B546 Trial Law and Advocacy: Course Description


Trial Law & Advocacy is one of the core courses in the litigation curriculum. It covers the theory, law, ethics, strategy, skills and techniques of trial practice. Students learn about the principles of judicial control and attorney advocacy, case preparation, jury selection, opening statements, direct examination, exhibits and demonstrations, cross-examination, use of expert witnesses, closing arguments, and jury deliberations. The course covers the legal and ethical framework within which trials are conducted, how to prepare portions of the trial in ways that will maximize their persuasive effect, and the forensic skills necessary for effective courtroom performances. Trial Law & Advocacy is aimed primarily at students who are serious about litigation. The law school also offers evening courses in Trial Advocacy that concentrate on courtroom performance and skills. You may not take both Trial Law & Advocacy and Trial Advocacy. Trial Law & Advocacy is taught in the fall semester. Sections of Trial Advocacy are taught both semesters.

All materials for this course will be distributed in electronic form via a course website, so a computer and the ability to work over the Internet are required.

The grading in this course comes from three sources -- one or more written exams on the rules and ethics of trial procedure, a full trial conducted at the end of the semester, and regular participation in weekly performance and critique sessions.

Either this course or a section of Trial Advocacy is required for students who want to become members of the Trial Competition Team. More information is available on the we site for the Trial Competition Team .

*Note that this course reverses the usual order of enrollment priority, and gives preference to second-year students. It is unlikely that any slots will be available to 3-Ls.

For more detailed information on syllabus, class assignments, etc., go to the home page for the course.

last updated 8/23/06