Judicial Opinion Writing
About This Class
This seminar explores the judicial opinion writing process as distinguished from adversarial legal writing. Class readings, discussions, and written assignments will encourage students to critically examine decision and opinion writing of prominent jurists. Class assignments will encourage students to develop the understanding and skills needed to assist judges by drafting opinions, bench memos, and judicial research memoranda based on the briefs and records in previously litigated state and federal cases. This course will provide the student with an understanding of the role and responsibilities of a judicial law clerk at the trial and appellate levels. While designed for students who are considering starting off their careers as judicial interns or law clerks, this course is appropriate for any student interested in studying the practical application of opinion writing as a complement to their overall legal writing skills. Method of evaluation: A combination of writing assignments and a final term project to at the end of the term. Extensive writing required; strongly recommended for 2Ls and 3Ls, whose goal is to secure a law clerk position with the judiciary.