Course Descriptions

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Fall 2018 Intellectual Property Law Class Descriptions

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Corporate Counsel Externship I (LWVL591)

Instructor(s): Beth Baier

1-6 credit(s), P/F Graded
Requirement(s): Experiential
Concentration(s): Intellectual Property Law, Intellectual Property, Business and Corporate Law, LLM in Business and Corporate Law

The Corporate Counsel Externship Program consists of a work component and a class component and allows students to earn academic credit working in the legal department of a corporation, company or other business entity. Students may also work in other departments of a corporation as long as they are supervised by an on-site licensed attorney.

Students must work during the academic session for a minimum of 50 hours per unit of credit and may receive 1-6 credits. For purposes of corporate counsel externship work, the academic session is from the official start of classes to the last day of final exams. No externship work for a corporate counsel placement is permitted outside this time period. Academic requirements include: mandatory orientation, journals between student and professor relating to the field placement; periodic discussion boards on legal practice topics; a three-five page reflective paper at the end of the semester; an example of work product for professor review; and, satisfactory completion of work experience. The Externship is graded on a Pass-Fail basis.

If you have been offered and have accepted a field placement, meet the eligibility requirements, agree to meet the course obligations and want to register for the Externship course, fill out the Field Placement Form. The Office of Career and Professional Development will then confirm your placement and instruct you on registering for the course.

Contact lawcareers@sandiego.edu with placement questions. Contact Professor John Sansone, Academic Director, at jsansone@sandiego.edu with academic questions.

Note: There are limitations on JD concentration eligibility. Please check the JD concentrations web pages for more information. Contact Law Student Affairs to find out if your work in this clinic qualifies for the concentration.
Additional Information: JD Concentrations Web Page, Email Law Student Affairs

Corporate Innovation & Legal Policy (LWIP528)

Instructor(s): Ted Sichelman

3 credit(s), Letter Graded
Requirement(s): Writing
Concentration(s): Intellectual Property Law, Intellectual Property, LLM in Business and Corporate Law

What are the optimal policy ingredients and business strategies for managing innovation? How can business leaders, inventors, lawyers, and policymakers benefit from the connections between corporate success, intellectual property, and human capital? The course will introduce foundations of intellectual property law and employment and organizational practices. We will examine corporate policies and disputes over the control of ideas, secrets, skill and intellectual property. In particular, we will analyze non-compete contracts, trade secrets and non-disclosures, information privacy, economic espionage, employee duties of loyalty, including prohibitions on customer and co-worker solicitation and raiding for competitive endeavors; and employer ownership over inventions and artistic work, including pre-invention patent assignment agreements and work-for-hire disputes. In the past few years, the black box of innovation has been pierced with a plethora of new interdisciplinary research and practice. At the same time, industry and policymakers in the United States, like other countries around the world, are debating the benefits of existing EIP laws. In the course, we will bring together these various developments to identify how companies can sustain their innovative capacities, commercialize science, and manage creativity, and to assess how differences in regulatory and contractual arrangements in the employment relationship can impact key aspects of innovation, such as the rate of patent filings, the level of network participation in intellectual and creative endeavors, individual motivation to innovate, organizational behavior, and talent mobility.

Corporate Technology Externship (LWVL570)

Instructor(s): Ted Sichelman

1-6 credit(s), P/F Graded
Requirement(s): Experiential
Concentration(s): Intellectual Property Law, Intellectual Property, Business and Corporate Law, LLM in Business and Corporate Law

This course places students at local law firms to provide legal assistance to local technology startups in the areas of corporate formation and transactions, contracts, employment, and related areas. Students will be supervised by attorneys at local law firms as well as the professor. The course will begin with 6 class sessions covering the core types of transactions encountered in technology startups. There are no scheduled classes during the remainder of the semester; instead, students will work with the firms and supervising lawyers each week, and meet one-on-one with the professor on a regular basis. Students who registered for the IP Externship or Corporate Technology Externship in previous academic years may not apply for the course for 2018-2019. An application process will be used to select students for the course. Please download the application and submit no later than Friday, April 27.

Note: There are limitations on JD concentration eligibility. Please check the JD concentration web pages for more information.
Additional Information: Application

Intellectual Property Survey (LWIP550)

Instructor(s): Lisa Ramsey

4 credit(s), Letter Graded
Concentration(s): Intellectual Property Law, Intellectual Property

This course provides a broad overview of intellectual property law. After discussing the policies underlying the protection of intellectual property rights, we will cover trade secret, patent, copyright, and trademark law, and related doctrines such as the right of publicity. These topics will be examined with a focus on new technologies, but a science or technical background is not required. This course provides a foundation for advanced intellectual property courses and is also appropriate for students who seek only a general understanding of intellectual property law. 

Note: May be applied as part of the six required credits for the Intellectual Property Concentration (JD).

IP Externship (LWVL532)

Instructor(s): Ted Sichelman

1-6 credit(s), P/F Graded
Requirement(s): Experiential
Concentration(s): Intellectual Property Law, Intellectual Property

This course places students at local law firms to provide legal assistance to local individuals (inventors, artists, musicians, and others) and tech and media companies in the areas of patent prosecution, patent searching, trademark prosecution, filing of provisional and utility patents, intellectual property litigation, intellectual property transactions, and related areas (including copyright and trade secret law). Students will be supervised by attorneys at local law firms as well as the professors. The course will begin with 6 class sessions covering the core practical aspects of patent, trademark, copyright and trade secret law. In the boot camp, students will be given sample office actions and draft responses, as well as IP litigation pleadings, motions, and discovery. Students will also perform sample patent and trademark searches and discuss and analyze sample real-world problems. There are no scheduled classes during the remainder of the semester; instead, students will work with clients and supervising lawyers each week, and meet one-on-one with the professors on a regular basis. Students who registered for the IP Externship or Corporate Technology Externship in previous academic years may not apply for the course for 2018-2019. An application process will be used to select students for the course.

Note: There are limitations on JD concentration eligibility. Please check the Intellectual Property Concentration web page for more information., Application

Patent Law (LWIP570)

Instructor(s): Maria Stout, Joseph Reisman

2 credit(s), Letter Graded
Concentration(s): Intellectual Property Law, Intellectual Property

The purpose of this course is to prepare students to understand the law and analyze the problems involved in protecting inventions under U.S. Patent Laws and in protecting trade secrets under the common law and the California Trade Secret Statute. Although the protection of state-of-the-art technology, including software and biotechnology, is included in portions of the course, technical or scientific expertise of the student is not a prerequisite.

Note: May be applied as part of the six required credits for the Intellectual Property Concentration (JD).

Patent Litigation I (LWIP568)

Instructor(s): Michael Amon, Craig Countryman

2 credit(s), H/P/L/F Graded
Requirement(s): Experiential
Concentration(s): Intellectual Property Law, Intellectual Property
Prerequisite(s): Patent Law or concurrent enrollment

The patent litigation course provides substantive patent law knowledge with a focus on the practical application and litigation skills. This course is appropriate for students who have taken or are taking patent law and other intellectual property courses and who are seeking to deepen and refine their understanding of how patent litigation actually works. This course will be of particular interest to students who envision practicing in the areas of patent litigation or patent prosecution. Grading will be based on written assignments, participation in classroom discussions, and participation in the various in-class exercises. Previous coursework in general patent law is recommended but not required. Patent Law is a pre-or-co-requisite.The course is graded on a 4-tier Pass-Fail basis

Trade Secrets (LWIP575)

Instructor(s): David McGowan

2 credit(s), Letter Graded
Concentration(s): Intellectual Property Law, Intellectual Property, Employment and Labor Law

This course provides an introduction to trade secret law. Subjects include the definition of trade secrets, the means by which trade secret protection is distinguished from copyright and patent law, and issues in enforcing trade secret protection. We will study the federal Defend Trade Secrets Act, the Uniform Trade Secrets Act, and California trade secrets law, as well as the relationship between trade secrets protection and California's policy against enforcing non-compete agreements. This class will have a take-home midterm and final exam administered on TWEN.

Trademark Law (LWIP580)

Instructor(s): Lisa Ramsey

3 credit(s), Letter Graded
Concentration(s): Intellectual Property Law, Intellectual Property

This course provides an overview of trademark and unfair competition law. We will discuss the purpose of these laws, the requirements for trademark protection, and the scope and enforcement of trademark rights. Specifically, we will cover the concepts of distinctiveness, functionality, and use of a trademark; the procedural and substantive aspects of trademark registration; geographic limits on trademark rights; trademark infringement, dilution, cybersquatting, counterfeiting, false advertising, false endorsement, and the right of publicity; and defenses and remedies in trademark actions.