The purpose of this class is to give students hands-on experience in appellate advocacy by simulating the real thing. At the outset students will be given a legal issue and assigned one side of that issue to brief. Each student must then independently research the issue and write a brief with no outside assistance from anyone, and without collaborating with others in the class. The only assistance they will receive at this point will be in the form of workshops reviewing research and brief writing skills, and a review by third year moot court board members of the initial outline and first draft of their brief. After turning in their briefs, which will be scored by the moot court board and the instructor, a workshop on oral argument techniques will be held, followed by two rounds of practice arguments. In the first round students will argue “on brief”; i.e., the side of the issue they briefed. In the second round they will argue “off brief,” i.e. the opposing side. Students will then argue both “on brief” and “off brief” in the preliminary rounds of the Fegtly Moot Court Competition. Their oral and brief scores will be combined to determine who advances to the semi-final and final rounds, which will be judged by members of the bench and bar.
National Moot Court Teams
The top six scoring participants in Second Year Fegtly Moot Court Competition will be selected to compete in a national moot court competition their 3rd year.
Moot Court BoardThe top 8-10 scoring participants in the Second Year Fegtly Moot Court Competition will be invited to join the Moot Court Board their third year. The Board assists the instructor in Second Year Moot Court by helping to present workshops in written and oral advocacy, scoring participant’s briefs and oral arguments, bailiffing arguments during the competition, and various other tasks.
The Little Book of Legal Writing, by Alan Dworsky
Handouts prepared by instructor
|Course Format||Because the emphasis is on learning by doing, this class will combine independent work with workshops and simulated courtroom appellate arguments.|
|Written Assignments||Appellate brief|
|Type of Exam||None|
|Basis for grading||To pass, students must: independently research a legal issue; prepare an outline of that issue; write a preliminary draft brief arguing one side of that issue; complete a brief by a specific time and date; argue both on- and off-brief in practice arguments; argue both on- and off-brief in the preliminary rounds of the Fegtly Moot Court Competition.|