Teaching IP transactions via Zoom

It’s now decided. This year’s one-week course, Intellectual Property Transactions: Law and Practice, will run at the UCL Faculty of Laws from 9-13 November. It will be conducted via Zoom or Teams (apparently some teachers are not allowed to access Zoom on their work computers).

IP Draughts was unsure whether to stretch the course out over several weeks, in view of the online format. We offered several alternatives to the students who were booked on the course, and the most popular response was to stick with the one-week format.

Apart from IP Draughts, who tends to involve himself in most of the talks, this shouldn’t be a problem for the 30-or-so teachers, whose duties vary between an hour or so and half a day. It is mostly the students who will need stamina. We will be increasing the breaks, so that people can stretch their legs and refocus their eyes on a different field of vision.

IP Draughts now has a fair amount of experience of teaching via Zoom. This week he gave three half-day talks. In the coming weeks he is running several one-day talks in half-day bursts. His UCL courses can be found (along with some other UCL courses) here.

Some of the techniques that he has been developing for these courses include:

  • running polls – a few alternative answers to a question – and then discussing the answers with the class
  • he has decided that referring people to short sections of long documents is quite difficult using the “share” function, and instead he may create extracts either on paper or as Powerpoint slides
  • running two screens (one for shared papers, one for seeing the class) has proved too difficult, given the many settings in Zoom or Teams that need to be in place, and which seem to be in different positions each time you use it.

For the one-week course, we are thinking of using a “Jeopardy” format (matching answers to questions) for the daily workshops. Some of you will know what this means!

We are looking forward to welcoming this year’s cohort of students on the course. If you haven’t yet booked, you can apply here. See you there!


Filed under courses and training, Intellectual Property

3 responses to “Teaching IP transactions via Zoom

  1. I teach contract drafting at the University of Houston Law Center; this semester it’s entirely by Zoom. For me, the key to Zoom is something I’ve been doing for many years anyway, which is having “thumbsucker” questions for students to discuss in small groups during class. Doing it in Zoom breakout rooms was a no-sweat transition.

    You can get an idea of the questions I ask at the Web site that I use as the daily class plan — https://toedtclassnotes.site44.com/#orgd1f1e19 (this past Wednesday, with drafting exercises) and https://toedtclassnotes.site44.com/#org02277b2 (discussions about the week’s reading).

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