American University Washington College of Law

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TLS_user
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American University Washington College of Law

Postby TLS_user » Sat Oct 08, 2005 3:53 pm

Law School Programs >> District of Columbia Law Schools

wcl.american.edu
American University Washington College of Law is located in Washington, DC. It appears on the Top Law Schools Rankings page.

Please "post a reply" and add any comments you have about WCL. Many generations of prospective law students will benefit by the information you share.

efineman
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Human Rights Law

Postby efineman » Sat Dec 23, 2006 3:24 pm

What can you say about the Human Rights Law / Labor Law program at American. Additionally what are other great Human Rights Law programs?

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GodSpeed
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Postby GodSpeed » Sat Dec 30, 2006 7:43 pm

They've sent me stuff in the mail several times and I'm thinking of applying now. What can you tell me about their IP program?

at1234
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Postby at1234 » Mon Jan 01, 2007 4:29 pm

Here's American's course listings for IP:

LAW-623 Copyright (3 hrs.) An examination of the legal protection afforded the fruits of literary and creative endeavor, the Federal Copyright Act of 1976, the nature of copyright protection, types of works covered, mechanisms of securing protection, and procedures for enforcement. Topics include the history of copyright; the relationship of copyright to other forms of protection for intellectual property; and the interaction between new technologies, including data processing and copyright law. Jaszi (Fall)

LAW-646 International and Comparative Trademark Law (3 hrs.) Focuses on the international system regulating the protection of trademark rights. Introduces students to the principal international conventions in the field of trademarks and some bilateral treaties. The course will consider current problems in the international trademark arena in light of recent tendencies towards greater reciprocity; the emergence of new jurisdictional issues raised by the Internet; and such new rights as the right of publicity, anti-dilution, and appellations of origin. It will briefly consider comparative trademark law in terms of the differences in the registration process and problems in priority of rights and pay particular attention to trademark law in the European Union and efforts toward harmonization. Prerequisite(s): U.S. Trademark Law (LAW-609) or Intellectual Property Law (LAW-670) or Unfair Trade Law (LAW-689) or permission of the instructor. Farley (Spring)

LAW-670 Intellectual Property Policy and Law (3 hrs.) Explores how the law deals with information as a commodity. The course examines the fundamental policies animating intellectual property jurisprudence and the extent to which "intellectual property" is "property." The course explores the underlying policy goals and conflicts internal and external to intellectual property. It also considers the responsibilities of various intellectual property agencies and courts and the relationship between state and federal governments, including the extent to which the efforts of state judges and legislatures to regulate intellectual products might be preempted by federal law. Primary emphasis is on the interrelations of all intellectual property protections; however, students also will study the basic principles and legal rules governing idea protection, the right of publicity, trade secrets, unfair competition, copyrights, trademarks, and patents. In addition, the course treats important areas of proprietary rights such as dilution and moral rights. Protection for computer programs as well as character rights are specifically covered. Farley (Fall, Spring)

LAW-681 International Wildlife and Biodiversity (3 hrs.) Considers the fate of the world's wildlife and biological heritage, from whales and bacteria to rain forests and coral reefs. This course surveys the most important international agreements on the protection of species, habitats, and ecosystems, such as the new Convention on Biological Diversity. It reviews the international implications of selected domestic laws, which will be examined within their scientific, economic, political, and cultural contexts. Students also explore the relationship these laws have to other fields of law, including human rights, indigenous peoples' rights, trade, and intellectual property. Hunter (Spring)

LAW-688 Patent Law (3 hrs.) Consideration of the philosophical underpinnings of the U.S. patent system, the definition of patentable subject matter in the United States, the granting and enforcement of U.S. patents, the relationship of U.S. patents to principles of competition, and the enhanced status of U.S. patents in the 1980s, particularly in view of the creation in 1982 of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Sarnoff (Spring)

LAW-692 Antitrust Law (3-4 hrs.) Basic antitrust law, with no involvement in general regulatory matters, monopolization, vertical and horizontal restraints, and merger analysis. J. Baker, May (Fall)

LAW-693 Advanced Antitrust (2-3 hrs.) Recent Supreme Court developments; assessment of federal agenda; application to regulated industries, the professions, intellectual property, trade associations, and franchising; application in international markets and vertical restraint guidelines. J. Baker, May (Spring)

LAW-698 International and Comparative Copyright (3 hrs.) A survey of the multinational and bilateral agreements which govern the enforcement of copyrights across national boundaries. Explores the similarities and differences which exist between U.S. copyright and other developed countries, copyright in developing countries, and the problems of enforcing the rights of American copyright owners overseas Prerequisite(s): Copyright (LAW-623). Jaszi (Spring)

LAW-920 Biotechnology and the Law (3 hrs.) Considers the state of biotechnology, its successes, problems, and promise. It presents an overview of regulatory, legal, political, and ethical considerations of this new technology based on the manipulation and transfer of genes. The focus will be on both the coordinated regulatory framework in the United States and possible overlapping and occasionally conflicting activities of the Environmental Protection Agency, Food and Drug Administration, National Institutes of Health, and Department of Agriculture. The course will consider developing case law. Also, it will examine the international regulation of biotechnology; the human genome project, including issues of privacy, confidentiality, and genetic information; and the implications of biotechnology for intellectual property/patent law. The course will examine the legal and regulatory complexities in the United States because biotechnology is not regulated by any single law or any one federal agency. W. Cohen (Fall)

LAW-924 Advanced Copyright Law (2 hrs.) Should an Internet parody of the presidential candidates be entitled to use a famous folk song without permission? Should the Recording Industry sue users who download music? Should the Federal Government prosecute these users? Should services that facilitate downloading be liable for the actions of their users? Should printer and garage door manufacturers be able to use copyright law to prevent consumers from purchasing interoperable parts? Should companies be allowed to market software and devices that allow consumers to remove unwanted material from movies? Should users be entitled to backup copies or works they purchase? Should consumers and artists be entitled to rip, mix, mash, and morph copyrighted music or other media to create new works? These are just some of the questions to be discussed in this year's class. Technological innovation and the Internet are creating dramatic tensions within copyright law. The class will consider the proper direction for copyright law in light of its purpose, history and the rapidly changing technological landscape. Student interests will guide the subject matter to be covered in the course, but emphasis will be on hot topics in the press, current litigation, recent decisions and proposed legislation. Evaluation will primarily be based on a student research paper on a copyright- related topic of the student's choosing. J. Baker

LAW-925 Intellectual Property Management (3 hrs.) Encompasses a broad range of disciplines, including copyright, trademark, trade secret, commercial, and contract law. Basic principles of intellectual property (IP) formalities, infringement, licensing, and the use of copyrighted material on the Internet are addressed in the context of the problems under discussion. The course considers topics through an organizational IP audit, economic, and transaction-based approach, rather than legislative and judicial analysis. Wimbly-Martin (Fall)

LAW-926 Patent Acquisition & Exploitation (3 hrs.) Patent law is not the exclusive domain of the technically trained. Any lawyer appropriately trained to understand and evaluate a patent can participate in significant aspects of the patent system. This course will introduce students to the full range of legal issues that arise concerning the acquisition of patent assets, including creation, purchase and in-licensing, and the subsequent exploitation of such assets, including sale, out-licensing and litigation. Topics to be covered include the historical development of the patent system, how patents are drafted, prosecuted and maintained, how a patent should be read to discover its strengths and weaknesses, the purchase and sale of patent assets on a stand-alone basis and within the context of a corporate transaction, the licensing in and licensing out, and the two sides of patent litigation. A major theme running throughout the course will be the role that public policy considerations play in shaping the development of the patent system and the practice of patent law in the real world. Students will either draft a simple patent application or short license agreement based on identical facts, and describe some of the issues they faced and choices they made during a short interactive presentation. The grade will be based 50% on an end-of-course essay exam, 45% on the application/license and related presentation, and 5% on class participation. There are no pre-requisites. Casey (Fall)


Definitely more than what most law schools offer.

at1234

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GodSpeed
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Postby GodSpeed » Mon Jan 01, 2007 6:21 pm

the international stuff is very appealing to me... looks like I might have to apply

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StCuervo
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby StCuervo » Mon Dec 01, 2008 10:49 pm

Any American students around to answer questions? I was admitted part-time and am considering it but I'd like to know more.

* Do you know anything about the part-time program?
* What is the grade distribution like? (e.g. do 80% get Bs or is it 10%A, 10%A-, etc.) Does the grade distribution vary from class to class?
* How common is the use of the Socratic method?
* If you had to choose law schools all over again, would you choose American?
* How bad is the commute? (I live off the Orange Line Metro.)
* What is the career services office like?

jr494949
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby jr494949 » Fri Dec 05, 2008 4:25 pm

StCuervo wrote:Any American students around to answer questions? I was admitted part-time and am considering it but I'd like to know more.

* Do you know anything about the part-time program?
* What is the grade distribution like? (e.g. do 80% get Bs or is it 10%A, 10%A-, etc.) Does the grade distribution vary from class to class?
* How common is the use of the Socratic method?
* If you had to choose law schools all over again, would you choose American?
* How bad is the commute? (I live off the Orange Line Metro.)
* What is the career services office like?


I applied to American PT, as well (3.3, 158), went complete 11/21 ED and haven't heard anything yet. If you don't mind me asking, what were your numbers and when did you apply?

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lawbutterfly11
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby lawbutterfly11 » Fri Dec 05, 2008 5:16 pm

<--- American U WCL student


Their two biggest draws are the International Law program (they do a LOT of International Law stuff) and Their Public Interest programs. They participate in a loan repayment program if you work in public interest after school (and no, you do not have to start right out with public interest in most cases)

They also allow first years an elective in the spring semester. They are basically survey classes, but this year's offerings include a Statutory Legislation class, two International Law sections, Enviromental Law, Law and Economics, Comparative Law and several others. The school also has a strong interest in Human Rights, and many clinics that allow upper level students the opportunity to work with real clients from the DC area. There are a whole lot of other things that made the school a positive draw for me, and frankly, I'm glad I go. Good luck to you guys still waiting, and feel free to PM me if you want more information from a student's perspective.

Commute: Depends on where you live on the Orange Line. I have classmates who live in Silver Spring, Alexandria and other places. Timing is more important than anything else. The shuttle leaves the Metro every 15 minutes heading towards the school, and runs from 7am until midnight during the week. First years can also drive and park on Main Campus, and pick up the shuttle to the school from there.

Socratic Method: I had Four Classes, Torts, Civ Pro, K's and Legal Rhetoric. Torts was an at will class, meaning that he never called on anybody who didn't raise their hand to be called on. Civ Pro was slightly socratic, but he had a list of his 'chosen' for the day, and once he called on you he never called on you again unless you volunteered. But you stayed under the gun for about half an hour. Contracts was similar. She called on you to discuss the facts of a case, and then that was it. Answering her questions after the facts were discussed was a voluntary act. However, I've heard of other sections where you sign in, and if you sign in you're free bait for the professor. Some classes got e-mailed the weekly on-call list so they would know when their 'day' was. The method and intensity really depended on the professor, but I haven't heard of anybody who had a terrible experience.

I don't know much about the PT program except its pretty popular and not an afterthought like at some other schools.

Career Services is pretty awesome, once you get to use it. The first weekend in November they have a Career Panel, then they have a resume' workshop and other events to give the 1Ls as much info as possible about the job search process. There are also career fairs and panels throughout the semester.

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StCuervo
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby StCuervo » Sat Dec 06, 2008 1:34 pm

joehasaquestion wrote:I applied to American PT, as well (3.3, 158), went complete 11/21 ED and haven't heard anything yet. If you don't mind me asking, what were your numbers and when did you apply?


3.87/165

And thanks lawbutterfly for your comments. I am going to visit in January and we'll see where I end up. One more question: do you know how they define "public interest" for the loan repayment program? Is it any government job? Because I'm thinking of going into government but I don't know if committee staff on a Congressional committee or serving on a member's staff would count...

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lawbutterfly11
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby lawbutterfly11 » Sat Dec 06, 2008 2:03 pm

From what i understand, any government job will do (I want to work for the OIG, and I was told that would count). I think there might be a salary cap on some of those jobs (cannot make more than x,) but don't quote me... call Career Services and ask.

nianlong
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby nianlong » Tue Dec 09, 2008 11:13 am

Here's a question:

Because of the WCL's reputation as a top-class school for International and Public Interest Law, it would seem that competition for participating in the clinical opportunities and international externships might be higher than places where most students are interested in corporate or private practice. Have you found this to be the case? Is it a realistic for an average student at WCL to expect to play a role in the programs that make American stand out as a leader in these fields?

2009 Prospective
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby 2009 Prospective » Tue Dec 09, 2008 2:30 pm

Nianlong,

I cannot attest to how competitive it is to participate in the international programs specifically but a WCL student told me a couple years back that so many clinical oppurtunities exist there, it isn't too difficult to participate in at least some type of clinical program.

nianlong
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby nianlong » Tue Dec 09, 2008 2:56 pm

There certainly are a lot of clinical programs. I'm just concerned that the large student body with similar goals in mind might offset the opportunities available to students who have chosen to spend the extra dollar at American to take advantage of specific programs.

dclawstudent
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby dclawstudent » Sat Dec 27, 2008 2:52 am

I'm also a WCL student. I LOVE the place. I got to experience the clinics that you were all speaking to earlier and cannot say enough great things! If you haven't visited, please do. I hear horror stories from my friends at other law schools, but WCL has a spirit of ambition yet solidarity. When we say WCL is diverse, we don't just mean ethnically. I am a lucky minority in the midst of many open-minded people, but I am also with people who think much differently than myself in many respects. It's only in law school, though, that I have had such in-depth conversations regarding race, our nation's founding principles, what it means to be a citizen, and so many other essential topics. I love WCL not because people think and act just as I do, but because people here are willing to explore each other's views, and their own. It's law school, so it is competitive and incredibly challenging, but I am glad I chose a place where the people help you get through it, as opposed to being obstacles in your way. Good Luck!

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stab master arson
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby stab master arson » Tue Jan 13, 2009 2:05 pm

I'm thinking of applying here to help prepare for a government job, and I am wondering if what I've read is true about the school being a bastion of liberalism. I generally am turned off by absolutism coming from either political wing, so I'm wondering if you AU folks are subjected to a lot of political tirades from your professors.

jetlagz28
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby jetlagz28 » Tue Feb 24, 2009 8:33 pm

bump...

Can any current student give their impressions?

ashes0909
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby ashes0909 » Sat Apr 04, 2009 7:24 pm

Any new insight on the COA, is it worth it?

Hafu
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby Hafu » Tue Oct 13, 2009 2:14 am

.

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nealric
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby nealric » Tue Oct 13, 2009 8:17 pm

Read this first before getting too starry eyed about "international law":

http://www.annaivey.com/iveyfiles/2008/ ... e_the_hype

jetlagz28
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby jetlagz28 » Fri Oct 23, 2009 12:05 am

A fresh 1L full time WCL student here.

I can try my best to answer any questions you might have.

Nitro-Owl
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby Nitro-Owl » Fri Oct 23, 2009 2:59 am

Hiya jetlagz~ thanks in advance!

lawbutterfly said something about the PT program being more popular and not like an "after-thought" at American.
Do you think that makes it more competitive?? Because I really wanted to apply to this law school and I love the area. However, I sadly got a 154 on the September 2009 LSAT. My gpa's 3.5. I will be taking the December test, but I'm trying to be realistic about how different my score will be. And I believe American has a much higher LSAT median than what I have.
I would rather go into full time like you, but I heard that PT gives people a much better chance... and I might be stuck with a LSAT score around 154... ><
What do you think about my chances in full time and PT??

jetlagz28
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby jetlagz28 » Fri Oct 23, 2009 9:31 am

Nitro-Owl wrote:Hiya jetlagz~ thanks in advance!

lawbutterfly said something about the PT program being more popular and not like an "after-thought" at American.
Do you think that makes it more competitive?? Because I really wanted to apply to this law school and I love the area. However, I sadly got a 154 on the September 2009 LSAT. My gpa's 3.5. I will be taking the December test, but I'm trying to be realistic about how different my score will be. And I believe American has a much higher LSAT median than what I have.
I would rather go into full time like you, but I heard that PT gives people a much better chance... and I might be stuck with a LSAT score around 154... ><
What do you think about my chances in full time and PT??


The part time program is def not an afterthought. Same classes, same profs, same legal writing classes, same events. The only real difference is that all the classes are in the evening and you take 1 less class each semester. The PT students make up a solid chunk of the total 1L class. The school and students see them as equals. A lot of people need to keep their jobs, have commitments or financial dependents while in school. PT makes a hell of a lot of sense.

You may be able to squeeze in with your numbers to the full time program. American seems to let in a certain % of students who fall way below the average but have an interesting story or background.

My LSAT score is similar to yours and my GPA was lower. You have a shot.

Nitro-Owl
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby Nitro-Owl » Sat Oct 24, 2009 9:54 pm

@jetlagz
I'm really glad I talked to you about the PT, because I wasn't really sure about the reasons behind it. I was actually thinking about working during law school. But I'm still debating whether I should just aim to graduate faster instead.
I was looking at PT at American, because I thought my LSAT was so low. But you really gave me hope!
Thanks a bunch and I'll be applying FT hopefully then :)

ToNY10
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby ToNY10 » Mon Oct 26, 2009 11:32 pm

Hey Guys, just want to say thanks for all the info already about American!
Additionally I did want to ask as far as the Public Interest Loan repayment is concerned, is there a certain amount of time you're required to work in Public interest after obtaining your degree and/or a cap on how much of your loans they'll assist you with?

On a more general note I haven't decided whether I'd like to go straight to Law School from undergrad...anyone wanna share they're experience or views?

democrattotheend
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Re: American University Washington College of Law

Postby democrattotheend » Wed Oct 28, 2009 3:22 pm

StCuervo wrote:Any American students around to answer questions? I was admitted part-time and am considering it but I'd like to know more.

* Do you know anything about the part-time program?
* What is the grade distribution like? (e.g. do 80% get Bs or is it 10%A, 10%A-, etc.) Does the grade distribution vary from class to class?
* How common is the use of the Socratic method?
* If you had to choose law schools all over again, would you choose American?
* How bad is the commute? (I live off the Orange Line Metro.)
* What is the career services office like?


I can answer the commute question. I live on the Orange Line as well and after I moved there during senior year of undergrad, I usually drove to campus when I had classes at night. Parking in the Nebraska lot on main campus is free at night...not sure about the law school, but I would think parking would not be that difficult to find on the street near WCL. It's about a 12-15 minute drive from Courthouse to AU main campus, more in traffic.

If you do not own a car, I would suggest moving closer to campus. It is possible to take public transportation, but it will take at least 45 minutes, probably over an hour depending on the time of day. The best way to do it is to take the orange line to Farragut West and then take the N2, N4 or N6 bus up Mass Ave to WCL. But it will take a while, and I was never willing to spend over an hour getting somewhere that's 15 minutes by car.




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