Faculty & Staff

Teaching Resources

The Law Library handles copyright permissions of course materials. This includes print course packs, materials that are distributed during the semester, and materials to be loaded onto Blackboard pages. Course materials, regardless of the number of pages, must be submitted directly to the Law Library for copyright clearance. Once the course materials are submitted to the library, a determination will be made as to whether copyright permission is required. In order to manage this process in a timely fashion, documents are to be submitted in sufficient time to have the materials checked, photocopied and available to students well before they will be needed. Submit course documents to law-copyrightclearance@law.umaryland.edu or call 410-706-0784. Once permission is granted for the materials, the library can also help facilitate the delivery of materials to the Copy Center for duplication.

Your library liaison is available to help you locate appropriate readings for specific topics, to obtain any materials not in the library, and to assist with questions that you may have regarding linking to articles on your course Blackboard page.

Library Reserves

For assistance with desk copies and instructor editions, casebooks, and other course materials, please email coursematerials@law.umaryland.edu.

The Media Services Department will contact each instructor prior to the begining of the semester to ask which of three classroom recording policies the instructor prefers for the class:

  1. Media Services will automatically record all regularly scheduled classes and make the recordings available to students registered in this course through the end of this semester.
  2. Recording is not permitted in this course except when the Deans’ office authorizes general recording. The Deans’ office may authorize general recording for some religious holidays and on inclement weather days. When recording is authorized under these circumstances, recordings will be available to all students registered in the course for remainder of the semester.
  3. Recording is not permitted in this course.

Please note that if you select options 2 or 3, Media Services cannot record individual class sessions to accommodate student absences. When an individual student must miss a class for any reason and wishes to have the class recorded, the student must obtain faculty member approval and ask a classmate to record the class.

In certain circumstances, the Office of Student Affairs will contact faculty to request classroom recording to support recommended ADA accommodations.

The Self Service Technology Instructions briefly explain the audiovisual equipment in the law school classrooms. Specific instructions for each room are posted near the lectern or on the wall in each room. For more information on classroom technology or to schedule a training session, please contact the Media Services Department at mediaservices@law.umaryland.edu, 410-706-8413, Room 308.

Large Classrooms (107, 108, 302, & 460) and Room 205 (ADA lectern) Instructions

Large Classroom Instructions

Room 205 with ADA Lectern

Seminar Room (309, 310, 402, 405, & 473) and Room 300 A/B Instructions

Seminar Rooms Instructions

Room 300 A/B

Courtroom and Boardroom Instructions

Bekman Courtroom - Room 202

Levin Courtroom - Room 307

Krongard Boardroom - Room 106

Ceremonial Courtroom – Room 160

Clinic Interview Rooms (362, 363, 364, 366)

Clinic Interview Room Instructions

Clinic Interview Rooms must be booked in advance with the Clinical Law Program, 410-706-3295. You may record a session in the interview room via a timed session scheduled with Media Services, or you can initiate an individual unscheduled recording. For assistance, please contact the Media Services Department at mediaservices@law.umaryland.edu, 410-706-8413, Room 308.

The Goals and Purpose of Faculty Supervision of Student Seminar Papers

Faculty members are often in the position of supervising student writing. In a seminar, the written paper is the heart of the student and faculty’s work together. It is an opportunity to convey to the student an understanding of the faculty member’s role as legal scholar. The students are in effect asked to create a small piece of legal scholarship and the faculty member can help them achieve the scholarly goal of pushing beyond the merely descriptive to the analytical work that we want them to produce.

For many students, the seminar paper will be their first experience with scholarly legal writing. It is therefore very important that the faculty member give the student guidance in understanding the purposes of scholarly writing and the expectations for both the interim pieces and final product. It is helpful to spend part of at least one seminar session talking about what legal scholarship is and what it means to contribute incrementally to the canon in a particular substantive area of law. Many students need guidance in understanding the importance of presenting a clear thesis and organizing the paper around that thesis. There are several articles and texts (listed below) that can aid students in that understanding; it can be very helpful to assign one of these texts to the students.

An additional resource that can help students write better seminar papers is the law school’s Writing Center. Through both group workshops and one-on-one meetings, the Writing Center can help students better to understand both the scholarly writing process and its resulting product. The writing fellows can offer ideas and techniques to assist student at any stage of the scholarly writing process: topic selection, deciding on research strategies, organizing notes, outlining, getting started on the first draft, rewriting and revising. The Writing Center also has a bank of sample student scholarly papers.

It also helps for the faculty to have specific deadlines for each of the interim writing steps in the syllabus and to include even more interim deadlines than are required for the advanced writing requirement. For example, it is useful to give the student a date by which she must select a topic, a date by which she must submit a reading list and her thesis, a date by which she must submit a first draft for written comments and of course, a final deadline by which the paper must be done.

It may be helpful to give the student a structure for a traditional law review article/note/comment. For example, the professor might require that any first draft contain something in each of the following parts of the paper so that feedback is useful. The student might be instructed to organize the paper into five parts with a draft of each due at the time the first draft is due. The faculty member might remind the student that the first goal of legal scholarship is to instruct the reader who is often not familiar with the area generally. So a typical structure might include: Part 1. Introduction: Why the topic is an important problem or issue in the law; Part 2. The legislative or judicial history leading up to the current status quo; Part 3. The positions taken by other scholars in the area; Part 4. The student’s original contribution which may be a proposal for a new legislative or judicial test or an exception to a rule or for example, the addition of one prong of a three- part test, or a critique of the other scholars positions, e.g."Professor X says A and Professor Y says B – both are correct as far as they go, but they should also consider C." and; Part 5. Conclusion.

Students should be encouraged to submit a draft that contains all five parts since feedback on the merely descriptive parts does not give the faculty member the chance to make sure the student is working on an original idea (Part 4) or to give feedback. Most students can write the descriptive part of the paper quite well – it is usually the original idea that needs work and that should be included in the first draft.

Papers written to meet the Advanced Writing Requirement must be of "substantial quality." According to the written requirements, papers less than twenty-five or thirty pages, exclusive of appropriate footnotes, are unlikely to qualify. Students must submit at least one draft of the paper for comment. Thus, a useful guideline for students is that non-cert papers be at least twenty-five pages, inclusive of footnotes while cert papers must be a minimum of forty pages, inclusive of footnotes. The cert paper should demonstrate broader research and more sophisticated analysis than a typical seminar paper. At least one draft of a paper should be required, whether or not the paper is being written to meet the Advanced Writing Requirement.

Whether the student is writing a seminar paper or a cert paper, it is also very helpful to require the student to present her thesis to her colleagues. This gives students experience presenting an academic paper. It also helps to have the colleagues complete peer review forms which are then given to the student author (along with a comment form from the professor) to sharpen the final paper. As faculty members know, teaching a topic is one of the best ways to understand it and fielding questions from a workshop audience helps the author to see weak points in her argument and to vet new approaches to the topic. Giving the students specific guidelines for the required presentation will not only make their presentations more effective, but can also improve the final written product. Sample presentation guidelines are attached.

Comments from the faculty member may come on the paper itself or through a written comment sheet that conforms to the areas on which the paper will be evaluated. These might include: clarity of writing style and organization, originality of thesis, thesis development, use of legal analysis, statutes and case law, breadth of sources and progress from first draft to final paper. Students may meet with faculty individually to discuss these written comments and/or faculty may discuss the writing process in class.

Finally, faculty may encourage students who have written excellent papers to submit them to law reviews for publication. In particular, second journals that specialize in a particular topic are often receptive to student work. In this way, faculty are helping their students become legal scholars and to contribute to the scholarly canon in the area that they have chosen to research.

Professor Paula Monopoli
Professor Susan Hankin

Sample Guidelines for Preparing the Class Presentation1

Oral presentations on the research papers are scheduled for the final four weeks of the semester. You should expect your presentation to be about 15 - 20 minutes long, followed by approximately 20 minutes of questions and discussion. In order to assist your classmates in preparing for your presentation, you must supply the class with reading material at least one full week before you are scheduled to speak. The materials should include an excerpt of your paper and other related readings. You should also consider posting discussion questions to the listserv prior to your presentation.

As you plan the structure of your presentation, consider ways of making the best use of your time. The goal of the presentation is to teach your colleagues the important, primary issues that have grown out of your research for the paper, and how you think these issues should be resolved (in effect, your thesis). In furtherance of this goal, think about the best way to present your points:

  1. Keep your presentation concise and focused. Start by introducing your topic, explaining why it is important, summarizing any needed background information, and setting forth your thesis. In many ways, the form of the presentation’s introduction follows the form of the paper’s introduction. Follow your introduction by setting out the main issues you addressed, what methods you used to resolve them, and what conclusions you therefore reached.
  2. Consider using the board, an overhead, or a handout.2 Creating a visual aid will not only help you better understand your issues; it will also help the class learn the about the issues in more than one way.
  3. Use a hypothetical, case study, or narrative to illustrate your problem in a more concrete fashion. After giving an overview of the topic and indicating where the issues you are addressing fit in, it often helps to use one of these techniques to present the problem more concretely. Alternatively, you might want to start your presentation with the hypothetical, case study, or narrative to draw in the class’s interest and highlight the importance of the problem.

1 From Susan Hankin’s Public Health and the Law Seminar, as adapted from Oral Presentation Guidelines prepared by Paula Monopoli.
2Note that these guidelines were prepared before student use of Powerpoint became so widespread. If I were rewriting these guidelines today, I would include some cautions on effective and ineffective use of Powerpoint technology.

The University is legally required to provide reasonable accommodations for students with disabilities, and faculty play a critical role in this process. Students seeking academic accommodations must have their requests evaluated by the Office of Educational Support and Disability Services (ESDS). You are encouraged to include instructions regarding the ESDS process in your syllabus:

Students seeking academic accommodations must submit a “Request for Accommodations” to the Office of Educational Support and Disability Services (ESDS). To submit a request, go to the following website: http://www.umaryland.edu/disabilityservices/. At the bottom of the page under “Quick Links” select “Request an Accommodation”. Please request accommodations as early as possible each semester or as soon as you have determined your semester schedule. Keep in mind that this process can take a while and often requires an evaluation of medical documentation and the results of diagnostic tests.

Faculty must provide reasonable accommodations for quizzes given during class sessions, as well as for graded written work (papers). Extra time granted on written work should be “reasonable in light of the essential requirements of the course.” Deference is given to the professor to determine an extension that is most appropriate for the course.

The law school’s liaison to the Office of Educational Support and Disability Services is Erica Smith, Associate Dean of Student Services. You can contact Dean Smith at e.smith@law.umaryland.edu.

Note to Colleagues: Below are links to resources developed or assembled by the University of Michigan Center for Research on Learning and Teaching, identified by the Professionalism and Diversity Committee in 2016 as potentially useful to faculty members in planning for or making the most of unanticipated discussions of bias, difference, diversity, cross-cultural competence or high-stakes controversy.  

The CRLT has also developed discussion guidelines on a number of tragic or controversial topics.  See http://www.crlt.umich.edu/publinks/discussionguidelines, and examples such as:

Attendance Policy

Credit Hours Policy

Class Cancellation Procedures

Credit/No Credit Option

Class Recording Policy

Classes on Religious Holidays

Employment of Adjunct Faculty


Grade Grievance Procedure

Grading System




Visit the Technology Services page for more information on using Blackboard.


The Center for Computer-Assisted Legal Instruction (CALI) publishes over 270 computer-based tutorials in over 28 different legal subject areas. The lessons use a variety of formats and methods for teaching doctrine, analysis and critical thinking skills. Access to CALI is restricted to University of Maryland School of Law faculty, staff and student use only. First-time faculty users must register and create a password using the faculty authorization code. Please contact elecres@law.umaryland.edu or call 410-706-1213.

The library maintains a file of previous course exams to which faculty members may choose to contribute. To view a list of exams you have on file, select your name from the drop-down menu on the library's Exams on File page. To add an exam to your exam file, please send an electronic copy of the exam to law-web@law.umaryland.edu.

At the end of every semester, students are asked to complete an evaluation form for each of their courses. Faculty are strongly encouraged to review their evaluations. Enter your user name (network logon) and password. For further information or help, please contact us (410) 706-2046.

News & Events

Website Updates

  • Course Catalog Updates

    Review the course catalog listing for your course(s) prior to the beginning of the semester. Email changes to the Office of Registration and Enrollment at registration@law.umaryland.edu.

  • Directory Updates

    Update your profile picture, bio, or other information in the directory by emailing your changes to law-web@law.umaryland.edu.

  • General Website Updates

    Email your general website updates to law-web@law.umaryland.edu.

Research and Scholarship

The Thurgood Marshall Law Library offers a wide array of services and programs to assist faculty members with scholarship. Research assistance is also available from Ryan H. Easley Research Fellows. Contact Senior Research Fellow Sue McCarty to request the assistance of a research fellow. 

The Ryan H. Easley Research Fellows provide scholarly support to faculty members. The fellow responds to requests from individual faculty members for assistance with law review articles and other works of scholarship, including broad and substantive research, detailed citation checking, and editing for style and format.

Research fellows are available to assist with editing, footnote creation, citation checking and formatting, and proofreading. While we try to meet everyone’s deadlines, it is best to give us as much advance notice as possible if you need work done in a specific time frame. Contact Sue McCarty, Senior Research Fellow to request the assistance of a research fellow.

Electronic Submission Service

Faculty members may submit scholarly works using the Berkeley Electronic Press’ ExpressO service. Using ExpressO eliminates photocopying, assembling, printing and mailing and provides rapid acknowledgment and periodic status updates.

If you are ready to submit an article for publication using ExpressO, the library can provide assistance with targeting journals and uploading papers. For assistance, please contact your library liaison or Sue McCarty.

ExpressO, a service of Berkeley Electronic Press. bepress™ has arrangements with over 750 law reviews, including all the "top 100" publications. ExpressO allows authors to include a cover letter and a C.V. as part of the submission; accepts documents in Word (or WordPerfect); delivers papers in real time; allows authors to track submissions; has the capability to "expedite" the submission process; requires no abstract or posting of a paper prior to submission; and delivers articles electronically, unless a law review will not accept electronic submissions, in which case the article will be delivered in print.

To submit a paper through ExpressO, follow these steps:

  • Go to http://www.law.bepress.com/expresso/
  • If you do not have an existing account, create one using your @law.umaryland.edu email address
  • Select manuscript file format
  • Create and verify the list of law reviews to which your article should be submitted
  • Upload a cover letter (if desired) and the article
  • Click finish

The University of Maryland School of Law encourages its faculty to use the AALS Model Author/Journal Agreement to judge agreements received from law journals. 

All five student-edited journals published at the University of Maryland School of Law have adopted the AALS Model Agreement.

The Law Library provides a one-stop shop to support faculty publication of manuscripts. This includes initial research and editing, as well as advising faculty members on obtaining copyright permissions for scholarship, reviewing author agreements, identifying publication options, assistance with targeting journals, updating Hein Scholar Profiles and ORCiD profiles, and uploading papers to SSRN and the school’s institutional repository, the Digital Commons. For more information on these services, please visit the Law Library's faculty publication support page or contact Managing Research Fellow Sue McCarty.