BA in Jurisprudence
The Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in Jurisprudence at California University (Cal U) is the first of its kind in the Commonwealth. From its Latin word roots- juris and prudentia- the academic journey demands that the student not only learn about law and legal theorems but also the wisdom of enactment, the sensibility of its applications and its impact on individual persons-citizens as well as the collective and common interest. The term “juris” has many connotations, including, “right”, “just”, “law or codification” or the idea of a “rule.” The term “prudentia” expressly insists that there be an aligned wisdom as to how to make law; when to apply and in what circumstances; when it works better for the nation state.
The degree’s primary aim is to educate a selective pool of students who seek an understanding of law from a legal, philosophical, practical and formative perspective.
The broad goals of the BA in Jurisprudence are firmly rooted in the traditional, historic and commonly accepted vision of what an educated person is. Jurisprudence seeks to instill many things, but within the grand scheme of the history of ideas, a fervent and unrivaled appreciation of the role of law to the maintenance of a free society. It tracks and traces the historical underpinnings of jurisprudence, from the time of Plato and Aristotle, through the Middle Ages as posited by Augustine, Gratian and Aquinas to the era of the Founding Fathers in Locke, Mill, Bentham, Jefferson, Madison and Hamilton.
Graduates of the program will discern how law plays out in democratic processes. In addition, the BA in Jurisprudence delivers a unique program of instruction and a model for the integration of knowledge and character. From a functional perspective, few majors will afford the accomplished student with the deep level of conceptual coverage and analysis as will Jurisprudence major. Finally, the degree hopes to form and habituate future leaders who shall lead with virtue and proper ethics. The BA in Jurisprudence will shape and mold not only intellects but also future leaders, future judges and lawyers, future citizens who will ask the most profound questions about law and its enactment.