Course Details

Medical Innovation II

Medical Innovation is an interdisciplinary course that exposes students to the innovation process and teaches them many of the business, technical, teamwork, presentation and other related skills necessary to be successful in that process. In the context of simulating a startup healthcare company, students will experience the various stages of the innovation life cycle from ideation to prototyping, to legal protection, to business plan development, and, finally, to investor presentation. The course is offered as part of Northwestern University's NUvention program. The course involves students and faculty from four schools: Law, Medicine, Engineering, and Business. Students work in teams including at least one member from each school; each team operates under the supervision of an advisor. While learning about market opportunities in health care, value propositions, what investors are looking for, needs identification, regulatory pathways, reimbursement, and many other topics, teams are challenged to develop or identify a novel and viable product that solves an unmet healthcare need. Students will conduct research to uncover compelling clinical problems, generate ideas to solve those problems, and ultimately settle on the preferred solution. Next, teams create a tangible prototype of their solution and undertake the necessary steps to plan for commercial development. They investigate suitable legal protection and technology transfer issues, they prepare a plan for protecting and/or using IP, and they prepare a business plan. At the conclusion of the program, teams present their inventions and business plans to a panel of sophisticated potential investors and development partners. Each week, on Wednesday evenings from 6:00-9:00, the Medical Innovation class sessions will address topics vital to each stage of the innovation and commercialization processes, using case studies, lectures, and guest speakers. There will be time set aside during the Wednesday evening sessions for teams to meet, discuss issues, and strategize about where they are in the process. Most Wednesday evening classes in the Fall quarter will be held on the Chicago Campus; most Wednesday sessions in the Spring quarter will be held on the Evanston Campus. There may also be one or two classes held off-campus. In addition to the Wednesday evening classes, the law students will meet separately in the law school on a regular basis - biweekly - to learn about and discuss the legal issues involved at the various stages of development. Though the law students are full founding members of their companies - and not the legal counsel for their companies - team members will look to the law students for guidance on the legal issues involved in commercial development (just as the teams will look to their engineering students to lead on prototyping issues, and to their business students for guidance in developing business plans); the separate law school class provides the opportunity for the law students as a group to learn about and discuss those issues. The law school classes will meet on Wednesdays at a time to be determined. Medical Innovation runs for 6-months - from fall quarter through winter quarter; the course begins mid-September and ends in mid-March. Students are required to enroll for both quarters; each quarter will constitute a separate course for enrollment and transcript purposes - Medical Innovation I & II - which together satisfy 6 law school credit hours. Class attendance is required, and students must commit in advance to attending the pitch presentations at the end of each quarter. The Fall quarter pitch presentation will take place during the law school exam period and the Winter quarter pitch will take place in March. The law school instructors for the Medical Innovation course are Professor Esther Barron and Professor Darren Green, and there will also be an adjunct professor to assist with intellectual property issues. The course is open to 2Ls, 3Ls, and LLM students and there are no formal prerequisites. We are looking for students with a variety of backgrounds and experiences; the course is especially suited to students with an interest in at least one of these areas: health care, business, entrepreneurship, and/or intellectual property. Students interested in this course should fill out a course application, which can be linked to from the NU Law Registration and Records website, under: forms. Students whose applications are accepted and enroll in the course will be charged 75 bid points per semester. Grades will be based on: the overall team project, the individual student's contribution to the overall team project, the quality of each law student's performance on the separate law school assignments throughout the course, class participation and performance in the separate law school class, and participation and performance in the larger Medical Innovation classes.

Catalog Number: PPTYTORT 642
Practice Areas: Intellectual Property Practice AreaLegal Skills Development
Additional Course Information: Class meets using University Calendar,  Experiential Learning


Course History

Spring 2019
Title: Medical Innovation II
Faculty: Gunn, Jonathan
Section: 1     Credits: 3.0
Capacity: 14     Actual: 9

Spring 2018
Title: Medical Innovation II
Faculty: Green, Darren (courses | profile)
Richards, Patrick D
Barron, Esther S. (courses | profile)
Section: 1     Credits: 3.0
Capacity: 14     Actual: 11

Spring 2017
Title: Medical Innovation II
Faculty: Green, Darren (courses | profile)
Richards, Patrick D
Barron, Esther S. (courses | profile)
Section: 1     Credits: 3.0
Capacity: 14     Actual: 13