Incorporating 'Business' in Business Law Classes
University of California, Davis - School of Law
December 3, 2007
U.C. Davis Business Law Journal, Vol. 8, No. 1, 2007
Over the past ten years, increased attention has been paid to incorporating the elements of corporate transactional practice in the law school curriculum. Employers - in particular, law firms - increasingly demand that law students have some exposure to the skills required to be a strong deal lawyer. The traditional law school curriculum, even business law classes, generally focuses on analyses of case law and the study of legal theory. Of course, law students need to learn important analytical skills by reading cases and creating a foundation in various legal theories. However, these traditional methods may not be sufficient to train graduating law students who decide to pursue a transactional career. Recently, law schools have begun to address this void in their curriculum by developing transactional law classes. While ideal for students that intend to pursue a transactional career, these intensive courses can be expensive and difficult to provide because they are time-intensive for the professor and cannot accommodate the large numbers of students who want to pursue such careers. Moreover, it is not sufficient for students to learn transactional skills from just one course. Elements of transactional practice can be readily incorporated in existing business law courses. Business law faculty can address law students’ needs by emphasizing the important relationship between law and business, and incorporating the basic skills involved in transactional practice in traditional law classes. These skills do not just involve drafting and negotiation skills, but they also involve the language of finance, how to learn about a client and the client’s needs, how to understand the transactional context and how to use precedents as lessons for their own transaction. In this short essay, I will analyze some of the other “business” skills that I found necessary during my transactional practice and how law school professors can help students gain these skills even in traditional law classes.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 7
Keywords: transactional skills, law school teachingAccepted Paper Series
Date posted: June 3, 2009
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