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Curriculum - Financial Compliance Certificate
USC Gould School of Law

Earning the online Financial Compliance Certificate requires successful completion of 12 credit units from among the following classes:

  • Business Principles in Law, 2 units

    Business Principles in Law introduces students to the basic principles and practices of contemporary business so that they can be more effective professionals when advising business clients and/or better leverage their internal and external legal resources. The course will focus on fundamental business concepts, including, an introduction to accounting, business strategy, management, sales and marketing, finance and risk. Additionally, the course will cover the challenges business leaders face in the contemporary economic, political, and social environment. Course sessions will include lectures, guest speakers, and analysis and discussion of real world situations and case studies.

  • Business Organizations, 4 units (mandatory)

    Business Organizations examines the legal organizations most often used by businesses in the United States, and discusses the specific laws governing business organizations, the policies and theories underlying these laws, and best practices for complying with them. The primary focus is on corporations as these are the predominant form of business organization by every measure except number of firms. The course also covers unincorporated entities, such as partnerships and limited liability companies. After taking this course, students will have a solid foundation in the law of business organizations, a general understanding of the business contexts in which the law operates, and an appreciation for the practical issues transactional lawyers confront when advising business organizations. The subject matter will be taught using a "problem method" in order to promote a practical understanding of business organizational law.

  • Contract Drafting and Strategy, 2 units

    Contract Drafting and Strategy examines the strategies, objectives, and challenges that will affect how they draft contracts. They will consider the lawyer's role in drafting contracts and the factors that influence drafting style, technique, and content. The course will begin by analyzing the standard structure and terms of a typical contract, including the purposes behind them. Students will learn to draft precisely. Students then will dissect and examine a range of contracts used in business relationships (e.g., business formations, employment, real estate transactions, mergers/acquisitions) to evaluate drafting techniques and decisions in specific transactions. Finally, the students will use the knowledge they've gained to ink a deal.

  • Corporate Governance, 2 units

    Corporate Governance introduces students to the role and responsibilities of the board of directors and executive management in private, public, and nonprofit entities. The course will examine the purpose, evolution and history of corporate governance standards, the current structure, makeup, priorities and culture of boards, shareholder/stakeholder engagement, shareholder activism, corporate social responsibility, indemnification of boards and their management, and current "hot" topics in corporate governance.

  • Financial Institution Regulation, 2 units

    Financial Institution Regulation introduces foundational concepts on general financial institution compliance, including compliance methods and regulations affecting banks, securities firms, funds, and other financial services. Compliance case studies will help students understand how a financial institution's compliance department operates. This includes discussions on recommend best practices, policies and procedures.

  • Global Regulatory Compliance, 2 units

    Global Regulatory Compliance provides an introduction to regulatory regimes governing business practices that are enforced globally and with which multinational and other companies that are engaged in cross-border transactions must comply; as well as the ways that organizations ensure compliance with such laws and regulations. This course will cover specific regulatory regimes that are enforced globally including, antitrust, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention, Anti-Money Laundering, Data Privacy, U.S. Export Controls, and regulatory governance of/restrictions on foreign direct investment.

  • Regulatory Compliance, 2 units (mandatory)

    Regulatory Compliance provides an overview of regulatory compliance law and the ways that organizations ensure compliance with governing laws and regulations. This course provides students with an examination of various areas of law, regulation, and policies, as well as the ways specific industries utilize compliance protocols or programs. Central principles, as well as the statutory and regulatory framework that governs this growing field of compliance, will be analyzed.

  • Securities Regulation, 3 units

    Securities Regulations examines the regulation of the offer and sale of securities under the Securities Act of 1933 and the reporting requirements under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Topics to be covered include: the definition of a , "security"; the registration of securities for public sale under the Securities Act; the exemptions from such registration requirement; the periodic reporting requirements under the Exchange Act; regulation of secondary market transactions; the anti-fraud provisions of the Securities Act and the Exchange Act, including Rule 10b-5; civil liability under the Securities Act; and the operation of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

    The aim of this course is to provide a basic working knowledge of the federal securities laws to students intending to pursue a career in corporate finance or securities litigation, whether in a law firm, securities firm or regulatory agency. It also will be of interest to those interested in the development of the modern regulatory state, as exemplified by the continuing evolution of the rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission.

If you are a degree-seeking student, your certificate credits also count toward the 21 units required for the online MSL degree or online LLM degree.

Courses used toward a degree completed at another university may not be applied toward this certificate.

Compliance Certification Board (CCB) Eligibility Notice: Students who pursue the Financial Compliance Certificate at USC Gould School of Law will need to complete 16 units in CCB-accredited coursework and earn a cumulative GPA of 3.0 to fulfill the professional work experience and continuing education units (CEU) requirements, allowing you to eligible to sit for a CCB exam upon graduation with the Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics.