Course Description

  • Instructor: Cartagena, Juan
  • Description:

    Fulfills Upper-Level Elective for LCS Major and Minor

    This course will introduce the student to a number of critical legal norms that have shaped, in part, the experience of Latinos in this country. Course readings rely heavily on case law. The course will also teach lawyering skills developed through simulated exercises that will serve as a foundation for those students interested in litigation. The Latino community in the U.S. has consistently used the courts to ensure equal treatment for all in a number of critical areas in civil rights and human rights jurisprudence. The modern civil rights era has also impacted upon the actual experience of Latinos and all national minorities in this country. Accordingly, the course will explore legal and public policy concerns in areas such as education, criminal justice, policing, and immigration, generally. In addition to the study of the substantive law in these areas the course also focuses on lawyering skills, which will lead to simulated trial exercises. Each trial will be based, in part, upon the substantive areas of law that are discussed in the course. Every student will serve as a trial lawyer and many will also serve as witnesses.

  • Learning Goals:

    Upon completion of the course, students will:

    • understand the contributions Latino communities have made to the development of U.S. civil rights and human rights norms
    • appreciate the intersection of Latino identifiers in race, language and culture and the protections of anti-discrimination laws
    • gain familiarity with courtroom advocacy by way of simulated trial and/or other components of litigation in a civil or criminal court context.
  • Required Reading:

    The course materials consist of court opinions, scholarly research, and other legal materials available in Sakai.

  • Evaluation:

    Final grades are determined on the basis of two written examinations and your participation in the lawyering skills tasks (that is, simulated trials and/or other exercises). These factors will be weighed as follows:

    Lawyering / Trial Skills: = 40%
    Mid-Term Examination = 30%
    Final Examination: = 30%

    Attendance and class participation, generally, may also be considered in the final grade.

  • Credits: 3
  • Disclaimer: The information in this course description is subject to change. For up-to-date course information, please refer to the syllabus on your course site (e.g. Canvas).