University of New Hampshire

School of Law

School of Law

Graduate Programs Skills I

This course introduces UNH Law graduate students to American common law legal reasoning and predictive legal writing. This course is designed to enhance the practical legal skills students need to think, write, and work effectively in their studies at UNH Law and subsequent careers. The course is required for all students who do not hold a US JD degree. The course is also tailored for students whose first language is not American English, as well as those who are likely to pursue their legal careers outside the US.

The goals of the course are to teach students to:

• Appreciate the unique features of American law and legal institutions. Students will learn to analyze and synthesize cases and statutes, and apply them to facts.

• Organize analyses clearly and logically.

• Write clearly, logically and concisely, targeting their reasoning to the intended audience, exercising good judgment in prioritizing issues and selecting appropriate authority.

• Review and revise their written drafts working one-on-one with the instructor and teaching assistants. Students learn to use constructive criticism productively. They also learn to edit and revise their own written work.

• Use case and statutory citation formats commonly employed in US legal writing.

• Perform legal research, using primary and secondary sources in both traditional hard copy and electronic form, and to develop and implement research strategies designed to analyze specific legal issues.

• Prepare cover letters and resumes to apply for externships or jobs in the US.

Grades are based on class preparation, participation, and assignments.