Summer 2020 Course List

Review the exam schedule under "Exam Information and Policies" before registering for classes to make sure there are no conflicts.

You may click on the name of each course for the course description and pre-requisites.

Bar courses cover significant subject matter tested on the Multi-State Professional Responsibility Exam, the Multi-state Bar Exam, or the Texas Bar Exam. For more detailed information about these and other courses which cover subject matter relevant to the bar exam, please see "The Bar Exam: SMU Course Recommendations."  If you are planning to take a bar exam in another state, you should contact the bar examiners office in that state to determine the subjects tested on that exam.  If you have any questions, please see the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs.

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NameClassCatalogSectionProfessorExamTimeDayRoomHrsYearNewBar ExamDescription
ART & ANTIQUITIES LAW (*MAY TERM)11648272001BENTONEXAM (May 22)9-11AM; 1-3PMM-TH (May 11-20)Remote22FalseF

A seminar course that focuses on the definition and nature of a 'work of art' and the legal rights and interests among artists, collectors, dealers, museums, and the public. The course considers these issues primarily as they relate to the visual arts. Although course content may vary, topics usually include the international movement and protection of art, theft and forgery, cultural property and native American art, artists' moral and economic rights in works of art, and valuation issues.


This is the basic business law course. The emphasis of the first portion of the course is on the closely held business. To be considered are the following: Agency: General principles of the law of agency. Partnerships (general and limited): Formation, control, liabilities, property, dissolution and disposition of business; internal and external relations of partners. Limited Liability Companies and Corporations: Formation, control, allocation concerns; duties, liabilities, and rights of management and shareholders or members; dispute resolution devices; and fundamentals of capitalization and financing (including basic securities financing and securities law concerns, particularly respecting the private exempt offering). The primary emphasis of the second portion of the course is on the widely owned business. In this portion, general corporate governance and capitalization problems (including preferred stock and debt securities structuring) are further explored, along with corporate distributions and repurchases and fundamental corporate changes. Analysis of mergers and acquisitions is emphasized. Depending on available time, emphasis also is placed on the impact of federal securities laws on the corporate governance structure, including discussion of ongoing public disclosure requirements, proxy regulations, and insider trading restrictions and liabilities. The course is transaction-oriented, whereby planning and problem-solving are stressed, and interdisciplinary use of basic taxation, accounting, and finance notions is made. Special attention is given to the modern statutory trends.


A practice-oriented study of documentation of and due diligence in the transfer, leasing, and finance of commercial real estate. Includes exercises in negotiation; title review; and drafting of documents, letters, and memoranda.

Prerequisites: Real Estate Transactions may be taken conurrently.

DEPOSITIONS (EL) (*MAY TERM)11656259001JACKSONPERFORMANCE100-500PMMay 12-15; May 18-22Remote22FalseF

This experiential short course on depositions is designed for students who plan to practice litigation, though it will also benefit the transactional lawyer by providing insight into the litigation discovery process. Focuses on the practical aspects of taking, defending, and preparing witnesses for depositions, including depositions of corporate representatives and expert witnesses. Students prepare for, take, and defend depositions using simulated cases. Students also review and comment on depositions of people in well-known cases

FAMILY LAW (Bar)241963477011LEATHERBERRYEXAM (July 8)600-740PMMWTHRemote32FalseT

The legal problems of the family including marriage, annulment, divorce, legitimacy, custody, support of family members, adoption, and related matters. This course does not include Texas matrimonial property law. If the student plans to take instruction in both courses, this course should be taken first.


The Government and Public Interest Externship Program is an academic program that combines a weekly public sector law class with hands-on fieldwork in nonprofit and government legal departments. Students who pass both the class and externship components receive one credit for the classroom component and 2-3 hours credit for their field work (depending on the hours worked at the placement).


An analysis of principles and rules governing the conduct of lawyers. Topics include the client-lawyer relationship, competence, confidentiality, loyalty, the roles of lawyers as counselors and advocates, public service, advertising, admission to practice, and professional discipline.

REAL ESTATE TRANSACTIONS (Bar) (*MAY TERM)11677326001CAMPTAKE HOME330-530PMMTWTH (also on F May 29)Remote32FalseT

Transfer, finance, and development of real property; the real estate sales contract; the duties and remedies of sellers, purchasers, and brokers; conveyancing; title protection, including recording laws, the mechanics of title search, clearing titles, and title insurance; real estate finance, including mortgages and federal programs; condominiums, cooperatives, and shopping centers. Some emphasis on Texas law.


This course explores selected topics in intellectual property law, including copyright, trademark, and patent law. Copyright law grants rights in expressive works such as books, music, sculptures, and photography; trademark law grants rights in product names, logos, packaging, and design; and patent law grants rights in technology. Collectively, we will study and discuss important contemporary topics in these rapidly-changing areas of the law. These topics include doctrines challenged in recent litigation (including Supreme Court and other appellate cases) and legislative reform efforts (including pending and recently-enacted legislation). Individually, students will examine one or more such topics as their own research project.

Prerequisites: Int'l LLMs must gain approval prior to enrolling