as revised by the Faculty Council on March 7, 2013
The American Bar Association (ABA) requires that every accredited law school “shall require that each student receive substantial instruction in …legal analysis and reasoning, legal research, problem solving, and oral communication … [and] writing in a legal context, including at least … at least one additional rigorous writing experience after the first year.” Rule 302 Accompanying Interpretation 302-1 states that “[f]actors to be considered in evaluating the rigor of writing instruction include: the number and nature of writing projects assigned to students; the opportunities a student has to meet with a writing instructor for purposes of individualized assessment of the student’s written products; the number of drafts that a student must produce of any writing project; and the form of assessment used by the writing instructor.”
Prior to graduation, each student must complete a paper of substantial quality with a substantial research component, with a grade of “B” or better. A student may satisfy the Advanced Writing Requirement:
Students are strongly encouraged to either (1) enroll in a seminar that will provide them with an opportunity to satisfy the Advanced Writing Requirement or (2) obtain a full-time professor’s agreement to supervise an Independent Writing project. Day students are strongly encouraged to complete the Advanced Writing Requirement during their 2L year. Evening students are strongly encouraged to complete the requirement during their 2L or 3L year. Except in extraordinary circumstances, students must complete the requirement no later than the end of their fifth semester (day division) or seventh semester (evening division). The option of satisfying the Advanced Writing Requirement through Independent Written Work will not be available to students in their last semester of law school.
The registrar will make her best efforts to inform students who do not meet this schedule and their supervising faculty members of that fact no later than the end of the second week of classes of the semester when this recommended deadline expires.
Seminars offered by adjunct faculty may provide students the option to satisfy the advanced writing requirement at the option of the adjunct faculty member, who should consult with the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs before making that decision. Adjunct faculty may limit the number of students eligible to fulfill the requirement at their discretion. New adjunct faculty members who elect to allow students to satisfy the advanced writing requirement must receive onsite training regarding the goals, process, and methodology for providing appropriate criticism to students before the course commences. Full-time faculty and existing adjuncts are strongly encouraged to take advantage of the training, and of resources developed by the curriculum committee that explain the cert requirement in greater depth and are posted on the law school web site.
When you determine how you will fulfill the "cert" or Advanced Writing requirement, complete the Advanced Writing Requirement Intention Form – Part I, and bring it to the Office of Registration & Enrollment. If you are fulfilling the requirement through an Independent Written Work project, you must also complete the Courses Requiring Faculty Approval form, obtain the supervising faculty member’s signature, and bring the form to the Office of Registration & Enrollment. Submission of these forms is required. At the successful completion of the Advanced Writing requirement, complete and submit to the faculty supervisor the Advanced Writing Requirement Certification Form. The faculty supervisor must sign the form, certifying the student’s satisfaction of the requirement, and convey it to the Office of Registration & Enrollment. All forms are available on the Forms page of this website.