The objectives of a student undertaking law study abroad during the J.D. program are 1) to obtain a deeper understanding of cross-cultural communication specific to the country in which the student studies, 2) to obtain knowledge of the laws and legal system of the country in which the student studies, and 3) to advance the student learning outcomes of the UMKC School of Law in the context of the cultural and legal environment of country in which the student studies.
Information relating to study abroad opportunities at UMKC is available on this website. In addition, information about programs at other law schools is available on the internet. Soe programs provide posters or brochures, which are available on the ground floor. Except as noted below, students with questions about study abroad programs should contact the sponsoring law school.
Information about credits for the China and Ireland/Wales programs is available on this website. Students desiring to apply credits to their UMKC law degree from coursework taken in a study abroad program from another school must obtain the prior approval of the associate dean. The request must be made in writing, accompanied by a brochure or other publication setting forth the sponsoring institution, the coursework available, the courses the student desires to take and the dates of study. Requests will be reviewed and students will receive a letter approving or denying the requests.
A grade of “C” or better must be earned in each course in order for credit for that course to transfer back to UMKC. In addition, even though the other institution assigns a grade, it will be recorded simply as a “credit” on the student’s UMKC transcript and will not be included in the student’s cumulative grade point average.
Associate Dean Thomas joined the UMKC Law Faculty in 1993. His research focuses on insurance law and on the intersection between law and culture. Since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, Dean Thomas has developed expertise on terrorism and insurance, and has published a number of recent articles on that topic in the U.S., Asia and Russia.
Dean Thomas attended law school at the University of California, Berkeley, where he was an executive editor on the California Law Review. As an undergraduate, Dean Thomas studied political science at Loyola Marymount University, but spent most of his time engaged in intercollegiate debate.
Before joining the faculty, Thomas spent five years practicing law in Southern California with the law firm Irell and Manella. He worked on civil litigation and insurance coverage matters. Prior to practicing law, he was a law clerk to M. Joseph Blumenfeld of the Federal District Court in Hartford, Conn.
He has taught alternative compensation systems (advanced tort), appellate advocacy, civil procedure, economics and the law, environmental and toxic torts, federal jurisdiction, and insurance law. He is currently working with the school’s LL.M. program for international students and in that program teaches the courses Introduction to Law and Lawyering, Introduction to American Law and Legal Culture and Introduction to American Legal Skills.
Areas of expertise
Insurance law, torts, civil procedure, economics