MPSL Criminal Law Concentration

Masters Programs

Improving and facilitating the administration of justice within the criminal arena through advanced knowledge of procedural criminal law and law enforcement trends and initiatives is the core mission of those engaged in this field.

For professionals with career paths oriented toward criminal law, law enforcement and criminal justice, Valparaiso University Law School offers a Master of Professional Studies (MPSL) Criminal Law concentration. Designed to meet the time constraints of busy professionals, the program will be taught during late afternoons and evenings at our Chicago campus in Hyde Park. For added flexibility, the course curriculum is offered through a combination of classroom and online instruction.

Graduates of the program will be able to identify and analyze legal issues within the workplace through a solid foundation in legal doctrines and concepts, appropriate for a non-practitioner. Courses in criminal procedure, trial techniques and strategies, and ethics, along with a wide variety of elective courses, will prepare graduates to take on greater leadership roles within their own organization or to move on to a new job. Special focus in the program is placed on the ability to articulate ideas and concepts in writing and through oral presentations.

Course of Study

Students are required to take 28 credits for graduation. Below are the required Introductory, Core, and Specialization classes and the Electives that students may choose to round out their program. All students will work with an advisor to create a plan of study to complete the program in a timely fashion.

Course of Study


Course Number and Title Credits / Course
Intro (3) MPSL 500 – The Legal Profession 1
MPSL 501 – Introduction to American Law 2
Core (6) MPSL 510 – Basic Legal Skills – Research 2
MPSL 511 – Basic Legal Skills – Writing 2
MPSL 512 – Ethics and Social Responsibility 2
Criminal Law (10) MPSL 610 – Criminal Law Survey 3
MPSL 611 – Evidentiary Issues in a Criminal Investigation 3
MPSL 612 – Criminal Procedure and the Constitution 3
MPSL 613 – Trial Practice for Law Enforcement 1
Electives (7) MPSL 520 – Applied Negotiation Skills 1
MPSL 521 – Criminal Forensics Survey 2
MPSL 522 – White Collar Crime 2
MPSL 523 – Sentencing and Appeals 2
MPSL 524 – Basic Insurance Law 2
MPSL 525 – Managing and Analyzing Health Care Information 3
MPSL 526 – Legal Issues of the Aging Population 2
MPSL 527 – The Unionized Workforce 2
MPSL 528 – Introduction to Employee Benefits 2
MPSL 529 – Bankruptcy and Corporate Restructuring 3
MPSL 530 – Financial Administrative Law 2
MPSL 531 – Regulation of Intellectual Property 2
Cap (2) MPSL 650 – Capstone 2

Electives not included in the initial MPSL catalog:
Contemporary Legal Issues – 2 Credits
Environmental Law and Policy – 3 Credits
The Legislative Process – 3 Credits
Arbitration Skills (Included in The Unionized Workforce) – 2 Credits
Special Topics in Elder Law – 2 Credits

If you are looking to move your career forward by mastering your knowledge of the criminal justice system, Valparaiso University Law Schools Master of Professional Studies program is the place where you can align your professional goals with your future success.

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The program has been approved by the Illinois State Board of Higher Education, the MPSL Program will operate under the umbrella of Valparaiso University Law School, with close collaboration with Valparaiso University Graduate School.