This degree is designed for attorneys who intend to practice in the fields of patent, copyright, and trademark law. The curriculum in the Intellectual Property LLM program includes courses covering every aspect of intellectual property law, from basic courses in patent, copyright, and trademark, to enforcement, litigation and dispute resolution, among others.
The Master of Laws (LLM) Degree in Intellectual Property is designed for attorneys who intend to practice in the fields of patent, copyright, and trademark law. Students will be selected from the pool of U.S. law school graduates, and graduates of universities outside of the U.S. who hold a law degree or its equivalent in education or practical experience.
Students in the LLM program will be selected from:
The George Mason LLM in Intellectual Property program draws on the law school's extensive existing resources. While the strength and depth of the George Mason IP Program is in patent law, significant offerings are available in the areas of copyright, trademark and technology law.
This is one of the most comprehensive, diverse programs of its kind among Washington area and Virginia law schools, according to a GMU survey of law schools in this region. This curriculum has depth as well as breadth.
The LLM program is designed to be a concentrated course in intellectual property law to provide practicing lawyers with a specialty in these fields for use in law practice, and in addition to provide an opportunity to graduates from non-U.S. law schools to study in the LLM program at George Mason for use in practice or other legal purposes. Students are expected to learn the basics of intellectual property law including patent, trademark, and copyright law together with enforcement and economic aspects of these fields and to enhance their graduate education with an elective course in technology law.
Located just two miles from downtown Washington, D.C., in the heart of the fast-growing high-tech business region of Northern Virginia, George Mason University School of Law offers its students unparalleled opportunities and resources including outstanding legal instruction; guest lectures by top law and policy leaders; and year-round employment and internship opportunities with government, including U.S. courts, USPTO and other state and federal governmental agencies, as well as hundreds of private law firms. In 2001, George Mason University School of Law had 100% job placement of IP students.
The Washington, D.C., metropolitan area is an established center for the practice of intellectual property (IP) law, with the government headquarters for patents, trademarks and copyright located here. Leading centers of technology are located in Northern Virginia and suburban Maryland.
The curriculum in the LLM program includes 13 courses covering every aspect of intellectual property law, from basic courses in patent, copyright, and trademark, to enforcement, litigation and dispute resolution, among others.
Given that George Mason University School of Law has a well-developed specialty in law and economics, exemplified by its Law and Economics Center founded in 1974, the required intellectual property courses include "Legal & Economic Theory of Intellectual Property" and "Economic Foundations of Legal Studies."
The program will offer an optional master's thesis in intellectual property, so that students may elect to write a master's thesis in the field or take an intellectual property seminar course that requires research and a written paper of shorter length than a thesis. For graduates of non-U.S. law schools, a course in Legal Research, Writing, and Analysis in the mode of American law will be offered.
The curriculum for the LLM program includes courses in intellectual property law (all aspects of patent and copyright law and related subject matter), and currently 14 elective courses in technology law generally and information technology specifically, including legal issues arising in cyberspace.
PLEASE NOTE: The George Mason LLM in Intellectual Property degree has received the acquiescence of the Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar of the American Bar Association. The Council does not undertake to 'approve' programs, but may provide its acquiescence when a law school initiates a degree beyond the first degree in law.
The LLM in Intellectual Property is not designed to prepare or qualify students who are not graduates of a U.S. law school to engage in the practice of law in the United States, or to qualify them to take a bar examination in the United States.
PLEASE NOTE: We understand that many LLM students will be working during their studies and will not be able to attend class full time. Since many of our JD students also work during the day, most IP classes are offered in the evening, and, as many LLM students will want to engage in their studies part-time, we have tried to make the program as flexible as possible to accommodate a wide range of possibilities.
The following sample schedule contains all of the required courses, and it is illustrative of the general order in which LLM students could take the courses if they were to complete the program in three semesters. Some courses might not be offered during a particular semester, so be sure to check with the Records Office for a current schedule of courses.
It is possible to complete the program in as little as two semesters, or as long as three years provided that the student enrolls in two classes each semester. A limited number of classes also will be available in the summer.
The required courses and the schedule of classes can be adapted to each student's background and interest by approval of the administration.
Brief Intellectual Property course descriptions.
|Economic Foundations of Legal Studies||3|
|Patent Law I||2|
|Introduction to U.S. Law||0|
|TOTAL CREDIT HOURS FOR SEMESTER 1||11|
|Patent Law II||2|
|International Intellectual Property & Policy Seminar||2|
|Patent Litigation and Dispute Resolution||2|
|Legal and Economic Theory of IP||2|
|Trade Secrets Law||1|
|TOTAL CREDIT HOURS FOR SEMESTER 2||9|
|Patent and Know-How Licensing||2|
|Thesis, IP Seminar or Writing Course||2-3|
|TOTAL CREDIT HOURS FOR SEMESTER 3||6-8|
|OVERALL TOTAL CREDIT HOURS:||26-28|
In order to remain in the LLM program, the student shall present a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.33 for all course work taken for which a quality grade (i.e., a grade on the A+* to F scale) was awarded and register for at least two courses each semester, unless granted a leave of absence. In addition to the university's standard graduation requirements, the following requirements must be met within three calendar years for a student to receive the LLM degree:
The LLM-level courses are taught by an experienced faculty, including full-time professors and adjunct professors who have practiced in the intellectual property field.
Our Intellectual Property faculty consists of full-time law faculty and IP adjunct faculty. Our distinguished adjunct faculty boasts a sitting Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit; the Solicitor of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO); a former Commissioner of Patents and Trademarks; a former Register of Copyrights; a former Examiner-in-Chief and Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences Administrative Judge; a former WIPO Director of Industrial Property Law; former chief counsels of the principal subcommittees on intellectual property in the United States Senate and House of Representatives; and prominent practitioners from most of the leading intellectual property law firms in the Washington, D.C., area.
Admission to this program under the standard curriculum set forth above is not available to George Mason JD graduates in the Intellectual Property Track or Intellectual Property Sequence, or comparably-trained applicants from other schools; however, at the discretion of the dean or his delegate, such applicants could be encouraged to apply for LLM intellectual property study under a customized curriculum of advanced courses from George Mason's existing intellectual property offerings, with the individualized approval of the LLM program director.
Acceptance is dependent on the availability of sufficient IP courses and related electives to create a full and acceptable curriculum. In addition, IP Track Grads must complete the thesis option. A maximum of six credits of undergraduate (JD) courses may be applied to the LLM program.
Interested IP Track Grads should submit an application and schedule an appointment with the Director of the program to design a proposed curriculum. Acceptance into the program is subject to approval of the proposed curriculum by the GMUSL Admissions Committee.
The LLM application for IP will be available in August. Application deadline is March 1, 2012.
For information on the application process, please visit: www.law.gmu.edu/admissions/application_forms, to be found directly below the JD application information.
For the most current posting of tuition rates for the School of Law, please visit:
Tuition is updated in mid-May by the university's Board of Visitors and is subject to change at any time.
Prospective applicants who have questions concerning admissions details or the admissions process should contact the Admissions Office at 703.993.8010 or firstname.lastname@example.org.