International and
Comparative Law

Almost every area of legal practice crosses borders in the 21st century. The International Law Concentration gives you the opportunity to hone your legal skills and gain exposure to varied aspects of multi-jurisdictional practice.

Overview

UC Hastings prepares students to compete and succeed on the global stage. Located in the entrepreneurial and technological heart of California, UC Hastings has reach and influence that touches every continent. Students in the International Law Concentration exemplify the cosmopolitan nature of the larger student body.

The program’s faculty is comprised of international law leaders including Professor Naomi Roht-Arriaza, an expert in human rights and international development; Professor Joel Paul, an expert in international trade and economic law; Professor Chimène Keitner, an expert in international civil litigation and public international law; Professor David Takacs, an expert in international environmental law; and Professor Keith Hand, an expert on the Chinese legal system. From advising the U.S. government on international law and litigation, to changing conversations about transitional justice, to breaking new ground in transnational business cases, our faculty is helping to shape the future of international law.

The depth of our course offerings allows the flexibility of taking courses in international trade and business, public international law, and foreign legal systems, among other subjects. UC Hastings also partners with an elite group of foreign law schools, giving students remarkable opportunities to study abroad. Most importantly, the experience you gain as a student of international law will help you cultivate and grow the kind of strategic, integrated thinking that gives you the confidence and skills to practice in a global setting.

Qualifying Coursework

For students who are interested in a career involving international law, foreign law, or transactions and activities that cross borders, completing the International Law Concentration will help to distinguish them from other job applicants and give them the confidence and skills to practice in a global setting. The International Law Concentration allows students the flexibility of taking courses in international trade and business, public international law and human rights, and foreign legal systems. Many students in the concentration choose to go abroad on one of the school’s exchange programs. Students who are interested in this concentration should enroll in The Practice of International Law Seminar in the fall of their 2L year.

Students are required to take 20 units of international law courses including The Practice of International Law Seminar plus at least one course in each of three areas: General International Law; Foreign and Comparative Law; and Private, Economic, and Transactional International Law. An equivalent course taken as part of a study abroad program may count towards ONE of the three distribution requirements, and other courses taken as part of a foreign exchange program may count for up to 12 credits of the total credits required, with the approval of the Concentration Advisor. The Concentration Advisor may also waive The Practice of International Law Seminar in exceptional circumstances for students who choose to study abroad.

Students must also write a substantial research paper that demonstrates professional and scholarly proficiency in research, analysis, and writing on some aspect of international or comparative law, either through enrollment in a seminar taught by a regular faculty member or through a 2-unit independent study under the supervision of a regular faculty member.

The list of courses above encompasses those typically offered in a 2-year curriculum cycle. Different qualifying courses may be offered in a particular year. If a student seeks concentration credit for a course not listed, the student should check with the Concentration Advisor to determine whether the course will count towards the concentration requirement.