Business Law 225
 Fall 2018 - Tues./Thurs. 8:00 - 9:20 a.m.
Harned Hall 110

Credits, semester, days & location:  3 credits  8-9:20am T-TR @ Harned 110

Instructor:  Shawn Newman, J.D. 

Office Hours: By appointment 

Current Syllabus:  See course Moodle page

Required Resources:

SMU E-mail account: You must have an active SMU email account as I periodically send articles of interest, quizzes and exams via email.

Book: “Business Law Today: The Essentials by Roger LeRoy Miller, 11th Ed.
Textbook ISBN-10: 1-133-19135-5
Textbook ISBN-13: 978-1-133-19135-3

Book PowerPoints: only available to students registered for the course here.

Course Description:
Introduction to the American legal system (sources of law and legal process); forms of business (sole proprietorships, partnerships, LLCs and Corporations); contract law; agency; employment law; torts; products liability; property law; wills and trusts; business ethics.

Course Objectives:  Upon completion of this course, the student should be able to do the following:

  • Summarize the four sources of American Law and how they relate 
  • Outline the court system and explain jurisdiction
  • Evaluate ADR
  • Distinguish intentional torts, negligence and product liability.  
  • Identify what intellectual property (IP) refers to and how IP rights are protected.
  • Compare civil vs. criminal law
  • Explain the importance of business ethics.
  • Name and discuss the 4 basic elements of an enforceable contract.
  • Examine the remedies where there is a breach of contract.
  • Compare and contrast sales law (UCC Art. 2) vs. common law contracts.
  • Identify some consumer protection laws.
  • Summarize the two basic types of negotiable instruments and why they are important to business. 
  • Describe some of the ways creditors can protect their rights.
  • Summarize the different types of bankruptcy.
  • Evaluate how employment at will has been changed by statutes.
  • Develop an understanding of entrepreneur's options, especially business forms and financing.   
  • Distinguish personal property from real property.
Instructor: Shawn T. Newman, J.D. (short bio & contact information)
Office Hours:  I am available before/after class, by appointment or via email at  I try to respond to emails within 24 hours. Note these etiquette tips for emailing your professor and submitting materials.   
Book:  Roger Leroy Miller, Business Law Today: The Essentials, 11th Edition (2017) ISBN-13: 9781305574793 | ISBN-10: 1305574796
Links to Book - Chapter Review Power Points (opens new window) /  Chapter Review Power Points (for download)
Optional (but helpful) Resource:  Professor Newman's Subject Matter Index
Assessment and Grading:  1000 points total
  • 5  Exams @ 100 points/each 
  • 1 Midterm @ 100 
  • 1 Final @ 100 points  
  • Discussion Forum Postings @ 10 points each (100 points total) based on the following:
  1. Follow these netiquette tips for online discussions and email. (2 points)
  2. Submit at least 5 sentences using proper legal terms. (2 points)
  3. Spelling, grammar and punctuation count! (2 points)
  4. Connect your comments on the post topic to course content, properly citing book, readings, videos or any other credible sources.(2 points)
  5. Respond to at least one other student comment. (2 points). 
  • Class presentations and discussions: 100 points.  The class will be divided into teams.  Each team will be responsible for presenting the  end of the chapter reviews.  Team presentations will be evaluated by me, classmates and fellow team members.  See: Link to the Review Evaluation forms below. 
  • Attendance:  100 points
Teaching Philosophy:  My job is to help you develop legal knowledge and skills that will help you succeed in your life and career.  It is your responsibility to be prepared for class and to complete all assignments on time.  I do not give re-dos, mulligans or incompletes.  I have listed reading assignments, exams and resources for each week.  Please note that I reserve the option to modify the schedule and frequently add content to the syllabus based on current events.  Classes are conducted like a business meeting.  (See Expectations Power Points below).  Students must have PRE-READ the material for that day's class.  Come prepared to engage!
Academic Policy:  SMU Academic Policies and Procedures regarding academic dishonesty can be found in the undergraduate student catalog.  
Need Help?  Information on student support services, including academic support, counseling, health and disability services can be found int the undergraduate student catalog.  For technology help, contact the Help Desk or the Computer Resource Center

Statement to Students concerning Academic Dishonesty:

Acts of academic dishonesty, plagiarism and cheating are considered unethical actions and a violation of university’s academic policy (SMU Catalog). Sanctions and procedures are included in the SMU Academic Catalog.

Statement to Students with Disabilities:

Students wishing to request appropriate accommodations are responsible for initiating contact with the SMU Office of Disability Support Services located at 214 OM [phone 438-4580;]. The office will access the individual needs of each student, assist him or her in communicating those needs to faculty and staff and help the student obtain the materials, services, and the assistance necessary to successfully pursue their higher education.

University Mission and Academic Values (SMU Catalog - Selected Excerpts)

University Mission: To know, to care, to serve – to educate
University Academic Values: Knowledge, Spirituality, Hospitality, Service, Creativity, Communication, Inquiry, Discovery, Holistic Education.

Business Division Philosophy (SMU Catalog)

Built on the General Education foundation informed by Saint Martin’s Catholic, Benedictine heritage and values, Business and Economics offers a unified business program that integrates the separate functional areas of business. Acknowledging the technologic innovation, ever-changing global marketplace and challenged ecosystems currently shaping the world, the Business Administration Program offers students an opportunity to learn and practice general management skills, discover the need for ethical decision-making and acquire functional business area expertise. Through practice and active learning, students also gain the ability to work cooperatively in diverse teams. They become effective writers and speakers, and they demonstrate sharpened critical thinking skills and professional judgment. Students graduate with a broad perspective on the business world and its place in our culture. Saint Martin’s graduates have the ability to work across business functions, adjust quickly to new situations, accept change and ambiguity as a natural part of life, and become enthusiastic lifelong learners. National or State Standards consistent with AACSB and AICPA

Syllabus will be
on Moodle - log in here