Conflict of Laws Course Policies
American Bar Association standards for accrediting law schools require
not less than one hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and
two hours of out-of-class student work per week for each credit awarded
for a class. According to the standards, fifty minutes suffices for one
hour of classroom time, while an hour for out-of-class time is sixty
This is a three-credit class. We will spend 75 minutes
together in class two time per week, which translates to 150 minutes of
class time per week, which precisely the amount required.
ABA minimum of out-of-class time for a three-credit course is six hours
per week. This would be met if you devoted three hours preparing for
each class — although you really should do more than that.
Laptops are not
allowed in class. I will post notes for each class. In addition, the
powerpoint slides for each class will be posted about an hour before
class. These can be printed out and used for hand-written notes.
The ABA requires course syllabi to contain learning outcomes. The learning outcomes that I desire for this course are:
Mastery of the main choice-of-law approaches used by state and federal
courts in the United States, as well as their theoretical underpinnings
and criticism of those underpinnings.
2) Mastery of the basics of federal constitutional limitations on choice of law.
3) Mastery of the basics of the constitutional and non-constitutional limits on the recognition of foreign judgments.
Students will be expected to have done the reading each day and to have
thought about the study questions. Everyone is vulnerable to being
called upon at random. If I am emailed by midnight the night before,
however, you can "take a pass" and insure that you won't be called on
that day. You can take a pass only two times the semester. During the
final two weeks of class you cannot take more than one pass.
The class may not be taped without my permission.
The exam will be limited open book. Commercial outlines,
hornbooks, treatises etc. will not be permitted in the
examination. You will not be permitted to access the internet for this
examination, except to upload your exam at the end. You will be able to bring into the examination only the
a) All materials assigned in this course, that is:
i) Currie, Kay, Kramer, & Roosevelt, Conflict of Laws (9th, 8th or 7th ed.)
ii) Other reading materials that were assigned on the website for the course.
b) Any outline made by you or by a study group within which you participated.
c) Your class notes.
I will take class participation into account in the final grade. I may
raise some students' grades by a third (e.g. B+ to A-) if they are
particularly active and informed class participants.