SMNR: Joint Seminar on the Legal & Medical Professions
Semester: Spring 2014
Class Unique: 30140
Course ID: 397S
Credit Hours: 3
Students frequently enter law and medical school without much sense of what a "profession" is or what it means to be a "professional." Modern professionals perform their duties in a rapidly changing world, subject to forces such as government regulation, corporatization, globalization, competition, and the information revolution. This course explores these issues by comparing the legal and medical professions.
After developing a theoretical framework for analyzing professional practice, students consider the day-to-day, regulatory, and public policy implications of organizational structures, scope of practice, compensation, representation and advocacy, communicating with clients and patients, professional error and misconduct, and professional education. The course includes discussion of several critical issues currently confronting each profession, including national health care reform and rapidly changing demand for legal services.
Enrollment consists of roughly equal numbers of students from Texas Law School and students from the University of Texas Medical Branch who are doing their clinical training in Austin. In addition to small-group discussions and break-out projects during class sessions, students will participate in role-playing simulations involving both law and medicine that allow a mutually enlightening exchange between the two professions.