422 Criminal Trial Practice

This is the basic trial skills course which for this semester will be taught virtually except that, conditions permitting, students who wish to try their case in person at the law school can do so.  The course covers Opening Statement, Direct Examination, Cross Examination, Impeachment, Exhibits, Trial Preparation and Closing Argument. In sections of no more than 12 students per section, students prepare and perform the various skills using simulated problems and case files. After each performance, students receive constructive comments both in class and during individual video review meetings with faculty members who are also experienced trial lawyers. The course regularly meets Thursday from 4-7 pm.  However, the first four sessions will be an intensive program with classes Thursday and Friday evenings, and half days on Saturday and Sunday, January 28-31, After the intensive session, regular classes will be held at the time previously mentioned.  The course ends before what would have been spring break, with a full jury trial of a civil or criminal case with teams of two students on each side. At the end of the trial, the jury deliberates and students can watch the jury as it deliberates.

Enrollment Prerequisite

Law 245 Evidence is a pre-requisite for Criminal Trial Practice. This course is not open to students who are taking, or have taken, Law 420 Trial Practice.

Course Areas of Practice
Degree Requirements
Course Type
Simulation
Learning Outcomes
Other professional skills needed for competent and ethical participation as a member of the legal profession
2020
Fall 2020
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Day/Times Room

422.01 3 Thomas K. Maher, Donald H. Beskind, Michael Dockterman Tu 6:00 PM-8:50 PM

This class will be taught remotely. The synchronous portion of the class will meet remotely once a week to discuss the basic skills and perform the assigned exercises. Each student will perform an exercise at least once for each class. If students are willing and conditions permit, we may meet for some exercises in the courtroom at the law school.  Students will need to pair up and prepare the exercises in advance, which can be done on Zoom.  There will be recorded lectures that can be watched   This basic trial skills course covers Opening Statement, Direct Examination, Cross Examination, Impeachment, Exhibits, Expert Witnesses and Closing Argument. Students will prepare and perform these skills using simulated problems and case files. Students receive constructive comments from faculty who are experienced trial lawyers. The course ends with a trial with teams of two students on each side. This class is appropriate for students with an interest in trial practice, with a specific focus on trial skills in the context of criminal litigation.

Pre/Co-requisites

Law 245 Evidence is a pre-requisite for Criminal Trial Practice. This course is not open to students who are taking, or have taken, Law 420 Trial Practice.

Enrollment Restrictions
None
Spring 2020
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Day/Times Room

422.02 3 Thomas K. Maher W 6:00-8:45 PM 4049

This basic trial skills course covers Opening Statement, Direct Examination, Cross Examination, Impeachment, Exhibits, Expert Witnesses and Closing Argument. Students will prepare and perform these skills using simulated problems and case files. Students receive constructive comments from faculty who are experienced trial lawyers. The course ends with a full jury trial with teams of two students on each side. At the end of the trial, the jury deliberates while students observe. This class is appropriate for students with an interest in trial practice, with a specific focus on trial skills in the context of criminal litigation.

In the Fall, this class lasts all semester. In the Spring, this course follows the schedule for the three sections that cover both civil and criminal trials. See Law 420.

Pre/Co-requisites
None
Enrollment Restrictions
None
2019
Fall 2019
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Day/Times Room

422.01 3 Thomas K. Maher Tu 6:00-8:50 PM 4049

This basic trial skills course covers Opening Statement, Direct Examination, Cross Examination, Impeachment, Exhibits, Expert Witnesses and Closing Argument. Students will prepare and perform these skills using simulated problems and case files. Students receive constructive comments from faculty who are experienced trial lawyers. The course ends with a full jury trial with teams of two students on each side. At the end of the trial, the jury deliberates while students observe. This class is appropriate for students with an interest in trial practice, with a specific focus on trial skills in the context of criminal litigation.

In the Fall, this class lasts all semester. In the Spring, this course follows the schedule for the three sections that cover both civil and criminal trials. See Law 420.

Pre/Co-requisites
None
Enrollment Restrictions
None
Spring 2019
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Day/Times Room

422.02 3 Thomas K. Maher M 7:00-9:45 PM; Th 7:35-8:35 PM 4049

This basic trial skills course covers Opening Statement, Direct Examination, Cross Examination, Impeachment, Exhibits, Expert Witnesses and Closing Argument. Students will prepare and perform these skills using simulated problems and case files. Students receive constructive comments from faculty who are experienced trial lawyers. The course ends with a full jury trial with teams of two students on each side. At the end of the trial, the jury deliberates while students observe. This class is appropriate for students with an interest in trial practice, with a specific focus on trial skills in the context of criminal litigation.

In the Fall, this class lasts all semester. In the Spring, this course follows the schedule for the three sections that cover both civil and criminal trials. See Law 420.

Pre/Co-requisites
Enrollment Restrictions
None
2018
Fall 2018
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Day/Times Room

422.01 3 Thomas K. Maher Tu 6:00-8:50 PM 4049

This basic trial skills course covers Opening Statement, Direct Examination, Cross Examination, Impeachment, Exhibits, Expert Witnesses and Closing Argument. Students will prepare and perform these skills using simulated problems and case files. Students receive constructive comments from faculty who are experienced trial lawyers. The course ends with a full jury trial with teams of two students on each side. At the end of the trial, the jury deliberates while students observe. This class is appropriate for students with an interest in trial practice, with a specific focus on trial skills in the context of criminal litigation.

In the Fall, this class lasts all semester. In the Spring, this course follows the schedule for the three sections that cover both civil and criminal trials. See Law 420.

Pre/Co-requisites
Enrollment Restrictions
None
Spring 2018
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Day/Times Room

422.02 3 Thomas K. Maher M 7:00-9:45 PM; Th 7:35-8:35 PM 4049

This basic trial skills course covers Opening Statement, Direct Examination, Cross Examination, Impeachment, Exhibits, Expert Witnesses and Closing Argument. Students will prepare and perform these skills using simulated problems and case files. Students receive constructive comments from faculty who are experienced trial lawyers. The course ends with a full jury trial with teams of two students on each side. At the end of the trial, the jury deliberates while students observe. This class is appropriate for students with an interest in trial practice, with a specific focus on trial skills in the context of criminal litigation.

In the Fall, this class lasts all semester. In the Spring, this course follows the schedule for the three sections that cover both civil and criminal trials. See Law 420.

Pre/Co-requisites
Enrollment Restrictions
None
2017
Fall 2017
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Day/Times Room

422.01 3 Thomas K. Maher Tu 6:00-8:50 PM 4049

This basic trial skills course covers Opening Statement, Direct Examination, Cross Examination, Impeachment, Exhibits, Expert Witnesses and Closing Argument. Students will prepare and perform these skills using simulated problems and case files. Students receive constructive comments from faculty who are experienced trial lawyers. The course ends with a full jury trial with teams of two students on each side. At the end of the trial, the jury deliberates while students observe. This class is appropriate for students with an interest in trial practice, with a specific focus on trial skills in the context of criminal litigation.

In the Fall, this class lasts all semester. In the Spring, this course follows the schedule for the three sections that cover both civil and criminal trials. See Law 420.

Pre/Co-requisites
Enrollment Restrictions
None
Spring 2017
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Day/Times Room

422.02 3 Thomas K. Maher M 6:30-9:20 PM, Th 7:15-8:15 PM 4049/4049

This basic trial skills course covers Opening Statement, Direct Examination, Cross Examination, Impeachment, Exhibits, Expert Witnesses and Closing Argument. Students will prepare and perform these skills using simulated problems and case files. Students receive constructive comments from faculty who are experienced trial lawyers. The course ends with a full jury trial with teams of two students on each side. At the end of the trial, the jury deliberates while students observe. This class is appropriate for students with an interest in trial practice, with a specific focus on trial skills in the context of criminal litigation.

In the Fall, this class lasts all semester. In the Spring, this course follows the schedule for the three sections that cover both civil and criminal trials. See Law 420.

Pre/Co-requisites
Enrollment Restrictions
None
2016
Fall 2016
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Day/Times Room

422.01 3 Thomas K. Maher Tu 6:00-8:50 PM 4049

This basic trial skills course covers Opening Statement, Direct Examination, Cross Examination, Impeachment, Exhibits, Expert Witnesses and Closing Argument. Students will prepare and perform these skills using simulated problems and case files. Students receive constructive comments from faculty who are experienced trial lawyers. The course ends with a full jury trial with teams of two students on each side. At the end of the trial, the jury deliberates while students observe. This class is appropriate for students with an interest in trial practice, with a specific focus on trial skills in the context of criminal litigation.

Pre/Co-requisites
Enrollment Restrictions
None

*Please note that this information is for planning purposes only, and should not be relied upon for the schedule for a given semester. Faculty leaves and sabbaticals, as well as other curriculum considerations, will sometimes affect when a course may be offered.