Welcome to South Texas College of Law Houston's
Pathways to Practice
Current and prospective students can learn about different career options in many legal fields, what it’s like to practice in those fields, and how to plan a curriculum to emphasize desired career goals.Learn More About Pathways to Practice
The professors here at South Texas College of Law Houston have created pathways and accompanying materials for sixteen different subjects.
Generally, each of the sixteen subject matters has four components:
Below is a summary of each component. We encourage you to read the summaries, take the time to review the practice area descriptions, and discover your path.
The subject overview provides a summary of the practice of law in a given field, the subject matter expertise students must acquire to practice in that field, the relevant skills that will help students succeed, and other considerations that students thinking about practicing in that field should know. The subject overview will also explain how courses listed on the curricular pathway relate to practice.
The curricular pathway provides a progression of courses offered at South Texas College of Law Houston that are relevant to an area of practice.
Should students take all the courses listed in a given pathway?
Students will rarely be able to take all the courses listed in a given pathway—nor should they. There are many specializations within a given practice area. Further, a pathway may list several relevant courses even though students can largely obtain the needed skills by taking just one of those courses. For this reason, it is important to consult the subject overviews where we try to explain the significance of each course when its relevance to particular career paths is not intuitive.
How are the courses organized within each pathway?
For most subjects, we lay out the pathways in three stages. The progression through the three stages takes into account whether the course is required, whether the course has any prerequisites, and how important or foundational the course is to the practice of law in that field. Nevertheless, courses may be particularly important to some specializations in a practice area but not others. For this reason, always make sure to consult the subject overview to fully understand the importance of a given class and the nature of the progression in a given pathway.
For select subjects, we believe that the regular three-stage progression is not ideal for curricular design. In those instances, the subject overview will explain how we organized the pathway.
Should students take courses in the order sequenced on the pathway?
Not necessarily. The progression of courses on the pathway is a recommendation for career training purposes. Students, however, must balance career development with the need to prepare for the bar exam by taking courses tested on the bar. Additionally, scheduling considerations could impact a student’s course selection process.
Are there relevant courses not listed on the pathway?
Please note that Legal Research & Writing (LRW) I and LRW II are not listed on the pathways because you can assume that the writing, research, and analytical skills taught in these courses are beneficial to every practice area. The pathways do not include Professional Responsibility for analogous reasons.
The law faculty page provides the names and the courses on the pathway taught by both full-time and adjunct faculty. By clicking the name of the faculty member, you can view their contact information. If you have questions about a particular pathway after reading the materials, the listed faculty members are here to help you.
The resources page provides additional sources of information that students might find useful. These resources provide sources for additional information on the practice area in question and sources that will be of use in seeking employment in the specific field.
Contact us with your questions or concerns
Our goal is to continue to enhance Pathways to Practice to help students maximize their ability to plan their careers and succeed once they start to practice. To further this goal, we welcome constructive feedback through our contact form.