NOTE: Course offerings change. Classes offered this semester may not be offered in future semesters.

245.2 sec. 2 - Civil Trial Practice (Spring 2013)

Instructor: Tracie Brown  (view instructor's teaching evaluations)
Instructor: Jeffrey S. White  (view instructor's teaching evaluations)
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Units: 3
Meeting Time: Tu 6:25-9:05
Meeting Location: 170

Course Start: January 08, 2013

This fast-paced course is designed to turn you from law student to trial advocate in one semester. It is taught by U.S. District Judge Jeffrey S. White, an award-winning teacher who has taught trial advocacy classes at Boalt for many years, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Tracie L. Brown, a Boalt graduate who has tried several civil and criminal cases to verdict in federal court. In addition, students will have at least two meetings with Virginia Abascal, a courtroom presentation skills expert who has worked with numerous students in Judge White’s classes in prior years. We hope this course will be an exciting and unique experience in your law school education.

During the semester, students will prepare and present all aspects of a trial, from opening statement to closing argument. Students will be required to provide and prepare their own witnesses, and to critique their own and each others’ performances. The final exam will consist of a four-hour mock trial (conducted in front of federal judges) and related written submissions. The final exam will constitute 50% of each student’s grade, with the remaining 50% comprised of in-class participation and performances, as well as written pre-trial submissions and critiques, with an emphasis on improvement throughout the semester. Students will do a live presentation each week that will be videotaped and uploaded to the Law School’s website for each student to review and self-critique.

The course will have its first session at Boalt, but will then transition to the federal courthouse in San Francisco (3 blocks from the Civic Center BART/Muni station) so students can experience trial advocacy in the courtroom, including use of electronic evidence presentation technology. Due to the use of simulation exercises throughout the semester and the fact that each class in the course builds on the skills mastered in the prior classes, the usual provisions of "Add/Drop" do not apply. All interested students, whether enrolled or on the wait list, should attend the first session at which time enrollment will be confirmed; once the roster is finalized, students who thereafter drop or withdraw from the course will be given a failing grade.

This course is limited to students who have previously taken Evidence. Priority will be given to students who have not previously taken another trial advocacy class. All interested students should complete the brief questionnaire available below (titled Supplemental File) and return to by Friday, November 2nd. Accepted students will receive the course control number from the instructors.

Students must have taken Evidence.

This course satisfies the Skills Requirement.

Exam Notes: T
Course Category: Advocacy Skills Courses
This course is cross-listed in the following categories:
Litigation and Procedure

The following files are available for this course:

First Assignment
Supplemental File

If you are the instructor or their FSU, you may edit your files on this page.

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Required Books are in blue

  • Federal Rules of Evidence with Objections, Tenth Ed.
    Anthony Bocchino, David Sonenshein
    Publisher: NITA
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: $45.00
    Note: prices are sampled from internet bookstores. Folletts prices are unavailable at this time.
  • Flinders Aluminum Fabrication v. Mismo Fire (Case File)
    Laurence Rose, Frank Rothschild
    Publisher: NITA
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 35
    Note: prices are sampled from internet bookstores. Ned's prices are unavailable at this time.
  • Modern Trial Advocacy
    Publisher: NITA
    ISBN: 9781601561411
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 40
    Note: prices are sampled from internet bookstores. Ned's prices are unavailable at this time.
  • Rowe v. Pacific Quad, Inc.
    David Benjamin Oppenheimer,
    Publisher: National Institute for Trial Advocacy
    ISBN: 9781601560490
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: To Be Determined

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