Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Another Stupid Bluebook Rule

In past editions of the Bluebook, the Illinois Appellate Court was abbreviated as "Ill. App." In recent editions, it's abbreviated now as "Ill. App. Ct."

In past editions of the Bluebook, the Indiana Court of Appeals was abbreviated as "Ind. App." And yes, we knew it was a court without having "Ct." as part of that abbreviation. The abbreviation now for the Indiana Court of Appeals is now "Ind. Ct. App."

So we have "Ill. App. Ct." and "Ind. Ct. App." today where we would have previously just had "Ill. App." and "Ind. App."

Do the Bluebook editors think that we don't know that the Illinois Appellate Court is a court? Why do we need "Ct." as part of the abbreviation? It adds nothing substantively to the citation. It wastes time of countless lawyers and law students who have to look up each state individually to see if "Ct." goes before or after "App." It's another stupid Bluebook Rule.


P.S. Guest rants against the Bluebook are welcome. Send us your favorite stupid Bluebook Rule.


September 28, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (1)

Monday, September 26, 2016

Marjorie Rombauer, the "Founding Mother" of the Field of Legal Writing Education, has Died

Marjorie RombauerProfessor Emeritus Marjorie Rombauer of the University of Washington School of Law, an icon in the field of legal research and writing education who has been described as the "Founding Mother" of Legal Writing Education, passed away on Friday, as reported by Professor Karin Mika in a post to the Legal Writing Listserve.
Marjorie Rombauer had a stellar career in service to the law community, legal education, and the justice system. She was a faculty member at the University of Washington School of Law for more than 30 years and served as acting dean in 1991. She was a prolific scholar whose works on legal problem solving, research, writing, and analysis informed generations of law students. Upon her retirement in 1994, an award was established in her name to honor her contributions to the legal writing field, presented annually to a person in the field by the national Association of Legal Writing Directors. In 2000, she was named one of the ten outstanding teachers in the first 100 years of the School of Law.
In her post to the Legal Writing Listserve, Professor Mika shared these thoughts about the legacy of Professor Rombauer and her important work for the field of legal writing education:
As most people in the profession know, our profession is a rather new one in terms of the history of legal education and was established initially by virtue of a handful of people fighting tirelessly for respect and credibility.  
Rombauer Legal Problem SolvingMarjorie Rombauer was one of these individuals, if not THE first person who dedicated her career to the profession.  Marjorie began teaching at the University of Washington in 1960, and by the time the first wave of "newbies" began the true development of Legal Writing in 1980, Marjorie was the matriarch to whom most people entering the field turned for advice and support.  She was omnipresent in every Legal Writing organization, and often provided the foundation on which so many conference panels were based.  
She was the first person to self-publish a book explaining how to teach Legal Analysis -- a book that West Publishing would not publish because they did not believe there was much demand for it.  [West later changed its mind about the importance of textbooks for legal writing.]
She was also the person who helped convince the Association of American Law Schools that our Section name should contain the description of "Reasoning" so that others did not think we taught skills that should be separated out from legal thought or analysis.
. . .
Legal Problem Solving Rombauer Legal Writing Bahrych RombauerMarjorie Dick Rombauer would eventually get her work published. Her books included Legal Problem Solving (pictured at left) and Legal Writing in a Nutshell (with Lynn Bahrych).
Professor Mika wrote further about her own good fortune of becoming friends with Marjorie during these past seven or eight years.  She shared these personal thoughts about her:
Marjorie was about as down to earth and humble as a person could possibly be.  She never felt that anything she did was much of a big deal, and was thrilled at the successes of those who followed in her footsteps. She was a lover of cats, and someone who, at the age of 75, could be found fixing the roof on her house.  She was extremely dedicated to family, and especially cherished the memory of her husband Edgar Rombauer, a notable attorney in his own right and who, interestingly enough, was the son of Irma Rombauer, author of the Joy of Cooking.  Marjorie told me the story about how Edgar disappointed his mother by deciding to be a photographer in the west rather than initially going into the legal profession in St. Louis. Fate brought Edgar into Marjorie's life as she was attempting to golf her way across the country starting from her home in North Dakota. She said she stayed in Seattle because she "ran out of money." Aside from law and golf and fixing things, Marjorie was an accomplished accordion player and spoke fluent Japanese.

For those who wish to know Marjorie a bit better, here is a link to an article written by Professor Mary Lawrence.

Here is also a video of Marjorie's remarks in 2011 upon accepting the 2011 Burton Award for Excellence in Legal Writing Education.

As Karin Mika wrote, "Marjorie Rombauer, legend and friend, will be greatly missed." We extend our sympathy to her colleagues, family, friends, and former students who were lucky enough to have her as a teacher.

Hat tip to Karin Mika


Here are some additional stories about Marjorie Rombauer:

Click here for the funeral home obituary.

Click here for a story from the University of Washington School of Law.

September 26, 2016 in Film | Permalink | Comments (2)

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Hiring Faculty at Texas A&M University School of Law

Since Texas A&M University School of Law acquired the law school from Texas Wesleyan University in August of 2013, the law school has embarked on a program of investment that increased its entering class credentials and financial aid budgets, while shrinking the class size; hired nineteen new faculty members, including thirteen prominent lateral hires; improved its physical facility; and substantially increased its career services, admissions, and student services staff.

The school is again hiring additional faculty. Texas A&M University School of Law now seeks to expand its academic program and its strong commitment to scholarship by hiring multiple exceptional faculty candidates for contract, tenure-track, or tenured positions, with rank dependent on qualifications and experience.  Candidates must have a J.D. degree or its equivalent.  Preference will be given to those with demonstrated outstanding scholarly achievement and strong classroom teaching skills.  Successful candidates will be expected to teach and engage in research and service.  Although the law school welcomes applications in all subject areas, it particularly invites applications from:

1)      Candidates who are interested in expanding and building on our innovative Intellectual Property and Technology Law Clinic (with concentrations in both trademarks and patents), or in one of our other acclaimed clinical areas, including Family Law and Benefits Clinic, Employment Mediation Clinic, Wills & Estates Clinic, Innocence Clinic, and Immigration Law Clinic; and

2)      Candidates with an oil and gas law and/or energy law background, either domestic U.S. or international, who are interested in interdisciplinary research, teaching, and programmatic activities.

3)      Candidates with strong classroom skills and scholarly achievement interested in teaching in its Legal Analysis, Research, and Writing Program.

Although the law school is primarily interested in entry-level candidates for the above positions, more experienced candidates may be considered to the extent that their qualifications respond to the law school’s needs and interests.

In addition, the law school welcomes lateral and highly experienced professionals for the following positions:

1)      Candidates with experience in IP licensing and technology transfers, with relevant academic and/or professional science background, and who are interested in working and building synergies with the Texas A&M University’s College of Agricultural and Life Sciences

2)      Candidates in the field of Alternative Dispute Resolution with a national or international reputation and stellar credentials in scholarship, teaching, and service, and with an interest in building our nationally ranked dispute resolution program;

3)      Candidates in any field with a national or international reputation and stellar credentials in scholarship, teaching, and service;

Texas A&M University is a tier one research institution and American Association of Universities member.  The university consists of 16 colleges and schools that collectively rank among the top 20 higher education institutions nationwide in terms of research and development expenditures.

Texas A&M School of Law is located in the heart of downtown Fort Worth, one of the largest and fastest growing cities in the country.  The Fort Worth/Dallas area, with a total population in excess of six million people, offers a low cost of living, a strong economy, and access to world-class museums, restaurants, entertainment, and outdoor activities.

As an Equal Opportunity Employer, Texas A&M welcomes applications from a broad spectrum of qualified individuals who will enhance the rich diversity of the university’s academic community. Applicants should email a résumé and cover letter indicating research and teaching interests to Professor Gabriel Eckstein, Chair of the Faculty Appointments Committee, at  Alternatively, résumés can be mailed to Professor Eckstein at Texas A&M University School of Law, 1515 Commerce Street, Fort Worth, Texas 76102-6509.




September 24, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Nominations for 2017 AALS Section Award to Honor a Significant Lifetime Contribution to the Field of Legal Writing and Research

AALS LogoThe Awards Committee for the Association of American Law Schools Section on Legal Writing, Reasoning, and Research is pleased to solicit nominations for the 2017 Section Award. This prestigious award recognizes an individual who has made a significant lifetime contribution to the field of legal writing and research. The award was formally created at the AALS Section Business Meeting in January 1995 and conferred for the first time in January 1996 at the AALS Annual Meeting. The award has sometimes been described as a Lifetime Achievement Award in Legal Writing Education.

The 2017 AALS Section award
will be presented at the AALS  Annual Meeting in San Francisco on Thursday, January 5, 2017, during the section luncheon. 

Past winners of the AALS Section Award include:

  • 2016 - Suzanne Rowe (Oregon)
  • 2015 - Mark E. Wojcik (The John Marshall Law School-Chicago)
  • 2014 - Jan Levine (Duquesne)
  • 2013 - Terrill Pollman (UNLV) and Jill Ramsfield (Hawaii) [two winners that year]
  • 2012 - Susan Brody (The John Marshall Law School-Chicago) and Mary Barnard Ray (Wisconsin) [two winners that year]
  • 2011 - Elizabeth Fajans (Brooklyn)
  • 2010 - Joe Kimble (Thomas Cooley)
  • 2009 - Richard K. Neumann, Jr. (Hofstra)
  • 2008 - Eric Easton (Baltimore)
  • 2007 - Anne Enquist (Seattle)
  • 2006 - Terri LeClerq (Texas)
  • 2005 - Marilyn Walter (Brooklyn)
  • 2003 - Laurel Currie Oates (Seattle)
  • 2002 - Helene Shapo (Northwestern)
  • 1997 - Ralph Brill (Chicago-Kent)
  • 1996 - Mary Lawrence (Oregon)

(We know that some years are missing from this list -- please contact us if you are able to fill in the names of winners for the missing years.)

Please submit nominations before October 15, 2016. There is no particular form required to nominate someone. A simple letter or email message naming the person and describing some of his or her work should be enough. (If it isn't, we'll contact you for more information.) You can also submit additional letters of support, but the nomination form by itself is enough.

Send nominations to Prof. Mark E. Wojcik, The John Marshall Law School-Chicago, Please also copy the Award Committee Co-Chair, Professor Rosario Schrier, at Please put "AALS Section Award Nomination" in the re line.


September 24, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, September 23, 2016

Stupid Bluebook Rules

The 20th edition of the Bluebook requires a citation to a Restatement to include "American Law Institute" in the parenthetical with the year of publication. For example:

  • Restatement (Third) of Unfair Competition § 3 (Am. Law Inst. 1995).

(If you're citing this in a law review footnote, the "Restatement (Third) of Unfair Competition" and "Am. Law Inst." would be in large and small caps).

In previous editions, lawyers and other legal researchers somehow magically knew that the Restatements were published by the American Law Institute. It wasn't necessary to include "Am. Law Inst." The year was enough. And under that same rule, if you're citing the Uniform Commercial Code, you have to put "Am. Law Inst. & Unif. Law Comm'n" in the parenthetical. All of this can be found in Rule 12.9.4 of the 20th edition of the Bluebook. And that's what happens when law students write the citation rules instead of professors, practitioners, or judges.

We're happy to publish your rants about other "Stupid Bluebook Rules." Please send them to us, and we'll post them. And who knows, maybe some future Bluebook editors will read it and adopt instead a more sensible rule. The "Uniform System of Citation" shouldn't be an "Uninformed System of Citation."


September 23, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Moot Court Competition Announcement

If anyone who serves double-duty as a Moot Court Advisor is looking for a new competition for your students, please see the below announcement of UNLV Boyd School of Law's Second Annual Frank A. Shreck Gaming Law Moot Court Competition.  
2nd Annual Frank A. Schreck Gaming Law Moot Court Competition
March 31, 2017 - April 2, 2017
The William S. Boyd School of Law’s Society of Advocates Moot Court Board and UNLV Gaming Law Journal invite your school to compete in the Second Annual Frank A. Schreck Gaming Law Moot Court Competition.  The competition problem focuses on emerging issues at the intersection of gaming law and regulation. This competition provides the opportunity for law students from around the country to advocate in front of federal and state judges, as well as prominent attorneys in the gaming industry.
For more information, please visit the competition website at or submit any questions you have to the Competition Chair, Valerie Gray, at
Important Dates:
  • Early Registration: September 19, 2016 through November 1, 2016
    • Fees: 
      • 1 Team: $450
      • 2 Teams: $800
  • Late Registration: November 2, 2016 through December 5, 2016
    • Fees:
      • 1 Team: $500
      • 2 Teams: $1,000
  • Problem ReleasedJanuary 9, 2017, at 12:01 a.m. Pacific Time
  • Brief Submission Due OnFebruary 20, 2017, at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time
  • Competition DatesMarch 31, 2017 through April 2, 2017

September 22, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, September 16, 2016

Legal Writing Director Position at Elon

Elon University School of Law seeks applicants for the tenure-track or contract position of Director of the law school’s First-Year Legal Method & Communication Program. The ideal applicant will be an excellent teacher and scholar who is prepared to lead through collaboration with a faculty and staff committed to curricular innovation.  Experience directing a legal writing program is preferred.

During the past two years Elon Law has launched an innovative 2.5-year curriculum that is consistent with its mission to be the preeminent law school for engaged and experiential education in law. Central to that mission is an expanded role for communications across the curriculum:  in addition to the required 1L Legal Method & Communication sequence, all Elon Law students must also take a communication course in every upper level term, including a full-time residency-in-practice during their 2L year.  As the current director shifts her attention to development of the upper-level curriculum, we seek an innovative teacher who will further integrate the law school’s 1L writing curriculum with other first-year courses to create a unified first-year experience for students and who will work with the current director to build a comprehensive communications curriculum that extends from matriculation to graduation. 

The law school’s first-year LMC program is taught in six sections of approximately 22-23 students. In addition to working with other faculty to integrate the first-year curriculum, the director of the first-year program will work closely with Elon’s research librarians, who teach a one-credit legal research course to first-year students, and with Elon’s Writing Specialist.  The program is housed in the newly-opened Center for Excellence in Legal Analysis and Communication, with classroom, faculty offices, and common spaces designed to facilitate collaboration among faculty and provide a supportive environment for student learning.  

Applicants for the position must hold a J.D. or equivalent degree. An equitable, inclusive and diverse campus and curriculum are critical to our educational mission. Therefore Elon Law is committed to enhancing equity, inclusion and diversity, including our capacity for teaching students from all backgrounds. Recruitment is subject to approval by the University’s Provost. Please send your application or any inquiries regarding this position to Professor Andrew Haile, Chair of the Faculty Recruitment Committee, at


Legal Research & Writing Faculty Teaching Position Job Posting Disclosure Form


  1. The position advertised: is a tenure-track appointment. OR may lead only to successive short-term contracts of one to four years.

The position will be a contract OR a tenure-track appointment.

  1. The professor hired: will be permitted to vote in faculty meetings.

A professor hired on a contract may not vote on the promotion and tenure of tenure-track professors.


  1. 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; a base salary does not include conference travel or other professional development funds.)

X         over $120,000

X         $110,000 - $119,999

X         $100,000 - $109,999

X         $90,000 - $99,999

Salary depends on qualifications and experience. Professor is also eligible for professional development funds and summer research grants. 

  1. 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 in a legal writing class

Professors teach four classes per year. The three-trimester Legal Method & Communication class averages 20-24 students per section. LMC professors may also teach an additional class during one trimester, with enrollments ranging from approximately 12-24 students in a writing course or small seminar, to approximately 30-50 in a traditional upper level course.  Course relief in recognition of administrative responsibilities may be subject to negotiation.

September 16, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

The Fifth Colonial Frontier Legal Writing Conference

The Fifth Colonial Frontier Legal Writing Conference

Saturday, December 3, 2016 

“Drafting Statutes and Rules: Pedagogy, Practice, and Politics”

Hosted by the Duquesne University School of Law, Pittsburgh, PA

Sponsored by LexisNexis with additional support from Wolters Kluwer Legal Education

Practicing attorneys frequently engage in statutory, regulation, and rule drafting whether it be drafting corporate governance documents, crafting legislative initiatives for non-profit clients, or engaging with highly regulated industries.  Despite increasing need for such skills in law practice, the drafting of statutes, ordinances, regulations, and rules (for public laws or governance of non-governmental entities) remains one of the least common law school subjects. Commonly, instruction focuses on the repercussions of poorly written statutes or rules, on the courts’ efforts at application and interpretation of statutory language, and on scholarly criticism of statutes.  Instead, law schools should teach students and practitioners how to better draft statutes and similar documents to avoid confusion, ambiguities, disagreements, and litigation. 

Duquesne University School of Law's 2016 legal writing conference offers attendees an opportunity to hear from academicians who teach how to write statutory materials, practitioners who craft statutes and similar rules, and other scholars who study all forms of legislation.  Lawyers representing corporate and non-profit clients, as well as those practicing in highly regulated areas of law, will find this program helpful in developing both skills in the art of statutory and rule drafting, and in learning about resources available to clients in need of such drafting.  

Here is the list of presentations:

  • Prof. Richard Neumann, Hofstra, & Prof. J. Lyn Entrikin, Arkansas Little-Rock – Teaching the Art and Craft of Drafting Public Law: Statutes, Rules, and More
  • Prof. Lisa Rich, Texas A&M – One-Pagers, Testimony, and Rulemaking Comments, Oh My!  Teaching Public Policy Drafting Techniques in a Law School Setting
  • Prof. Olivia Farrar, Howard – From Self-Determination To Self-Regulation: Teaching Legal Drafting Through Negotiating And Writing Class Rules
  • Profs. Dakota S. Rudesill & Terri Enns, Ohio State, Legislative Drafting Exercises: Design Decisions and Experiential Experiments
  • Governor Tom Corbett (Pennsylvania) & Senate Minority Leader Jay Costa (Pennsylvania), with Prof. John Rago, Duquesne (Moderator) – From Chaos to Creation: A Look Behind the Curtain on the Flow of Policy-Making Powers Between Pennsylvania's Executive and Legislative Leaders
  • Prof. Jamie Abrams, Louisville – Teaching Legislation in the Era of Trump
  • Prof. Charles Trost, Belmont – The Government Relations Clinic
  • Prof. Rex Frazier, McGeorge – The Capital Lawyering Concentration & Courses
  • Prof. Heidi Brown, Brooklyn – Misprision of a Felony? Using State and Federal “Failure to Report a Felony” Statutes to Illustrate Language Choices in Legislation
  • Prof. Ann Schiavone, Duquesne – Writing the Law:Promoting Community Engagment and Social Justice Through  Statutory And Rule Drafting 

Attendance at the one-day conference, on Saturday, December 3, 2016, will be free for presenters, Duquesne faculty, and $50 for non-presenters with an academic or government affiliation; other attendees will be charged $125 for the full-day conference or $50 for those attending only the afternoon sessions. We anticipate offering continuing legal education credit of four hours for attorneys attending the entire conference; attendees may also register for the afternoon sessions for two hours of credit. Duquesne will provide free on-site parking to conference attendees.  

Pittsburgh is an easy drive or short flight from many cities.  To accommodate persons wishing to stay over in Pittsburgh on Friday or Saturday evenings, Duquesne is arranging for a block of discounted rooms ($144 per night) at the Marriott City Center hotel adjacent to campus, within walking distance of the law school and downtown Pittsburgh.  We will also provide attendees with information about the Pittsburgh area’s attractions, including our architectural treasures, museums, shopping, and sporting events.  To register for the conference and review the conference agenda, information about hotel accommodations and other materials, please visit the conference webpage at

hat tip:  

Jan M. Levine

Professor & Director, Legal Research & Writing Program

Duquesne University School of Law 


telephone: 412.396.1048


September 16, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Guest Blog Post: Building the Legal Writing Discipline -- A Good Reason to Attend the Rhetoric Society of America Conference

Kirsten DavisIn case you missed her earlier guest blog post this year, we're happy to share again this article from Professor Kirsten Davis of Stetson University, who strongly recommends attending conferences and institutes of the Rhetoric Society of America. Here's her report on the 2016 Conference:

The 17th Biennial Rhetoric Society of America Conference was held earlier this year in Atlanta: 1600 participants, 500 sessions, a countless number of intriguing ideas about words, symbols, and meaning. And I'm awash in thoughts about the future of legal writing teaching and scholarship.

In the community of law school faculty with research interests in legal writing, we are in the middle period, I believe, of developing the field of legal writing as an academic discipline. We are creating a canon of legal writing, theorizing our practices and pedagogy, testing our assumptions, engaging in scholarly debates, and turning a critical eye upon the acts and artifacts of legal writing. It's an exciting time. Being at the RSA Conference reminded me that faculty whose academic homes are in composition, technical writing, English, and human communication can offer much in the continued discipline-building process. Their work, sophisticated and rich, can prompt us to expand and explode our boundaries, learn new methods, and ask both the big and small questions of legal writing.  

In her conference talk entitled The Fifth Persona, Katie Langford of Texas Tech explored how Justice Kennedy in his Obergefell opinion used his insider status to assume the role of an outsider and give voice to same-sex couples when the political attempts to gain voice had failed. This made me think about patterns of legal writing:   How do we identify when other judges and lawyers are writing from this insider/outsider position? Does this style of legal writing suggest a sub-genre? What other sub-genres might we identify?

In a session entitled run_progynasmata: The Training of a Rhetorical Device, William Hart-Davidson of Michigan State, James Brown of Rutgers-Camden, Kevin Brock of the University of South Carolina, and Ryan Omizo, of the University of Rhode Island blew my mind with their work at the intersection of rhetoric, writing, and machine learning. Their computer application, Hedge-O-Matic, uses machine learning to identify hedging language in documents. As an aid the rhetoric researcher, the machine analyzes written texts on a scale and at a speed that humans cannot accomplish. And it does this by being shown examples of hedges and then applying its own reasoning to find instances of hedges in new documents.

I think this project is of double importance to the legal writing community. First, it provokes new questions about the future of legal writing and what it might hold. We've been interested in reading on the screen, mobile technologies, and visual images as part of legal writing's future. But what about machine learning in legal writing? If machines can take over part of the legal writing process, should they? Which aspects of writing are suitable for machines? And, should we be teaching legal writers how to train their machine writing partners? What will we lose or gain if machines reason through parts of the legal writing process for lawyers?

Second, legal writing researchers can ask how machine learning can help us study legal writing and legal texts. What components of legal writing could we train machines to recognize? What would we learn from that process? For example, if we used Hedge-O-Matic to identify instances of hedging in judicial opinions, briefs, or, perhaps, even contracts, what would we learn and what could we theorize?

On a panel that addressed Rhetorical Education as Legal Education, Elizabeth Britt of Northeastern University presented her research on rhetorical listening in clinical legal education. Britt's ethnographic study observed law students interviewing—but not giving legal advice to—victims of domestic violence. The results showed how rhetorical listening, the act of listening to learn the other's point of view, is an essential precursor to the "legal" listening that lawyers do. Dr. Britt's study made me wonder whether rhetorical listening should be part of legal writing education. How would we teach it? How does rhetorical listening relate to legal writing? In what other contexts would we observe rhetorical listening in the law and study it?

Finally, Brian Larson of Georgia Tech in his talk, LeMeme Chose: Lawyers Use of Exemplary Reasoning in Legal Writing, used argumentation theory and technical writing research methods to examine case-based legal argument in court briefs and opinions. Dr. Larson applied exemplary-argument schema by coding briefs and opinions for different kinds of case references. His pilot study showed that none of the texts used a case reference to expressly claim the relevance of precedent cases to the client facts. Hmmm. So, what's going on here? If this step of argument is missing from briefs and opinions, is legal writing as a course failing to teach it? How might we know? If Dr. Larson's full study yields the results of the pilot, should we rethink best practices in legal writing? How else might we test the structure of lawyers' arguments, and what would we learn?

I am thoroughly energized from my time at the RSA Conference. My mind was opened to new ideas and new directions for legal writing research. And I found a welcoming community of colleagues and collaborators. The next RSA Institute will be in 2017: Hope to see you there!

Kirsten K. Davis, Professor of Law and Director of the Institute for the Advancement of Legal Communication, Stetson University College of Law

Click here for information about the 2017 Institute.



September 15, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (1)

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Legal Writing Director Job Opening in Alabama at Samford

SAMFORD UNIVERSITY’S CUMBERLAND SCHOOL OF LAW is seeking applicants to fill the position of Director of Lawyering and Legal Reasoning beginning in the 2017-2018 academic year.  The Lawyering and Legal Reasoning program is a first-year required course offering designed to ensure students possess outstanding legal reasoning, research and writing skills. The program forms the cornerstone of the first-year curriculum.   

In addition to teaching core aspects of the legal writing curriculum, the Director of the Lawyering and Legal Reasoning program is responsible for the training and supervision of legal writing instructors and student teaching fellows.  The position requires strong leadership and collaborative skills as well as the ability to adapt the legal writing curriculum to meet the changing needs of the legal profession.  This is a tenure-track position and applicants should have superior academic credentials and a demonstrated record of, or the potential for, of excellence in teaching, legal scholarship and service.  Prior teaching experience is advantageous but not required.  The committee is particularly interested in candidates with relevant experience in private practice, government or public service.   Salary and rank are commensurate with the candidate’s experience and skills.  

Samford University is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, gender, national or ethnic origin, disability, or age in its hiring.  In furtherance of our strong institutional commitment to a diverse faculty, we particularly welcome applications from minorities, women, and others who enrich and diversify our faculty.  Please forward a letter of interest, a resume or Curriculum Vitae, and a list of three references to: Professor Jill E. Evans, Cumberland School of Law, Samford University, 800 Lakeshore Drive, Birmingham AL 35229 or by email to




September 13, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, September 9, 2016

Friday Fun: Literally

This video literally illustrates the dangers of using literally. Enjoy.


Hat tip to Ann Schwing and Scribes -- The American Society of Legal Writers.


September 9, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Southeast Regional Legal Writing Conference will be April 21-22, 2017 in Florida

The Southeast Regional Legal Writing Conference will be held April 21-22, 2017 at Stetson University’s Institute for the Advancement of Legal Communication. There will also be a one-day Law and Rhetoric Colloquium that same weekend. For more information about these events, contact Professor Kirsten K. Davis at Stetson University College of Law.


September 9, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Links to 20 Legal Writing and Law Professor Job Postings

Here are links to 20 job postings for legal writing professors and other law faculty positions in the United States and Canada. The list is alphabetical by state (followed by the listing in Canada). Cut and paste the links.

  • Phoenix, Arizona:
  • Little Rock, Arkansas (1):
  • Little Rock, Arkansas (2):
  • Little Rock, Arkansas (3):
  • Colorado Springs, Colorado [U.S. Air Force Academy]:
  • Miami, Florida:
  • Boston, Massachusetts [Suffolk]:
  • Boston, Massachusetts [Boston University]:
  • Newton, Massachusetts:
  • Lincoln, Nebraska:
  • Las Vegas, Nevada:
  • Ithaca, New York (1):
  • Ithaca, New York (2):
  • Ithaca, New York (3):
  • New York, New York:
  • Winston-Salem, North Carolina:
  • Akron, Ohio:
  • Memphis, Tennessee:
  • Fort Worth, Texas:
  • British Columbia, Canada:

If your school has an opening not listed here, please send it to us and we'll be happy to put it on the Legal Writing Prof Blog for you. We're also happy to post news of new hires and promotions, upcoming conferences, calls for papers and proposals, new scholarship, and other events of interest to the legal writing community. (And thank you for more than 1.6 million views of the Legal Writing Blog over the years!)

You can also visit the website of the Legal Writing Institute for additional job listings.

Prof. Mark E. Wojcik, The John Marshall Law School-Chicago, Editor, The Legal Writing Prof Blog


September 6, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Job Opening at Boston University School of Law

BOSTON UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF LAW is seeking exceptionally qualified and experienced candidates for full-time positions as Lecturers in our Lawyering Program with an anticipated start date of July 1, 2017. The Lawyering Program is a new two-semester course replacing our current First Year Legal Writing Program. Lecturers will be responsible for teaching the required first year Lawyering course that will cover legal reasoning, legal writing, oral advocacy, and lawyering skills. Lecturers will also teach in our one-week Lawyering Lab during January intercession.

It is anticipated that each Lecturer will teach thirty-five to forty students a semester in the Lawyering Program, divided into two sections. Each section of the course will be assigned two upper-class Writing Fellows, who will work with the students as they draft their assignments. In addition to teaching, Lecturer responsibilities include helping to develop persuasive and objective writing assignments and simulations, conducting individual student conferences, training and judging students in oral advocacy, coaching moot court teams, and providing individual feedback on students’ written work.

These Lecturer positions are non-tenure track appointments to a one- or two-year initial contract, with the possibility of successive appointments. Candidates must have a degree from an accredited law school, excellent writing and analytical skills, and a strong academic record. Legal writing teaching, and legal practice or clerkship experiences are preferred.

Boston University School of Law is committed to faculty diversity and welcomes expressions of interest from diverse applicants.

Applicants should send a letter of interest, resume, and a list of three references to Professor Robert Volk, Boston University School of Law, 765 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, Massachusetts 02215. Email applications are encouraged and should be sent to Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

To learn more about the law school, click here

Hat tip to Robert Volk.


September 6, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, September 5, 2016

Call for Presenters: New Scholars' Showcase Program at the 2017 AALS Annual Meeting in San Francisco -- Apply by September 9th

AALS LogoThe Association of American Law Schools' Section on Legal Writing, Reasoning and Research (LWRR) is seeking participants in a “New Scholars Showcase” session that will be held on Wednesday, January 4, 2017, from 3:30 – 4:45 p.m. during the 2017 AALS Annual Meeting in San Francisco, California.

During this session, three newer scholars who teach legal writing and who have been selected through a competitive process described below will present their works-in-progress or recently completed article. Each scholar will have approximately 10-12 minutes to present, and the remainder of the session will be spent on questions and comments from the audience. The LWRR Section is seeking participation from both newer scholars and more experienced legal writing faculty.

Newer Scholar Participants

Anyone who teaches legal writing and has been in the legal academy for seven years or fewer (or if teaching longer than seven years has recently moved into or has their position converted to one that requires scholarship) and who has a work-in-progress or an article that has been published since January 1, 2016, can apply to present that work at the New Scholars Showcase.  That scholarship can be on any topic, using any method, at any level of controversy, and suitable for publication in any scholarly journal.

Applications from newer scholars will be due on Friday, September 9, 2016. Please email your application to Lisa Mazzie, Program Committee Co-Chair, at Please include “New Scholars Showcase” in your subject line. Each application should include:

  1. the author’s name, school affiliation, and years teaching in the legal academy;
  2. an abstract of the article;
  3. the current draft of the article; and
  4. an indication of your interest in being matched up with a scholarly mentor.

The LWRR Program Committee will remove identifying information from each application, review the applications, and select three applicants to present at the New Scholars Showcase session at AALS. All applicants who indicate an interest will be paired with a mentor, and we anticipate publicizing the other applicants’ scholarship through the session to help provide additional opportunities for mentorship and feedback.

More Experienced Legal Writing Faculty Participants

The section is also seeking experienced legal writing faculty to serve as mentors for the applicants. If you are interested in serving as a mentor, please email Lisa Mazzie, Program Committee Co-Chair, at, to indicate your interest by Friday, September 9, 2016. Please indicate “New Scholars Showcase Mentor” in your subject line.

Program Committee

Mary Bowman (Seattle) Co-Chair, Lisa Mazzie (Marquette) Co-Chair, Joan Blum (Boston College), Selina Brandt (Pepperdine), Scott Fraley (Baylor), Elizabeth Inglehart (Northwestern), Susan McMahon (Georgetown), and Wayne Schiess (Texas).

Hat tip to Lisa A. Mazzie


September 5, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Legal Writing Job Opening at the Department of Law of the U.S. Air Force Academy

The Department of Law of the U.S. Air Force Academy anticipates filling a full-time 12-month Assistant Professor of Law position, beginning approximately 26 June 2017. The person hired can expect to teach Legal Research, Writing, and Advocacy. These gateway courses introduce Legal Studies majors to the research and communication skills needed to effectively advocate a position. They are similar to typical 1L research and writing courses in law school, except taught at the undergraduate level.

The successful applicant will also teach the core (required) course, Law for Air Force Officers, a survey course covering topics such as criminal and constitutional law, law of armed conflict, jurisprudence, and legal tools of military discipline. The person selected may also teach upper-level law courses as part of the Legal Studies major.

For a complete listing of courses please visit the Department of Law webpage: In lieu of tenure, presumptive re-appointments of up to four years in length are possible and will be based upon an assessment of performance, Air Force and departmental needs, and financial constraints. Over 90% of faculty are reappointed after their initial appointment. Duties will also include scholarship and service on committees related to the curriculum and the academic mission of the Academy. Academic promotions to associate and full professor are available based upon records of teaching, scholarship, and service. Faculty members will be expected to be in the office for a full duty day to be available to cadets and to participate in a variety of cadet activities in addition to teaching.

A Juris Doctorate degree from an American Bar Association accredited law school and a minimum of five years full-time teaching at the undergraduate or graduate level are required. Applicants will be assessed based on teaching credentials, scholarship, service, and education. Candidates with demonstrated experience in course and curriculum development and assessment, as well as experience teaching and mentoring students in legal research and writing are highly desirable. The United States Air Force Academy (USAFA), located just north of Colorado Springs, Colorado, is an undergraduate institution that awards the Bachelor of Science degree as part of its mission to educate, train, and inspire men and women to become officers of character, motivated to lead in the United States Air Force and in service to our nation. Faculty applications are invited from candidates who can contribute to this mission by interacting with cadets, both in and out of the classroom, as instructors and mentors. The student body consists of approximately 4,000 men and women representing every state and several foreign countries. The Academy faculty is an integrated group of military and civilian educators. The curriculum includes core academic and professional courses, and 27 disciplinary and interdisciplinary majors. The Department of Law is composed of 18 military and civilian attorneys and a small administrative staff.

How to Apply: Application instructions and further information is at Type "Professor" in the Keyword box and "USAF Academy" in the Location box and click "Search." You must submit your application so that it will be received by the closing date of the announcement, Wednesday, October 19, 2016. Faxed, emailed or incomplete applications WILL NOT be accepted or considered--no exceptions.

The position is for one to four years and the professor hired will be allowed to vote in faculty meetings. The salary starts at $90,000 and the number of students estimated is 46 to 50. Deadline to apply is October 19, 2016.



September 5, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Job Opening in Ohio

The University of Akron School of Law invites applications for two full-time faculty appointments to teach legal writing in its J.D. program, beginning in the fall of 2017 at the rank of Assistant Professor of Legal Writing. The professors will each teach 10-12 credits per year of some combination of first-year legal writing courses and upper-level legal drafting courses. Candidates hired as Assistant Professors of Legal Writing will serve on a probationary basis for their first two years, then be eligible for reappointment under a three-year term, followed by eligibility for reappointment under presumptively renewable five year terms.

Candidates should have strong academic records (including a J.D. or its equivalent) and either experience in law practice or a judicial clerkship (or both). They should be able to show a strong interest and competency in teaching legal research and writing. Candidates should also show a record of or potential for successful scholarly publication.

The University of Akron School of Law is a public, mid-size law school of approximately 450 students located in the Akron/Cleveland metropolitan area. Akron Law offers excellent teaching, relatively low tuition and a commitment to student success, as well as a strong relationship with the local and regional bars. Akron Law prides itself on outcomes including our high bar passage rate, strong job placement, award-winning clinical programs, national championship trial team program and various areas of excellence.

Akron Law is committed to achieving a diverse faculty and staff by including individuals from varied backgrounds and characteristics, including age, gender, religion, ethnicity, disability, national origin, sexual orientation and socioeconomic background. They are also committed to offering competitive salary and benefits packages to qualified candidates.

Required Qualifications: A Juris doctor or equivalent law degree, and either experience practicing law or a judicial clerkship (or both).

Preferred Qualifications: A demonstrated record of or potential for successful scholarship and teaching.

For complete details and to apply for these positions, visit: Job ID# 9651. Applying for one position will automatically count as applying for the other, so there is no need to apply for both positions. Although all candidates must submit their applications via this centralized system, please feel free to direct any inquiries to Professor Bernadette Genetin, Chair of the search committee, at For assistance with your application or attachments please call 330-972-8431. Review of applications will begin immediately. Anticipated start date: August 15, 2017.

The position is long-term but not tenure-track. The professor hired will be allowed to vote in faculty meetings. Salary is estimated at $70,000 to $79,000. The number of students to be taught each semester is estimated at 41 to 45. The deadline to apply is September 15, 2016.


September 5, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Job Opening in Arizona

The Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law at Arizona State University invites applications for a full-time position commencing in August 2017 to teach first-year and upper-level courses in the College of Law's highly-ranked Legal Method and Writing program. The position offers a professional environment with job security that exceeds the requirements of ABA Standard 405(c). The College of Law is ranked nationally in the top 25 by U.S. News and has recently opened a new state-of-the-art building on ASU's downtown Phoenix campus.

This is a full-time, benefits-eligible appointment. This appointment is as a probationary academic professional, on track to continuing status, under the university title of Associate Instructional Professional. Information about Academic Professionals at ASU, including status, rank, titles, and appointment categories, can be found at manuals/acd/acd505-03.html.

Candidates must possess a J.D. degree and at least one year of experience teaching Legal Method and Writing courses to J.D. students at a fully-accredited law school. Preferred candidates will have a record of demonstrated excellence as a teacher, professional contributions in the field of legal writing, and service activities.

The application deadline is September 15, 2016 and if not filled, every two weeks thereafter until the search is closed. To apply, please submit a resume, a statement of interest, and the contact information for two references. Successful applicants may be invited on campus for an interview, though in rare cases an interview may take place by telephone or by video. Please direct inquiries and applications to Ms. Rebecca Hutchison, Coordinator for Appointments Committee, Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law, Arizona State University, MC9520 Arizona State University 111 E. Taylor St. Phoenix, AZ 85004-4467 or electronically to:

Additional information about the Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law and Arizona State University is available at:

The position is tenure-track and the professor hired will be allowed to vote in faculty meetings. Salary is estimated at $70,000 to $89,000. The number of students taught each semester will be 36 to 40. The deadline to apply is September 15, 2016.



September 5, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

And Yet Another Legal Writing Job in Arkansas

The University of Arkansas at Little Rock, William H. Bowen School of Law seeks applicants for a tenure-track position to design, manage, and teach our required second-year Lawyering Skills I and II courses beginning August 2017. The successful candidate will also hire, train, and supervise the adjunct faculty who teach the courses and will oversee the law school’s trial advocacy teams. For more information about the required second-year Lawyering Skills courses, see Salary and rank are commensurate with experience. Minimum qualifications are a J.D. from an accredited law school and strong litigation skills. Preferred qualifications include outstanding academic credentials, prior teaching experience, and law review or moot court service.

Little Rock is the capital city and largest metropolitan area in Arkansas, boasting extremely affordable housing, cultural attractions, and proximity to extensive recreational areas. The law school is located in revitalized downtown Little Rock, less than two miles from the state capitol, the federal, state, and county courthouses, the largest law firms in the state, and the Clinton Presidential Library. Housed in a spacious 150,000 square foot, completely renovated building, the law school is situated within the historic Quapaw Quarter, next to the MacArthur Museum of Military History and the Arkansas Arts Center.

Applicants should send a curriculum vitae, together with a cover letter indicating teaching and scholarly interests and three references, to Professor Michael T. Flannery, Chair, Faculty Appointments Committee, UALR William H. Bowen School of Law, 1201 McMath Avenue, Little Rock, Arkansas 72202-5142, or to Applications will be considered until the position is filled. The University of Arkansas at Little Rock, an Equal Opportunity Employer, affirms the values and goals of diversity and strongly encourages the applications of all candidates, including women and candidates from historically under-represented groups.

September 5, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Business Innovations Law Clinic Director Job in Arkansas

The University of Arkansas at Little Rock, William H. Bowen School of Law invites applicants for a non-tenure-track, full-time visiting clinic director position in our new Business Innovations Law Clinic. The position is available beginning June 1, 2017. The successful candidate will supervise clinical students and work with participating attorneys to provide free and low-cost legal services to qualified start-ups, small businesses, innovators, and non-profit organizations in Central Arkansas. Candidates must hold a J.D. from an accredited law school and demonstrate experience in transactional, intellectual property, and corporate law. Candidates must either be admitted to the Arkansas bar or capable of admission to it prior to February 1, 2018. Preferred qualifications include business law practice, collaboration with community partners, and experience supervising attorneys or direct clinical teaching. Salary and rank are commensurate with experience.

Little Rock is the capital city and largest metropolitan area in Arkansas, boasting extremely affordable housing, cultural attractions, and proximity to extensive recreational areas. The law school is located in revitalized downtown Little Rock, less than two miles from the state capitol, federal, state, and county courthouses, the largest law firms in the state, and the Clinton Presidential Library. Housed in a completely renovated building, the law school is situated within the historic Quapaw Quarter, next to the MacArthur Museum of Military History and the Arkansas Arts Center.

Applicants should send a curriculum vitae, with a cover letter indicating teaching and scholarly interests and three references, to Professor Michael T. Flannery, Chair, Faculty Appointments Committee, UALR William H. Bowen School of Law, 1201 McMath Avenue, Little Rock, Arkansas 72202-5142, or to The University of Arkansas at Little Rock, an Equal Opportunity Employer, affirms the values and goals of diversity and strongly encourages the applications of all candidates, including women and candidates from historically under-represented groups.

Hat tip to Lyn Entrikin.


September 5, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)