Course - Law


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Being a lawyer is about making choices. This course will introduce students to some of the many, often difficult, choices faced by the ethical lawyer. We will study the “law of lawyering” including the Model Rules of Professional Conduct, case law, relevant rules of civil and criminal procedure, and legal malpractice. But we will also explore some of the ethical, moral and personal choices that many lawyers face in daily practice and that cannot be easily resolved by reference to rules or laws alone. The hope is that the course will be one step in helping students become reflective and competent lawyers.


The Law and Ethics of Law Practice, Margaret Raymond, ISBN: 13-9780314180438.


Supplemental Text:  American Bar Association, Model Rules of Professional Conduct, 2008 ed. or any other rules compilation that is current to 2008. 

Course Format

This is a problem oriented class. We will study issues of professional responsibility and professionalism by trying to resolve situations posed by the text, by the professor, by videos, by the news, and by your own experiences. Students can anticipate being called upon to participate in classroom discussions, to work in small groups and to role play. 

Written Assignments

1.  A small group project in which you will create your own law office.  2.  A short reflection paper/essay.   In addition, students may teach a high school or middle school class and/or participate in the Volunteer Lawyers Program.  A short reflection paper about either of those experiences may be used for a portion of the grade. We will discuss the teaching and VLP options in class.  

Type of Exam

Four short quizzes will be given during the semester. The quizzes will be multiple choice questions in the style of the Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam which most of you must take to be admitted to a state bar. The Final Exam will be a mix of essay and short answer questions. 

Basis for grading

Final Exam -- 50%,  four quizzes -- 20% total, class project --20%, reflection paper - 10%.  Class participation may be a basis for additional credit.

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