In 1983, the School of Law at Duquesne University and Pittsburgh Theological Seminary established a joint degree program leading to the Master of Divinity and Juris Doctor (JD) degrees. Graduates of the program are expected to work in a wide array of professional tasks, such as law firms specializing in serving religious institutions as clients, church boards and agencies, and parish ministries of various kinds.
Due to the nature of the professional requirements of the practice of law and ministry, neither the School of Law nor the Seminary can surrender any of their required courses. However, while separate completion of both degrees would normally take six years, the joint program allows for the completion of both degrees in five years by permitting work done in one institution to count for credit in the other institution. Each school may award elective credits for courses taken at the the other institution. Admission is determined separately by each institution.