Law, Litigation & Science



SLN #: 21333
Course Prefix: LAW-633
Course Section: 001
Credit Hours: 3
Instructor(s): Saks

Course Description:
This course aims to fill a gap in the education of most lawyers, namely, how to effectively think about and use empirical evidence. How do lawyers and the law obtain needed facts about the way the world works, evaluate those facts, and employ them in making law as well as in deciding cases? The course will improve your skills in dissecting an opponent’s evidence and in presenting your own more intelligently and effectively. Although the materials of the course emphasize cases involving social science data, the intellectual skills and legal issues are equally applicable to any other kind of empirical evidence in law (e.g., biomedical, economic, forensic science, etc.), and some of the cases and materials we will use involve those other subject matters. The course has these goals: (1) To assist students in developing an ability to think rigorously and critically about factual assertions and the evidence offered in their support. (2) To understand the evolving doctrine that governs how the law obtains, evaluates, and gives legal effect to empirical knowledge. (3) To examine these issues in their legal context, as they occur in a wide range of substantive legal areas.

Additional Information:
Credit Hours: 3
Grading Option: Numeric Grade and ONE-Time Pass Option is Available, or Letter Grade Only
Graduation Writing Requirement: No
Flexible Writing Requirement: No
Skills Requirement: No
Prerequisite: None
Final Exam Given: Yes
Final Exam Type: In-Class
Mid Term or Other Exam: No
Paper or In-Class Presentation: No
Participation Points: Yes
Attendance Policy: Per Statement of Student Policies
Additional Attendance Policy: Attendance necessary. More than a minimum number of absences may result in negative participation points and possible withdrawal with a grade of 64. Students who are present in body but unprepared may receive negative participation points.
Online Course Site: Blackboard