New and Seminar Courses


    LEGAL DRAFTING: Criminal (Law 633-2) Molina : This course will focus on legal drafting within the context of white collar criminal defense and prosecutorial practice. The course will address several of the procedural and strategic issues that prosecutors and defense attorneys confront in handling white collar matters including internal investigations, discovery and pre-trial motion practice, and plea negotiations. Students in turn will draft a prosecution/client letter, discovery requests/responses, and deferred prosecution agreement.   

    UNFAIR TRADE PRACTICES (Law 776) Mayer: covers various areas of the law dealing with so-called “business torts,” including: federal trademark law (the Lanham Act), trade secrets, unfair competition, false and deceptive advertising, Federal Trade Commission regulation of advertising, state “consumer protection” laws, business defamation and predatory practices (including interference with contractual relationships), and celebrities’ right of publicity.  Some attention also will be given to the ethics of business competition (What is “unfair”?).  It is a useful course for students concentrating in business law, for students interested in general law practice involving business entities (particularly small businesses) as clients, as well as for students interested in Intellectual Property (for this course complements courses in Copyright and Patent Law by covering trademarks and trade secret law).  It is also a useful course for all law students because it covers the interplay of “common law” and statutory law (including statutory interpretation) and the interplay of state law and federal law (including constitutional issues involving federal preemption of state law).   


    Oil & Gas Law (Law 784) Stewart : This course explores the fundamentals of oil and gas law, while also exposing students to the practical skills needed to be successful oil and gas attorneys.  This course will provide a mixture of traditional doctrinal instruction, skills and experiential opportunities. Course activities may include a visit to a "fracking" site, a visit to a County Recorder's Office to conduct a simulated title search, and an in-class simulated negotiation exercise in groups. 



     ADOPTION LAW (On-line Offering): Adoption Law will be taught in an online format.  We will be using two forms of online learning:  synchronized & non-synchronized.   

    • Synchronized online learning most closely mirrors the traditional classroom setting.  During synchronized sessions the participants (both professor and students) are participating from their own computers from any location.  However, they are all logged in at the same time.  This allows the students to talk to each other and to the professor.  For the majority of these sessions, I plan to use a screen-sharing platform.  The student will log on to a website and enter a code to join the class session.  At that point, the students will view my computer screen and will follow along with me as I present the material.  They will hear my voice and be able to chime in with their comments or questions by use of the internet (with a headset and VoIP) OR by calling into a group phone (landline or cell phone) conference line.  Students will also be able to send me or any other person an instant message during the session.  I will also use group video conferencing to conduct small group exercises.  To get an idea of what the synchronized sessions might look like, feel free to view the video tutorial on  (Click on the “About” tab at the top of the screen and the “Tour time” link). 
    • Non-synchronized online learning allows students to complete projects on their own and according to their own timeline (but by a set due date).  During a non-synchronized class session, students watch pre-recorded lessons when they have time.  They then complete an assignment or exercise on their own and post to a class blog or webpage.  For an example of non-synchronized class participation, feel free to view this video demonstrating VoiceThread. 

    For this course, 10 classes will be taught in a synchronized online format.  For the majority of the synchronized sessions, we will be meeting as an entire class during the time set for Adoption Law on the course schedule.  The remaining synchronized sessions will be small-group meetings and will take place on a day and time agreed to by the group members and professor.   The remaining 4 classes will be taught in a non-synchronized online format.  Students must complete non-synchronized assignments and exercises by a date set in the class syllabus. The designation of which weeks will be taught in a synchronized or non-synchronized format will be set out in the syllabus at the start of the term. 

    To participate in this class, students must have access to (and be comfortable using):  

      •  a computer (PC or Mac are acceptable) or mobile device such as an Ipad with an internet connection;  
        •   and   
          • (1) a headset (or internal microphone and speaker) and VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol)   
          • OR (2) phone connection (landline or cell phone) 

    It is preferred, though not required, that participants have a webcam for use in small group projects. 

    829 LAW AND SOCIAL SCIENCE Poteet: This course introduces students to the use of social science evidence by legal practitioners and courts at all levels. Such evidence is used, for example, in cases involving issues of trademark infringement, obscenity, discrimination, identification of criminal offenders, potential jury prejudice, eyewitness reliability, sexual assault, self-defense, dangerousness, and the fashioning of remedies. Despite its now common use, scientific evidence poses fundamental issues and recurring challenges for the law. In this course, students examine the methodology of social science research and various uses and challenges of using such research in the law. This course provides a foundation for law students to become sophisticated consumers and critics of social science evidence, equipping them to recognize issues raised by the use of social science in the law, and providing a foundation in empirical analysis that assists in using social science in legal forums.  This course fulfills the Perspective Requirement for graduation. 

     878: TAX DEFERRED QUALIFIED COMPENSATION PLANS: This course will cover tax code principles of tax deferral, various non qualified plan options and other tax qualified arrangements such as IRAS and SEPS, 403(b) and 457(b) and (f) plans.  Coverage will focus on the core Internal Revenue Code sections relating to various qualified plan options, coverage and participation alternatives, contribution and benefit limits, vesting and benefit protection rules, discrimination rules, salary deferral opportunities under 401(k), merger and acquisition rules, control group and affiliated service group rules, fiduciary and investment management oversight, reporting and disclosure rules, and certain health and welfare benefit rules. The course culminates with a practicum-style case study which simulates the experience of a law firm associate working in a tax/benefits department.  During the case study, students will be required to design compensation plans that achieve the management and financial goals of a simulated client.  This interactive process will help the focused and prepared student develop the critical thinking and problem solving skills necessary to succeed in practice and will demonstrate how a skilled attorney uses the tax code, regulations and related authorities to meet the business and financial concerns of clients.  In short, the exercise demonstrates the importance of integrating theory and practice skills to successfully serve the needs of clients.   


    • Law 651 A: Constitutional Law II (Beattie):  The small section will primarily focus on critical reading and case analysis, critical writing and examination strategies, employing the constitutional doctrines for fundamental rights, equal protection, and freedom of expression.  
    • Law 661 A: Civil Procedure: Jurisdiction (Upchurch):  We will focus on reading and outlining evolving constitutional doctrines and conducting comparative case analysis on exams. 
    • Law 680 A FPIT (Wood):    The modern practice of law requires students to be comfortable analyzing complex and sophisticated statutory interpretation problems. The small section of FPIT will use the Internal Revenue Code, Treasury Regulations, and judicial opinions to develop and enhance statutory construction skills and enable students to use those skills in analyzing difficult questions involving federal and state statutes. 


     919 CIVIL PRETRIAL PROCEEDINGS (3 credits) Foley : As a litigation attorney you will conduct most of your activity before trial in pleading, discovery and dispositive motion practice.  This includes meeting with your client, independently investigating the facts, preparing a Complaint or Answer, Interrogatories, Requests for Production of Documents, Requests for Admissions, Notice of Deposition, Subpoenas and gathering information on your client, the opposing party, and sometimes Co-Defendants.  Once you have gathered this information, you will typically be taking multiple depositions and defending your client’s deposition as well as your witnesses’ depositions.  You may also be preparing or defending against a motion for summary judgment.   This class will introduce you to the basics of pleadings, discovery and motion practice.  You will explore strategies for framing and drafting pleadings.  You will explore strategies for effective use of each discovery tool.  You will prepare written discovery, prepare answers to discovery, and take mock depositions. Ultimately, the class seeks to help you learn to formulate a litigation plan and use each stage of the pretrial process to effectively develop the evidence needed to achieve your desired litigation outcome.  By the end of this class, you should see how a litigator effectively employs pleadings and discovery to frame the factual issues in a way that allows for favorable disposition at trial or on summary judgment.  Your final grade will be based on the pleadings you draft, the discovery submitted to opposing counsel, your responses on behalf of your client, including all appropriate objections, a final deposition and a motion for summary judgment. Prerequisite:  660, 661 or 661P 


    945 CORE BAR STUDIES (1 credit): Core Bar Studies (CBS) provides a substantive review of the core doctrinal material tested on bar exams and relevant to law practice.  The course features a comprehensive faculty-led lecture series on the frequently-tested topics such as Torts, Contracts, Property, Constitutional Law, Evidence and Criminal Law. CBS is modeled on active learning principles and methodologies. As such, students will be required to engage with the substantive material through a variety of hands-on methods, including: interactive online lectures, online assessment software, live classroom discussion, written assessment exercises, and individual consultation with the course instructor.  Students are expected to commit themselves to the learning process and to the ultimate goals of bar passage and excellence as attorneys.  Core Bar Studies is intended exclusively for students whose academic record and/or experiential profile suggests that they would benefit from an earlier start to their bar examination preparation. Enrollment in the course is strictly limited and will be open by invitation only to third-year day or fourth-year evening students.  



    SEM: Criminal Responsibility (Law 981) Professor Anderson: (2 credits) - The general rationale for punishment presumes competent, adult offenders, acting of their own free will.  In this class, we will consider those situations in which criminal responsibility is less clear-cut, and more controversial.  What if the offender is a young child?  Insane?  Provoked?  Battered?  Socially deprived?  Students will read, discuss, and write about competing jurisprudential perspectives on criminal responsibility in these and similar contexts.  This class fulfills the perspectives requirement. 

    SEM: Ideas of the First Amendment (Law 981) Professor Beattie (2 credits) - The first focus of the seminar will be the pivotal doctrines of first amendment law.  For example, why is it important that we regulate speech after, rather than prior to, its expression;  or why is viewpoint regulation more problematic than “neutral” regulation of speech;  or should there be “paternalistic” reasons for regulating speech, designed to protect audiences from their own susceptibilities, to name a few.  Although these doctrines are quickly canvassed in the core Constitutional Law courses, they are not given center stage as they will be in this seminar.  The second focus of the seminar is that such questions are best studied by engaging a few of the greatest writings on the freedom of speech that have been generated in the Anglo-American tradition.  The seminar will study these doctrines through the writings – some political polemic, some judicial opinions – of John Milton, James Madison, John Stuart Mill, Learned Hand, O.W. Holmes, Louis Brandeis, A. Meiklejohn and assorted “contemporary” replies.  The course will fulfill the upper-level writing and perspectives requirements.   

    SEM: White Collar Crime (Law 980) Professor Molina (2 credits) - First, it considers overarching principles of corporate criminal liability, personal liability in an organizational setting, and appropriate sanctions for white collar crimes. Second, the class examines a number of "generic" offenses, that cut across substantive areas, including conspiracy, RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act), mail fraud and wire fraud, and false statements. Third, it focuses on a variety of "cover-up" crimes such as perjury, false declarations, and obstruction of justice. Finally, the course explores more particularized types of white collar offenses such as security fraud, bribery of public officials, and tax fraud.