Law Course Descriptions – Community College of Rhode Island

Law Course Descriptions

LAWS (Law)

LAWS 1000 - Introduction to Law Enforcement (3 Credits)

This course examines the history and philosophy of the role of police in society. It surveys organizational structures and basic procedures of police work, police ethics and major problems confronting the law enforcement profession. Students examine international, federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, identifying the origin, jurisdiction, mission and functions of each. Lecture: 3 hours

LAWS 1010 - Criminal Law (3 Credits)

This course is a study of crimes from early English common law to modern American criminal law including common law and statutory offenses. Criminal intent, criminal act and causation are thoroughly analyzed. General definitions of crimes, classifications of crimes, parties to crimes and common defenses such as insanity and self-defense are considered. Lecture: 3 hours

LAWS 1020 - Criminal Procedure (3 Credits)

This course presents an overview of the criminal justice system, including an examination of the organization and jurisdiction of federal, state and local courts and law enforcement agencies. The arrest, arraignment, plea, preliminary hearing, bail, grand and petit jury proceedings, verdict, sentence and petitions for new trial are studied together with the jurisdiction of the courts on all levels. Lecture: 3 hours

LAWS 1030 - Criminalistics I (3 Credits)

This course surveys basic crime scene investigation methods. Topics include first responder duties, evidence collection and processing, photography, impression evidence, blood analysis, trace evidence, arson investigation and casting methods for impression evidence. Students complete projects involving plaster casting and crime scene sketching. A mock crime scene investigation is conducted. Lab fee required. Lecture: 3 hours - Lab Fee: $20

LAWS 1040 - Criminalistics II (3 Credits)

This course is an advanced study of criminalistics. Topics include the investigation of specific crimes (sexual assault, homicide, burglary and auto theft); alcohol and drug detection; firearms investigations; advanced latent fingerprint techniques; and forensic entomology. Lab fee required. (Prerequisite: LAWS 1030) Lecture: 3 hours - Lab Fee: $20

LAWS 1080 - Introduction to Paralegal Studies (3 Credits)

This course is designed to provide an overview of the functions of paralegals/legal assistants within the legal environment. It will also include material on the organization and structure of law firms, legal ethics, various types of legal practice and use of computers in the legal environment. Background material on federal and state constitutional law, statutory law and court decisions is provided as a foundation for other law courses required in the Paralegal Studies Program. Lecture: 3 hours

LAWS 2000 - Constitutional Law (3 Credits)

This class presents a view of the role of the Supreme Court in its interpretation of the United States Constitution. Areas to be scrutinized include judicial review, federalism, civil liberties and the Bill of Rights (through the 14th Amendment) as it applies to the states. Case and text method. Lecture: 3 hours

LAWS 2010 - Law of Evidence (3 Credits)

This course is a study of the body of rules governing the admissibility of evidence at trial. The nature of evidence; circumstantial and direct evidence; testimonial, documentary and real evidence; hearsay and the exceptions thereto; the presentation of evidence and the rules on relevancy; and lastly, competency, credibility and impeachment of witnesses are examined. Lecture: 3 hours

LAWS 2020 - Basic Civil Procedures for Paralegals (3 Credits)

This course introduces the legal concepts and practical applications of civil litigation using the rules of civil procedure as applied in the federal and state court systems. The course will cover the court system; jurisdiction and venue; pleadings (complaints, answers, counterclaims and cross-claims); and discovery documents (interrogatories, depositions and requests for production). (Prerequisite: LAWS 1020 and LAWS 1080 or permission of instructor) Lecture: 3 hours

LAWS 2030 - Criminal Law and the Constitution (3 Credits)

This course presents a consideration and analysis of the most significant and recent Supreme Court decisions as they pertain to the rights of the accused in the areas of arrest, search and seizure, interrogation and right to assistance of counsel. Case and text method. Lecture: 3 hours

LAWS 2040 - Law and Society (3 Credits)

This course studies adjudicated cases involving the leading social issues affecting society today and the impact such adjudications have had upon that society. Stress is placed upon the relationship of law to social values and morals. The delicate balance between the interests of society and individual rights is scrutinized and the students' views as to the maintenance of the balance is evaluated in the light of the cases studied. Lecture: 3 hours

LAWS 2050 - Law of Contracts (3 Credits)

This course studies the legal rules, concepts and terminology relating to voluntary agreements entered into for the provision of services or the sale of property. The areas included are agreement, consideration, contractual capacity, legality, genuineness of assent and legal form. Lecture: 3 hours

LAWS 2060 - The Law of Property, Estates and Trusts (3 Credits)

This course studies the laws of real property, personal property and decedent's estates. Topics to be covered include definitions of real and personal property; the ownership and transfer of real estate (concurrent ownership, deeds, mortgages and leases); and the areas of gifts, wills, inheritance laws, probate and trusts. Lecture: 3 hours

LAWS 2070 - Law of Business Organization (3 Credits)

This course covers the law of agency (principal-agent relationships and independent contractors), federal and state employment law and the law regarding legal forms of business (sole proprietorships, partnerships of various kinds, corporations and limited liability companies). Lecture: 3 hours

LAWS 2090 - Legal Research and Writing (4 Credits)

This course for Paralegal Studies majors covers legal research using primary sources (statutes, court decisions, and regulations); case digests and finding aids; secondary legal sources (encyclopedias, treatises and annotations); and citators (Shepard's Citations and WestLaw's KeyCite). Emphasis is on legal research using computer-assisted legal research (CALR) tools. Students are expected to complete a full legal research project and write a legal memorandum. (Prerequisites: Laws 1080 and 24 credit hours earned or permission of instructor) Lecture: 4 hours - Lab Fee: $20

LAWS 2100 - Law of Torts (3 Credits)

Law of Torts involves the study of civil wrongs that result in personal injury, property damage or economic injuries. This course deals with areas of negligence, intentional torts and strict liability torts. It will also cover topics of professional malpractice, products liability and premises liability. (Prerequisite: LAWS 1020 or LAWS 1080 or permission of instructor) Lecture 3 hours

LAWS 2500 - Case Studies in Criminal Law (3 Credits)

This capstone course in the Law Enforcement program will integrate the material covered in prior classes in the areas of substantive criminal law, criminal procedural law, crime scene investigation, evidentiary law and constitutional law related to law enforcement. Students will work on and write reports on two case studies based upon comprehensive case files. These case files will include documents that would be involved in an actual criminal case such as bills of indictment, police reports, witness statements, forensic reports, search warrant affidavits and inventories, transcripts of court hearings involving the case and the substantive criminal laws that may apply to the facts of the case. Lecture: 3 hours

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Last Updated: 4/14/20