Studying IP at Rutgers Law

bridgeRutgers Law offers course encompassing both intellectual property and the broader regulation of information.  “Traditional” intellectual property law encompasses various forms of intangible property, such as patents, copyrights, and trademarks.  Information law includes intellectual property law, but also encompasses separate fields that are such as privacy law, media law, advertising law, free speech, and Internet law.

Intellectual Property Courses

All lawyers can benefit from exposure intellectual property law, and our Introduction to Intellectual Property course provides a basic overview of the fundamentals of copyright, patent, and trademark law. Our introductory course is also helpful to students planning to specialize in a particular field of intellectual property, since it explores the relationships between the various regimes of intellectual property law.  However, the Introduction to Intellectual Property course is not a prerequisite for taking more advanced IP courses, and it may be taken simultaneously with other IP classes.  Introduction to Intellectual Property is offered every year.

Our more advanced intellectual property courses offer deeper explorations of specific regimes of intellectual property.  Trademark explores state and federal trademark registration and litigation, as well as related unfair competition doctrines.  Copyright explores federal copyright law in detail, including recent developments in digital copyright law.  Patent Law introduces fundamental patent law concepts.  Patent Litigation focuses on the procedural and substantive law of the Federal Circuit.  Transactional Intellectual Property is a skills-oriented class focused on IP-related business transactions.  The Intellectual Property Practicum is also a skills-oriented class focused on simulating a range of IP-related legal services.  Legal seminars on specific intellectual property topics are often offered as well.

Various seminars offered on IP topics can be useful to students seeking to strengthen their research and writing skills, as well as broaden their knowledge of contemporary issues.  Regularly offered seminars include Hot Topics in IP, which is usually offered every other year.

Information Law Courses

Rutgers Law also offers a broader range of courses on information law and policy.  Internet Law explores the new laws applicable to digital networks and the struggle of the law to keep up with rapidly emerging technologies.  Digital Privacy Law explores cutting edge issues surrounding consumer privacy, government surveillance, national and some foreign privacy statutes, and the conflicts between privacy and free speech, as well as privacy and commerce.  Media Law focuses on the laws of media communications, including news gathering and journalism.  Advertising Law explores the regulation of advertising at the state and federal level.  Freedom of Expression explores the constitutional law doctrines protecting free speech under the First Amendment and the laws of other jurisdictions.  Entertainment Law explores the various legal issues that arise in the entertainment industries, such as film and music production.

Additional Courses

Students hoping to practice in the field of intellectual property should acquaint themselves with the broader range of laws that affect businesses.  Courses such as Business Organizations, Bankruptcy, and Business Torts are good choices.  Students should also consider Antitrust, as competition issues frequently arise in IP and Advanced Antitrust, which has a heavy IP focus covering patent trolls, smartphones, Google, and the pharmaceutical industry. Classes that focus on statutes, including Statutory Construction, can be very helpful, since most of intellectual property and information law is statutory.