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Stillman’s Mission

… is to enrich each student’s life through an ethics-centered education focusing on transforming concepts into business practice.

Welcome To The Course

Welcome to Advanced Topics. This is part of your course syllabus. We will meet for the first time on Wednesday, January 18th at 330p in JH112. I will update this syllabus if I add something to the course or if something unexpected intervenes … like a hurricane or blizzard. It is your responsibility to remain current on course assignments and materials by reviewing this syllabus regularly for updates.

You should review the entire course syllabuscalendar, deliverables, schedule and any other materials included in this course site carefully. You will find answers to any questions when you review the rest of the information included on this site. If you have any questions after you’ve reviewed this syllabus and the rest of the course site, you can DM me in Teams to contact me.

Before We Meet

Before we meet please click Before We Begin to complete some housekeeping items that include introducing yourself, agreeing to the learning contract and completing your O365 profile by adding a head shot as your profile picture. Please be certain to bring a mask to every class meeting since we will be wearing masks during class.

Click here to visit our Teams workspace. It is important that you visit immediately since all of our course communication will be via Teams and I will not use email for our course communication in the future.


Managers face a variety of legal challenges that can both help and hinder success. This course examines several advanced topics in the legal environment that will provide a foundation that will equip students to recognize the legal challenges they will encounter as managers. We will focus on current issues related to voting rights and election law during the first part of the course. We will then review several of the cases decided during the 2021/2022 SCOTUS term. Those cases will examine issues touching on constitutional law, privacy, environmental protection, establishment and free exercise clauses and second amendment, among others. While we will not turn students into lawyers, we will develop the legal knowledge and analytical skills that guide entrepreneurs in a complicated legal environment.

What Should You Expect?

The subject matter of the course is interesting, challenging and very timely. We will cover some very interesting topics that are particularly important in the economy of the 21st century. We will use a variety of digital platforms to interact with each other and the course materials.

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced us to use a fundamentally different set of delivery modalities, e.g., in-person, HyFlex, hybrid, remote, synchronous, or not, or some combination of approaches to teaching and learning. We have met remotely, when necessary, in order to accomplish our work over these last several years. The use of remote modalities demands that we adjust our understanding of acceptable protocols for attendance and participation, whether a meeting or course attendance, engagement and participation.

While working together using a digital platform, e.g., Teams, Zoom, Slack, etc. it is important that you join the session with a live camera and muted mic. A live camera helps to create a sense of community and will help all of us to engage effectively during our discussions. If you only unmute your mic when speaking we can avoid feedback, unsolicited input from family, pets and others as well as any random noise. If you cannot be seen or heard by your classmates it will be difficult to actively engage in course meetings. That will have negative implications for your grade results. Please review the Protocols for Online Meetings and Classes for more information.

I will actively engage you through the use of the Socratic Method, both in class and during our discussions outside class. You will have a better sense of my class sessions after you read my perspective on Teaching and Learning.

Learning Objectives

This course is an elective that is required for those students who have decided to pursue the Minor in Legal Studies. The course will help prepare students to meet the legal and regulatory challenges and opportunities they can expect to encounter as managers of private and public businesses. The course provides a conceptual framework for understanding the various legal tools available to managers engaged in evaluating and pursuing opportunities. This course will not make you a lawyer. It will, however, help you to develop insights into the law so you can handle the legal aspects of management with confidence.  This includes developing legal literacy and learning what to look for when selecting an attorney and then … knowing when to call one.

Required Casebook

Election Law: Cases and Materials, 7th Ed., Lowenstein, Daniel Hays; Hasen, Richard L., Tokaji, Daniel P. and Stephanopoulos, Nicholas, Carolina Academic Press 2022 ISBN# 9781531020811. You can purchase the ebook here.

Additional Materials

All of the course materials are available as links that you will find at ShannonWeb. I may assign additional materials for use in our course. I will post links to those materials in advance in the Course Schedule. Please check the syllabus regularly for updates.


Since you have reviewed my Course Policies, you are already familiar with my expectations about the use of technology in my courses. Your participation in this course will require you to engage with a number of different digital platforms. Be sure to carefully review the materials included in Writing on a Digital Platform and Writing and Research. Our communication and collaboration platform will be Teams. If you need to reach me or have a question, please DM in Teams. We use Teams video for our virtual office hours. You will prepare your writing assignments using digital platforms that will allow you to incorporate multimedia that will enhance your text based content. You will use resources as varied as a search engine (GoogleDuckDuckGo or Bing) and also the resources available from our own Walsh Library.

You are responsible for “figuring it out” when it comes to the “how to” aspects of a project. If you don’t know how to do something … “search for it”!

Many of my students have told me that “figuring it out” was both an unexpected and beneficial experience and a critical learning outcome.

Course Policies

It is your responsibility to become familiar with my Course Policies including in class performance; attendance, preparation & participation; assignments; course communication; assessment and plagiarism. Please review them carefully.

As in the law … ignorance (of the Course Policies) is not an excuse.

Contact Me

Professor John H. Shannon

  • Office: 651 Jubilee Hall or Teams
  • Communications: Teams DM (preferred) or email at john DOT shannon AT shu DOT edu
  • Office Hours: Mon & Wed, 10a – 1130a (click here to join via Teams); also by appt, all office hours and other meetings will be held via Teams

We can schedule an alternative meeting time if you are not available during my office hours. As you know, our course communications platform is Teams. Please DM me in Teams with some days/times when you are available and we can schedule a video conference in Teams.

I can be reached via any number of platforms … Teams (preferred), email, voice or video. As a general rule, I am available if I am online. You can DM me in Teams or, if you are already enrolled in one of my courses, post a question to the Course Questions channel in our course’s Teams workspace. I will try to reply to any communications as soon as possible but certainly no more than 24 hours after receipt. If you prefer a video conference (and who doesn’t?) please DM me with some convenient days/times and we’ll set it up.

My office hours are subject to change pretty much every semester so please check your course syllabus for my current office hours (see above). I have, in the past, generally scheduled at least one hour a week using Teams video to accommodate those who have a conflict with my scheduled office hours. Since we are conducting all office hours and other meetings via Teams and if you are unavailable to meet during my scheduled office hours, you can schedule an appointment for a video conference via Teams. I prefer video conferences because they give me more options when answering your questions.

That said, I do try to carve out some space for thoughtful consideration of life. The practical impact of that desire is to keep evenings and weekends clear for family, friends and other forms of social interaction. If you going to ping me late on a Friday then I will get back to you on Monday unless it is an emergency … a REAL emergency.

When communicating with me please include the following information: your name, the question or issue to be resolved, your course/section and any other necessary information.

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