Up ] Syllabus, Cardozo School of Law ] LSU Law Center Introduction to U.S.Law Syllabus ] Syllabus, University of Miami ] Southern Methodist University Syllabus ] Wake Forest Syllabus ] [ Syllabus, Wake Forest, Legal Research and Writing ]


                                                                                                                                                                        September 11, 2002







(Section 3LLM)


OFFICE:  Room 3338

PHONE:  Office (758-6116)

Home   (724-9911)


Teaching Assistants:     


Bess Parrish                                                                 Meredith Braintwain                                                     Kate Lyons

Phone:  724-3044                                                        Phone: 725-6009                                                         Phone: 896-1298

Carrel:  2-62                                                                Carrel:  2-58                                                                Carrel: 2-54

E-mail:  parrbm1@law.wfu.edu                         E-mail:  braimal@law.wfu.edu                           E-mail: Kclyons@yahoo.com

                                                                                                                                                            WFU e-mail: lyonkc1@law.wfu.edu




I.          TEXTS


D. Pratt, Legal Writing:  A Systematic Approach (3rd ed.).


D. Dickerson, Citation Manual: ALWD Professional System of Citation (2000) (bring to each class). 


A. Dworsky, User's Guide to the Bluebook (2000) (bring to each class).


A. Dworsky, The Little Book on Legal Writing (2d ed.1992).


T. Fine, American Legal Systems: A Resource and Reference Guide (1997).


Legal Reasoning, Writing and Research for International Lawyers:  Materials on Case Analysis, Synthesis, and Statutory Interpretation (bring to each class).


A.  Sloan, Basic Legal Research: Tools and Strategies (2000).




The Course is designed to teach you how:


1.         to research a legal problem;

2.         to analyze an appellate opinion;

3.         to synthesize a series of appellate opinions;

4.         to interpret a statute;

5.         to write an objective memorandum of law.


These skills are essential to competent practice of U.S. law.  More immediately, you will find their mastery helpful in understanding all of your other courses.




During fall semester, the class will meet as indicated on the attached schedule.  Consult your class schedule carefully since class times and room locations vary during the week.  Members of the library faculty teach another component of this course, Legal Research.  The library staff will provide their schedule to you separately.







IV.       GRADES


Legal Research and Writing for LL.M. students is a fall semester course.  You will receive one grade at the completion of  fall semester (2 credit hours).  The grade will be computed as follows:


Assignment #1                                      1-1 1/2 pages                                      10%    


Memo I                                                            3-4 pages                                            15%

Memo II                                                           6-8 pages                                            30%    

  (First graded draft)                                                    


Memo II                                                                                                                       25%

   (Second graded draft)                       

Legal Research Component                                                                                         15%

Class Preparation,                                                                                                       

Participation, and

Attendance                                                                                                                   5%                      




In arriving at the grade, the weight of each exercise is not based on the amount of time required to complete the exercise.  The method of computation is based on the theory that you will learn by doing.  Therefore, the later exercises are given more weight because you will be more experienced in research and writing as you near the end of the course.


In order to receive a grade in the course, you must successfully complete all components of the course (including legal research exercises, WESTLAW and LEXIS certification, and other assignments as announced).




The assignments and schedule of classes for the first week of instruction and the remainder of the fall semester are attached to this outline.  You will master the skills taught in this course more quickly if you read each assignment thoroughly before class.


Assignments are in Legal Reasoning, Writing and Research for International Lawyers:  Materials to Accompany Classes on Case Analysis, Synthesis, and Statutory Interpretation (designated "Materials" in the syllabus); D. Pratt, Legal Writing:  A Systematic Approach  (designated "Pratt" in the syllabus); A. Dworsky, User’s Guide to the Bluebook (designated "Dworsky - User's Guide”); A. Dworsky, The Little Book on Legal Writing (designated "Dworsky-Little Book" in the syllabus); Fine, American Legal Systems: A Resource and Reference Guide (designated “Fine” in the syllabus); A. Sloan, Basic Legal Research: Tools and Strategies (designated “Sloan” in the syllabus.


             Class attendance is mandatory.



Fall Semester 2002

Class Schedule for Legal Reasoning, Writing, and Research

for International Lawyers



Date/Time/Room                                                       Topic                                                   Assignment


Mon. Aug. 19


10:00-11:15 a.m.                                  Welcome – Dr. Hearn, President WFU            

Room 1312                                          Dean Walsh – Introduction of Faculty

                                                                        And LL.M. Students


11:30 a.m.                                            Small Group Professionalism Discussion                        Lunch Served

Room to be Announced



1:30 – 4:00 p.m.                                   Introduction to Course, Sources of Law,                       Materials, pp. 1-13 (Sources of Law);

Room 1302                                          Structure of Court Systems                                           Pratt, pp. 2-6 (Sources of Law);

                                                                                                                                                Materials, pp. 19-23 (Court Systems);

                                                                                                                                                Pratt, 10-17 (The Court System).


4:00 p.m.                                              Dean’s Reception







Wed. Aug. 21


9:30-12:00 noon                                   IFRAC Method                                                            Dworsky-Little Book, pp. 105-111 (IRAC).

Room 1302                                                                                                                              Materials, pp. 67-68 (IRAC), read and                                                                                                                                                         brief Johnson v. Willey, pp. 304-306;                                                                                                                                                           Pratt, pp. 167-169 (IRAC).


2:00-4:00 p.m.                                     IFRAC Method                                                            Distribute IFRAC assignment #1

Room 1302                                                                                                                              Due 9:30 a.m. Fri. Aug. 23       


Thurs. Aug. 22


9:30-12:00 noon                                   Case Analysis and Synthesis,                                        Materials,  pp. 307-315, Read and Brief Room 1302                                          Memo Writing                                                              Klotz v. Morocco.


12:00 noon                                           Professionalism, Honor Council Program                       Lunch Served



2:00-4:00 p.m.                                     Use of Authority/Precedent                                           Pratt, pp. 18-53.

Room 1302                                          Analysis and Synthesis


4:30-5:30 p.m.                                     Introduction to Computer-based U.S.                           Stephanie O’Keefe, Consultant

Computer Lab                                      Legal Research:  LexisNexis                                         LexisNexis                                                      

                                                                                                                                                TAs Assist

Fri. Aug. 23                                         


9:30 a.m.                                             Assignment #1 due                                                     In Class


9:30-12:00 noon                                   Judicial Precedents, Opinion Reports,               Materials, pp. 38-41 (Opinion Reports),

Room 1302                                          Secondary Authority                                                     pp. 59-62 (Judicial Precedents).


Distribute Memo I (Due 9:00 a.m. Thurs. Sept. 12)

12:00 noon                                           Picnic              

Law School Courtyard


1:30-2:30 p.m.                                     Lexis/Nexis Lab                                                           Meredith Braintwain

Computer Lab                                                                                                                          TAs Assist


2:30-3:00 p.m.                                     Wake Forest Information (WIN)                                  LeAnn Steele, Registrar

Computer Lab                                      Systems Training                                                           Patricia Martin, Assistant Registrar

                                                                                                                                                TAs Assist


3:00-3:30 p.m.                                     On-Line Career Services Resources                             Kim Fields, Director, Career Services

Computer Lab                                                                                                                          TAs Assist


Tues. Aug. 27                                       Use of Authority/Precedent                                           Dworsky-Little Book, 91-99, 79 (case

 3:00-4;00 p.m.                                                                                                                        description);

 Room 1301                                                                                                                             Materials, p. 69 (chart of legal authority);  Fine, pp. 1-5, 13-16, 39-46



Thurs. Aug. 29                                     Memo Writing: Basic Office Memo Format                   Materials, pp. 76-96 (Elements of an Office

4:00-5:00 p.m.                                                                                                                         Memo);

Room 1301                                                                                                                              Pratt, pp. 163-166.


Tues. Sept. 3                                        No Class


Thurs. Sept. 5                                       Memo Writing                                                              Fine, pp. 89-100 (Basic Office Memo).

4:00-5:00 p.m

Room 1301


Tues. Sept. 10                                         Case Analysis and Synthesis    

3:00-4:00 p.m.

Room 1301

Wed. Sept. 11                 Memo I due 9:00 a.m.  Give to Mrs. Connie Cashin in Room 3340.


3:00-4:00 p.m.                                        Writing Issues                                                                          

Room 1310


Week of Sept. 16


Computer Lab                                         Lexis on Secondary Sources                                         Lexis Consultant Stephanie O’Keefe

                                                               and Search Advisor                                                      TAs Assist


Tues. Sept. 17                                      Organization Techniques for Memo                               Materials, pp. 97-111;

3:00-4:00 p.m.                                     Gross Organization, Fine Organization (IRAC)  Pratt, pp. 165-175 (organizing your

 Room 1301                                                                                                                             analysis).


Distribute Memo II which will be due Mon. 9:00 a.m. Oct. 7


Wed. Sept. 18                                      Thesis Paragraph, Topic Sentence, and             Pratt, pp. 176-178 (thesis),

3:00-4:00 p.m.                                     Transitions                                                                    184-186 (transitions);

Room 1310                                                                                                                              Materials, pp. 113-123 (topic sentences).


Tues. Sept. 24                                      Legal Citation                                                               Materials, pp. 211-216 (citation chart,

 3:00-4:00 p.m.                                                                                                                        citation system);

Room 1301                                                                                                                              Dworsky-Little Book, pp. 75-83 (case citations).


Wed. Sept. 25                                      Perfecting Writing Skills:  Sentence                                Pratt, pp. 240-243.

3:00-4:00 p.m.                                     Structure in Legal Writing                                             

Room 1310


Week of  Sept. 30

Computer Lab                                      Using Lexis to Find and Update Federal and                 Lexis Consultant Stephanie O’Keefe

(to be scheduled)                                  State Cases                                                                  TAs Assist

Tues. Oct. 1                                         Using Public Policy and Shepherd’s                              Materials, 175-180 (using policy efficiently)          

3:00-4:00 p.m.                                     Citations                                                                       Shepherd’s Citations, 253-266 (State v.

Room 1301                                                                                                                              Pardon).


Mon. Oct 7                 Memo II Due (Draft 1) at 9:00 a.m.  Give to Mrs. Connie Cashin, Room 3340.


Tues. Oct. 8                                         Perfecting Writing Skills:  Sentence Structure                

3:00-4:00 p.m.                                     in Legal Writing

Room 1301


Wed. Oct. 9                                         Perfecting Writing Skills:  Word Choice                         Materials, pp. 130-138 (word choice and

3:00-4:00 p.m.                                     and Legal Usage                                                           usage).

Room 1310


Week of Oct. 14

(To be scheduled)                                 Lexis on Treatises and Loose-Leaf Services                  Lexis Consultant Stephanie O’Keefe

                                                                                                                                                TAs Assist

Tues. Oct. 15                                       No Class


Oct. 17-20                                           FALL BREAK                                                           No class


Tues. Oct. 22                                       Perfecting Writing Skills: Verb Use in                           

3:00-4:00 p.m.                                     Legal Writing

Room 1301


Wed. Oct. 23                                       To be announced

3:00-4:00 p.m.

Room 1310


Tues. Oct. 29                                       Statutory Analysis: Parts of Statutes, Vertical                 Materials, pp. 141-166.

3:00-4:00 p.m.                                     Hierarchy of Statutory Law, How to Read a                 

Room 1301                                          Statute


Wed. Oct. 30                                       To be announced

3:00-4:00 p.m.

Room 1310                                         


Mon.  Nov. 4                 Memo II due (2nd graded draft). Give to Mrs. Connie Cashin in Room 3340.


Tues. Nov. 5 - Mon. Nov. 18             Individual Conferences  -  Memo II  re-write due 1 week after each student’s conference.


Tues. Nov. 5                                        How Courts Interpret a Statute, External Sources,         Materials, pp. 167-173.

3:00-4:00 p.m.

Room 1301                                          Canons of Construction, Researching Statutes


Wed. Nov. 6                                        To Be Announced                                                                                           

3:00-4:00 p.m.

Room 1310


Week of Nov. 12


Tues. Nov. 12                                      To Be Announced

3:00-4:00 p.m.

Room 1301


Wed. Nov. 13                                      To Be Announced

3:00-4:00 p.m.

Room 1310















Provide Website Feedback / Accessibility Statement / Accessibility Assistance
/ Privacy Statement