June 23, 2011
Corporate Finance Roundtable: Teaching Methods and Tools
Posted by joanheminway

When I started teaching law, I wrestled not only with whether and how to fashion a course in Corporate Finance, but also with what materials to use.  Because I determined, as a former corporate finance practitioner, that I was best equipped to teach a practical law course that addresses principally applicable legal doctrine and practice skills (founded on theory and policy, but with those aspects of the course having subsidiary roles), rather than a finance course (which my students could, after all, get "across the street" at our College of Business Administration), I first searched for an appropriate law school teaching text.  (Hat tip here to Trey and Brian for raising the issue of law-course-versus-finance-course in their earlier posts.)  

Although there then were a number of fine books by distinguished scholar-experts, none of them was my book.  In particular, none of them engaged actively the wide variety of legal and practice materials with which I wanted my students to interact in and outside the classroom.  Although I settled on one text eventually (which I thought did that best), I also supplemented it heavily with my own materials and used the book in novel ways--more as a jumping-off point than as a Bible.  I will write my own book; I have promised myself this.  But until then, I continue on with what I have cobbled together over the years.  If anyone would like any of my materials, all they have to do is ask.  They vary from simple assignments on prospectus disclosure drafting to PowerPoint slides on M&A to law review articles, including ones written by Steve Davidoff and me.

I also routinely teach a module in our practice simulation course, Representing Enterprises, one of two alternative capstones in our Concentration in Business Transactions. From time to time, the module that I have taught has varied.  I currently have been looking through a new book written by Ken Adams for teaching the M&A module that I sometimes teach in that course.  I will review that briefly in a separate post.

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