Professional Skills Courses
Students are required to complete at least 3 hours of courses designated “PS.”
(“PS” designation, Aug. 2007)
Clinical Program (Law 665). 4 hours. PS.
Students at The University of Alabama are particularly fortunate in that the Law School has a number of live-client law clinics. When some law schools speak of clinic offerings they are referring exclusively to internal, simulated activities such as trial advocacy. Alabama, however, is able to provide its students with hands-on experience in dealing with real clients. Cases are presently focused upon criminal defense, civil law, domestic violence, elder law, capital defense, and community development. (“A Guide to the Law School Curriculum” p. 53)
Law Office Practice (Law 688). 2 or 3 hours. PS.
Much of a lawyer’s work, particularly that of a general civil practitioner, is outside of the court room. This course provides the opportunity to draft documents for adoptions, estates, real estate, business entities, divorces, detinies, conservatorships. Generally offered once a year. (“A Guide to the Law School Curriculum” p. 53)
Legal Counseling and Interviewing (Law 708). 2 hours. PS.
If any message comes out of the first year of law study, it is that the application of legal principles is determined by the facts. The most important source for those facts is often one’s client. This course is aimed at acquiring the interviewing skills necessary for securing these facts and the skills necessary for counseling the client regarding available options and outcomes. (“A Guide to the Law School Curriculum” p. 52)
Legislative Drafting (Law 744) 2 or 3 hours. PS.
This course is an introduction to legislative drafting. Objectives for this course include: (1) understanding the forms and conventions of legislative drafting; (2) learning to conceptualize legislative solutions to social problems; and (3) appreciating the relationship between legislative drafting and substantive policy. (website “Course Listings”)
Mediation (Law 779). 2 or 3 hours. PS.
This course identifies how mediation fits within the existing dispute resolution process; it analyzes the component parts of mediation and analyzes the mutuality of negotiations, as well as analyzing the strategies and hurdles of two party and multiparty mediations. The course usually employs role-plays of mediations to demonstrate the techniques used in mediations. Generally offered once a year. (“A Guide to the Law School Curriculum” p. 53)
Real Estate Practice Workshop (Law 672). 2 hours. PS.
General practice course covering all aspects of general real estate practice. Includes drafting documents as real estate contracts, leases, loan closings, conveyances through estates, protected persons, businesses entities etc. Course designed with the new practitioner in mind. Open only to third-year students. Generally offered once a year. (“A Guide to the Law School Curriculum” p. 18 & 44)
Transactional Drafting (Law 816) 2 hours. PS.
This course provides second- and third-year students with an opportunity to draft documents often utilized in representing business entities and receive feedback on those documents. It focuses on teaching the student general components of drafting corporate documents and developing the skills necessary for effectively writing and organizing these documents. (website “Course Listings”)
Trial Advocacy I (Law 663). 3 hours. PS.
A tort lawyer’s education is complete only upon receipt of practical training in trial skills. This is the first of two courses dedicated to practical training in trying cases. No part of such skills training is more important than those formal activities, such as discovery, that precede the trial itself. While this course deals with issues that are confronted during the trial, its emphasis is upon pretrial. Prerequisite/Corequisite: Law 642 (Evidence). Generally offered both semesters. (“A Guide to the Law School Curriculum” p. 53)
Trial Advocacy I (Criminal Litigation) (Law 673). 3 hours. PS.
This advanced elective is a specialized trial advocacy course. (Students are permitted to take only one course in Trial Advocacy I.) Prerequisite/Corequisite: Evidence (LAW 642). Pass/D/Fail.
Trial Advocacy II (Law 664). 3 hours. PS.
This is the course in which students have the opportunity to participate in the actual trial of cases. This exposure is essential for the tort lawyer. Prerequisite: Law 642 (Evidence) and Law 663 or 673 (Trial Advocacy I) Advanced litigation skills are developed through the preparation for and trial of two mock civil or criminal cases, the conduct of small-group exercises designed to develop particular skills, and, perhaps, attendance at an actual trial. Pass/D/Fail. Generally offered both semesters. (“A Guide to the Law School Curriculum” p. 53)
Trial Advocacy II (Criminal Litigation) (Law 604). 3 hours. PS.
This advanced elective is a specialized trial advocacy course. (Students are permitted to take only one course in Trial Advocacy II.)
Trial Advocacy Competition Class (Law 728). 2 hours. PS.
In this course, students compete for selection to national trial advocacy teams by trying cases based on prepared file materials. Enrollment is limited and based on (1) the demonstration of superior litigation skills in Trial Advocacy I (Law 663), (2) prior membership on a national trial advocacy team, or (3) tryouts. Students who receive credit for this course are not eligible to enroll in Law 664 (Trial Advocacy II) or Trial Advocacy I (Criminal Litigation) (Law 604). Prerequisite: Evidence (Law 642). Pass/D/Fail. (website “Course Listings”)
White Collar Practice (Law 706). 5 hours (2 hours professional skills). PS.
Substantive law in the area of business crimes and torts will be covered. These include conspiracy, mail and wire fraud, RICO, money laundering, false claims and corporate criminal liability. Procedural issues arising from white collar crime will also be covered. (mybama listing)