Prof. Steven Jamar's
Recommendations for Advisees
Please note that these are personal recommendations, not recommendations
of the faculty as a whole or of any part of it. Other faculty may
well have other suggestions. Think about what you want to accomplish in
law school; ask questions; use your own best judgment in preparing yourself
for your legal career starting with passing the bar exam.
- Each semester take at least two "bar courses" (see below for a general listing). Be sure to check the bar requirements for the state where you plan to take the bar.
- Try to take as many bar courses as possible before you graduate
-- do not rely on learning the material in a bar review course,
except perhaps for one course. Be very cautious about choosing not to take bar courses. Bar review courses are designed to review and refresh, not to do first-time instruction.
- If you have an area in which you are very interested or in which
you wish to concentrate, e.g., international law, criminal law,
family law, commercial law, intellectual property, real estate
development, etc., try to take one course in that field in the fall
of your second year.
- Each semester try to take one "fun" course.
- At some point take at least one course you think you would have
no interest in. You could be surprised to find you want to practice
in that area.
- Plan what skills courses you wish to take, and for what purpose
(litigation, ADR, negotiation, planning, drafting, etc.).
- Plan how you are going to satisfy the LW III requirement (preferably
in the third year) (seminar, Law Journal, independent study).
- Take at least one international law course.
- Take at least one IP course.
Basic courses you should take.
These courses are on many state bar exams and/or are in some sense
core courses. The first group are typical 2L courses (though you will likely
take a few of them in your third year due to scheduling priorities). Remedies and Conflicts are
good 3L course because they bring together property, contracts, and
torts from a different perspective which allows you to review those critical
first year subjects.
Standard 2L courses; some would likely need to be put off until the third
- Administrative Law
- Agency, Partnership, and Unicorporated Businesses
- Constitutional Law II (required 2L)
- Criminal Procedure
- Evidence (required)
- Family Law
- Federal Income Tax
- LRRW II (required 2L)
- Professional Responsibility (required)
- Property II
- UCC courses (especially Sales, but also Commercial Paper and Secured Transactions)
- Wills and Trusts
Useful reinforcing/review courses in the third year
- Remedies (reinforces and deepens understanding of aspects of Torts, Contracts, Property law concepts)
- Conflicts (reinforces and deepens understanding of aspects of Civil Procedure (especially jurisdiction), Con Law I)
- Federal Courts (reinforces and deepens understanding of aspects of Civil Procedure, Con Law I)
When you meet with your advisor, you should be prepared to discuss sequencing courses in your area of interest and ask about courses you should consider taking because they are related to or at least useful for practicing in your area of interest.
HUSL courses in general have few formal prerequisites. This allows the student more flexibility in course selection and sequencing. Nonetheless, there are some courses that are in some sense precursors to others. For example, Administrative Law provides a foundation for subjects that are heavily regulated by administrative agencies such as Environmental Law, Securities Law, Labor Law, and Federal Communications Law. Agency, Partnership, and Unicorporated Businesses provides a firm foundation regarding the concept of fiduciary duty which arises in every field of law and most especially in Corporations, Wills and Trusts, and Professional Responsibility.
Some courses are important for certain areas of practice, but are not central to the law in that area. For example, someone practicing commercial law or someone practicing corporate law would be well advised to take the Introduction to Intellectual Property because so many commercial transactions involve licensing IP and many corporate acquisitions involve IP and many businesses are built around exploiting IP.
last update 2 May 2014