Penn State
Lewis Katz Building, University Park, PA
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Indigent Criminal Justice Trial Simulation

Course Abbreviation: 
EXPR 940

Through simulations, this course provides students the opportunity to practice and develop the Fundamental Lawyering Skills and Professional Responsibilities described above in a controlled, safe, supportive, and instructive environment prior to performing adversarial hearings before a Court in the Indigent Criminal Justice Trial Clinic. Specifically, students will learn client management skills, litigation, negotiation, ethics, criminal law and procedure, and advocacy skills as they simulate representation of defendants through all stages of a criminal case, including Pre-trial conferences, jury selection, and a full trial. 

These simulations are designed to provide students with enhanced expertise in all fields of advocacy. The simulations also provide students with the opportunity to play different roles and gain perspectives they would not otherwise have, advocating solely for the defense. The use of simulations dramatically increases the experience and preparedness of the clinic students who are expected to successfully argue and maneuver against prosecutors with years of courtroom experience. The simulations also vary in terms of preparation afforded to each student. Certain simulations permit students hours of preparation time to perfect cross-examination and argument. Other simulations happen with little or no preparation time to give students experience thinking quickly and actively listening in stressful adversarial situations. 

Students are required to enroll in the simulation course both semesters and earn two credits in Fall and two credits in Spring. Students in this clinic course attend a three-hour class one day a week in addition to the time they spend outside of class preparing for the simulations and doing readings for class. 

These four credits do not count against the clinic and externship cap at Penn State Law because no client representation is involved in this part of the course.

Evidence (PROSK 955) and Professional Responsibility (PRORP 934) Corequisites: Indigent Criminal Justice Trial Clinic (IHCJC 900)
Richard G. Settgast