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What is the difference between a joint and a concurrent degree?
The joint degrees with Harvard Business School or Harvard Law School feature integrated coursework that has been developed by faculty members from HKS and HBS or HLS to ensure that students have a holistic learning experience.
Students pursuing concurrent degrees at HKS and a partner school will find the curriculum is not as closely integrated when compared to the joint degree track. Concurrent students are expected to be more independent in weaving together the two halves of their learning experience.
What are the pros and cons to earning a combined degree?
There are certain realities when pursuing a joint or concurrent degree.
By combining two degrees, you will:
However, you will:
May I apply any previous academic credits towards my combined degree?
You cannot apply any credits towards your HKS degree for courses that are in the same discipline as your combined degree regardless of whether you are completing your other degree at a Harvard school. HKS students who are admitted to a concurrent program will be able to apply their HKS credits towards their combined degree. However, they will not be able to count any cross-registered courses in the same discipline toward their HKS degree.
When will I graduate with my combined degree?
It depends on your degree track and when you meet the degree requirements for your two schools.
If you are earning an HKS degree and an MBA or law degree, you would typically graduate in three and four years respectively. If you are earning a degree concurrently from HDS or GSD, you would typically graduate in three years. If you are pursuing a medical degree concurrently, you would usually graduate in five years.
When and where should I apply for financial assistance if I am a concurrent student at a non-Harvard school?
Financial assistance is awarded by the school where you will be enrolled for any given semester or academic year. You will need to apply for assistance at each school for the semesters that you will be enrolled.
At HKS, you will only apply to Harvard Kennedy School for financial assistance when you are submitting your admission application; this assistance will be renewed each semester unless HKS is advised otherwise. If you are studying at the partner school but are returning to HKS, you will need to notify Student Financial Services before the start of the academic year.
I am attending a professional graduate school at Harvard, and I’m interested in pursuing a combined degree at HKS. Where should I apply for financial assistance?
If you are enrolled at Harvard Law School, Harvard Medical School or Harvard School of Dental Medicine, you will need to apply for financial assistance for the year you are in-residence at HKS. For the remainder of your degree program, you will apply for and receive financial assistance from the partner school even if you are cross-registered into classes at HKS.
If you are attending Harvard Business School, Harvard Divinity School, or Harvard Graduate School of Design, you will need to apply for financial assistance from these schools for the semesters or academic years that you will be enrolled. You will only apply to Harvard Kennedy School for financial assistance when you are submitting your admission application; this assistance will be renewed each semester unless HKS is advised otherwise. If you are studying at the partner school but are returning to HKS, you will need to notify Student Financial Services before the start of the academic year.
How will my HKS financial assistance package be impacted if I defer my admission to HKS to attend my other school first?
Any financial assistance – including merit-based fellowships – that you may receive from HKS is only distributed the year in which it is awarded to you.
If you apply to HKS and the partner school at the same time, and defer HKS admission to begin at the other institution, you will need to reapply for financial assistance and meet all deadlines before enrolling at HKS. There is no guarantee that your HKS financial assistance package will be the same combination of fellowships/grants, work-study, and loans that were originally awarded to you.
Is summer internship funding available for combined degree students?
Yes, combined students are eligible to receive funding from the Summer Internship Fund (SIF) beginning the summer after they are in-residence at Harvard Kennedy School. SIF funding may only be received one time.
I am applying to the HKS/HLS joint degree program. Which test scores should I submit with my application?
You may submit your LSAT only if you are in your first year at Harvard Law School. In this case, you will need to send a written request to the HLS admissions office to have your LSAT forwarded to HKS. Otherwise, you are required to submit GRE or GMAT scores.
I am currently enrolled at Harvard Medical School. May I submit my MCAT score with my application if I am applying to the HKS/HMS concurrent degree program?
Yes, you may submit the MCAT instead of your GRE or GMAT by making a request in writing to the HMS admissions office to have your MCAT scores forwarded to HKS.
Which test scores should I submit if I am applying to the MPA/ID Program?
The MPA/ID Program only accepts the GRE or GMAT, not the LSAT or MCAT.
I am in my first year at a partner business school and am thinking about applying to a concurrent degree program at HKS. Which degree programs can I apply to?
You are eligible to apply to the MPP, MPA/ID, and MPA degree programs. HKS waives the three years of full-time work experience requirement for applicants to the MPA program who are currently enrolled at a partner business school.
I am applying to a partner business school and to HKS at the same time, and am interested in being a concurrent degree candidate. Which HKS degree programs can I apply to?
It depends on your professional and academic experience. You may only apply to the MPA degree program if you have at least three years of full-time work experience and have completed four graduate-level courses similar to those in the MPP curriculum by the time you submit your application. If you have less than three years of professional experience, you are eligible to apply only to the MPP or MPA/ID degree programs.
I am an international student who wants to pursue a combined degree. What kind of U.S. student visa documentation is required?
Each international student is responsible for obtaining and maintaining valid U.S. visa documentation. If HKS and the partner school are preparing your travel documents (the I-20 for an F-1 student visa, or the DS-2019 for a J-1 student visa), you must have each institution prepare travel documents for the semesters you will be enrolled. HKS and the partner school will have procedures and policies for you to follow to issue the travel documents to you and to transfer your visa between the two schools. Familiarize yourself with these procedures after you are admitted to each school.
If a sponsoring agency (AMIDEAST, Fulbright, IIE, LASPAU, or USAID, for example) is preparing the DS-2019 for your J-1 student visa, ask them about the procedures you will need to follow. Contact Student Financial Services for any specific questions you may have.