Using the Idea of Mathematical Proof to Teach Argument Structure
Hamline University School of Law
January 1, 2006
Perspectives: Teaching and Legal Research and Writing, Vol. 15, No. 1, p. 50, Fall 2006
Most legal writing textbooks explain that in the “A” section of the IRAC (Issue, Rule, Application, Conclusion) paradigm, the analysis or argument section, the writer should apply the law to the facts and draw a conclusion. Students are usually advised to do this in a step-by-step manner. But some students need more explicit guidance about what this means and how to actually structure a law-to-facts application on the page in a way that meets the expectations of a legal reader. This article looks at how legal writing is in some ways more comparable to mathematical writing than literary writing. Consequently, drawing on the idea of mathematical proof can help students understand how to structure an argument.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 4
Keywords: Mathematical proof, argument structure, geometric proof paradigm, math, IRAC, legal writing
Date posted: November 8, 2011