Friday, August 25, 2006

the colon and how to use it

The colon.  So simple, yet so misunderstood.

Here's a simple rule of thumb:  a common use of the colon is to indicate a setup: payoff relationship.  The set-up portion should be an independent clause (has all  the grammatical parts to stand on its own as a sentence).  The payoff portion can be anything--a single word, a phrase, a clause.  Often, it's a list.

A common error is that the part of the sentence preceding the colon is not an independent clause.  Unless the writer is using some kind of inverted construction ("space:  the final frontier"), he has just committed an error.

CORRECT:  I went to the store and bought many items:  milk, eggs, and the ingredients for lasagna.

INCORRECT:  My purchases included:  milk, eggs, and the ingredients for lasagna.

CORRECT:  My goals are to go to college and then to law school.

INCORRECT:  My goals are:  to go to college and then to law school.

Examples of incorrect colon usage abound.  Please do NOT do your part in contributing to that abundance.  Use the colon correctly!

(njs)

August 25, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, August 24, 2006

limited offer!! act now!!

Joe Kimble, the Executive Director of Scribes, the American Society of Legal Writers, has a generous offer:  for those who are interested in joining Scribes and who contact Joe by September 15, he will offer a FREE COPY of the latest volume of The Scribes Journal of Legal Writing.  So act now:  let Joe know by September 15 if you might like to join and want your FREE COPY!  Send him your name and address:  kimblej@cooley.edu.

(njs)

August 24, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

job at Golden Gate

Golden Gate University School of Law invites applications for the position of Director of First-Year Legal Writing. This tenure-track position will begin in the fall of 2007. The Director will be responsible for designing and administering Golden Gate’s two-semester first-year legal writing and research program. The Director will also hire, train, and supervise the adjunct faculty who teach individual sections of the course. The Director will teach one section of the course each semester.

Golden Gate is a private university located in downtown San Francisco with a strong commitment to practical and clinical education and a diverse student body. Applicants should have a distinguished academic background, at least three years of experience teaching legal writing, strong organizational, administrative and interpersonal skills, and a demonstrated interest in legal scholarship. Candidates with supervisory and administrative experience are preferred. We especially welcome applications from women, members of minority groups, and others who will enhance and diversify our faculty. Applications (cover letter & resume) should be sent to Chair, Faculty Appointments Committee, Golden Gate University School of Law, 536 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94105.

DEADLINE: September 15, 2006.



1. The position advertised:

x_ a. is a tenure-track appointment.

__ b. may lead to successive long-term contracts of five or more years.

__ c. may lead only to successive short-term contracts of one to four years.

__ d. has an upper-limit on the number of years a teacher may be appointed.

__ e. is part of a fellowship program for one or two years.

__ f. is a part-time appointment, or a year-to-year adjunct appointment.

Additional information about job security or terms of employment, any applicable

term limits, and whether the position complies with ABA Standard 405(c):

2. The professor hired:

x_ a. will be permitted to vote in faculty meetings.

__ b. will not be permitted to vote in faculty meetings.

Additional information about the extent of the professor’s voting rights:

3. The school anticipates paying an annual academic year base salary in the range checked below. (A base salary does not include stipends for coaching moot court teams, teaching other courses, or teaching in summer school; nor does a base salary include conference travel or other professional development funds.)

x _a. $90,000 or more (depending on qualifications)

x_ b. $80,000 to $89,999 (depending on qualifications)

__ c. $70,000 to $79,999

__ d. $60,000 to $69,999

__ e. $50,000 to $59,999

__ f. $40,000 to $49,999

__ g. $30,000 to $39,999

__ h. this is a part-time appointment paying less than $30,000

__ i. this is an adjunct appointment paying less than $10,000

Additional information about base salary or other compensation:

4. The number of students enrolled in each semester of the courses taught by the legal research

& writing professor will be:

x_ a. 30 or fewer

__ b. 31 - 35

__ c. 36 - 40

__ d. 41 - 45

__ e. 46 - 50

__ f. 51 - 55

__ g. 56 - 60

__ h. more than 60

Additional information about teaching load, including required or permitted teaching outside of the legal research and writing program:

=======

hat tip:  Leslie Rose, Associate Professor and Director, Advanced Legal Writing Program, Golden Gate

(njs)

August 23, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

new words

More than most people on the planet, lawyers are usually interested in old words, even in the very old words, the ones that already have been analyzed from every possible angle and defined for all time.  Now there's a place on the Web for new words, the ones that are just coming into the English language.  Perhaps in a few hundred years law students will be arguing in their classes about the meaning of some of these entries, too.

(spl)

August 23, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

american rhetoric

This is from Tom Mighell's INTERNET LEGAL RESEARCH WEEKLY, Volume 7, Issue 23 August 20, 2006.

American Rhetoric

http://www.americanrhetoric.com/

 

This is a great site for learning about rhetoric and speech. For scholars,
there's an area discussing the subject of rhetoric, and Plato's and
Aristotle's view on it. Perhaps the best part of the site is the Speech
Bank, which includes more than 5,000 full text audio and video (streaming)
versions of public speeches, sermons, legal proceedings, lectures, debates,
interviews, and other recorded media events. Some great resources here.

(hat tip to Sharon Blackburn, Faculty Services Librarian at Texas Tech University School of Law)

(njs)

August 22, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

the first day

With many U.S. law schools starting classes this week, a little refresher on how to handle the first class meeting might be in order.  Many of the reminders and tips in one university's advice for new undergrad professors are directly applicable to legal writing class, too.

(spl)

   

August 22, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, August 21, 2006

job opening at Texas Tech

Texas Tech University School of Law seeks applicants for an opening in its nationally ranked Legal Practice Program for the 2007-08 school year. The position is currently held by a visiting professor. The successful applicant will join a program that comprises four other full-time LP Professors, two adjunct professors, a writing specialist, and the tenured director.

The Legal Practice Program offers a six-credit, two-semester course (Legal Practice I and II) that integrates research, writing, client interviewing and counseling, oral advocacy, and an extensive ADR component. While program faculty generally work from common texts, syllabus, and core assignments, each full-time LP Professor is responsible for drafting his/her own fact patterns and some related exercises. Each LP Professor teaches two sections of about 20 students each. In addition, each LP Professor is assigned one student tutor per section to help with providing additional workshops, grading of research exercises, etc. The salary for the position is $55,000 to 60,000, DOE. LP Professors may also have the opportunity to teach other courses for additional compensation. They enjoy the same access to travel and research assistant funding as do all faculty members.

The Program seeks applicants with a J.D., prior teaching and/or practice experience, demonstrated writing ability, strong academic credentials, the ability to work well within a coordinated program structure, and an interest in being involved in regional and national legal writing activities. Texas Tech is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all in every aspect of its operations and encourages applications from all qualified persons.

Texas Tech University, with 28,000 students, is located in Lubbock, Texas, a city of 200,000 located in the high plains of West Texas. The law school has almost 700 students and 30 full-time faculty members. Lubbock enjoys a low cost of living with very affordable housing and offers easy access to other parts of the country via three major airlines that offer daily flights.

For more information about this position, please contact Associate Dean Nancy Soonpaa, LP Program Director, at nancy.soonpaa@ttu.edu or 806/742-3990, ext. 357. To apply for the position, please send application materials to Professor Jorge Ramirez, Chair of the Personnel Committee.

To apply for this position, please send a cover letter, a resume, the names and contact information for 3 references, and a writing sample. Our mailing address is 1802 Hartford Avenue, Lubbock, TX, 79409. Applications will be considered on a rolling basis and will be accepted until the position is filled. We do plan to interview for this position at the AALS Faculty Recruitment Conference in November.

(njs)

August 21, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

job opening in Georgia

The job annoucement below is from Mercer University School of Law (institutional home of the Legal Writing Institute):

"Mercer University School of Law invites applications for a tenure-track Legal Writing position beginning July 1, 2007.  If you know of anyone who might be interested, please pass along this information.  We may expedite the hiring process this Fall, so please send materials by Sept. 15.
"The Curriculum: Mercer’s curriculum, which emphasizes Legal Writing and other professional skills, is among the most thoughtful in the nation, having earned the Gambrell Professionalism Award by the ABA for its comprehensive skills training. Also, Mercer was recently one of four schools recognized by the National Jurist as a "select pace-setting school" in legal education. Mercer was recognized specifically for its Certificate Program in Advanced Legal Writing, Research, and Drafting, an upper-division elective writing program described more fully below.
"The Teaching Load: The person hired to fill this position will teach Legal Writing I and II (the core required courses covering research, predictive and persuasive writing, and oral advocacy) and another course of interest to the professor and the school.  The professor may also moderate a six-student section of  Advanced Writing Group, a group that meets one hour a week primarily to read and react to short pieces (1-3 pages) of legal writing.  Class sizes for the core required courses range from 22-27, depending on the year. Mercer’s Legal Writing professors work together on program planning, and we share administrative tasks.
"The Legal Writing Program: Mercer’s Legal Writing Program has three components: (1) the required three-semester program; (2) an assortment of upper-division electives; and (3) the Legal Writing Certificate Program. The core courses in the required three-semester program carry three graded credits each.  In addition, students take Legal Analysis, Introduction to Legal Research, and a writing component in a small section of one of their 1st-semester casebook courses. Together, these required writing courses total the equivalent of nine credits, not counting the two-hour seminar requirement in the third year.
"After completing the required program, students can choose from a number of upper-division research or writing electives, such as Advanced Research, Advanced Litigation Drafting, Appellate Practice and Procedure, Transactional Drafting, Real Estate Drafting, and Pretrial Practice. Alternatively, upper-division students can participate in Mercer’s Legal Writing Certificate Program. Participants in the Certificate Program meet in weekly Advanced Writing Groups (6 students per group), critiquing each other’s writing. They take Advanced Research and one of the other writing electives, pass a grammar and style competency exam, complete three additional drafting projects, and compile a portfolio of their writing. Students who earn the Legal Writing Certificate complete the equivalent of 17 credits in Legal Research and Writing.
"The Environment: Located 75 miles from Atlanta in Macon, Georgia, Mercer is one of the oldest private law schools in the nation. The faculty is collegial and relationships with students are strong. Mild winters, historic homes, inexpensive housing, and friendly people make for a pleasant life-style. Big-city pleasures are nearby, and the Atlanta airport, with its connections to every major national and international destination, is a little more than an hour away.
"Qualifications: Applicants should have a strong record of academic achievement, excellent legal writing skills, and at least one year of post-law school legal experience. Prior Legal Writing teaching experience is especially helpful. Mercer University School of Law does not discriminate on the basis of age, race, color, national and ethnic origin, sex, religion, handicap or disability, or sexual orientation. The Faculty Appointments Committee will begin reviewing applications very early in the fall and may complete the hiring process prior to the AALS Faculty Appointment Conference in Washington. Send a cover letter, resume, writing sample, and any teaching evaluations from last year to Linda Edwards at the address below.
"1.  The position advertised

     _X_   a.   is a tenure-track appointment.
     ___   b.   may lead to successive long-term contracts of five or more years.
     ___   c.   may lead only to successive short-term contracts of one to four years.
     ___   d.   has an upper limit on the number of years a teacher may be appointed.
     ___   e.   is part of a fellowship program for one or two years.
     ___   f.    is a part-time appointment or a year-to-year adjunct appointment.

"2.  The person hired will be permitted to vote in faculty meetings.

     _X_   a.   true
     __   b.   not true

"3.  The school anticipates paying an annual academic year base salary in the
range checked below.  (A base salary does NOT include stipends for coaching moot court teams, teaching other courses, or teaching in summer school; nor does a base salary include conference travel or other professional development funds.)

     _X_   a.   $90,000 or more (depending on qualifications)
     _X_   b.   $80,000 to $89,999 (depending on qualifications)
     _X_   c.   $70,000 to $79,999 (depending on qualifications)
     ___   d.   $60,000 to $69,999
     ___   e.   $50,000 to $59,999
     ___   f.    $40,000 to $49,999
     ___   g.   $30,000 to $39,999
     ___   h.   this is a part-time appointment
                     paying less than $30,000
     ___   i.    this is an adjunct appointment
                     paying less than $10,000
"*Additional information:  The professor also will be eligible to all of the same benefits as any other faculty member.  These benefits include eligibility for summer research grants of approximately $9,000, stipends for voluntary additional teaching, ample research assistants, and generous travel funds.
"4.  The number of students enrolled in each semester of the courses taught by the legal research & writing professor will be:

     ___   a.   30 or fewer
     _X_   b.   31 - 35
     _X_   c.   36 - 40
     _X_   d.   41 - 45
     _X_   e.   46 - 50
     _X_   f.    51 - 55
     _X_   g.   56 - 60
     ___   h.   more than 60
"*The number of students depends primarily on the semester and on the nature of the "other" course the professor teaches.  The professor will teach 1 section of the core required legal writing course during one of the semesters and will teach 2 sections during the other semester.  Here is an example of a possible course load:  In the semester in which the professor is teaching 2 sections of the core required legal writing course, the professor might teach 25 legal writing students in each section, for a total of 50 students.  In the semester when the professor is teaching only 1 section of the core required legal writing course, the professor might teach 25 legal writing students and 10-15 seminar students, for a total of 35-40 students. The professor probably would also moderate an Advanced Writing Group meeting (6 students) one hour a week."
(spl)

August 21, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, August 20, 2006

research discussion at AALS

If you're starting to fill up your dance card for the AALS annual meeting, to be held in Washington, D.C., in January, here's an event that sounds interesting:

The session titled "AALS Committee on Research" will be held on January 4, 2007, at 8:30.  (This is a new standing committee of AALS, charged with encouraging research about the legal academy itself and legal education.)
"This program will explore ideas and topics for needed research; existing databases; sources for funding research; and skills needed to conduct empirical research well.  Possible research topics include, among others, the shape and arc of an academic legal career; the J.D. as an entry degree for non-traditional careers; factors that predict bar passage, and the use of learning theory in law school teaching.  There will be time to solicit and discuss other possible topics for research."

hat tip:  Professor Linda Edwards, Mercer University School of Law

(spl)

August 20, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)