin American Divisions of all major music companies, Miami offers exceptional internship and work opportunities.

Admission Requirements

Requirements for admission to the graduate studies for the Juris Doctor/Master of Arts in Music Industry degree are:

  • Applicants may apply before they begin the J.D. program OR they may apply during their first or second year of Law School.  (Students must be accepted to the J.D. program before they are eligible for acceptance into the J.D./M.A. program.)
  • Students should let Professor Serona Elton know that they are applying to the M.A. program.
  • Students will find  an application for the joint degree program under the list of graduate program applications:  https://www.applyweb.com/miamigrd/index.ftl
  • Only the LSAT exam is required.
  • Students who apply to the joint degree program are giving permission for the M.A. program admissions staff and faculty to review their complete J.D. application.
  • Students already enrolled in the M.A. program are not eligible to apply to the joint program.
  • All the requirements of the J.D. and M.A. programs must be fulfilled.

Curriculum Requirements

  • Students will complete the first-year law school curriculum in its entirety before taking any M.A. courses.
  • All other J.D. requirements must be met. Six credits will be satisfied by two M.A. courses. These courses must be completed before the J.D. degree will be conferred.
  • Twenty-one credits of M.A. courses are required and cover topics such as music copyright law, music industry agreement, music publishing and licensing, recorded music operations, marketing and promotion, and others.  More information about courses in the M.A. curriculum can be found in the UM Academic Bulletin.
  • Nine School of Law credits will be applied to the M.A. degree in the areas of intellectual property, business, and tax law topics. The M.A. degree will not be conferred until these nine credits are completed.
  • Student are encouraged to fashion a balanced upper-class law school curriculum which prepares them to provide legal services to clients in the business and entertainment industries including specific offering regarding arts and entertainment law, as well as more general offerings in domestic and international aspects of fields such as antitrust, business associations, commercial law, intellectual property, tax and torts.
  • If a student in the joint program wants to take music elective course (e.g., Musicology, Psychology of Music, Audio for Producers, etc.) arrangements will be made to accommodate the request.
  • Students are able to complete the joint degree program within three years if summer courses are taken.  Students may also choose to complete the program within three and ½ years or four years. 

JD/MA in Music Industry

Please select from the following or others with approval:
Business Association
Copyright Law
Applied Topics in Advanced Music Copyright Law
International Copyright
Intellectual Property Problem Solving
International Intellectual Property
Legal Communication and Research I
Legal Communication and Research II
Law and the Media
Labor Law
MMI 673Music Publishing3
MMI 752Music Licensing3
Approved MMI Electives6
Final Project
Choose from:3
Music Industry Practicum
MMI Elective
Cumulative Exit Exam
Please choose from the following or others with approval:
MMI 750Music Industry Agreements3
or MMI 738 Legal Aspects of the Live Entertainment Industry
MMI 774Music Copyright Law3
Total Credit Hours103

* To fulfill joint degree requirements, credit must be earned with a grade of B or higher. 

Sample Plan of Study

Plan of Study Grid
Year One
FallCredit Hours
JD Courses 16
 Credit Hours16
JD Courses 16
 Credit Hours16
JD Courses 6
 Credit Hours6
Year Two
JD Courses 10
MMI 673 Music Publishing 3
MMI 774 Music Copyright Law 3
 Credit Hours16
JD Courses 13
MMI 750 Music Industry Agreements 3
 Credit Hours16
JD Courses 6
 Credit Hours6
Year Three
JD Courses 6
Approved MMI Elective 6
 Credit Hours12
JD Courses 9
MMI 752 Music Licensing 3
Approved MMI Elective 3
MMI Cumulative Exam
 Credit Hours15
 Total Credit Hours103