California Western -- Robert DeKoven
Courses Taught - Robert R. DeKoven

Introduction to Legal Skills

Legal Skills I

Legal Skills II

Legal Research & Writing: Selected Topics


Required one-week course, which students attend during the first week of school (the week before substantive courses begin).  Focuses on teaching students those skills that make the successful law student and ultimately the successful lawyer.  These skills include the structure of the court system, case briefing, rule synthesis, deductive reasoning, analogical reasoning, and issue analysis.  Students will also receive instruction on outlining, exam preparation, use of study aids and study groups, and time management.  No credit, as this course is considered part of Legal Skills I.   back to top
LEGAL SKILLS I - Legal Research, Analysis, and Objective Writing (2 units)
Required first trimester course.  An intensive, comprehensive, and practical learning experience.  Focuses on developing the research, analytical, and writing skills necessary to be a successful lawyer in today's world.  Students are introduced to legal research  through use of the major tools available for actual problem research.  Students are also introduced to objective legal writing, including instruction and practice in skills of legal problem analysis and in techniques of clear, concise writings.  Students will research and write at least one interoffice legal memorandum.  Emphasis is on giving students a foundation they can use independently in evaluating and improving their own legal work throughout their careers.   back to top
LEGAL SKILLS II - Legal Research, Analysis, Persuasive Writing, and Oral Advocacy (2 units)
Required second trimester course (or third semester for part-time students).  An intensive, comprehensive, and practical learning experience.  Building on the skills learned in Legal Skills I, students will focus on honing and refining their research skills, writing persuasively, and oral advocacy.  At a minimum, students will research and write a memorandum of points and authorities and an appellate brief.  Students will also prepare and engage in oral argument.   back to top
Topic:  Civil Rights, Privacy, Sex, Sexuality & Gender Law Practice
This course emphasizes advanced techniques in legal writing, focusing on the writing skills necessary for preparing practical documents.  Students will learn the techniques for persuasive writing, drafting motions or appellate briefs.  Substantive areas may include privacy, education, civil rights, or entertainment/sports law.    back to top

Full course descriptions are available in PDF format on the J.D. Curriculum page.

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