First-years at NYU Law get the best possible foundation in both legal theory and practice.
Beginning with our renowned Lawyering Program, the 1L experience at NYU Law is unique. With class sizes averaging just 30 students, Lawyering develops essential skills in legal research and writing, examines the functions and techniques of several forms of legal writing, and explores the interplay of law and fact in legal analysis. During the second semester, the class concentrates on activities basic to law practice: interviewing, counseling, case analysis and problem handling, negotiation, informal advocacy, and trial advocacy. Recently we've added instruction on basic business and financial concepts, too. Working collaboratively in small teams, students role-play, then critically review their experiences in each activity. The skills and knowledge acquired in Lawyering prove indispensable when students take one of NYU’s clinics as a 2L or 3L—and when they begin their careers as attorneys.
Another distinctive feature of the 1L curriculum is the NYU Law-designed class, Legislation and the Regulatory State (LRS). Recognizing the pervasive role of government in all area of law practice, LRS introduces the materials, concepts, and tools that lawyers need in a world of statutes and regulations. The class is taught by faculty who are leaders in their fields, such Samuel Estreicher, Sally Katzen, Deborah Malamud, Samuel Rascoff, and Adam Samaha. LRS also helps students better absorb the ideas and issues covered in Contracts, Criminal Law, Procedure, and Torts, all required first-year courses. (Property and Constitutional Law are mandatory too, but don’t need to be taken in the first year.)
1L electives, first offered in response to student interest, also set NYU Law apart. While students asked for one elective, the dean and the faculty liked the idea so much that we now offer five: