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Master of Legal Studies

Cleveland State University's Master of Legal Studies (MLS) graduate degree offers an exciting opportunity to enhance your career credentials by gaining applied legal knowledge without obtaining a law degree, sitting for the bar, or practicing law.

The MLS program is designed for non-lawyers who work regularly with laws and regulations and could benefit from a greater understanding of the law as it relates to their field in a current or future position. Enrolled students may select from eight tracks including health care and criminal law, or work with an advisor to design an individualized concentration that fits their career needs. MLS students take some of the same classes as the JD students studying to become lawyers, but are able to take fewer classes and focus on the specialized areas that will specifically enhance their careers. While most students enroll in the program part-time, full-time study can be discussed.

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Master of Legal Studies Admissions
Phone: 216.687.2328




Admission Requirements

  • Application Form
  • Application Fee
  • Undergraduate Transcripts
    • Minimum 3.00 Undergraduate GPA
    • If GPA is under 3.00, a GMAT, GRE, or LSAT test score is required. 
  • Personal Essay
    • Describing how you expect to use the knowledge acquired in pursuing the MLS degree.
  • Resume
    • Detailing work and professional experience. 
  • Two or more Letters of Recommendation 
  • Personal Interview
    • May be required.

-International students are required to have met at least one of the following English language proficiency requirements:

  • TOEFL iBT (Internet-Based): 78 (including at least 20 in reading, 21 in listening, 17 in writing, and 20 in speaking)
  • TOEFL PBT (Paper-Based): 550
  • IELTS: 6.0 and at least 5.0 in each section
  • PTE (Pearson’s Test of English): 50
  • iTEP: 5.0

Admission Deadlines

All applications must be submitted and complete on the following application deadline dates:

  • Domestic Students
    • Rolling
  • International Students
    • Fall Semester – May 15th
    • Spring Semester – October 15th
    • Summer Semester – March 15th


  • Introduction to American Law
  • Independent Legal Research
  • Legal Research and Writing

At least one of the J.D. first-year common law courses:

  • Civil Procedure
  • Contracts
  • Criminal Law
  • Property
  • Torts


Regardless of your area of concentration – you will be provided with an Academic Advisor who will assist you in selecting the courses best suited for your needs.

  • Business and Corporate Law
  • Corporate Compliance
  • Criminal Law
  • Elder Law
  • Health Law & Health Care Compliance
  • International Law
  • Litigation
  • Sports and Entertainment Law
Did You Know?

The median annual wage for legal occupations was $80,810 in May 2018.

Bureau of Labor Statistics


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Career Outcomes

  • An MLS degree can help an employee stand out within an organization or profession as someone who can interact with counsel, protect ideas and organizational assets, assess the need for regulation and work efficiently with changing legislation, such as health care reform and compliance.
  • C|M|LAW's professional network of influence is unparalleled in Northeast Ohio and those key relationships keep our curriculum relevant for today's professionals.
  • These are some of the local companies that are hiring CSU grads: US Department of Justice, Robert Half Legal, Thompson Hine LLP, Special Counsel, Tucker Ellis LLP, and The MetroHealth System.