Writing to Learn Law and Writing in Law: An Intellectual Property Illustration

20 Pages Posted: 4 May 2008

See all articles by Michael J. Madison

Michael J. Madison

University of Pittsburgh - School of Law


This essay, prepared as part of a Symposium on teaching intellectual property law, describes a method of combining substantive law teaching with a species of what is commonly called "skills" training. The method involves assessing students not via traditional final exams but instead via research memos patterned after assignments that junior lawyers might encounter in actual legal practice. The essay grounds the method in the theoretical disposition known generally as "writing to learn." It argues that students are likely to learn intellectual property law effectively if they learn to practice as intellectual property lawyers, and specifically to write as intellectual property lawyers.

Keywords: teaching law, writing to learn, writing in law, legal writing, intellectual property law practice

Suggested Citation

Madison, Michael J., Writing to Learn Law and Writing in Law: An Intellectual Property Illustration. St. Louis University Law Journal, 2008, U. of Pittsburgh Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2008-13, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1128312

Michael J. Madison (Contact Author)

University of Pittsburgh - School of Law ( email )

3900 Forbes Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15260
United States
412-648-7855 (Phone)
412-648-2648 (Fax)

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