USD Law Class Information

Course Descriptions of My Intellectual Property Law Classes

Note: I will be on sabbatical during the 2024-2025 academic year so I can finish writing my book about trademark and free speech law, so I will not teach any classes until fall 2025.

International Intellectual Property - Spring 2024


This course examines international protection of intellectual property. We will discuss international treaties, trade agreements, and dispute resolution systems relating to trademarks, patents, copyrights, and related rights. The course will also cover acquisition and enforcement of intellectual property rights in foreign markets.

Trademark Law - Fall 2023


This course provides an overview of trademark and unfair competition law.  We will discuss the purpose of these laws, the requirements for trademark protection, and the scope and enforcement of trademark rights.  Specifically, we will cover the concepts of distinctiveness, functionality, and use of a trademark; the procedural and substantive aspects of trademark registration; geographic limits on trademark rights; trademark infringement, dilution, cybersquatting, counterfeiting, false advertising, false endorsement, and the right of publicity; and defenses and remedies in trademark actions

Intellectual Property Survey - Last taught Fall 2021 (note: this class is currently taught by Prof. Shawn Miller)


This course provides a broad overview of intellectual property law. After discussing the policies underlying the protection of intellectual property rights, we will cover trade secret, patent, copyright, and trademark law, and related doctrines such as the right of publicity. These topics will be examined with a focus on new technologies, but a science or technical background is not required. This course provides a foundation for advanced intellectual property courses and is also appropriate for students who seek only a general understanding of intellectual property law.

Trademark Litigation - Last taught Spring 2021 with Kayla Jimenez (note: Prof. Jimenez will teach a Trademark Prosecution class in spring 2024)


This advanced trademark class will provide students with the legal and practical skills necessary to become successful trademark litigators. Students will learn how to litigate a trademark case, including how to develop a case strategy, write a demand letter, and draft pleadings, written discovery, and motions frequently used in trademark litigation. Students will also strengthen their oral advocacy communication skills through class participation and in-class exercises simulating oral arguments before a judge or meetings with partners and clients. They will perform tasks and legal research and analysis similar to junior attorneys involved in actual trademark litigation. The grade will be based on the writing assignments and in-class oral exercises. Prerequisite: Intellectual Property Survey or Trademark Law. 

Intellectual Property Seminar: Current Issues in Intellectual Property - Last taught Spring 2013


This advanced seminar is intended for students interested in cutting-edge intellectual property law. Students will learn practical legal skills while we explore currently unresolved issues in copyright, patent, and trademark law. Past seminars included topics such as intellectual property rights in virtual worlds, parody fair use of copyrighted works on YouTube, patent reform, and trademarks and free speech. Students are required to write a research paper and present that paper to the class during the second half of the semester. The grade will be based on the paper, presentation, and class participation. Prerequisite: Completion of an intellectual property survey course or at least one other intellectual property course (copyright, patent, trademark, or trade secret law).