Who is this degree for?

This innovative dual degree will provide current and aspiring child development and family service leaders with deep knowledge of early childhood development and how the law impacts young children and families. A distinguishing feature is a focus on policy and leadership development; students will develop skills to advocate for children across a range of disciplines and organizations as well as learn how issues of inequality are addressed in law and policy in relation to children. Offered in conjunction with Loyola University Chicago’s School of Law, the M.S. in Child Development/M.J. in Children’s Law and Policy is the only program of its kind in the nation.

As a graduate, you will be prepared to work in the following settings:

  • Government agencies and departments
  • Court and probation systems and services
  • Public and private schools
  • Community-based child and family support nonprofits
  • Hospitals and health care

Applicants to this dual degree program must submit an application for admission to each program separately. To learn more about the M.J. in Children’s Law and Policy program, please click here. Please note that completing the M.J. program does not allow you to practice law or to sit for the bar exam.

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Course Work

Students enrolled in the dual degree program will receive two separate degrees: an M.S. in Child Development from Erikson Institute (38 credit hours) and an M.J. in Children’s Law and Policy from Loyola University Chicago’s School of Law (18 credit hours). Students in the dual degree program will be eligible to transfer six credits of their Erikson internship/tutorial sequence towards the M.J. in lieu of the Child Law thesis/capstone requirement.

Sample course schedule

28-month program [PDF, 1pg]
3-year program [PDF, 1pg]


Core Courses: