The Supreme Court (QWC)

795. Supreme Court* (Harpaz) (3 credits)
The focus of the course will be on the United States Supreme Court. Students will take turns playing the roles of Supreme Court Justices and advocates before the Court. Each student will be assigned the task of filing a petition for a writ of certiorari to convince the Court to review a lower court decision. Each student also will write a brief and present an oral argument in a case before the Court. The course “docket” will consist of 4 cases raising unresolved constitutional issues. Priority in case selection for the docket will be given to cases already granted review by the Supreme Court for consideration during the current Term. The cases will be selected by the instructor during the spring and summer. As they are selected, they will be posted at Student preferences for assignment to one of the four cases briefed and argued during the semester will be taken into account in the case assignment process. When not playing the role of advocate before the Court, students will have the opportunity to serve as a Justice, questioning the advocates during oral argument and writing an opinion in a case. In addition to the study of Supreme Court practice and procedure and oral and written advocacy skills, the course will include material on the role of the Supreme Court, the judicial philosophies of the current Justices, the selection of nominees to fill vacancies on the Court and the Court’s opinion writing process. The class will meet one afternoon a week for 2 1/2 hours. Prerequisite: Successful completion of the required LAW 501 Constitutional Law course.

Course Materials from  Fall, 2006

Materials About 2009-10 Supreme Court Term

Watch as We Make This Law Disappear: How the Roberts Court Disguises its Conservatism (Oct. 4, 2010)

Stays Were Common at High Court by Howard Bashman (July 9, 2010)

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