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Skills Training Registration Information

In order to take full advantage of the skills and practice experience courses offered at the College of Law, you need to pay attention to the proper sequence. An explanatory flowchart is available here as well as at the link below. Copies are also available.

The skills training courses fall into two main categories: classroom simulation courses, taken in either the 2nd or 3rd year; and practice experiences, taken in the 3rd year, in which you experience the hands on practice of law as an attorney representing real clients, clerk for a judge, or act in the role of a mediator. The intended sequence is that you first learn how to represent a client in the simulation courses, and you then obtain real world experience in the practice experiences. (Note: the Appellate Defender Clinic can be taken 2nd or 3rd year).

If you wish to take maximum advantage of our practice skills offerings, I suggest you take Professional Responsibility, Lawyering Skills, and Evidence during your second year. All three courses are offered both fall and spring semesters, and all are prerequisites for other courses, most notably the clinical courses and externships that make up the practice experiences.

The courses can be taken in any order, but some of us are of the belief that students are better served if they take Lawyering Skills prior to Trial Advocacy. Lawyering Skills teaches you the representation of a client from initial client interview to pre-trial settlement negotiation. Trial Advocacy teaches you how to conduct a jury trial. Therefore, a preferred sequence would have you take Lawyering Skills in your second year and Trial Advocacy in your third year. You must take Evidence before Trial Advocacy. Evidence is offered both fall and spring semesters. Lawyering Skills and Trial Advocacy have limited enrollments. Be sure to follow the
registration instructions provided by Associate Dean Marc Falkoff.

If you are interested in taking a clinic course or externship, you should consult the website and/or flow chart for the required pre-requisites. You must complete an application for the clinic courses and externships. Please note that the Domestic Abuse and Elder Law Clinics will be offered both Fall and Spring semesters. Whether there will be a Mediation Clinic in the Spring is yet to be determined.

If you have any questions, stop by my office, email me at dtaylor@niu.edu or contact the member of the faculty teaching the specific course, clinic or externship.

-Professor David Taylor, Director of Skills Training

Skills Training Flowchart

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