Scroll way down for longer-term assignments like the Legal News Response extra credit opportunity (including the George Floyd verdict) and the Oral Presentation assignment.
TOMORROW (Fri May 14): (Optional) If you’d still like to read & brief Daniels v. Manhattan & Bronx Surface Transit Operating Auth., 261 A.D.2d 115 (1st Dep’t 1999) for extra practice (and up to 2 points on the final exam), you may still do so until the end of Fri. May 14.
TU. MAY 18: It’s “Reading Day” at the College but by unanimous consent of the class, we will meet at our regular time and Zoom channel! Please review EVERYTHING in prep for our final exam (notes, quizzes, readings, oral presentations etc.) and we’ll have a fun activity to practice your skills!! Earn extra points ONLY if you are present and participate orally. Have your Bluebook handy!
TH. MAY 20: FINAL EXAM!! Complete it during any two-hour period 10am-5pm on Blackboard.
DUE TH. FEB. 4: (1) Read the whole course syllabus and come prepared to ask questions! (2) Send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) from your City Tech address with your (a) contact information, including home address, phone number, and email address you check frequently like gmail or other personal account (and if you don’t feel comfortable giving me that information, that’s OK, just let me know); and (b) three half-hour time slots between now and the end of next week (Fri. Feb. 12) when you are available to meet with me individually on Zoom. (3) Read Yelin & Samborn chapter 1 part A & chapter 2 parts B & C.
DUE TU. FEB. 9 (or before your individual meeting, if sooner): No class this day–individual meetings this week instead! Write a post here on OpenLab with the category “Who I Am” describing (a) why you are in the Law and Paralegal Studies program (such as your goals, interests, plans, etc.), and (b) something(s) that you want your classmates to know about you, as a person! Anything(s) at all is terrific! Photos and links are welcome. Here are instructions on how to post, including photos and links.
DUE TH. FEB. 12: (1) Reply to a classmate’s “Who I Am” post! Preferably someone who has not received a reply. Here are instructions on how to reply. (2) Read textbook chapter 1 part B and chapter 2 part A (pp. 19-21). (3) Review these charts and maps of the U.S. legal system, which we’ll discuss in class: (a)3 branches of government (b) Generic court structure (c) US (federal) court system diagram (d) US (federal) court system map (districts and circuits). (4) Read this or another news article about the current impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump, which we’ll discuss in class!
DUE TUE. FEB. 16: (1) Read pp. 14-21 of ch. 2 in your Civil Procedure textbook (about the NYS court system). (2) Read “NYS Courts: An Introductory Guide,” published by the NYS court system. (3) Review these charts (one from the NYS Court System website, adapted, and one from your Civil Procedure textbook, very similar, use whichever you like best); this map of the NYS court system; and this list of the Appellate Division Departments and the counties they include.
DUE TH. FEB. 18–WE WILL MEET FOR CLASS!! Trip is postponed due to weather. 🙁 Before class, PLEASE review the US & NYS court system charts, maps, and readings that previously were assigned: (1) on the US (federal) legal system: textbook chapter 1 part B and chapter 2 part A (pp. 19-21), diagrams of US (federal) court system from your Civil Procedure textbook and this color version (same info, use whichever you like best), and this US (federal) court system map (districts and circuits). (2) on the NYS court system: pp. 14-21 of ch. 2 in your Civil Procedure textbook, “NYS Courts: An Introductory Guide,” published by the NYS court system, charts from the NYS Court System website, adapted by me, and one from your Civil Procedure textbook (same info, use whichever you like best), this map of the NYS court system; and this list of the Appellate Division Departments and the counties they include.
DUE TUE. FEB. 23: (1) Read excerpts from textbook ch. 3 (Court Decisions)–see Blackboard. (2) Study for quiz #1! Everything we’ve covered through end of Th. Feb. 18 class (intro to legal research, types of authorities, US & NY legal systems). You’ll take it on Blackboard at the end of class.
DUE TH. FEB. 25: NO REGULAR ZOOM MEETING! Meet at the college at 10am for optional walking tour of the courts! See “events & info” tab for details.
DUE TH. MARCH 4: (1) Send me an email with three dates to give your oral presentation! Available dates and other details on the assignment are here. If you’ll work with another student, just send me one email from both of you! (2) Read this essay, “How to Read a Case” by Prof. Julie Novkov of SUNY at Albany, and this NY Court of Appeals decision, People v. Neulander. By 9am Thursday, March 4, post a “reply” to my post on the “home” page here in which you do TWO THINGS: (a) Write a short response and/or question about the essay that shows you read and thought about it! (b) Answer any ONE of questions 1-4 in the essay (including the “bullet point” subquestions beneath it) as it applies to People v. Neulander. This assignment will not be accepted late. 🙁 (3) Optional: For extra insight on reading court decisions, check out these sources from Roosevelt University and FindLaw!
DUE TUE. MARCH 9: (1) Study for Quiz #2! covering everything since quiz #1 through Th. March 4 class (some review of court structure; when state & federal courts bind each other; case reporting system) See “class notes & materials” page for helpful study tools! (notes, charts, etc.) (2) Read this version of People v. Neulander (from WestLaw, to get familiar with reading cases as they appear on WestLaw). Also review Prof. Novkov’s essay, “How to Read a Case” and be ready to discuss the information in case that responds to her six questions. (3) By the end of day day, send me an email with three dates for your oral presentation! Available dates and other details on the assignment are here. If I don’t hear from you, I’ll assign you a date! (You might not like it. 🙁 ).
DUE TH. MARCH 11: (1) Read textbook ch. 18 (case briefing) pp. 347-355, including the sample case & brief. Available on Blackboard. (2) If you didn’t already, read (or review) this WestLaw version of People v. Neulander which we WILL read Thursday, to get used to reading cases in that format. You may also want to review Prof. Novkov’s essay, “How to Read a Case” to help you understand the case.
DUE TU. MARCH 16: (1) Review for the midterm exam!! Notes, quizzes, charts, maps, etc. Bring questions to class or email them to me in advance! (2) Read textbook ch. 18, pp. 351-365 (descriptions of case brief components, on Blackboard). (3) Read “Guidelines for Case Briefing” (definitely) and John Jay’s guidance on “How to brief a case”! (optional–you may find it useful!). (2) Review People v. Neulander and this sample brief of that case which (hopefully) we will discuss Tuesday.
TH. MARCH 18: MIDTERM EXAM!! 10am-5pm on Blackboard (any 2-hour period). STUDY!! All notes, quizzes, charts, maps, etc. See “class notes & materials” tab and post titled “Court system resources” on home page here.
DUE TU. MARCH 23: (1) Read Lisa L. v. Anthony H. attached to my post on “home” page, and reply to that post with a draft of the following element of the brief assigned to YOU:
- Procedural history: Sherona, Evens, Natalie, Sharon, Nyiah
- Issue/question presented: Jasiyah, Joseph, Shayer, Brandon, Alexandra;
- Holding: Aaliyah, Leilani, Ariana, Daniella, Fatou
- Disposition: Nasser, Ninmah, Kaela, Mackenzie, Yaire
**For guidance on how to write your element, see descriptions of each one in textbook ch. 18 pp. 351-365, also sample briefs in textbook (pp. 354-355) and posted under “case briefing resources” in “class notes & materials” tab!
DUE TH. MARCH 25, 9am: Read info about guest speakers in my post, “Reply to this post by Th. March 25, 9am,” reply with at least one question for them by 9am!
Sat. March 27 thru Sun. April 4: SPRING BREAK! 🙂 No classes. 🙁
DUE TU. APRIL 6: (1) Have your Bluebook!! Read the Introduction (pp. 1-2). (2) Review registration & advisement info posted under “Class notes & materials” tab! Bring questions!
DUE TH. APRIL 8: (1) Read and take a shot at briefing Loving v. Virginia, due by email to me by 9am! This assignment will not be accepted late. 🙁 See “class notes & materials” tab for case briefing resources, including sample briefs. Skip the citation, we’ll discuss that in class. Here’s a Word version of the case if you want to download it and “color code” or otherwise mark it for briefing like we did in class! (2) In your Bluebook, read pp. 3-6 & 11-18 (Bluepages: Intro, B1, B2 & B10, including all subparts). (3) Have your Bluebook handy during class!! In every class from now on, except as noted.
DUE FRI. APRIL 9: (1) If you didn’t submit your first draft brief of Loving v. Virginia that was due 9am today (Th. April 8), you have a second chance! You may email it to me until the end of Friday April 9 to receive full credit. See “class notes & materials” tab for case briefing resources, including sample briefs. Use this citation (which we’ll discuss in class Tu. April 13): Loving v. Virginia, 388 U.S. 1 (1967). Here’s a Word version of the case if you want to download it and “color code” or otherwise mark it for briefing like we did in class!
DUE TU APRIL 13: (1) Revise Loving v. Virginia brief, email to me before class! (2) Read BB R10 (Cases), T1, T1.1 (Fed Materials). Bring BB to class!
DUE TH. APRIL 15: (1) Applying what you learn in our Tu. April 13 class discussion, revise and improve your brief of Loving v. Virginia. Email it to me by 9am! (2) Review BB T1 (US Jurisdictions) and T1.1 (Federal Judicial and Legislative Materials) pp. 227-230—specifically p. 227, and you may skim the rest (for now–we’ll work closely with those pages later). (3) Have your Bluebook handy during class!!
DUE FRI. APRIL 16 — OPTIONAL!! Applying what you learned in our class discussions on April 8, 13 and 15, revise and improve the draft brief of Loving v. Virginia you previously submitted, for two extra points on your final exam! If you did not submit the draft brief previously assigned for homework, you may submit a brief of the case now to get credit for that homework assignment (no late penalty). Email it to me anytime Friday!
DUE TU. APRIL 20: (1) Read and brief this 2014 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court, legalizing same-sex marriage. For your citation, use the official reporter! (See the “header” at the top of each page for the various reporters in which the case appears.) Also, remember to follow all rules for case names that we reviewed (underline or italicize, etc.). Follow the the “City Tech format” that appears in the template and sample briefs posted under “class notes & materials” tab. (2) Study for quiz #3!! It will focus on the Bluebook and case citation. You’ll take it at the end of class on Blackboard, starting about 10:45am. (3) Have your Bluebook handy during class, and especially during the quiz!!
DUE TU. APRIL 27: (1) Final brief of Trivino v. Jamesway due by email 12 noon. Use this citation: Trivino v. Jamesway Corp., 148 A.D.2d 851 (3d Dep’t 1989). (2) NO class meeting! Optional individual meetings on Trivino briefs this week. Email me times you’re available in the afternoons of next Tuesday through Thursday (April 27-29)!
DUE TH. APRIL 29 — (1) By 9am, post a reply to my post at the top of the “home” page, asking you to read one of three resources on validating case law and respond by identifying something(s) interesting, or asking question(s), or anything else you want to write! (2) Review Bluebook Table 1.3 (T1.3), NY section. (3) Read Bluebook Tables 6, 7, 10 & 12 (T6, T7, etc.). (4) Have Bluebook handy in class!!
DUE TU. MAY 4!! (1) Read excerpts from textbook ch. 7 posted on Blackboard (about statutes). (2) Check out these official websites for the federal statutes, known as the U.S. Code, and the New York State statutes, known as the Consolidated Laws of New York. Poke around, click on some items, generally get familiar with them! You’ll use them a lot. 🙂 (3) Give your Bluebook a rest! It’s been working hard. You don’t need it today.
DUE TH. MAY 6!! (1) By 9am, reply to my post on the “home” page, asking you to locate, read and explain a federal OR NYS statute! (2) (Optional) For extra practice (and 2 points on final exam!) read & brief Daniels v. Manhattan & Bronx Surface Transit Operating Auth., 261 A.D.2d 115 (1st Dep’t 1999). Email it to me before Thursday’s class. I’ll provide written suggestions, and we can meet to discuss it if you’d like! (3) Have your Bluebook handy during class!
DUE TU. MAY 11!! (1) Please read excerpts from textbook ch. 9 posted on Blackboard (Administrative Materials) AND (more importantly!) this short essay from the National Constitution Center, “Executive Orders 101: What are they and how do presidents use them?” If you only have time or energy to read one of those, please read the essay! (2) (Optional) For extra practice (and 2 points on final exam!) read & brief Daniels v. Manhattan & Bronx Surface Transit Operating Auth., 261 A.D.2d 115 (1st Dep’t 1999). Email it to me before class. I’ll provide written suggestions, and we can meet to discuss it if you’d like! (3) Have your Bluebook handy during class!
Optional extra credit for posting responses to legal news articles! Anytime during the semester. Select and read a news article about a law-related event or issue, then write a post summarizing the article and providing your thoughtful personal response to it. See details in this assignment. OR you may write a post responding to the April 20, 2021 verdict convicting Derek Chauvin of murdering George Floyd, or another law-related event, no article needed. Earn up to two points on the next major exam (midterm or final) for each post! Up to one per week.
Oral Presentation assignment! Due on date(s) you are assigned.