Sarah Burstein

  • Associate Professor of Law


B.A., with Honors and with Distinction, Iowa State University, 2004

J.D., University of Chicago Law School, 2007

Research Interests

  • Design Patents
  • Trade Dress
  • Copyright in the Visual Arts
  • Comparative Design Law


Professor Burstein joined the University of Oklahoma College of Law faculty in 2012. She teaches Intellectual Property, Trademarks, Copyright and Patents. She also coaches the International Trademark Association (INTA) Saul Lefkowitz Moot Court Competition team.

Prior to joining the faculty, Professor Burstein served as a law clerk to the Honorable Robert W. Pratt in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Iowa. She also worked as an intellectual property litigation associate in the Chicago office of Kirkland & Ellis LLP. Professor Burstein has a law degree from the University of Chicago and B.A. in Art & Design from Iowa State University. 

Professor Burstein’s scholarship focuses on design law, with a particular focus on design patents. She has participated, by invitation, in design law conferences at the University of Oxford, Stanford Law School, the Max Planck Institute for Intellectual Property and Competition Law, and ETH Zurich. Professor Burstein is a past chair of the AALS Section on Art Law and the ABA Design Committee. She is a member of the INTA Design Rights Committee.

Transparency disclosure:

Consulted with another law professor, who was preparing for a congressional staff briefing on the PARTS Act, about various issues of design patent law on behalf of the Quality Parts Coalition (October 2016).

Consulted with another law professor, who drafting a white paper in support of the PARTS Act, about various issues of design patent law, legislation, and history on behalf of the Quality Parts Coalition (July 2017).

Additional Information

Courses Taught


  • Copyright 6543
  • Intellectual Property Survey 6213
  • Patents 6100
  • Trademarks & Unfair Competition 6100


Selected Recent & Upcoming Presentations

Berkeley Technology Law Journal Symposium (April 2018).

Florida International University College of Law, Comparative IP Law Conference (April 2017). 

Case Western Reserve University School of Law, WIPIP Colloquium (February 2018).

Selected Additional Writing

Samsung v. Apple: A view from inside the courtroom, PATENTLY-O (Oct. 12, 2016).

“Design” & Design Patents, DESIGN.BLOG (September 7, 2016) (by invitation).

Analysis of U.K. Legislation Criminalizing the Infringement of Registered Designs, COMPARATIVE PATENT REMEDIES (May 23, 2014), (by invitation).

TPP: what the design provisions say—and don't say!, THE IPKAT (Nov. 22, 2013) (by invitation).

Design Patent Myths—On examiners and expertise, THE FACULTY LOUNGE (Oct. 30, 2013).

Classic Design Patent Scholarship, WRITTEN DESCRIPTION (Apr. 5, 2013), (by invitation).

Heart, soul and US design patents, CLASS 99 (Oct. 17, 2012).

Guest Post: Design Patents and Apple v. Samsung, MADISONIAN.NET (Aug. 27, 2012).

Guest Post by Sarah Burstein: Apple v. Samsung, PATENTLY-O (May 18, 2012).


Bar Admissions

Supreme Court of Illinois

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois

Supreme Court of the United States

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