Course Browser

Search and explore Duke Law's wide variety of courses that comprise near every area of legal theory and practice. Contact the Director of Academic Advising to confirm whether a course satisfies a graduation requirement in any particular semester. Course evaluations can be found here.
 

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 filters16 courses found.
Course Number Course Title Course Credits Degree Requirements Semesters Taught Methods of Evaluation

302

Appeals 2
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • PIPS elective
  1. Spring 20
  2. Spring 21
  • Research paper, 25+ pages

This course will examine the practices and powers of American appellate courts, with a particular emphasis on the federal courts of appeals.  Our discussion will focus on the goals of these institutions and the extent to which individual components of the appellate decision-making process—including oral argument and opinion-writing—further those goals.

We will begin with an overview of the function of appellate courts—why they were created and what we expect of them today.  We will then move to the specific components of appellate adjudication, including mediation, briefing, oral argument, and judgment, as well as the personnel who contribute to the adjudication process.  Finally, we will consider the ways in which the appellate courts have been affected by an increasing caseload, and proposals for alleviating the strain on the courts.

Ultimately, the goal of the course is to expose you to how appellate courts operate and the purported goals of these institutions.  Over the course of the semester, you should also be evaluating what you think are the fundamental objectives of appellate review and whether the current structure of the courts allows them to meet those goals.

Evaluation in the course will be based on a final research paper, which may be used to satisfy the SRWP.

312

Cybercrime 2
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM Business Cert
  • IntllLLM IP Cert
  • PIPS elective
  1. Spring 20
  2. Spring 21
  • Reflective Writing
  • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
  • Class participation

The course will survey the legal issues raised by cyber-related crime. The bulk of the course will be organized around two overarching themes: (1) substantive criminal law (i.e., the scope, structure, and limitations of the criminal laws that reach cyber-related crime); and (2) criminal procedure (i.e., the scope, structure, and limitations of the privacy laws and constitutional principles that regulate law enforcement investigations of cyber-related crime).  Along the way, we will also consider topics that frequently arise in cyber-related investigations and prosecutions, such as:  jurisdictional issues (e.g., federal/state dynamics and international cooperation in collecting evidence); national security considerations (e.g., state-sponsored intrusions and IP theft, terrorists’ use of the internet, government surveillance); and encryption.  We will make regular use of contemporary case studies, including several drawn from my own experience in the national security arena.  We will also examine threats that pose particularly difficult legal and policy challenges, such as foreign interference in U.S. elections and misinformation.

317

Criminal Justice Ethics 2
  • JD elective
  • JD ethics
  • IntlLLM NY Bar
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • PIPS elective
  1. Fall 18
  2. Spring 20
  3. Spring 21
  • Final Exam
  • Reflective Writing
  • Class participation
  • Other

The Criminal Justice Ethics course is centered on the law governing lawyers operating in the criminal justice system. It explores some of the critical issues facing lawyers in the roles of defense counsel, prosecutor, judge, etc., and includes several guest speakers and visits to a prison and courthouse. Case studies and problems are drawn from North Carolina cases, including some of the Duke Wrongful Conviction Clinic's cases of actual innocence.

338

Animal Law 2
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM Environ Cert
  • PIPS elective
  1. Spring 19
  2. Spring 20
  3. Spring 21
  • Reflective Writing
  • Class participation

This course will examine a number of topics related to the law of animals, including various issues that arise under the laws of property, contracts, torts, and trusts and estates. It will also examine various criminal law issues and constitutional law questions. The class will consider such issues as the definition of "animal" as applicable to anti-cruelty statutes, the collection of damages for harm to animals, establishing standing for animal suits, first amendment protections, and the nuances of various federal laws.

399

Forensic Psychiatry 2
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • PIPS elective
  1. Spring 19

This course is designed to provide students with a working knowledge of the major areas of interface between psychiatry and law. Basic concepts of clinical psychiatry and psychopathology will be highlighted throughout the course. The attorney and the psychiatrist roles in the commitment process, right to treatment and right to refuse treatment, competency to stand trial, and criminal responsibility will be explored using a number of methods. Discussion of assigned readings, short lectures, interviews and observation of patients involved in legal proceedings, films, guest speakers, and field trips will form the basis of the course. The students will periodically be asked to use the information from the course together with independent and group research to complete short projects and class exercises.

408

Appellate Litigation Clinic (Spring) 2
  • JD elective
  • JD experiential
  • PIPS elective
  • PIPS experiential
  1. Spring 20
  2. Spring 19

Spring continuation of Appellate Litigation Clinic.

421

Pre-Trial Litigation 2
  • JD elective
  • JD experiential
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  1. Fall 18
  2. Spring 19
  3. Fall 19
  4. Spring 20
  5. Fall 20
  6. Spring 21
  • Practical exercises
  • In-class exercise
  • Class participation

This practical skills course focuses on the path civil litigators must navigate prior to trial. It is becoming increasingly rare for cases to be decided by a jury.  Lawyers must instead learn to succeed during the pretrial process.  We will examine the key components of the civil pretrial litigation process, beginning with the filing of a law suit.  The class will be divided into law firms on the second week of class. You will work with co-counsel, representing a hypothetical client, for the entire semester.  Law firms will prepare and serve discovery and respond to discovery from opposing counsel. Students will prepare and argue a short discovery motion. The last four weeks of class focus on depositions, with each student taking and defending a deposition. This course will help students synthesize and more deeply understand the strategy and the practical application of civil procedure and evidence rules used in litigation advocacy. 

Topics  include:

  • Drafting pleadings and motions
  • Preparing and responding to discovery
  • Taking and defending depositions
  • Practicing becoming a more effective advocate in the current on-line environment facing all attorneys and courts.

The course grade is based on written and practical skills-based work product and class participation, as described in the syllabus.  There is not a final exam.

505

Criminal Justice Policy Lab 2
  • JD SRWP, option
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • PIPS elective
  1. Fall 18
  2. Spring 20
  3. Spring 21
  • Reflective Writing
  • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
  • Oral presentation
  • Class participation

The growth in incarceration in the United States since the early 1970s has been “historically unprecedented and internationally unique,” as the National Research Council recently put it. This lab seminar will explore current debates about how best to improve our criminal justice system. The focus will be on concrete research projects with the potential to improve criminal justice outcomes in North Carolina. Students will learn how to conduct policy-based research on criminal justice problems, and students will choose projects and write research papers studying possible reforms. Visitors to the seminar will include leading lawyers, policymakers, and scholars to speak to the class, and to assist with the research efforts.  Students will better appreciate the challenges of designing a sound criminal justice system and also learn how as lawyers they may participate in successful and well-researched policy reform efforts.

513

Murder Trials: Real-World Lessons in Persuasive Advocacy 2
  • JD elective
  • JD experiential
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  1. Spring 19

Credits earned in this seminar, grounded in simulating participation in certain aspects of a murder trial, apply to the experiential learning requirement for graduation. The course's backbone will be real first-degree murder cases that resulted in conviction and the death penalty. Simulations in the form of class exercises and writing assignments will be based upon those high-stake cases' actual evidence, defense and prosecuting attorneys' decisions and actions, and the controlling constitutional and evidentiary law. The simulations will include but not be limited to attorneys' brainstorming to make tactical decisions, composing jury selection questions to pick a "fair" but "death-qualified" jury, and writing and presenting opening statements and closing arguments. In the simulated activities, students will learn to practice the art of persuasive, zealous advocacy in the face of challenges to professionalism, ethical dilemmas, and complex tactical choices. Lessons about advocacy, though learned in the context of death penalty cases' memorable circumstances, apply equally to students' future practice in transactional or civil litigation practice.

533

Government Enforcement and Global Corporate Compliance 2
  • JD elective
  • JD experiential
  • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  1. Fall 19
  2. Fall 18
  • Practical exercises
  • In-class exercise
  • Class participation

Students will learn about white collar criminal law principles, today’s climate of government enforcement against corporate wrongdoing and the important role that compliance programs can play in preventing, detecting and resolving those compliance issues.  The course will involve substantive lectures and classroom exercises.  The Foreign Corruption Practices Act (FCPA) will be utilized as the substantive basis to discuss the various principles and conduct the practice simulations. The FCPA will also help demonstrate the global nature of white collar and compliance and the legal issues multi-national corporations face. 

Students will engage in classroom exercises to develop skills frequently used in practice – analysis, drafting materials, preparing for and conducting interviews, and developing a work plan.  Students will learn to advise a client on dealing with a government enforcement action, conduct a global internal investigation, and build a corporate compliance program.  This learning combination of substantive lectures and doing simulation exercises regarding “real world” issues will provide students with practical skills in an area that is in high demand for lawyers.

547

Criminal Justice Policy: Crime, Politics, and the Media 2
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • PIPS elective
  1. Spring 19
  • Reflective Writing
  • Group project(s)
  • Class participation

This course will focus on various changes in criminal justice policy that occurred in during the last four decades (e.g., changes in sentencing law and policy, increased incarceration rates, and the "war on drugs") and will explore some of the factors that brought about those changes. To what degree were these changes responses to changes in the rates and types of crimes experienced in the U.S.? To what degree were these changes prompted by political campaigns and strategies, or by a media-induced sense of crisis? What factors determine how the media covers crime and criminal justice? And how does media coverage affect public opinion? How do the U.S. politics of crime vary from that of other countries? Readings will include legal materials that will probe and analyze statutory and administrative changes, as well as interdisciplinary readings.

562

Sentencing & Punishment 2
  • JD SRWP
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • PIPS elective
  1. Fall 18
  2. Fall 19
  3. Fall 20
  • Research paper, 25+ pages
  • Class participation

This new seminar will focus on the process of imposing sentences in criminal cases, administering punishment, and attempting rehabilitation of convicted criminals. The course will first provide background regarding the purposes of punishment and the history of mandatory sentences, presumptive sentences, and sentencing guidelines, and focus on some of these issues in more detail through the use of a expert guest lecturers and a tour of the Federal Correctional Facility in Butner, NC. Students will be expected to participate meaningfully in the lectures, guest speakers and field trip, and produce a research paper on a related topic.

570

Criminology and Criminal Procedure 2
  1. Spring 19
  2. Spring 20
  • Class participation

In this seminar, we will read social science research to examine the empirical assumptions of rules, systems, and practices of criminal law and procedure. We will cover a series of empirical questions, which may include: (1) Does stop and frisk policing reduce crime? (2) Can body cameras change police behavior? (3) Does the death penalty deter? (4) Are there alternatives to incarceration that can keep us safe? (5) Is there racial disparity in sentencing, and if there is, what can we do about it? (6) What is the right age of majority to separate the juvenile and adult justice systems?

While some background in social science and statistics may be helpful, it is not a requirement for the course. Students will be evaluated based on class participation and a series of reaction papers. Students will also be asked to lead discussion of some of the readings.

584

Forensic Science Colloquium 2
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • PIPS elective
  1. Spring 19
  • Reflective Writing
  • Class participation

Science has never been more important to crime solving in the United States, with expanding crime labs, DNA databanks, and new crime scene technology. Yet never has the use of forensics been more controversial in the legal and scientific communities, with scientific reports critical of the research foundations of many forensic techniques and new Sixth Amendment and evidentiary challenges in the courts. This seminar will examine the legal, scientific, and the practical questions raised by the use of forensic evidence in our legal system, by bringing in a series of leading scholars, lawyers, and researchers to present cutting edge work (we may also visit a crime lab and meet with its general counsel). During the semester, speakers will present their research to the seminar. The students will have written papers evaluating and critiquing the work in class the week before each speaker presents. We will discuss current legal challenges to the admissibility of forensic evidence, the constitutional regulation of forensics in the courtroom, philosophy of science, privacy issues, and research seeking to improve the uses of forensics in the lab and in the courtroom. Interested faculty from the law school, as well as statistics, psychology, and other disciplines will also attend given sessions. Students do not need a background in science and there are no prerequisites.

588

Investigating and Prosecuting National Security Cases 2
  • JD SRWP with add-on credit
  • JD elective
  • LLM-ICL (JD) elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  • IntlLLM writing, option
  • PIPS elective
  1. Spring 20
  2. Spring 19
  3. Spring 21
  • Reflective Writing
  • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
  • Class participation

National security cases present unique challenges to prosecutors and defense attorneys. From the outset of an investigation, and before charges are brought, prosecutors and investigators must take into account a number of considerations, including coordination with the intelligence community and potential conflicts that may arise between law enforcement and intelligence gathering. After a case is charged, such cases frequently present other challenges, such as complying with discovery obligations while protecting classified information and obtaining testimony from foreign witnesses who may be beyond the reach of the U.S. government. This course will provide an in-depth examination of the unique issues that lawyers face in national security prosecutions and the substantive and procedural tools used to navigate those issues.  We will also examine the advantages and limitations of civilian prosecutions and consider the effectiveness of current procedures and criminal statutes in addressing modern national security threats.  An emphasis will be placed on case-specific examples and hypotheticals, drawing in part on the instructor’s experience and pending public cases.  The course will culminate in a simulation in which students are presented with a rapidly unfolding national security incident in which they are asked to address various hypotheticals at different stages of the case.

Students will be expected to complete a final paper of 10-15 pages in length on a topic approved by the instructor.  Students who wish to use the paper to satisfy the JD ULWR should enroll in a 1 credit Independent Study with Professor Stansbury and will be expected to write a final paper of 25-30 pages in length.  The Independent Study will be graded on a credit/no-credit basis.

766

Law Practice Technology 2
  • JD elective
  • IntlLLM/SJD/EXC elective
  1. Fall 19
  • Research and/or analytical paper(s), 10-15 pages
  • Oral presentation
  • Practical exercises
  • Class participation

Rapidly evolving technologies are undoubtedly transforming the traditional law practice. The purpose of this course is to explore and investigate the use and impact of current technologies in the practice of law. The focus will be smaller to mid-sized law firms but there will also be some discussion on large practice groups. Tools for client management, electronic discovery, and document management will be analyzed. Ethical issues relating to proper use of technology and data management will be discussed. Electronic communications and social networking tools will also be explored.
Students who take Law 766 Law Practice Technology may not take Law 765 Introduction to Technology in the Law Office.