Intellectual Property Law

Students interested in pursuing a career in intellectual property law start their studies with a survey course. They can expand their knowledge through advanced courses on topics including patent law, copyright and international trade law.


Intellectual property law is an expanding and complex field covering topics including patents, trademarks, trade secrets and copyright. KU Law offers courses on a range of intellectual property topics. 

The law school’s faculty includes nationally recognized scholars in areas such as intellectual property law and biolaw. Faculty are available to supervise research papers on intellectual property topics to fulfill KU Law’s writing course requirement. Students have published previous papers in law reviews or earned competitive writing awards.

KU Law alumni include patent examiners at the United States Patent & Trademark Office and intellectual property attorneys at leading firms across the United States. The law school is a rotating host of the Patent Conference, a collaborative event that brings together patent scholars from around the world. 

Intellectual Property Law Curriculum Guide

Recommended Upper-Level Courses:

  • Biolaw
  • Copyright Law in a Digital Age
  • Intellectual Property
  • International Trade Law
  • Patent Law
  • Patent Practice

Course descriptions

The Student Intellectual Property Law Association sponsors speakers and events on a range of intellectual property topics. 

The law school can also help place students in externships and internships at the KU Center for Technology Commercialization.

KU Law is one of four collaborative host schools for the Patent Conference, the largest annual conference for patent scholars in the world.

In 2010, the founders of PatCon — law professors David Olson, David Schwartz, Ted Sichelman and Andrew Torrance — realized that the growth and importance of research in the area of patents required an exclusive forum that would enable participants to share their research with other experts and explore links across the legal and business side of patents.

The event rotates between host schools – University of Kansas School of Law, Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, University of San Diego School of Law and Boston College Law School – each year. KU Law last hosted in 2019. The conference brings together patent scholars in law, economics, management science and other disciplines to share their research.

In addition to faculty teaching courses specific to intellectual property, Professor Raj Bhala's courses in international trade include coverage of intellectual property issues. Adjunct instructors also teach specialized courses in patent law and copyright law.

Full faculty list


Andrew Torrance
Paul E. Wilson Distinguished Professor of Law