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Full-Text Articles in Law

Collaboration With Doctrinal Faculty To Introduce Creac, Beth Hirschfelder Wilensky Oct 2018

Collaboration With Doctrinal Faculty To Introduce Creac, Beth Hirschfelder Wilensky

Articles

When legal writing professors introduce CREAC (or IRAC, TREAT, etc.), our examples necessarily use some area of substantive law to demonstrate how the pieces of legal analysis fit together. And when we ask students to try drafting a CREAC analysis, they also have to learn the relevant substantive law first. Students might be asked to analyze whether a worker is an employee or independent contractor or whether the elements of a tort claim are satisfied. But that means that students need to learn the relevant substantive doctrine while they are also grappling with the basics of CREAC. In the language ...


Shot Selection, Patrick Barry Sep 2018

Shot Selection, Patrick Barry

Articles

One of the more common pieces of writing advice in our post-Hemingway world is to keep sentences short. Experts on legal writing are particularly fond of this Position — and for good reason. Few judges look at the sentences that appear in briefs, memos, statutes, and contracts and say, "You know what each of those could use? More words." Professor Noah Messing does a particularly good job making the case for short sentences. Brevity, he explains, "reduces the risk that your writing will confuse or irk readers," especially given that "empirical studies show that writing verbosely makes writers sound dumber, not ...


Paragraphing, Patrick Barry Aug 2018

Paragraphing, Patrick Barry

Articles

Consider treating the word paragraph as a verb. Think of it as something you can do well or poorly, with major consequences for your readers. Good paragraphers, for example, help readers. They make it easy to navigate and absorb information. They don’t flit around, hastily moving on to the next point before fully supporting their first. Nor do they get stuck for too long in one place. Instead, they give a lot of thought not just to the ideas but also to their arrangement—their shape, their balance, their pace.


Using Appellate Clinics To Focus On Legal Writing Skills, Timothy Pinto May 2018

Using Appellate Clinics To Focus On Legal Writing Skills, Timothy Pinto

Articles

Five years ago, I went to lunch with a colleague. I was teaching a legal writing course to 1L students, and he taught in a clinic in which 2L and 3L students were required to write short motions and briefs. Several of his students had taken my writing class as 1Ls, and he had a question for me. "What the heck are you teaching these students?" he asked as we sat down. He explained that several of his students were struggling with preparing simple motions. They were not laying out facts clearly. They were not identifying key legal rules. In ...


What We Still Don't Know About What Persuades Judges – And Some Ways We Might Find Out, Edward R. Becker May 2018

What We Still Don't Know About What Persuades Judges – And Some Ways We Might Find Out, Edward R. Becker

Articles

Over 25 years ago, in his foreword to the first volume of Legal Writing, Chris Rideout nailed it: legal writing as actually practiced by lawyers and judges needs to improve, “[b]ut more fundamental inquiry into legal writing...is needed as well.” The intervening decades have seen many laudable efforts on the latter front, as our collective scholarly discipline, then in its infancy, has matured. But one particular question that Rideout identified remains largely unaddressed by our discipline, although recent developments suggest a welcome increase in attention to the topic. Specifically, Rideout explained that our field did not know as ...


Editing And Empathy, Patrick Barry May 2018

Editing And Empathy, Patrick Barry

Articles

Design begins with empathy.” I recently wrote that on the board during a class for students in the Child Welfare Appellate Clinic at the University of Michigan Law School. I thought it might help them write better briefs. I got the idea from Ilse Crawford, whose work as an interior designer can be seen all over the world—from airport lounges in Hong Kong, to fancy restaurants in London, to pear-shaped stools at IKEA. In Crawford’s view, “empathy is a cornerstone of design.”1 She thinks it is important to understand the spaces and products she creates from the ...


Freedom In Structure: Helping Foreign-Trained And International Graduate Students Develop Thesis Statements By Component, Elizabeth R. Baldwin Jan 2018

Freedom In Structure: Helping Foreign-Trained And International Graduate Students Develop Thesis Statements By Component, Elizabeth R. Baldwin

Articles

This article explains how foreign-trained and international graduate students can use a thesis development template to find and articulate narrow, novel, non-obvious, and useful claims for their final, academic papers in law. These students, in particular, are in need of clear direction and methods for crafting well-developed claims (or thesis statements), given that many are non-native speakers of English who trained in different legal and educational systems with different expectations about what constitutes good academic writing—in any genre, let alone law. Through the use of a thesis development template (adapted from writing advice by Joseph M. Williams and Eugene ...


Results May Vary, Susan Nevelow Mart Jan 2018

Results May Vary, Susan Nevelow Mart

Articles

No abstract provided.


Dethroning The Hierarchy Of Authority, Amy J. Griffin Jan 2018

Dethroning The Hierarchy Of Authority, Amy J. Griffin

Articles

The use of authority in legal argument is constantly evolving—both the types of information deemed authoritative and their degree of authoritativeness—and that evolution has accelerated in recent years with dramatic changes in access to legal information. In contrast, the uncontroversial and ubiquitous “hierarchy of authority” used as the cornerstone for all legal analysis has remained entirely fixed. This article argues that the use of the traditional hierarchy as the dominant model for legal authority is deeply flawed, impeding a deeper understanding of the use of authority in legal argument. Lawyers, judges, and academics all know this, and yet ...


Tenure Redux, Jacqueline D. Lipton Jan 2018

Tenure Redux, Jacqueline D. Lipton

Articles

This essay is a reflection on some of the questions that arose during the author's tenure process that are likely pertinent to others on the tenure track today particularly with respect to questions about writing style in tenure pieces, and on whether early scholars should focus on general law reviews or specialty journals--depending on their areas of expertise--or a combination of both. It also reflects on choice of subject matter for tenure work, and whether some of that work may or may not stand the test of time, as well as on differences between the U.S. legal scholarship ...


The Potemkin Temptation Or, The Intoxicating Effect Of Rhetoric And Narrativity On American Craft Whiskey, Derek H. Kiernan-Johnson Jan 2018

The Potemkin Temptation Or, The Intoxicating Effect Of Rhetoric And Narrativity On American Craft Whiskey, Derek H. Kiernan-Johnson

Articles

No abstract provided.


Understanding The Human Element In Search Algorithms And Discovering How It Affects Search Results, Susan Nevelow Mart Jan 2018

Understanding The Human Element In Search Algorithms And Discovering How It Affects Search Results, Susan Nevelow Mart

Articles

When legal researchers search in online databases for the information they need to solve a legal problem, they need to remember that the algorithms that are returning results to them were designed by humans. The world of legal research is a human-constructed world, and the biases and assumptions the teams of humans that construct the online world bring to the task are imported into the systems we use for research. This article takes a look at what happens when six different teams of humans set out to solve the same problem: how to return results relevant to a searcher’s ...


Two Pedagogies In Search Of Synergy, Lisa Schultz, Susan Nevelow Mart Jan 2018

Two Pedagogies In Search Of Synergy, Lisa Schultz, Susan Nevelow Mart

Articles

Anyone who has taught a first-year legal research course understands the dilemma: How do we weave research skills into the writing program without sacrificing the quality or quantity of either discipline? In fact, it is difficult and time consuming to interweave any serious legal research instruction into a first-year writing course. What the students need to know is not just how to do a little case law research or how to find a statute: they need to also know how to formulate a research plan, how to evaluate a database, what kind of search works in different information environments, and ...


What A Technical Services Librarian Wants Their Library Director To Know, Georgia Briscoe Jan 2018

What A Technical Services Librarian Wants Their Library Director To Know, Georgia Briscoe

Articles

Promoting the value of technical services librarians in the digital age.


Bloomberg’S Points Of Law: Can They Compete With Headnotes?, Jill Sturgeon Jan 2018

Bloomberg’S Points Of Law: Can They Compete With Headnotes?, Jill Sturgeon

Articles

No abstract provided.


Tracking Colorado Legislation, Robert Linz Jan 2018

Tracking Colorado Legislation, Robert Linz

Articles

No abstract provided.


The Consensus Myth In Criminal Justice Reform, Benjamin Levin Jan 2018

The Consensus Myth In Criminal Justice Reform, Benjamin Levin

Articles

It has become popular to identify a “consensus” on criminal justice reform, but how deep is that consensus, actually? This Article argues that the purported consensus is much more limited than it initially appears. Despite shared reformist vocabulary, the consensus rests on distinct critiques that identify different flaws and justify distinct policy solutions. The underlying disagreements transcend traditional left/right political divides and speak to deeper disputes about the state and the role of criminal law in society.

The Article maps two prevailing, but fundamentally distinct, critiques of criminal law: (1) the quantitative approach (what I call the “over” frame ...


Book Review, Anna Spain Bradley Jan 2018

Book Review, Anna Spain Bradley

Articles

No abstract provided.


Researching Colorado Health Law, Kerri Rowe Jan 2018

Researching Colorado Health Law, Kerri Rowe

Articles

No abstract provided.