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Welcome to Intellectual Property

A survey of the law of intellectual property. This course will provide students with an introduction to the law of trademarks, copyrights, patents, and trade secrets. Students will learn how to procure, maintain, and enforce each type of intellectual prop


Welcome to Intellectual Property! Designed for second- and third-year law students, this course features eight chapters of videos, plus over 300 practice questions. This course provides an introduction to the basics of United States intellectual property law, including trademarks, copyrights, patents, and trade secrets.

Chapters two and three are all about trademarks, which are words or symbols merchants use to signal to consumers where their goods came from. Chapter two provides an overview of what a trademark is and how to establish and maintain trademark rights, either through use or optional registration. Chapter three explains how owners may enforce their trademark rights under the federal Lanham Act and related state unfair-competition law.

Chapters four and five explain copyrights for creative works of expression. Chapter four describes what subject matter is copyrightable and how authors may secure and maintain protection for their creative works under federal copyright law. Chapter five details how a copyright owner enforces her bundle of rights and significant limits on those rights, such as the fair-use doctrine.

Chapters six and seven cover patents, which grant exclusive rights to inventors of new, useful, and nonobvious inventions. Chapter six explains patentable subject matter and the hurdles an inventor must overcome to obtain a patent. Chapter seven outlines how inventors enforce their patent rights through infringement actions in federal district court.

Last but not least, chapter eight covers trade secrets, which can be any valuable information that provides its owner with a competitive advantage. After explaining the types of information that may constitute a trade secret, chapter eight describes the types of security measures owners should take to protect their trade secrets, and what types of conduct support a claim for misappropriation under state or federal law.

By the time you finish this course, you’ll be ready to rock your IP final and will finally be able to explain to your crazy uncle that it’s a patent, not a trademark or copyright or trade secret, that will protect his latest improved fishing lure.