Course Browser

Search and explore Duke Law's wide variety of courses that comprise near every area of legal theory and practice. Contact the Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs to confirm whether a course satisfies a graduation requirement in any particular semester.
 

NOTE: Course offerings change. Faculty leaves and sabbaticals, as well as other curriculum considerations, will sometimes affect when a course may be offered.

 

Credits
Semester
JD Course of Study
JD/LLM in International & Comparative Law
JD/LLM in Law & Entrepreneurship
International LLM - 1 year
LLM in Law & Entrepreneurship - 1 year
Certificate in Public interest and Public Service Law
 
Clear all filters14 courses found.
Course Number Course Title Course Credits Degree Requirements Semesters Taught Methods of Evaluation

301

AIDS and the Law 2
  • JD elective
  • JD SRWP
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • PIPS elective
  1. Fall 17
The course will explore the legal and policy landscape of the HIV/AIDS epidemic primarily in the United States. We will employ a multi-disciplinary approach to teaching about HIV law and policy, including the legal issues faced by persons with HIV disease. Speakers will include medical specialists, social workers, and persons living with HIV. Topics covered include HIV-related stigma and discrimination, HIV testing and public health laws, confidentiality and privacy rights, estate planning issues, HIV criminalization, health disparities, access to health care and health insurance, permanency planning for children and other family law issues, employee benefit issues, and torts and HIV-related private lawsuits. There is an opportunity for student presentations on AIDS Law issues. In lieu of an exam, there is a paper requirement for the course. The course is helpful but not required for those intending to enroll in the Health Justice Clinic.

This course is only offered in the fall semester.

311

Election Law 3
  • JD elective
  • JD SRWP
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • PIPS elective
  1. Fall 17
  2. Spring 20
  • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
  • Research paper, 25+ pages
  • Reflective Writing
  • Group project(s)
  • Oral presentation
  • Practical exercises
  • In-class exercise
  • Class participation

This course will explore selected topics in Law and Politics of American Democracy. We will examine the way the law and other forces have shaped the structure of American political participation, and we will consider alternative directions American democracy might take. Time permitting, we will focus on the right to vote, racial and political gerrymandering, campaign finance, political parties, ballot access, reapportionment/redistricting, and the Voting Rights Act.

320

Water Resources Law 2
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM Environ Cert
  • PIPS elective
  1. Spring 18
  2. Spring 19
  3. Spring 20
  • Research paper, 25+ pages

This survey course studies the legal and policy issues governing water resource allocation in the United States. Students will be introduced to both the Prior Appropriation systems of the western United States and the Reasonable Use systems dominating the eastern states. We will study the law applied to groundwater use as well as issues of federalism. Examples from disputes around ACF basin and the Colorado River will be contrasted. We will examine the issues from the perspective of different user groups.

 

321

The Law and Policy of Innovation: the Life Sciences 3
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • LLM-LE (JD) elective
  • LLMLE (1 yr) elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntllLLM IP Cert
  1. Spring 18
  2. Spring 19
  3. Spring 20
  • Reflective Writing
  • Research paper, 25+ pages
  • Class participation

This course analyzes the legal and policy regimes that shape the introduction of new products, processes, and services in the life science industries. Innovation in biopharmaceuticals, medical devices, health services, and health care delivery is central to the heavily regulated life sciences sector, and thus the sector offers a window into multiple intersections of scientific innovation, regulatory policy, and law.  Innovation in this sector is also shaped by multiple bodies of law (e.g. intellectual property law, FDA law, federal and state-based insurance and professional regulation, antitrust, tax), each with its own private and public constituencies, and therefore offers an opportunity to assess how different bodies of law approach the common issue of innovation.  Although this course focuses on innovation in the life science industries, this focus will produce lessons for innovation policy in other regulated and less-regulated industries. 

329

Education Law 2
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • PIPS elective
  1. Fall 17
  2. Fall 18
  3. Fall 19
  • Research paper, 25+ pages
  • In-class exercise
  • Class participation

Education Law: Constitutional, Statutory, and Policy Considerations This seminar introduces students to the legal standards that govern public schools in the United States. Constitutional topics include the right to a public education, the financing of public schools, desegregation and equal opportunity of students, limitations on student speech, school discipline and the right to due process, religion in schools, and privacy rights of students. Statutory topics include federal laws such as the Every Student Succeeds Act, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Title IX, and the Equal Educational Opportunities Act. Policy topics include school reforms, such as charters and vouchers, and the ongoing inequities in US public schools, and the school-to-prison pipeline. A research paper is required; successful completion of the paper will satisfy the upper-level writing requirement. A course pack will be used in lieu of a textbook.

527W

Access to Medicines Writing Credit 1
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • IntllLLM IP Cert
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  1. Spring 18
  • Add on credit

While enrolled in Law 527 Access to Medicines: Intellectual Property and Global Public Health, students have the option to take an additional 1 credit if they wish to write a 45 page paper. *LAW 527W MUST be added no later than 7th week of class.*

545

Urban Legal History 3
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  1. Fall 17
  • Research paper, 25+ pages
  • Class participation

Urban Legal History is a research seminar which will focus on the legal issues relating to Durham's political, social, and economic development. The class will involve intensive study of primary and secondary materials, and will require students to produce substantial (45 page) research papers.

579W

Mass Torts Writing Credit 1
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
    • Add on credit

    While enrolled in Law 579 Mass Torts, students have the option to take an additional 1 credit if they wish to expand the required 15 page paper to 30 pages in order to satisfy the JD Writing Requirement. *LAW 579W MUST be added no later than 7th week of class.*

    581

    FinTech Law and Policy 3
    • JD SRWP
    • JD elective
    • LLMLE (1 yr) elective
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • IntlLLM Business Cert
    1. Fall 17
    2. Fall 18
    3. Fall 19
    • Research paper, 25+ pages
    • Oral presentation
    • Class participation

    In 2016, few people had ever heard of Bitcoin or blockchain, initial coin offerings were non-existent, and U.S. financial regulatory agencies had yet to react to the emergence of non-bank financial services providers. The FinTech industry has changed dramatically since then: Bitcoin has captured the public imagination and spawned new derivatives products, you can now apply for a mortgage on your smartphone, initial coin offerings are now a viable alternative to venture capital funding, and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has proposed a new kind of bank charter specifically for FinTech firms.While many have focused on the technologies underpinning the FinTech revolution, less attention has been placed on how these technologies fit within the current financial regulatory framework. Understanding this framework is critical to the long-term success of any FinTech startup. While technology startups in other sectors may predicate their business on breaking rules and ignoring regulations, such a strategy is sure to fail if deployed by a FinTech firm. This is because the financial industry is heavily regulated by multiple state and federal agencies that often have overlapping authority. Being a successful FinTech firm requires more than just great technology; it also requires an understanding of the laws and regulations applicable to your business.

    This course aims to provide you with that understanding. You will learn about the critical legal, regulatory, and policy issues associated with cryptocurrencies, initial coin offerings, online lending, new payments and wealth management technologies, and financial account aggregators. In addition, you will learn how regulatory agencies in the U.S. are continually adjusting to the emergence of new financial technologies and how one specific agency, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, has proposed a path for FinTech firms to become regulated banks. You will also learn the basics of how banks are regulated in the U.S.

    If you are unfamiliar with how these new financial technologies work, fear not. We will begin each new course section with a high-level overview of the underlying technology.

    590

    Risk Regulation in the US, Europe and Beyond 2
    • JD SRWP
    • JD elective
    • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • IntlLLM Environ Cert
    1. Spring 18
    2. Fall 19
    • Research paper, 25+ pages
    • Class participation

    This seminar pursues an advanced, integrated analysis of the law, science and economics of societies' efforts to assess and manage risks of harm to human health, safety, environment and security. The course will examine the regulation of a wide array of risks, such as those from food, drugs, medical care, automobiles, air travel, drinking water, air pollution, energy, climate change, finance, terrorism, emerging technologies, and extreme catastrophic risks (students may propose to research other risks as well). Across these diverse contexts, the course will explore the components of regulatory analysis: risk assessment, risk management (including the debate over "precaution" versus benefit-cost analysis), risk evaluations by experts vs. the public, and risk-risk tradeoffs.  And it will explore options for institutional design and structure, including the interrelated roles of legislative, executive, and judicial functions; delegation and oversight; fragmentation and integration; and international cooperation.

    The course examines these issues through a comparative approach to risk regulation in the United States, Europe, and other countries.  These comparisons address topics including the choice of policy instruments, the selection of which risks to regulate, "precautionary" regulation, "better regulation" initiatives, regulatory impact assessment and regulatory oversight bodies, and others.   It examines the divergence, convergence, and exchange of ideas across regulatory systems; the causes of these patterns; the consequences of regulatory choices; and what regulatory systems can learn from each other.

    Students' research papers in this seminar may analyze specific risk regulations; compare regulations, institutions or tools across countries; formulate and advocate original proposals to improve the regulatory state; or other related topics.

    636

    Food, Agriculture and the Environment: Law & Policy 2
    • JD SRWP
    • JD elective
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • IntlLLM Environ Cert
    • PIPS elective
    1. Fall 17
    2. Fall 18
    3. Fall 19
    • Reflective Writing
    • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
    • Oral presentation
    • Class participation

    In many areas of the country, and especially in North Carolina, sustainable, local food markets represent one of the most exciting opportunities for environmental stewardship, economic growth, value-added agricultural niches, job creation, and community building. However, these opportunities require careful and sustained attention to the legal and regulatory requirements at the international, national, state, and local levels, many of which inhibit the development of sustainable, local food systems.

    The course will focus on (1) the interrelationship of food and agricultural production and environmental sustainability and (2) the ways in which the law influences, and can be used to overcome impediments to, the development of sustainable, local foods-based markets. Students will explore readings from a variety of sources, hear directly from guest speakers from North Carolina's strong network of organizations involved in the local foods movement, and delve into a research project of their own choosing.* Through the semester, students will gain an understanding of how legal rules interact with food safety research, physical infrastructure, personal consumption habits, patterns of private sector investment, race-based and other structural inequalities, to notions of community, underlying cultural and religious values, etc.

    *This project will allow students to explore an issue of interest and contribute their knowledge to this developing field. Papers may be scholarly in nature, but students are encouraged to shape their projects as practical case studies that directly engage the issues and players in the local foods community.

    677

    Duke Law in DC: Rethinking Federal Regulation 4
    • JD SRWP
    • JD elective
    • PIPS elective
    1. Spring 18
    2. Fall 18
    3. Fall 19

    This course is open to students participating in the Duke in DC integrated externship program (LAW 679: Duke Law in DC Externship). The Rethinking Federal Regulation course is a graded 4-credit weekly class that focuses on trends in regulatory philosophy, competing models for regulation, the nature of administrative rulemaking and enforcement of rules and regulations, and some of the sources of regulatory dysfunction. Students will develop critical analysis skills that are necessary to evaluate federal regulatory law, and will produce a 30-page final paper for the course. This course is open to second and third year law students, by permission only. For more information, please visit https://law.duke.edu/curriculum/dukedc/.

    707

    Statutory Interpretation Colloquium 2
    • JD SRWP
    • JD elective
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    1. Spring 20
    • Reflective Writing
    • Research paper, 25+ pages

    The objective of the course is to introduce students to important issues concerning the theory and doctrine of statutory interpretation through exposure to cutting-edge legal scholarship. The colloquium will feature bi-weekly presentations of works-in-progress by leading scholars of statutory interpretation, legislation, and administrative law. In the week preceding each presentation, students will read and discuss foundational materials (a mix of academic commentary and case law) on topics related to the work-in-progress.

    Students may opt to prepare six short (5-10 page) papers in response to each work-in-progress, which would be due in advance of the presentation and used to stimulate discussion. Alternatively, students may write one longer research paper (roughly 30 pages) dealing with a topic of their choice related to the themes of the class. Students who take the latter option may use the colloquium to satisfy the upper-level writing requirement.

    710

    Derivatives: Financial Markets, Law and Policy 3
    • JD SRWP
    • JD elective
    • LLMLE (1 yr) elective
    • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
    • IntlLLM Business Cert
    1. Spring 18
    2. Spring 19
    3. Spring 20
    • Research paper, 25+ pages
    • Oral presentation
    • Class participation

    Modern capital and financial markets rely on a wide variety of complex instruments, including Treasury securities, structured debt and equity instruments, and derivatives of various kinds.  Public awareness regarding these instruments has grown since the Financial Crisis of 2008 because they are thought to have played an important role in both the rapid growth of financial markets (“financialization”) and their destabilization.  Yet these instruments and the role they play in modern markets remain little understood.  A basic understanding of these instruments has now become important in modern financial law practice and any discussions on financial policy and regulation.

    This course will review the workings of derivative instruments in the capital markets and how such instruments themselves are used.  The relationship between banking and capital markets, and between government and the private markets, will be explored, as will the most important legal and fiduciary responsibilities involved.  While not highly technical, the various principal types of government securities and derivatives will be examined. 

    Warren Buffet once called derivatives “weapons of mass financial destruction.”  We will consider the numerous public policy issues relating to derivatives, their role in the Crisis of 2008 (and more recent financial distress such as the Eurozone crisis and the US debt ceiling controversy), the history of attempts to regulate these instruments, and the current regulatory structure.

    Required Coursework

    The 3-credit graded requirements for the course will be:

    1. A thirty-page paper, to be submitted by Friday, April 14 2017 (80%); the opportunity for JD writing credit will be given to the first five students who present research proposals, approved by me, commit to completing their drafts by Friday March 10 for grading and comments by me, and submit their final drafts in response to comments by the last day of class for the semester (when all papers will be due).
    2. An individual class presentation, of 20 minutes in length (10%), on the early draft of the 3-credit paper; and
    3. Overall class participation (10%).The course will be highly interactive and graded on this basis.

    The course will be highly interactive and graded on this basis.