Temple Law School offers both day and evening divisions. Students in both divisions may choose from a variety of course offerings. In addition to the requirements outlined below, all students must earn 88 credits to graduate.
Full-time students attend the Day Division. The program requires three full academic years to complete, and acceleration is not permitted. Classes and activities extend throughout the entire day, Monday through Friday.
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Temple Law’s part-time programs are designed for students with time restrictions due to employment or other responsibilities. Most part-time students attend the Evening Division and attend classes held Monday through Thursday evenings. The Law School, which began as an evening program, is committed to making the experience for evening students comparable to that of the day students. Full-time faculty regularly teach in the evening and enjoy teaching the Law School’s exceptional Evening Division students. Admissions, the curriculum, examinations, and all other standards are the same for both divisions.
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Day division courses are scheduled Monday through Friday from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm. You can expect to have classes every day, although you may not have classes for a full day every day of the week. Evening division classes are scheduled Monday through Thursday from 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm.
The first-year curriculum is designed to provide students with an understanding of the relationship between law and society, an introduction to legal and procedural concepts, and a commitment to ethical conduct and professional responsibility.
First-year students explore these concepts through the study of the legal systems that govern the enforcement of agreements (Contracts), the ownership of resources (Property), and the protection afforded to people and their property from interference by others (Torts). In Civil Procedure I, first-year students are introduced to the allocation of judicial authority among state and federal courts and to the procedures they employ in civil litigation. Students investigate the relationship of people to government and the concept of federalism in Constitutional Law. Criminal Law I completes the doctrinal introduction to the American Legal System.
Consistent with Temple Law’s commitment to blending theory with practice, first-year students also participate in experiential programs within weeks of beginning law school. Students negotiate employment agreements and interview mock clients in Introduction to Transactional Skills. Litigation Basics gets them on their feet examining witnesses in mock trials. Finally, Legal Research and Writing helps first-year students develop the strong practice skills for which Temple graduates are well-known.
Commencement of an action, pleading, pre-trial techniques of discovery, the trial, judgments and jurisdiction, res jurisdiction, collateral estoppel, bar and merger and other collateral attacks are considered in a federal setting with appropriate emphasis on historical antecedents.
Judicial review of legislative and executive actions in a constitutional setting, the relationship of the states to the federal government (Federalism), the relationship of the people to government (Bill of Rights), and the powers of the Congress are considered.
Topics may include: the bargain, fairness, equality of the bargain and formalisms such as parole evidence and Statute of Frauds are examined in the context of the common law and Article 2 of the Uniform Commercial Code. Further utilizing the Uniform Commercial Code, the common law and other statutory bases, impossibility, change, condition, anticipatory breach, good faith duty to act, judicial remedies, controlling risk and remedy, third-party beneficiaries and assignment are examined.
The elements of major crimes, their policy and historical underpinnings, and the alternatives for designating and dealing with major antisocial behaviors are considered. Some introduction to criminal procedure is provided.
Instruction in modern law schools is founded on the notion of teaching each student to think like a lawyer. The Legal Research and Writing Program teaches the basics of writing and speaking like a lawyer. The first-year research and writing program at Temple is a two-semester course of study.
In first-year Legal Research and Writing courses, students are assigned to small groups for individualized instruction. After introduction to basic research techniques, problems are assigned and various methods are utilized to help students develop their writing and analytical skills. The objective of the program is to develop basic legal skills in an informal seminar atmosphere that allows maximum contact with the assigned instructor.
For more information on Temple’s highly-regarded Legal Research and Writing Program, please visit the program page.
The basic relationships in systems of ownership of personality and realty, and the devices for transferring ownership are considered. Private and public planning, regulation of land use, the estate system and the new property theories are also examined.
The legal protection afforded in civil proceedings against interference by others with the one’s person, property and intangible interests is considered. The historical and theoretical bases of the principal theories of tort liability are examined to develop an understanding of current law and a sensitivity to changing patterns of tort responsibility emerging from a dynamic society.
A basic overview of the judicial system and the mechanics of litigation. This course famililarizes students with the anatomy of a lawsuit and the basic procedural concepts that frame many of the cases used in the first year curriculum.
This course exposes students to transactional lawyering through a mix of substantive lectures and small-class skill workshops organized around founding a small business. Topics include:
- choosing a business form;
- client interviewing;
- drafting letters, contracts, leases and other agreements.
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In the spring semester, full-time first year students will be able to select one elective course from a list of 3-4 course offerings. Only first year students will be enrolled in these courses and enrollment will be across all of the first year sections. The courses offered as first year electives will vary from year to year, and in the past have included: Introduction to Intellectual Property, Environmental Law, International Law, Criminal Procedure, Introduction to Business Organizations and Taxation. Each student will list his or her preferences and a lottery system will be used to fill the courses.
First-Year Scheduling Options
The first-year core curriculum is mandatory. Full-time first-year students take all ten of the first-year required courses.
Part-time students may attend in either the day or evening divison and delay Criminal Law I and Constitutional Law until their second year. Although summer study is not required, most students who select the part-time sequence in the first year find it necessary to attend summer classes at some time in order to complete the required 88 credits by the end of the fourth year.
Upper Level Electives
All upper-level courses are electives with one important exception. All students must successfully complete a course in Professional Responsibility prior to graduation. This requirement reflects Temple’s commitment to the development of lawyers with high ethical standards. Students must also successfully complete two upper-level writing requirements and an upper-level skills course. Review our Course Selection to learn more about Temple Law’s extensive and diverse upper-level course offerings.
Students who wish to lighten their fall and spring course load can take advantage of a summer evening term at the main campus in Philadelphia, or a summer term abroad in Rome. Temple Law’s innovative T-SPEC and Law & Public Policy programs also offer opportunities for summer study that include professional development, networking, and hands-on experience.