Writing 109L—Writing for the Legal Profession


Instructor: James H. Donelan
Tuesday, Thursday, 2:00-3:15, Enroll Code: 46897
Tuesdays: HSSB 1232
Thursdays: Miramar Lab, Phelps 1526
Email: donelan@writing.ucsb.edu
Web Site: http://www.writing.ucsb.edu/faculty/donelan
Office: 1521 South Hall
Office Hours: Tuesday 9:00-10:00, Wednesday 9:00-10:00 or by appointment.

Texts: All books are available in the UCen Book Store.
Clapp, Random House Webster's Dictionary of the Law
Stark, Writing to Win (Writing)
Behrens, Making the Case (Making)
If you do not already own a basic writing handbook, please purchase one.

Computer Program:

ConnectWeb (purchase online for $20) Program site: http://connectweb.com/ucsb.asp
This section is Writing 109L, 1.

Reader:

Available at Graphikart in Isla Vista (Reader)

Course Description: Practice in applying rules to facts in analyzing issues and in writing clearly, succinctly and cogently in various forms of legal discourse.

Requirements: The course requires regular attendance, active participation in class discussion and activities, and timely completion of all assignments, including case briefs and legal analysis. You will write a case brief, a legal memorandum, an advocacy letter, an appellate brief, and several pre-writing assignments. The relative value of these assignments and class participation in determining your course grade is as follows:

    1. Case brief—10%
    2. Memo—20%
    3. Letter—20%
    4. Appellate brief—35%
    5. Participation and completion of other homework assignments—15%

In addition:

 

Syllabus

I: Terms, Definitions, and Sentences: The Case Brief

9/23
Introduction and Logistics

9/25
Class meets in the lab today.
Reading: Making, "Preface" xxii; Hricik, "The American Legal System" 2
Homework: Two-paragraph description of the structure of the American legal system. Have the assignment available in class as either a Microsoft Word or html file.
In-class: Introduction to ConnectWeb; comparison of descriptions

9/30
Reading: Making, Group 1 Readings, 419, Williams v. Ellington , 476-478; Reader, Knowles v. Iowa and "Comprehensive Brief."
Homework: Summary of Williams v. Ellington
In-class: Case briefs

10/2
Class meets in the lab today.
Reading: Making, "IRAC" 59; Writing, Chapters 1-5
Homework: Thumbnail Brief of Knowles v. Iowa
In-class: Creating a comprehensive brief

10/7
In-class: Reversal of Fortune

10/9
Class meets in the lab today.
Homework: Comprehensive Brief Due
In-class: Peer Review

II: Paragraph Development: The Legal Memorandum and the Advocacy Letter

10/14
Class meets in Davidson Library.

10/16
Class meets in the lab today.
Reading: Making, Stracher, "The Memo" 32; Reader, "Writing the Memorandum"; Writing, Chapters 6-7.
Homework: Making, Writing Exercise 2, 83
In-class: Writing persuasive memos.

10/21
Reading: Making, Group 3 Readings, 456; Writing, Chapter 13
Homework: Draft of memorandum.
In-class: Editing and proofreading.

10/23
Class meets in the lab today.
Homework: Memorandum due.
In-class: Peer review of memoranda.

10/28
Readings: Making, "Broken Engagements" 487; Writing, Chapter 14
Homework: Write a brief, but persuasive letter for one side of a broken engagement case.
In-class: Paragraph structure.

10/30
Class meets in the lab today.
Homework: Draft of advocacy letter.
In-class: Paragraph transitions and peer review.

11/4
Reading: Reader, "The Appellate Brief"
Homework: Advocacy Letter due.
In-class: Preparing an appeal.

III: Writing Longer Arguments: The Appellate Brief

11/6
Class meets in the lab today.
Readings: Reader, Amarin v. Maryland Cup briefs
Homework: Summary of Amarin arguments.
In-class: Work group formation; task lists and schedules.


11/11
Veterans Day! No class!

11/13
Class meets in the lab today.
Readings: Reader, "Copyright Basics"
Homework: List of relevant cases.
In-class: Argument and strategy

11/18
Readings: Writing, Chapter 8
Homework: Outline of appeal.
In-class: Logic and argument

11/20
Class meets in the lab today.
Homework: First half of appeal draft.
In-class: Editing for clarity

11/25
Group Meetings.

11/27
Happy Thanksgiving!

12/2
Oral presentations.
Final class.

12/8
Appellate brief due. Place a hard copy in my mailbox by 12:00 noon.