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Fall 2023

7397 WRC: Well-Being in the Law - HOFFMANL/MOULTON- 25728

Professor(s): Lonny Hoffman (FACULTY)
Cindy Moulton (ADJUNCT)

Credits: 3

Course Areas: Law And Society/ Interdisciplinary 

Time: 4:00p-5:30p  TTH  Location: 211 

Course Outline: This course rigorously explores the challenges to well-being and happiness facing law students and legal professionals and then examines possible paths to overcoming those challenges. We will consider a number of questions and hard issues that bear directly on the lives of students now and after they enter the legal profession. I have previously taught this class as a non-writing course; that syllabus is available here:

This summer I will post an updated syllabus for this WRC-version of the class.

Course Syllabus: Syllabus

Course Notes: (Face-to-Face)   The UH registration system instruction mode for this course is listed in parenthesis. After student registration opens, there may be instruction mode changes to this course up through two weeks before the first day of classes for the term, but notice of such changes will be sent to then-registered students. For this instruction mode, instructors and students are expected to normally be physically present in the classroom. If the course has a final examination, it will be in a classroom requiring your physical presence. Other assessment, such as a mid-term exam, may also be in a classroom. Whether this instructor will offer “remote presence” (starting a zoom meeting from the podium computer to enable student remote access on an occasional basis) for part or all of the semester is not known, but students should not rely on an expectation that remote presence will be available.


Students are evaluated in three ways:

Class Participation: Worth 20% of the final grade.

Short Papers: You will write several short papers, each of which will likely be approximately three or four pages in length. These assignments will all be noted in the updated version of the syllabus I will post this summer. I will separately provide more detailed guidance as to the expected content of the papers and how I will evaluate them. The short papers are worth, collectively, 30% of the final grade.

(Slightly) Longer Paper: Finally, you will write one slightly longer paper (exact length to be listed in updated syllabus). There are two potential subject areas: well-being in law school and well-being in the legal profession. The updated syllabus will have much more information about this assignment and how I’ll evaluate it. The longer paper is worth 50% of the final grade.


First Day Assignments:

Final Exam Schedule:    

This course will have:

Satisfies Senior Upper Level Writing Requirement: Yes

Experiential Course Type: No

Bar Course: No

DistanceEd ABA: No

Pass-Fail Student Election: Conditional Availability (not for required credits)

Course Materials

Book(s) Required

Course Materials: (1) Nancy Levit & Douglas Linder, The Happy Lawyer: Making a Good Life in the Law (2010); and (2) Sonja Lyubomirsky, The Myths of Happiness

If you want to buy them from one of the city’s best local bookstores, call Brazos
Bookstore [(713) 523-0701] and they’ll order them for you. If you’d rather order it online, there
are lots of options, including several well-regarded ethical alternatives to Amazon. For example,
you can get buy both books for very little at (As of mid-July, The Happy
Lawyer was available for $5.61 and The Myths of Happiness was $5.03.) Wherever you get it
from, just to be sure you have it in advance of our first class on August 22.

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