Legal Studies Program

Program Overview

The Legal Studies Program is an undergraduate major in the College of Letters and Sciences. The program’s mission is to provide a liberal education across traditional disciplines, focusing on the theory and operation of law and legal institutions. The courses in the Legal Studies major expose students to the many facets of law as a social phenomenon – its evolution, function, motivating ideas and effects. The major is not intended as preparation for law school because the emphasis is on exploring broadly defined questions about law from a variety of perspectives, rather than on training for the profession. The Legal Studies major is, however, suitable for pre-law students.

The curriculum is designed around the following five themes: Legal Institutions, Processes of Legal Order and Disorder, Law and Social Forces, Law and Culture, and Law and Theory.

Courses

  • Spring 2019 Courses

    For the most current information, search the UW-Madison Schedule of Classes here

    Spring 2019 Courses for the Legal Studies Major (print-able)

    Gateway Courses

    Legal St/Soc 131: Criminal Justice in America – 9:30-10:45 T/R + disc

    Legal St/Poli Sci 217: Law, Politics & Society – online

    Methods Courses (Statistics and Research Design)

    Statistics (one course from this listing)
    Economics 310: Statistics: Measurement in Economics
    Psychology 210: Basic Stats for Psychology
    Sociology 360: Statistics for Sociologists
    Statistics 224: Intro Stats for Engineers
    Statistics 301: Introduction to Statistics
    Statistics 371: Intro Applied Stats – Life Sciences

    Research Design (one course from this listing)
    Political Science 170: Research Methods in Political Science – 11-11:50 T/R + disc
    Political Science 373: Intro to Survey Research 9:55-10:45 M/W + disc
    Political Science 401: Intro to Empirical Legal Research – 9:30-10:45 T/R
    Psychology 225: Experimental Psychology
    Sociology 357: Methods of Sociological Inquiry – 11-11:50 T/R + disc

    Theme Group 1: Legal Institutions

    General Business 301: Business Law – online + disc
    General Business 302: Bus Orgs and Negotiable Instruments
    Legal St/Hist 262: Amer Legal History 1860s to Pres – online
    Legal Studies 444: Law in Action – 11-12:15 T/R
    *Political Science 340: European Union – 4-5:15 T/R + disc
    Political Science 401: Legal Writing – 9:30-10:45 T/R
    *Political Science 401: Global Access to Justice – 8-9:15am T/R
    Political Science 412: The American Constitution II – 4-5:15 T/R + disc
    Political Science 470: The First Amendment – 1-2:15 T/R
    Political Science 601: The Supreme Court’s 2018 Term – 2:25-5:25 W
    Political Science 601: Constitutional Issues – 2:25-5:25 F

    Theme Group 2: Process of Legal Order & Disorder

    Legal Studies 694: Field Observation in Criminal Justice and Legal Studies – 9-11 W (application and internship required)
    Psych 526: The Criminal Mind: Forensic and Psychobiological Perspectives – 11-12:15 T/R + disc
    Psych 601: Psych Juvenile Delinquency (Psych 225 prereq) – 9-10:15 M/W
    Sociology 421: Deviant Behavior – 2:30-3:45 M/W
    Sociology 441: Criminology – 1:20-2:10 M/W/F  + disc
    Sociology 446: Juvenile Delinquency – 4-5:15 M/W

    Theme Group 3: Law & Social Forces

    American Indian 450: American Indian Natural Resources Law – 11-12:15 T/R (ethnic st) (Honors only)
    American Indian 450: Indian Child Welfare Act – 4-7 T/ (ethnic st)
    Legal Studies 400: Civil Rights – 2:30-3:45 M/W
    Legal Studies 400: Impacts of Social and Legal Issues on Health (application and placement hours required) – 3:30-5
    Legal Studies 400: Wrongful Convictions – 9:30-10:45 T/R
    Legal Studies 443: Immigration, Crime & Enforcement – 2:30-3:45 M/W (ethnic studies)
    Legal Studies 645: Intellectual Freedom – 1:30-4 M
    Psych 601: Legal Psych: Crim & Civil Iss (Psy225 prereq) – 2:25-4:55 M

    Theme Group 4: Law & Culture

    *Comp Lit 500: Guilt – 1-2:15 T/R
    Legal Studies 450: Criminal Justice and Popular Culture  – online
    *Legal Studies 477: History of Forensic Science – 11-12:15 T/R
    *Legal Studies 510: Legal Pluralism – 9:30-10:45 T/R
    *LitTrans 324: Criminal Utopias – 11-12:15pm T/R

    Theme Group 5: Law & Theory

    *Legal Studies 600: Legal Dystopias – 1:20-3:15 W
    Med Hist/Phil 558: Ethical Issues in Health Care – 11-12:15 T + disc
    Philosophy 341: Contemporary Moral Issues (some sections are Comm B)

    Core Perspectives

    Legal Studies 262: Amer Legal History 1860s to Present – online
    Legal Studies 443: Immigration, Crime & Enforcement – 2:30-3:45 M/W (ethnic studies)
    Legal Studies 400: Civil Rights – 2:30-3:45 M/W
    Legal Studies 400: Wrongful Convictions – 9:30-10:45 T/R
    Legal Studies 450: Criminal Justice and Popular Culture  – online
    *Legal Studies 477: History of Forensic Science – 11-12:15 T/R
    *Legal Studies 510: Legal Pluralism – 9:30-10:45 T/R
    *Legal Studies 600: Legal Dystopias – 1:20-3:15 W

    *Meets requirement that at least two courses in the major must have substantial content dealing with countries or cultures other than the United States.

  • Summer 2019 Courses

    For the most current information, search the UW-Madison Schedule of Classes here

    Gateway Course

    Legal Studies/Soc 131: Criminal Justice in America – 3cr – 8:55-11:20am [DDD session 6/17-7/14]

    Statistics

    Economics 310: Statistics: Measurement in Economics- 4cr – online [AFF session 5/28-7/7]

    Psychology 210: Basic Stats for Psychology- 3cr – 2:30-3:45 MTWR + lab [DHH session 6/17-8/11]

    Sociology 360: Statistics for Sociologists- 3cr – 10:10-11:45 MTWR [DHH session: 6/17-8/11]

    Statistics 301: Introduction to Statistics- 3cr – 1:10-2:25 MTWR + disc [DHH session: 6/17-8/11]

    Statistics 371: Intro Applied Stats – Life Sciences- 3cr – 11:45-1 MTWR + disc [DHH session: 6/17-8/11]

    Research Design

    Political Science 170: Research Methods in Political Science – 3cr – online [DHH session: 6/17-8/11]

    Psychology 225: Research Methods – 4cr – online [DHH session: 6/17-8/11]

    Sociology 357: Methods of Sociological Inquiry – 3cr – 1:10-2:25 MTWR [DHH session: 6/17-8/11]

    Theme Group 1: Legal Institutions

    General Business 301: Business Law – 3cr online [DHH session: 6/17-8/11]

    General Business 302: Bus Orgs and Negotiable Instruments- 3cr – 2-5:15 MTWR [ACC session: 5/28-6/16]

    * International St/Political Science 434: The Politics of Human Rights- 4cr – online [DHH session: 6/17-8/11]

    Political Science 414: Supreme Court as Political Institution – 3cr – online [DHH session: 6/17-8/11]

    Theme Group 2: Process of Legal Order & Disorder

    Legal Studies/Sociology 694: Criminal Justice Field Observation

    [Application and concurrent internship required – Schedule appt with advisor if interested]

    Theme Group 3: Law & Social Forces

    Economics 522: Law and Economics- 4cr – online [AFF session: 5/28-7/7]

    Legal St/Gender & Women’s St/Sociology 425: Crime, Gender and Justice- 3cr (online) [DHH session: 6/17-8/11]

    Legal St/ChLa/Soc 440: Ethnicity, Race, and Justice – 3cr (ethnic studies) – 1-3:25 MTWR [ZDD session: 5/20-6/16]

    Theme Group 5: Law & Theory

    Legal St/History 426: History of Punishment – 3cr – online – [DDD session: 6/17-7/14]

    Legal Studies 450: Jurisprudence and Social Issues – 3cr – 1-3:25 MTWR [DDD session: 6/17-7/14]

    Philosophy 341: Contemporary Moral Issues- 3cr – 1:10-3:50 MTWR [ZDD session 5/29-6/16]

    Core Perspectives

    Legal St/Gender & Women’s St/Sociology 425: Crime, Gender and Justice- 3cr -online [DHH session: 6/17-8/11]

    Legal St/History 426: History of Punishment – 3cr (online) – [DDD session: 6/17-7/14]

    Legal St/ChicLa/Soc 440: Ethnicity, Race, and Justice – 3cr (ethnic studies) – 1-3:25 MTWR [ZDD session: 5/20-6/16]

    Legal Studies 450: Jurisprudence and Social Issues – 3cr – 1-3:25 MTWR [DDD session: 6/17-7/14]

  • Fall 2019 Courses

    For the most current information, search the UW-Madison Schedule of Classes here

    Fall 2019 Courses Counting for the Legal Studies Major

    Gateway Courses

    Legal Studies/Sociology 131: Criminal Justice in America – 2:30-3:45 M/W + disc
    Legal Studies/Political Science 217: Law, Politics & Society – 11-12:15 T/R

    Methods Courses (Statistics and Research Design)

    Economics 310: Statistics: Measurement in Economics
    Psychology 210: Basic Stats for Psychology
    Sociology 360: Statistics for Sociologists – 9:30-10:45 T/R + lab
    Statistics 301: Introduction to Statistics
    Statistics 371: Intro Applied Stats – Life Sciences

    Political Science 170: Research Methods in Political Science – 11 T/R + disc
    Psychology 225: Experimental Psychology
    Sociology 357: Methods of Sociological Inquiry – 1:20 T/R + disc

    Theme Group 1: Legal Institutions

    Educational Leadership and Policy Studies 502: Law and Public Education (online) – enroll for 3 credits
    General Business 301: Business Law – online + disc
    General Business 302: Bus Orgs and Negotiable Instruments
    Legal Studies/Hist 261: American Legal History to 1860 – 2:30-3:45 T/R
    *Legal Studies 409: Human Rights in Law and Society – 9:30-10:45 T/R
    *Political Science 347: Terrorism – 11 M/W + disc
    *Political Science 356: Principles of International Law – 2:30-3:45 T/R + disc
    Political Science 408: The American Presidency – 1-2:15 T/R + disc
    Political Science 412: The American Constitution II – 4-5:15 T/R + disc
    Political Science 419: Administrative Law – 4-5:15 M/W + disc
    Political Science 601: Topics in American Constitution – 9:30-10:45 T/R

    Theme Group 2: Process of Legal Order & Disorder

    Legal Studies 694: Field Observation in Criminal Justice and Legal Studies – 9-11 W (application and internship required)
    Psych 526: The Criminal Mind: Forensic and Psychobiological Perspectives – 4-5:15 M/W + disc
    Sociology 441: Criminology – 2:30-3:45 M/W + disc

    Theme Group 3: Law & Social Forces

    AfAm/History 628: History of the Civil Rights Movement in the U.S. – 9:30-10:45 T/R (ethnic st)
    AfAm 671-002: Topic: Criminalizing Blackness – 2:25-5:25 W (ethnic st)
    American Indian 450: Federal Indian Law – 11-12:15 T/R (ethnic st)
    Econ 522: Law and Economics – 1-2:15 T/R + disc
    Envir St 349: Climate Change Governance – 11 T/R + disc
    Legal Studies 400-023: Impacts of Social and Legal Issues on Health – 3:30-5 W (application and service learning required)
    Legal Studies 400-026: Neighborhoods, Crime and Punishment – 1-2:15 T/R
    Legal Studies 400-027: Law, Sexuality & Society – 9:30-10:45 T/R
    *Legal Studies/Soc/GWS 425: Crime, Gender and Justice – 4-5:15 M/W
    Legal Studies 430: Law and Environment – 9:30-10:45 T/R
    Legal Studies/Sociology 440: Ethnicity, Race, and Justice – 4-5:15 M/W (ethnic st)
    Legal Studies 450: Jewish Law, Business, and Ethics – 12:05-12:55 M/W + disc
    Legal Studies 663: Cyber Law – 2:30-3:45 M/W
    Psych 401: Psychology, Law and Social Policies – 4-5:15 M/W

    Theme Group 4: Law & Culture

    *Comp Lit 203-001: Law and Literature – 11-12:15 M/W (Fig Student Only)
    *History 201-003: Shanghai Life and Crime – online (Comm B)
    *Legal Studies 450-026: Criminal Justice and Popular Culture – online

    Theme Group 5: Law & Theory

    *Legal Studies/History 426: History of Punishment – 1-2:15 T/R + disc
    Philosophy 341: Contemporary Moral Issues (some sections are Comm B)

    Core Perspectives

    Legal Studies/History 261: American Legal History to 1860 – 2:30-3:45 T/R
    Legal Studies 400-018: Wrongful Convictions – 2:30-3:45 M/W
    Legal Studies 400-026: Neighborhoods, Crime and Punishment – 1-2:15 T/R
    Legal Studies 400-027: Law, Sexuality & Society – 9:30-10:45 T/R
    *Legal Studies 409: Human Rights in Law and Society – 9:30-10:45 T/R
    *Legal Studies/Soc/GWS 425: Crime, Gender and Justice – online
    *Legal Studies/History 426: History of Punishment – 1-2:15 T/R + disc
    Legal Studies/Sociology 440: Ethnicity, Race, and Justice – 4-5:15 M/W (ethnic st)
    *Legal Studies 450-026: Criminal Justice and Popular Culture – online
    Legal Studies 450-027: Jewish Law, Business, and Ethics – 12:05-12:55 M/W + disc

     

    *Meets requirement that at least two courses in the major must have substantial content dealing with countries or cultures other than the United States.

Program Requirements

Jump to the UW Undergraduate Guide

Program Advising

Jump to the Advising Hours and Appointments

Syllabus Archive