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School of Law
1045 W. Maple St.
Robert A. Leflar Law Center
Waterman Hall
University of Arkansas
Fayetteville, AR 72701

Phone: (479) 575-5601

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Selected Fall 2012 Course Descriptions

Click on a course title to see the description of the course:

Law & Economics

Prof. Dustin Buehler Fall 2012 – WF 11:25–12:40

Q: Should we deter “bad” behavior with monetary or criminal sanctions?

Q: Can anti-discrimination and minimum wage laws increase business productivity? Q: Should tobacco companies be held liable for smokers’ healthcare costs?

Q: Should we replace patent laws with a government reward system?

Law and Economics (L&E) confronts these types of legal and policy issues by critically analyzing whether legal rules provide the greatest good to the greatest number of people. The class offers an introduction to basic economic principles, while providing a useful review of many core law school and bar exam subjects.

We will examine applications of L&E to: tort law, property law (including intellectual property and eminent domain), contract law, criminal law, tobacco litigation, employment law, and several other topics.

All students are welcome—an economics background is NOT necessary for success in this class (last time this course was offered, many of the top grades went to students with no prior economics background).

Grading: Students will have the option of taking a 3 hour, open-book final exam or writing a short paper (approx. 10 pages) in response to a question that I will hand out to the class.

Questions? E-mail Prof. Buehler at dbuehler@uark.edu.

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ULW: Crime & SCOTUS

Prof. Brian Gallini – Fall 2012 – W 4:20-7:00 (ISIS 8733 LAWW 406(3))

In this limited enrollment special topics seminar, we will critically examine criminal law and procedure cases currently pending before the Supreme Court. To facilitate our examination, we will construct a hypothetical Supreme Court, argue selected cases, take a vote, and then produce an actual series of judicial opinions to determine whether, as a class, our view of the case accurately predicts the Supreme Court’s ultimate decision.

During the semester, you will fill a variety of roles. Once during the semester, you will make an appellate argument to our fictitious Supreme Court on an issue currently pending before the actual Court. In doing so, you need not author a brief; instead, you will rely on the actual litigants’ brief and construct an oral argument based on that brief. At another point during the semester, you will serve as a bailiff/newspaper reporter. As bailiff, you will call the Court to session and keep track of the litigants’ time. As a newspaper reporter, you will observe the conduct of the Court, the litigants, and write an article covering the event. For the balance of the semester, you will sit as a Supreme Court justice. Justices will hear cases, conference on the argument, and issue opinions.

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Environmental Lawyering

Instructor: Walter G. Wright, Jr. – Fall 2012

This course examines the role of environmental laws in society and teaches students how to think about a complex regime of statutes, regulations, and informal agency practices. The course addresses concrete environmental problems, teaching the manner that a practicing lawyer should approach them. By examining in detail environmental law in application, the students apply the theory of the law and understand the challenges of environmental lawmaking and regulation. Each class focuses on both a particular topic (i.e., agriculture, water resources, commercial transactions, energy, etc.) and the environmental laws that affect it. The basic Environmental Law Course is not a prerequisite to the course. The grade will be based upon a final exam.

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Seminar: The Mortgage Foreclosure Crisis

Instructor: Professor Dale Whitman – 2 credits

This seminar will address the legal and practical difficulties raised by the large increase in residential mortgage foreclosures during the past four years. Consideration will be given to the law and policies governing the transfer of mortgages in the secondary market and the proof required to foreclose, both by judicial action and nonjudicially. Programs to assist homeowners in avoiding foreclosure and to mediate foreclosure disputes will be discussed. The grade will be based on a research paper prepared by each student.

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Law & Psychology

Professor Don Judges – Fall 2012

The disciplines of law and psychology interact at a variety of points. The legal system influences clinical practice through the regulatory effects of statutes, administrative regulations, and court decisions. Psychological expertise influences legal decision making at every level of the legal system. Psychologists advise legislatures, administrative agencies, and appellate courts on psychological issues related to legal policy-making and government practices. Psychologists serve as expert witnesses in trial courts and before administrative tribunals. Psychological theories affect the development of legal doctrine. Psychologists provide assessment and treatment services to correctional populations and public service occupations.

This course covers a selection of topics from those points of interaction. The goal is to introduce specific topics as eyewitness evidence (including child witnesses), suspect interrogation, violence risk assessment, criminal responsibility, assessment of malingering, sex offenders, and competency to stand trial and to waive rights. In the process the course also introduces more general matters such as psychopathology, forensic assessment and the role of the psychologist in the legal process.

I have selected readings for each topic that are available free on-line and have provided links to them. These materials are only a selection of the literature on each topic. None is comprehensive, these sources are written by a well-recognized experts in their various fields.

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Mediation

Professor Watson – Fall 2012

This 3-hour course will serve as an introduction to the alternative dispute resolution process of mediation. It will give students a working understanding of the mediation process, which will enhance their professional skills and ability to serve clients. While the course is focused on developing the student’s competency as a mediator, the skills are also relevant to lawyers in their capacity as an advisor and as an advocate. This course satisfied the skills requirement.

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ULW: Judicial Clerkship

Instructor: Bianca Rucker – Fall 2012

Judicial Clerkships is a two-hour course that deals primarily with the process of judicial clerkships, focusing on both state and federal clerkships, and writing and drafting for and with judges from a non-adversarial perspective. The course will cover the development of the institution of clerking, clerk and judge selection, judicial philosophy (regarding the degree of authorship a judge has over his or her opinions), and the responsibilities associated with clerking. Students will gain exposure to the variety of clerkship opportunities available (for example, appellate, trial, bankruptcy, social security, pro se, magistrate), and the essential skills required of law clerks, with particular focus on memorandum and opinion writing. This course satisfies the Upper-Level Writing Requirement.

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Sports Law

Instructor: Perkins – Fall 2012

This 2-hour course will provide an overview of the relationship between the sports and legal worlds. The students will be exposed to issues in professional, collegiate and Olympic sports, as well as high school and community based sports programs. In addition, we will explore how: Constitutional Law; Tort Law;Employment Law; and Contract Law impact decisions made in sports on all levels. Students will be required to write a 10-15 page paper in response to a question that will be handed out to the class. The text for the course is: Glenn Wong, Essentials in Sports Law (4th ed., ABC-CLIO, 2010).

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Alternative Dispute Resolution Seminar/ULW

Instructor Prof. Robert Moberly – Fall 2012

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is one of the most significant trends in our legal system. ADR includes the use of such dispute settlement methods as negotiation, mediation, arbitration, mini-trial, summary jury trial, early neutral evaluation, rent-a-judge, and others. It also includes the design and development of dispute resolution systems.

ADR is used to resolve disputes in most fields of conflict, including courts (state and federal), commercial, labor, environmental, family, administrative law, and international. Arkansas has an extensive court-sponsored ADR program.

The course focuses on a variety of ADR processes, and their application in differing contexts. Students are required to complete a paper on an aspect of ADR and/or its application in a particular area, or a project such as designing a dispute resolution system. This course satisfies the Upper Level Writing requirement.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS. The requirements for this course are as follows:

  1. Complete a seminar paper-minimum 25 pages.
  2. Conduct a presentation of your paper.
  3. Participate actively in seminar discussions across the semester.

GRADING: Your grading will be calculated as follows:

  1. Seminar Paper: 2/3 (described separately below)
  2. Presentation: 1/6
  3. Class participation: 1/6

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Conflict Resolution

Instructor: Prof. Moberly — Fall 2012

“Discourage litigation. Persuade your neighbors to compromise whenever you can. Point out to them how the nominal winner is often a real loser–in fees, expenses, and waste of time. As a peacemaker the lawyer has a superior opportunity of being a good…[person]. There will still be business enough” [RBM: and even more]. Abraham Lincoln, 1850.

“[A]n attorney’s duty to a client includes ‘the obligation to attempt to effectuate a reasonable settlement of the…action where the general standards of professional care [require] that the most reasonable manner of disposing of the action was by settlement.’” Garris v. Severson, et.al, 252 Cal.Rptr 204 (Cal.App.2 Dist. 1988)

COURSE PURPOSES & TEACHING METHODS: The objectives of the course are (a) to convey information about the history, legal status, nature, theory and practice of conflict resolution processes, including negotiation, mediation, arbitration, and mixed processes, such as the mini-trial, and (b) to develop the skills necessary to use alternatives to litigation. Each of the alternative dispute resolution (ADR) processes will be examined critically, with discussion of their strengths, weaknesses, and appropriate areas of use. A variety of teaching techniques will be utilized, including experiential exercises, demonstrations (live and/or videotaped), discussions and lectures.

METHODOLOGY: The doctrinal component will be developed through assigned readings and class discussion. The skills component will be developed through a series of group and individual exercises. Work on the exercises will run concurrently with the reading assignments. Grading is based on preparation, participation, competence, critiques, and attendance. Since this is a skills course, there is no final examination.

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School of Law

1045 W. Maple St.
Robert A. Leflar Law Center
Waterman Hall
University of Arkansas
Fayetteville, AR 72701

Phone: (479) 575-5601

Law School Directory

University of Arkansas School of Law