Courses and Faculty

Students may enroll in up to six credits. All courses are taught in English.

2019 Law Course Offerings:

First Term

1. Introduction to the Laws of Europe (Required Orientation Lectures) (Prof. Lasser)

2. Comparative Legal Studies (Prof. Lasser) (1 Credit)

3. Gender and International Human Rights (Prof. Babcock) (1 Credit)

4. International Litigation and Arbitration (Prof. Clopton) (1 Credit)


Second Term

1. Comparative Corporate Governance (Prof. Whitehead) (1 Credit)

2. Globalizing Constitutional Law (Prof. Anker) (1 Credit)

3. Business and Human Rights (Prof. Cornell) (1 Credit)

4. International Business Regulation (Prof. Gardner) (1 Credit)

    (For detailed course descriptions, click on the course or see below)

French Courses:

Beginning French and Intermediate French

Continuing Legal Education (CLE) Credit:

Attorneys enrolled in the program may earn Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credits while attending courses at the program (regardless of whether you audit them or take them for credit).  You will need to confirm precise requirements with your state bar association, but you are eligible to earn 1 CLE credit for each class-hour you attend.  In order to qualify, you must be officially registered and complete the required terms of the registration.  Class attendance is mandatory and will be documented so that you have evidence to satisfy your state bar requirements.

Course Credit Information:

Each course is taught for 90-minutes over seven days.

All courses qualify for credit toward the J.D. degree at Cornell and are recognized by other J.D. programs in the U.S.

Non-Cornell J.D. students should consult their Dean of Students or Registrar to determine the amount of course credit allowed and students interested in acceleration should consult their home schools to review this issue.

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Introduction to the Laws of Europe (Required Orientation Lectures)

Cornell Professor: Mitchel Lasser

These lectures examine the origins and development of the national legal systems of Europe. They also present the key features of the European Union and of the European Court of Human Rights.  These lectures do not carry separate credit, but attendance by all enrolled students is required, as part of the regular courses

Comparative Legal Studies (1 Credit)

Cornell Professor: Mitchel Lasser

This course introduces students to the study of foreign legal systems. It will provide a broad overview of the institutional and conceptual organization of "civil law" legal systems, comparing them to their "common law" equivalents in the United States.  Substantively, the course will focus on the different approaches to private law and procedure, criminal procedure, administrative law and constitutional law that characterize most contemporary European civil law jurisdictions.  Methodologically, the course will teach the most important approaches for engaging in comparative legal analysis, so that students will be in a position to practice and critique them effectively.


Gender and International Human Rights (1 Credit)

Cornell Professor: Sandra Babcock

This course explores issues of gender through an international and comparative human rights law lens.  We will examine international and regional instruments such as the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), and will explore topics such as gender-based violence, discrimination, political participation, LGBT rights, reproductive rights, female genital cutting, women in armed conflict, human trafficking, and other practices affecting women.  Students will participate in interactive, in-class exercises that allow them to grapple with the strategic questions and ethical concerns that arise when seeking to assist victims of gender rights violations.


International Litigation and Arbitration (1 Credit)

Cornell Professor: Zachary Clopton

This course will introduce students to the resolution of transnational disputes through international arbitration or complex litigation. This course will include an introduction to the basics of international arbitration and its relationship to litigation and enforcement. In addition, this course will address transnational litigation involving multiple court systems or under the laws of multiple jurisdictions.


Cornell Law Professor Charles Whitehead

Comparative Corporate Governance (1 Credit)

Cornell Professor: Charles Whitehead

Corporate governance has time and again been the subject of extensive scrutiny. This course will focus on corporate governance, control, and accountability, in particular in two contexts—corporate acquisitions (hostile and friendly) and capital structure.  The problems faced by businesses around the globe are much the same; but the solutions developed in different legal systems can be different.  This course will focus principally on the U.S. approach to these solutions, but in the process, students should expect to touch on some of the other solutions to these problems.

Topics to be covered include basic fiduciary obligations, shareholder voting rights, the impact of capital structure on corporate governance, and corporate control transactions. 


Globalizing Constitutional Law (1 Credit)

Cornell Professor: Elizabeth Anker

Constitutions have long represented the bedrocks of many national legal cultures. Yet the late 20th century also witnessed what many term the globalization of the constitution, and in recent years the academic field of “comparative constitutional law” has also burgeoned. This Course examines constitutional law from the perspective of these contemporary developments. What can we learn about constitutional jurisprudence when studied comparatively? How has the writing of constitutions in the global South and in regions like Eastern Europe impacted the evolution of that form? And how should we understand recent efforts to craft supranational constitutions (such as the breakdown of the movement for a formal European constitution) in relation to the constitution’s much longer legal and political history? 


Business and Human Rights (1 Credit)

Cornell Professor: Angela Cornell

This course will introduce students to the growing literature on Business and Human Rights and Corporate Accountability.  We will cover public and private law topics, including the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, U.N. Global Compact, OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises and the complaint mechanism process, Alien Tort Claims Act Litigation, and Global Framework Agreements. Corporations have been excluded from the state-centric international human rights framework, but with the increasing role of multinational corporations in the world, should legal instruments bind these entities as well?  We will discuss these issues and analyze the draft ILO Convention that seeks to regulate transnational corporation and business enterprises. 


International Business Regulation (1 Credit)

Cornell Professor: Maggie Gardner

This course will explore how national law (in particular, U.S. law) regulates transnational businesses. Because such regulation occurs within the context of international law, the course will combine U.S. and international law perspectives. The course will address the international law of jurisdiction and the challenge of overlapping regulatory regimes; different forms of regulation (national law, international treaty, soft law, litigation); and different forms of regulatory cooperation (or lack thereof). Particular regulatory regimes covered may include the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, antitrust, securities, banking and tax transparency, environmental law, and space law.


Beginning and Intermediate French

Chantal Casanova is a native of France. She obtained a master's degree from the Sorbonne Nouvelle-Paris III, where she studied American Civilization. She specializes in F.L.E. (French as a second language). In France, she has taught in various institutions, including the French and Spanish Trade Office, the "INSEE " (national institute of statistics) and the C.I.E.L.F. (International Center of French Language). From 1986-1990, she was a Teaching Assistant in the Department of Romance Languages at Harvard University, as well as a teacher in the Harvard Lifelong Learning Center. Since 1994, she has participated in the Cornell Law School Summer Program in Paris, as the instructor of Intermediate French and the coordinator of the language instruction program.

The Intermediate French classes are designed for students with a year or more of French, even if taken years ago. It is not an advanced language class, however, so persons with basic competency in French might find that it is not sufficiently challenging. There are no homework assignments and no examinations.The course includes excursions to restaurants and other outings to fully immerse students into French culture. Students may change to Beginning French, if necessary, on or before the course add/drop date, which is also the last date to withdraw from the language class and receive a refund of the class fee.

Please note that the French classes are open to non-students, if they are accompanying an enrolled student. Arrangements may be made to enroll non-students in the French classes either as a part of a student's initial application process, or at the time the program begins in Paris.

Payment for French courses will be made to Chantal Casanova directly, at the first day of orientation.