Reinvigorating the 1L Curriculum: Sequenced ‘Writing Across the Curriculum’ Assignments as the Foundation for Producing Practice-Ready Law Graduates
41 Pages Posted: 7 Jul 2011
Date Written: February 14, 2011
This article describes an integrative, sequenced “Writing Across the Curriculum” (WAC) program to help first-year law students master legal analysis and writing by systematically developing these skills through writing assignments in doctrinal courses, thereby enhancing the instruction that students receive in the Lawyering Skills course. The article discusses the key components of the program – writing assignments sequenced to build skills incrementally from simple to complex; prompt and consistent feedback based upon a competency model; and transparency in setting forth the professor’s expectations, both in advance of the exercise and in the feedback – and assesses some of the benefits and challenges of adopting such a program.
Keywords: writing across the curriculum, first-year law students, integrative curriculum, legal writing
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