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Thursday, May 29, 2014

Pretrial Advocacy Course Outline

The first of our course outlines (see blog post of May 28, 2014 for further explanation) is for a pretrial advocacy course. This version is provided by Gwen Stern, Director of Trial Advocacy Programs and Associate Teaching Professor at Drexel University School of Law in Philadelphia. Please feel free to contact Gwen directly for more information about her course at gstern@drexel.edu.

Pretrial Advocacy
  • Skills course with student participation to teach students to develop pretrial strategic themes, theories and practices to be used through pretrial process
  • Use real cases with real examples
  • Max 18 students
  • Start with HBO film “Hot Coffee”, then classes on:
  1. Before Representation
  2. Client Interviewing
  3. Pleadings
  4. Discovery-Interrogatories, Request for Production of Documents and Request for Admissions
  5. Expert Reports
  6. E-Discovery
  7. Depositions of parties, witnesses and experts
  8. Demonstrative Evidence
  9. Motions in Limine
  10. Settlement Conferences
  • Grading:
    1. Class Participation (including writing assignments)-25%
    2. Memorandum for Motion for Summary Judgment-25%
    3. Final Exam-50%
*Students in this course will be divided into groups of Plaintiffs and Defendants. Students will be further subdivided into teams of two students (plaintiff and defendant), so they can for example, serve and respond to discovery between themselves. Each team may be assigned to lead the discussion during one or more classes during the semester.
Example of an Assignment:
For example: EXPERT DEPOSITION CLASS: SA=Student Assignment; PP=Plaintiff’s Problem Assignment; CA=Class Assignment; DP=Defendant’s Problem Assignment:
SA: Read short summary of case for expert deposition class
PP: Bring deposition outlines to prepare plaintiff’s expert and take the deposition of Defendant’s expert.
DD: Bring deposition outlines to prepare defendant’s expert and take deposition of Plaintiff’s expert.
CA: Prepare real economists for depositions and take depositions. Discuss and critique depositions.
--Gwen Stern

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