Institute for Intellectual Property & Information Law


20th Anniversary Logo Institute for Intellectual Property & Information Law



APPROXIMATELY THREE DOZEN COURSES RELATING TO IPIL ARE OFFERED REGULARLY at the UH Law Center. All of these courses answer the degree requirements for the Doctor of Jurisprudence (J.D.) degree and most apply to the Master of Laws (LL.M.) degree in intellectual property and information law.


The UH Law Center offers both full-time and part-time programs leading to the J.D. degree. J.D. candidates must complete 90 semester hours and can customize their curricula with intellectual property and information law courses that reflect their individual interests. Students interested in applying to the J.D. program should contact the Office of Admissions for an application at 713.743.2280 or Applications also can be accessed at


The LL.M. Program provides an academic environment for practicing lawyers who wish to expand their knowledge of intellectual property and information law.  Only a limited number of candidates are accepted for full-time or part-time studies, and admissions are highly competitive. Applicants from the United States must hold the J.D. degree or equivalent from a law school accredited by the American Bar Association. Lawyers who hold law degrees from foreign countries must meet academic and English-language standards for admission.

LL.M. candidates must complete 24 semester hours of approved courses (including a minimum of 15 hours of IP and IL study), with a qualifying cumulative grade-point average. An optional thesis is available. Class scheduling and availability vary from year to year. Most IPIL courses are offered in the fall and spring semesters. Generally, IPIL courses are not available in the summer. Both full-time and part-time degree candidates are allowed a maximum of three years for in-classroom work and completion of the thesis. Thesis supervision occurs during the fall and spring semesters only. For details about the LL.M. program, contact the LL.M. Coordinator at 713.743.2080 or, or visit


Second- and third-year law students in good standing at an ABA-accredited law school are eligible to spend a semester at the UH Law Center and to enroll in its IPIL curriculum as well as other upper-division courses. Participants are accorded “visiting” status and receive their law degrees from their home schools. Students interested in visiting at the UH Law Center should contact the Office of Admissions at 713.743.2280 or


ADVANCED TOPICS IN COPYRIGHT LAW SEMINAR provides students the opportunity for in-depth exploration of topics of interest to them, including technological, international, and historical problems in the field of copyright law. 3 credits.

ADVANCED TOPICS IN SOFTWARE PROTECTION provides students with a holistic view of software protection, focusing on legal issues concerning the protection and transaction of computer software, particularly with respect to trade secrecy, digital copyright, and licensing. 2 credits.

ANTITRUST LAW teaches the law and economics of antitrust policy and the methods for enforcing antitrust policy.  Emphasis is placed on the issues of monopolization, mergers, price fixing, and state and local government actions displacing the competitive process. 3 credits.

ART LAW considers various national and international disputes involving the title and possession of works of art and cultural heritage. 2 credits.

BIOTECHNOLOGY & THE LAW examines ethical, legal, and policy issues surrounding new medical technologies related to genetic information, including consideration of regulatory frameworks to ensure appropriate incentives for research and commercialization of biotechnologies. 3 credits.

COMMUNICATION LAW examines regulation and policy concerned with various forms of mass media in the US, including radio and television as well as telecommunications regulations, law and policy. 3 credits.

COMPUTATIONAL LAW enables students to develop interactive models of legal issues or systems. Likely topics include decision theory, game theory, finance, statistics, network analysis, and computational linguistics. 3 credits.

CONSUMER LAW examines consumer law issues in both traditional and electronic/internet marketplaces, including an emphasis on the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act. 3 credits.

CONTRACT DRAFTING helps students prepare for drafting, reviewing, analyzing, explaining, and negotiating contracts. Depending in part on student input, typical contracts considered may include, e.g., agreements involving employment, leases, distribution, services, licenses, stock-options, change-of-control, arbitration, and/or settlements. 3 credits.

COPYRIGHT LAW deals with the protection of the works of human intellect (literature, music, art, computer programs, etc.) under U.S. Code Title 17. 3 credits.

CULTURAL PROPERTY covers topics in the protection of intangibles as they relate to knowledge generated by indigenous people around the world, and also considers issues concerning knowledge derived from genetically isolated populations. 2 credits.

DIGITAL TRANSACTIONS covers issues in software and online licensing, including the nature of remedies, warranties, and other obligations that arise from such transactions. 2 credits.

eDISCOVERY examines the increased impact of technology in the workplace, including significant changes in the way litigation, and specifically discovery, is handled. 3 credits.

ENTERTAINMENT LAW blends concepts and skills derived from intellectual property, contracts, and torts, with emphasis on recent Internet-based developments in the relevant entertainment industries. 2 credits.

ENTREPRENEURSHIP examines entrepreneurship and specifically considers the challenges and strategies typically encountered in becoming a successful entrepreneur, with particular emphasis on technology and the law relating to it.
3 credits.

FRANCHISE & DISTRIBUTION covers franchise regulation, disclosure, and registration, types of franchises, antitrust, unfair competition, trademarks, pricing, advertising, premises liability, and contract law. 3 credits.

GENETICS AND THE LAW examines ethical, legal, and policy issues surrounding new genetic technologies. 2 credits.

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY ADVANCED TOPICS SEMINAR is a treatment of specialized subjects in intellectual property law. 3 credits.

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LAW SURVEY covers domestic intellectual property laws—patent, copyright, trademark, and trade secret—through statutes and cases, with attention to the needs both of non-specialty students desiring a one-time overview of the basics of IPIL law and of soon-to-be IPIL specialists seeking more detailed study. 2 credits.

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY STRATEGY AND MANAGEMENT examines the legal and managerial issues facing an intellectual property or information-based organization from its startup phase through either an initial public offering (IPO) or an acquisition by another firm. 2-3 credits.

INTERNATIONAL ENFORCEMENT OF INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY analyzes the enforcement of trademarks, patents, and copyrights beyond national boundaries. Special emphasis is placed on the differences and similarities between the diverse national intellectual property enforcement systems. 2 credits.

INTERNATIONAL INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY examines both international IP law itself and comparative aspects of IP law among major trading countries and regions of the world. 3 credits.

INTERNET LAW is a survey of legal issues arising from the rapid growth of Internet and other online communications. Coverage includes intellectual property, First Amendment, criminal, and privacy issues. 3 credits.

INTERSESSION COURSES, taught during the winter break, consider a variety of currently topical subjects such as database protection and privacy, as well as issues posed by pending and recently decided major cases. 1-2 credits.

LICENSING AND TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER examines means for licensing rights in technology and the ways of employing and transferring such rights. 3 credits.

LLM THESIS COURSE affords IPIL Master of Laws candidates the opportunity to produce thesis scholarship, under the supervision of IPIL faculty, in any area of intellectual property law or information law. 3 credits.

PATENT LAW examines the substantive law of patenting as a means for protecting inventive ideas. The course focuses on conditions necessary to obtain a patent, infringement, and enforcing patent rights through patent litigation. 3 credits.

PATENT PROSECUTION studies substantive law and procedures governing the patent application process, and emphasizes practical application of the rules to real-life situations. 2 credits.

PATENT REMEDIES AND DEFENSES studies issues commonly arising in modern patent litigation. The course examines necessary parties, remedies, and affirmative defenses. 2 credits.

PRIVACY AND DATA PROTECTION covers the basic principles of privacy and data protection law, including federal privacy statutes relating to surveillance, record-keeping, and health information, as well as state privacy statutes, the privacy-related activities of the Federal Trade Commission, and the privacy law in the European Union. 2 credits.

PROCEDURE OF PATENT LITIGATION provides hands-on experience with issues that patent litigators face in day-to-day trial preparation, examining a hypothetical patent case from inception through the Markman hearing, to trial, with additional attention to the relationship between the district courts and the Federal Circuit in patent litigation. 2 credits.

PROPERTY CRIME IN THE INFORMATION AGE melds two fields, criminal law and the law of information and intellectual property, with special focus on how the law protects information products from unauthorized use facilitated by the Internet and digitization. 3 credits.

SPORTS LAW covers topics such as representation of the professional athlete in contract negotiations and endorsements, related intellectual property matters, the player-club contractual relationship, anti-trust and collective bargaining issues in amateur and professional sports, and sports tort liability.  2 credits.

TRADE SECRETS surveys the practical aspects of trade secrets as they relate to protection by contract and operation of law, relationships of the parties, public law constraints, adversarial considerations, and licensing. 2 credits.

TRADEMARK AND UNFAIR COMPETITION examines the evolution and practice of trademark and related unfair competition law, with emphasis on litigation strategy. 3 credits.

VIRTUAL WORLDS examines models for virtual world law and government, with special emphasis on online contracts, intellectual property rights, gambling and gaming laws, jurisdictional laws, privacy and publicity rights, and issues of computer security. 2 credits.