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This book is a legal writing text for first-year law students that provides a systematic approach to learning legal analysis, organization, writing, and advocacy. Each step in the process is introduced separately so students can concentrate on mastering each skill before attacking another one. Although the text was originally developed for a four-credit course, the process approach works well in courses with varying number of credits and styles of instruction.
The text begins with an introduction that answers many of the basic questions law students have at the outset but are afraid to ask. It examines the sources of the law, the precedent system, the court system, basic civil procedure and its terminology, the anatomy of a case, and the anatomy of a statute. The principle topics covered in the text include: legal analysis, legal organization techniques, writing the basic legal memorandum, upgrading to a more complicated office memorandum, constructing a trial level brief, appellate advocacy, and oral advocacy. The text focuses on teaching students to write in plain English that highlights, rather than obscures, the analysis.