Hanover's curriculum is designed to strengthen characteristics essential to practitioners of law. It offers a broad and rich education that sharpens important skills such as critical thinking, writing, and speaking; it challenges students to consider moral and ethical questions, historical change and its consequences, and current social and political issues; it inspires a deeper appreciation of arts and culture; and it encourages students to make connections between the disciplines.
Law schools encourage students to major in subjects that interest them, but to emphasize classes that require writing, reading, public speaking and critical thinking. No matter what area of law you pursue, a course in accounting would be valuable both in running your law practice and in understanding cases that involve financial matters. In our increasingly global society, the study of a second language is particularly appropriate for those interested in law. Depending on your interests, you may choose to take one or more elective courses that have legal themes listed below.
Philosophy 321: Formal Logic
A course in formal logic is regarded as one of the best ways to prepare for the logical reasoning section of the LSAT. This course helps you develop a sharper sense of what follows (and what doesn't follow) logically from what.
Political Science 326: Constitutional Law
This course focuses on the evolving understanding of the Bill of Rights as seen through key Supreme Court cases. You might consider this course if you would like a preview of what reading and briefing cases will be like in law school.
Interdepartmental 357: Pre-law Internship
Law-related experience is valuable not only in testing your interest in the field, but in developing contacts for the future. Students meeting requirements of the academic internship program are able to earn a unit of credit while working in a courtroom or law office.
IF YOU HAVE SPACE IN YOUR SCHEDULE, YOU MIGHT CONSIDER ONE OR MORE OF THE FOLLOWING:
Com 350: Communication Law and Public Policy
This is a First Amendment law course in which students study the legal principals that both safeguard and restrict the media and speech. Students read and brief cases, follow current legal controversies, and make arguments based on precedent. Assignments usually include: writing a paper that takes a policy stance on a proposed regulation or law change, making an oral argument on a case that is in the appellate process (often on the Supreme Court docket), and analyzing legal scenarios, often based on current "ripped from the headlines" situations.
Philosophy 237: Ethics: Theory and Practice
The connection between law and ethics is complex. However, there can be no doubt that most of the concepts that make up our legal system--justice, rights, obligation--have their origins in ethical theory. This class will introduce you to these concepts and give you an opportunity to explore their implications for the law.
Philosophy/Computer Science/Engineering 263: Ethics of Computer Technology
This course seeks to develop a solid foundation for reasoning about ethical, professional, and social issues that arise in the context of computer technology. Emphasis is placed on identifying appropriate legal, professional, and ethical contexts and on applying sound critical thinking skills to a problem. Topics covered include professional codes of ethics, safety critical systems, whistle-blowing, privacy and surveillance, freedom of speech, intellectual property, and cross-cultural issues. This course relies heavily on case studies of real-world incidents.
Political Science 232: The Problem of Order: Law, Politics
This course considers the relationship between law and society: why is law necessary? Where does law come from? And in what ways has law been used or abused through history? If you are interested in thinking about the law beyond what is studied in law school, this course would be beneficial to you.
Political Science 222: U.S. Legislative Process
This course provides an examination of the Congress and the state legislatures in their governmental and political contexts. It tracks how legislation is made and explores the interpretation of legislative intent.
Political Science 331: International Law and Organizations
Discussing how international law shapes and is shaped by international politics, this course addresses one of the many options within the realm of law. Students interested in working in the international arena will find that many people working with international organizations, including non-governmental organizations, have a law degree.
Sociology 336: Crime and Corrections
This course considers both crime and corrections: why do people commit crime? What is the nature of this criminal activity? How do and should we control crime and deal with criminals? Students interested in criminal law will find this course a beneficial introduction to adult crime and the criminal justice system.