LAW-2374 U.S. Law, Legal Reasoning and Writing

Prof. Stephen C. Hicks, Prof. Elizabeth Z. Stillman,

2 credits day; 2 credits evening.


This course is required for full-time international LL.M. students and Exchange Students. Students with a civil law background are required to take the course. Students who have a common law background may also enroll in the course with the prior approval of the professors. The course is not open to J.D. students.

The purpose of the course is to enable international students to understand the different legal system and education that they will encounter in their studies in the U.S. It will provide an overview of the U.S. Legal System, including the structure of the state and federal courts, and the roles of the judges, lawyers and other professionals in the common law adversarial system of legal procedure and dispute resolution. In addition, basic principles and terminology of common law subjects will be introduced and explored through case law and other readings and legal research skills, as well as exercises and simulations.

Particular attention will be given to the use of precedent, and methods of reading, analyzing and synthesizing case law successfully, as well as understanding statutes and paramount constitutional authority. Individual classes will also focus on methods of study, such as note taking, briefing, outlining, problem solving, paper writing and multiple choice exams to assist learning.

The course will be graded according to the satisfactory completion of exercises, problems, research assignments and a comprehensive research and writing problem during the semester.


  Prerequisite: Restricted to non U. S. LLM Students and Exchange Students

pointer    Enrollment is limited: 20 

pointer    Elective Course

pointer    LLM Course


<<Course Updated: March 16, 2016>>