Trial Advocacy College: Essentials of Civil Litigation

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Trial Advocacy College: Essentials of Civil Litigation 

Program Information


Registration Fee: Members – $995
Nonmembers – $1,245

AAJ New Lawyers Discount-Attend at 25% Off
If you are an AAJ member and have been admitted to the bar for five years or less, you can attend your first AAJ college for 25% off the regular price. Please call to register.

Register two or more lawyers from your firm at the same time, and take $70 off the registration fee for each registrant.

AAJ Paralegal Affiliates may attend this college and receive 50% off the registration fee if they are employed by and attending with an AAJ plaintiff attorney from the same firm with the same firm address.

Cancellation Policy
All cancellations for our programs must be submitted in writing.

For more information or assistance, please call 800.622.1791 or 202.965.3500, ext. 8612.


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October 7, 2013 - October 10, 2013
Tulane University Law School
New Orleans, LA

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Opening statements, direct and cross-examinations, and closing arguments are key trial skills, but are rarely effectively covered in law schools. Through interactive workshops tailored to each attendee’s skills, AAJ faculty will provide guidance and instant feedback, as well as a live focus group demonstration. With the help of this college you will excel in these and every other stage of your case. Working with experienced trial lawyers and consultants you will develop and enhance your courtroom presence and trial skills. At the end of this intensive program, you will have the confidence to effectively litigate your next case. For those with limited or no courtroom experience this program is a must. You will see a significant before-and-after change in your pretrial and trial skills.

Our effective training method has several critical features:

• Four workshops (all with small groups of participants), including Voir Dire/Opening Statements, Direct and Cross Examination of Lay Witnesses, Direct and Cross-Examination of Expert Witnesses, and Closing Argument and Rebuttal, in which your performance is recorded practicing what you have learned in lectures
• Feedback from experienced trial lawyers and trial consultants—on camera—for you to take home
• Live focus group demonstration
• Low student-to-faculty ratio for more individualized attention

Monday October 7, 2013


Morning Session
8:30 am - 12:45 pm

Welcome and Introductions

Developing and Executing a Deposition Plan
Thomas S. McGrath, AL

Voir Dire: Deselecting Jurors
Richard A. Jenson, TX
John W. deGravelles, LA

Winning Techniques from the Beginning: Storytelling and Putting Together the Framework
Russ M. Herman, LA

Giving Plaintiff Jurors the Facts and Arguments They Need to Prevail in the Jury Room
Robyn L. Wishart, Vancouver

Workshop Introductions and Orientation 


Afternoon Session
1:30 - 5:30 pm

Workshop on Voir Dire/Opening Statement

Networking Reception

Tuesday October 8, 2013

Morning Session
8:30 am - 12:15 pm

Witness Preparation
Thomas S. McGrath, AL

Direct Examination
Stephen J. Herman, LA

Cross-Examination of Lay and Expert Witnesses
N. John Bey, GA

Ethics for Lawyers: Dealing with the Rambo Litigator
Moderator: Stephen J. Herman, LA
All faculty


Afternoon Session
1:30 - 5:30 pm

Workshop on Direct and Cross of Lay Witnesses

Individual Trial Consultant Video Reviews

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Morning Session
8:30 am - 12:45 pm

Cross-Examination of the DME
Jennifer E. McKibben, IN 

Workshop on Direct and Cross-Examination of Expert Witnesses 

Focus Groups: Insights to Jury Decision Making and Jury Selection
Robert Gerchen, MO
Thomas S. McGrath, AL

Individual Trial Consultant Video Reviews


Afternoon Session
2:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Evening Session (at the hotel)

Effective Design and Use of Demonstratives/Exhibits
John W. deGravelles, LA

Crafting the Closing and Rebuttal Argument
Jennifer E. McKibben, IN
Tad Thomas, KY     
Robyn L. Wishart, Vancouver 

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Morning Session
8:30 am - 1:30 pm

Workshop on Closing Argument and Rebuttal

Individual Trial Consultant Video Reviews

Roundtable Discussions: Bringing it all Together
Moderator: Stephen J. Herman, LA

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