Law Schedule of Classes

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

243 sec. 002 - Appellate Advocacy (Fall 2019)

Instructor: Alexandra Robert-Gordon  
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Units: 3


    W 6:25 PM - 9:05 PM
    Location: Law 136
    From August 21, 2019
    To November 22, 2019

Course Start: August 21, 2019
Course End: November 22, 2019
Class Number: 32011

Enrollment info:
Enrolled: 12
Waitlisted: 0
Enroll Limit: 12
As of: 04/07 11:14 PM

Appellate Advocacy is designed to further develop the skills learned in Written and Oral Advocacy - writing and presenting oral argument. The aim of Appellate Advocacy is to provide students an experience closely comparable to appellate practice. Students will write a full brief from a shortened record of a case pending in the California Supreme Court or United States Supreme Court. Students will also prepare, practice and deliver a full oral argument. Students will receive advice and guidance from Berkeley Law Student-Advisors (3Ls) and Practitioner-Advisors who are among the best appellate practitioners in the Bay Area.

The course is graded, with the brief counting as 75% of the grade and oral argument as 25% of the grade. The grade awarded will also reflect the quality and timeliness of interim assignments.

Because this class requires efforts on the part of so many parties - including Student-Advisors, Practitioner-Advisors, judges, and opposing counsel - no student will be permitted to drop the class, without an extraordinary reason, after the first week of instruction.

Appellate Advocacy will NOT be offered in the Spring Semester.

Alexandra Robert Gordon is an experienced trial and appellate litigator and a Superior Court Judge. From 2009 up until her judicial appointment in 2018, Ms. Gordon served as a Deputy Attorney General in the Government Law Section of the California Department of Justice. She has represented the constitutional officers of the State of California in a wide array of litigation, in both the state and federal trial and appellate courts. Ms. Gordon has handled many high-profile cases from the trial court to the United States Supreme Court, including challenges to California’s law prohibiting the possession of large-capacity magazines, banning possession of shark fin, and requiring the disclosure of major donor information by charitable organizations. In 2014, Ms. Gordon was awarded the California Lawyer of the Year Award for her work defending the constitutionality of a state law prohibiting mental health professionals from engaging in treatments intended to change the sexual orientation of a minor.

Prior to joining the California Department of Justice, Ms. Gordon was a Ninth Circuit Staff Attorney managing the Court’s Criminal/Habeas Unit and practiced commercial litigation at a San Francisco law firm. Ms. Gordon clerked for District Judge Robert W. Sweet of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.

Ms. Gordon was a history major at Brown University, from which she graduated magna cum laude. She attended Oxford University as a Marshall Scholar before earning her J.D. with honors at Harvard Law School. Prior to attending law school, Ms. Gordon was a speechwriter for First Lady Hillary Clinton and for Ronald Brown, U.S. Secretary of Commerce.

Attendance at the first class is mandatory for all currently enrolled and waitlisted students; any currently enrolled or waitlisted students who are not present on the first day of class (without prior permission of the instructor) will be dropped. The instructor will continue to take attendance throughout the add/drop period and anyone who moves off the waitlist into the class must continue to attend in order not to be dropped.

Requirements Satisfaction:

This class fulfills Option 2 of the J.D. writing requirement for all students in the course. All students must write 30 pages and complete a draft.

Units from this class may count toward the J.D. Experiential Requirement but the class may only satisfy one academic requirement, not both.

Student Services is available to answer questions.

Exam Notes: (P) Final paper  
Course Category: Simulation Courses

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