How To Prepare for a Career in Intellectual Property and Information Law

Intellectual Property and Information Law Pathway

Innovation and information policy are critical to 21st-century society. NYU’s curriculum provides opportunities to study the major areas of law that affect innovation and information policy: intellectual property law, including patents, copyrights, and trademarks; information law, including information privacy and electronic commerce; and antitrust law and competition policy. Our faculty of law professors, economists, and noted practitioners guides students in exploring these issues in a variety of course settings, from basic courses to advanced seminars to independent directed research projects, and through the activities of the Engelberg Center on Innovation Law and Policy as well as the Information Law Institute and its Privacy Research Group.

Core Courses

In addition to taking two or three of the basic courses in this area—Copyright Law, Information Privacy Law, Survey of Intellectual Property, Patent Law, and Trademarks and Unfair Competitionstudents should take at least one course exploring one of these areas in greater depth or from a wider perspective.

Students should also take at least one international law course: either a general course, such as International Law, International and Regional Trade Law: The Law of the WTO & NAFTA, or International Organizations, or an IP-specific course, such as International Intellectual Property Law or Intellectual Property Law & Globalization

In choosing advanced courses, students should aim for a mixture of theoretical and practice-oriented perspectives. Students are also encouraged to balance courses in the specialty area with more general courses relevant to their career objectives, such as Corporations, Administrative Law, and Evidence, and with courses in related areas, such as Antitrust, Health Law, or National Security Law.

A student who is interested in pursuing a career in intellectual property law should consult with a member of the intellectual property law faculty before deciding to take Survey of Intellectual Property, in lieu of the core courses in Patent Law, Copyright Law, and Trademark Law. The survey is particularly appropriate for students seeking careers in information privacy law or some other aspects of information or commercial law, as well as for LLM students in the Competition, Innovation, and Information Law Program who are specializing in antitrust law. Depending on their career objectives, it may or may not be a good choice for students who intend to focus on intellectual property law.  

Additional Opportunities

Students interested in this area should take advantage of the opportunities offered by the Engelberg Center for Innovation Law and Policy and the Information Law Institute. Both of these centers host conferences and other events that may be of interest to students and provide various other professional and research opportunities.