The undergraduate minor in law, policy and social justice at The University of Tulsa College of Law has the general aim of making the law a centerpiece for interdisciplinary inquiry into the diverse ways in which cultures-notably, but not exclusively, American society-have sought to achieve order and justice through appeals to recognized authority. The subject of law as a field worthy of study is widely acknowledged at The University of Tulsa but until now has been accessible mainly to J.D. students who pursue a professional degree in the College of Law or to undergraduates who take courses that include legal subject matter but typically are ancillary to a chosen concentration in the humanities or business. The law is much more than either of these applications. Instead, it provides a way to think through a different intellectual lens about the evolution of society and the problems that threaten fairness, justice, and inclusiveness in society. Social history; conceptions of social conformity; juridical expectations regarding rights, obligations, and interpersonal relations; evolving ideas of justice and punishment from cross-cultural perspectives and from perspectives of history are all revealed through study of the law.
The minor in law, policy and social justice enables students to explore law as a diverse human effort to achieve collective order without sacrificing individuality or the freedoms of discrete and insular minorities. The use of law as an instrument of policy for effecting change and improvement in human societies is examined in historical and present-day contexts, and in descriptive and normative modes of inquiry. Areas that students may pursue through coursework in the minor include, for example, morality, responsibility, theories of punishment, the American legal system, international law, legal and political philosophy, literature, the death penalty, sex crimes, climate and the environment, copyrights and intellectual property, and the internet as a space both for self-expression and for piracy and other controversial activities.
The minor in law, policy and social justice requires a total of 12 hours selected from the list below. At least 6 hours must be at the 3000 level or above.
Some upper-level courses in the law, policy and social justice minor integrate undergraduates into regular J.D. offerings; others are offered as standalone undergraduate courses. Seminars are offered on such topics as women in the law, sex crimes, theory of punishment and medical consumerism. The College of Law anticipates offering at least four LAWU courses per academic year.