From Awkward Law Student to Articulate Attorney: Teaching the Oral Research Report

27 (2) The Second Draft 6 (Fall 2013/Winter 2014)

U of Akron Legal Studies Research Paper No. 13-19

4 Pages Posted: 7 Oct 2013 Last revised: 8 Aug 2015

Sarah J. Morath

University of Houston Law Center

Date Written: October 3, 2013

Abstract

Whether having a conversation with a client, speaking to a judge, or interacting with another attorney, lawyers need to be able to communicate orally. In the first year of law school, however, there are not many opportunities for students to “practice” having conversations about the law in a thoughtful and professional manner. While the Socratic dialogue common in most first year courses challenges students to think on their feet, this method does not teach students how to orally describe their research path, how to orally explain their analysis of a client’s legal issue, or how to orally make a recommendation on a course of action.

For this reason, I have incorporated an exercise into my Legal Research and Writing course requiring students to orally present their research results and assessment of a client’s legal issue. In this article, I explain why I include an oral research report exercise in my Legal Research and Writing class, what this exercise entails, and how legal writing professors are uniquely situated for teaching the oral research reporting skill.

Keywords: Legal Research, Legal Writing, Oral Research, Oral Communication

JEL Classification: K10

Suggested Citation

Morath, Sarah J., From Awkward Law Student to Articulate Attorney: Teaching the Oral Research Report (October 3, 2013). 27 (2) The Second Draft 6 (Fall 2013/Winter 2014); U of Akron Legal Studies Research Paper No. 13-19. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2335617 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2335617

Sarah J. Morath (Contact Author)

University of Houston Law Center ( email )

4604 Calhoun Road
Houston, TX 77204-6060
United States

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