Reproductive and Sexual Rights (Busby)

Course Title: Reproductive and Sexual Rights (Busby)
Course Number: LAW 3980
Course Description:

This seminar course will deepen students’ knowledge on complex issues related to reproductive and sexual rights, encourage incorporation of insights from other methodologies and theoretical approaches into legal problem solving, and sharpen research and communication skills.


Non-criminal Responses to Gendered Violence:   University Sexual Violence Policies; Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls; Limits and Uses of Domestic Violence Protection and Prevention Orders

Criminal Responses to Sexual Violence and Stigmatized Practices:   Police and Prosecutorial Policies in Sexual Assault Cases; Stigmatized Sexual Practices; HIV Disclosure and Sexual Assault Law

Human Reproduction:  Surrogate Motherhood; Egg, Sperm and Gamete Donations; Issues in Pregnancy Termination

Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity:  Gender Queer Youth; Queer Politics/Queer Rights; The LGBT Purge Class Action; Participation in Elite Sports by Trans Identified People

Sex Work/Prostitution: Will Canada’s New Laws Survive a Charter Challenge? Comparing Sex Work Laws in India and Canada

Teaching Method:

Many of the seminars will feature interactive presentations by guest speakers who are leading edge researchers or practicing professionals. As this is a seminar course, students are be expected to read assigned materials, attend the seminars and participate in dialogue with the guest and other participants. The seminars (which are open to anyone who wants to attend) usually will be two hours long and the student cohort will usually meet together in the third hour. To accommodate some speakers, occasionally seminars may be held at a different time and students are expected to make every effort to attend seminars that are scheduled at other times.


Students will be graded on two written assignments and on class participation. The first written assignment (2000-2500 words) calls for a legal opinion on a problem related to university sexual violence policies. It will be due in early or mid-October and will be worth 20% of the course grade. The second assignment is a research paper (about 7-8000 words) worth 70% of the final grade. The paper will be due on the last day of classes in December. Students will be evaluated on participation and engagement (worth 10% of the final grade). Participation and engagement grades will be based on preparation, attendance and participation in the seminars; participation in the inter-disciplinary cohort events; inviting others to come to the seminars and engaging them in discussions on the issues; and delivery of a presentation on their paper.

Course Materials:

coming soon


Karen Busby