Certificate in Law and Government

Students who desire to concentrate their elective courses of study and their co/extra-curricular activities in the general area of law and government can seek to earn a Certificate in Law and Government. The Certificate is an acknowledgment by the faculty that the student has successfully completed a focused course of study to expand his or her skill and knowledge in law and government, and those issues situated at the intersection of law, government, and public policy.

Course of Study

Required Courses

  • Administrative Law (LW 780 - 3 hours) and one of the following:
    • Federal Indian Law (LW 841 - 3 hours)
    • Legislation (LW 776 - 3 hours)
    • Local Government Law (LW 820 - 2 hours)

Elective Courses

Students must successfully complete at least 15 credit hours of Law and Government course work – the combination of required courses noted above plus selections from the elective courses listed on the chart below. Of the fifteen total required credit hours, a minimum of nine credit hours must be earned in courses taught by full-time Washburn Law faculty. Externship credits will not count towards this nine-credit minimum, and no more than four externship credits will count towards the fifteen-credit hour requirement for the Certificate.

Professional Development Requirement

Complete 500 minutes of participation in co/extra-curricular programming aimed at enhancing student understanding of important issues in the realm of law and government. Students can meet this requirement by participating in events sponsored by either the Center for Law and Government or any student organization presenting a program supported by the Center. Participation in any Washburn Law Centers for Excellence program that bears on government-related issues also counts toward meeting this requirement. Additionally, with pre-approval from Professor Rubenstein, participation in other activities and/or events may be used to satisfy this requirement.

Writing Requirement

Complete the upper-level writing requirement (or equivalent writing project) on a pre-approved Law and Government topic. Students may satisfy the Certificate writing requirement through Directed Research (LW763) or an alternative writing opportunity approved in advance by Professor Rubenstein. Students must receive a grade of "B" or better on the paper they submit to satisfy this requirement.

General Requirements

Students interested in pursuing a Law and Government Certificate must first meet with the faculty member administering the certificate (Professor Rubenstein) to declare their interest, plan their course of study, and, following the meeting, complete a "Meeting Summary" (27 KB PDF) This must be done prior to completing 40 hours of study. Professor Rubenstein will serve as the student's Certificate advisor and must approve any waivers or alternative courses allowed or required by the course of study.

The student must complete 90 hours of total law school credit and achieve a minimum grade point average of 3.0 in the 15 hours of courses selected by the student to meet the Certificate requirements.

Note: Students who declared their intent to pursue a Certificate prior to June 1, 2021, and who obtained a minimum grade point average of 3.5 for courses used to satisfy their Certificate requirements, will be awarded the Certificate in Law and Government (with distinction).

Elective Courses

  • Advanced Legal Research (LW 800 - 2 hours) (with topic approved by Center Director)
  • Antitrust (LW 782 - 3 hours)
  • Artificial Intelligence and Law (LW 792 - 2 hours)
  • Civil Rights Litigation (LW 760 - 2 hours)
  • Constitutional Litigation (LW 748 - 3 hours)
  • Criminal Procedure II (LW 839 - 3 hours)
  • Directed Research - Veterans' Claims (LW 970 - 2 hours)
  • Election Law (LW 945 - 2-3 hours)
  • Energy Regulation (LW 803 - 3 hours)
  • Environmental Law (LW 744 - 3 hours)
  • Externship I (placement approved by Center Director) (LW 921 - 2-4 hours)
  • Federal Courts (LW 759 - 3 hours)
  • Federal Indian Law (LW 841 - 3 hours)
  • Health Care Law and Policy (LW 830 - 3 hours)
  • Higher Education Law (LW 951 - 2 hours)
  • Immigration Law (LW 815 - 2-3 hours)
  • International Law of Indigenous Peoples (LW 919 - 2 hours)
  • Law of Armed Conflict (LW 927 - 3 hours)
  • Law and Human Rights (LW 812 - 2-3 hours)
  • Legal Analysis, Research & Writing for the Government Client (LW 965 - 2 hours)
  • Legislation (LW 776 - 3 hours)
  • Legislative Workshop (LW 801 - 1 hour)
  • Local Government Law (LW 820 - 2 hours)
  • Oil and Gas Law (LW 740 - 3 hours)
  • Public Employment Law (LW 959 - 2 hours)
  • Public International Law (LW 928 - 3 hours)
  • Public Land Law (LW 747 - 3 hours)
  • Race and the Law (LW 902 - 3 hours)
  • Renewable Energy Law: Wind and Solar (LW 985 - 1 hour)
  • Specialized Legal Research: Statutory and Regulatory Law (LW 949 - 1 hour)
  • Taxation by State and Local Governments (LW 788 - 2 hours)
  • Taxation of Individual Income (LW 790 - 3 hours)
  • Trademark Law (LW 898 - 3 hours)
  • Tribal Law and Government (LW 941 - 2-3 hours)
  • Water, Environmental, and Regulatory Law lmpacting Agriculture (LW 988 - 1 hour)
  • Water Rights (LW 742 - 3 hours)
  • White Collar Crime (LW 936 - 2-3 hours)

Approved by the faculty: December 14, 2010.
Effective: January 2011.
Revised: November 15, 2022.

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Faculty Member
Photograph: David Rubenstein.

David Rubenstein
James R. Ahrens Chair in Constitutional Law and Professor of Law

Courses offered within the law school curriculum are subject to change at any time.

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Certificates of Concentration

Students at Washburn University School of Law may distinguish themselves in the job market by earning a Certificate of Concentration. The areas of concentration can be completed within the traditional 90 credit hours required for graduation. While students do not declare majors because law school provides a broad foundational education, earning a certificate at Washburn Law allows students to formalize an area of specialization within the traditional law school curriculum.

Certificates may be earned in the following areas: