A Civil Procedure Curriculum Challenge

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6 Responses

  1. Steve Lubet says:

    This is an outstanding post. We Trial Advocacy teachers have always taught that “law is easy but facts are hard,” and it is great to see someone make the point in the context of a first year Civil Procedure course.

  2. Bruce Boyden says:

    I agree with a lot in this post, and am also unhappy with the way the personal jurisdiction cases play out in the readings. So I’m curious what your syllabus looks like. What personal jurisdiction cases do you teach? How do you teach discovery — straight from the book, or do you supplement with your own cases? I’ve generally not been happy with most of the discovery cases I see in textbooks, because they’re (again) Supreme Court cases that don’t really illustrate that well what the issues are now. (E.g., Hickman is an interesting case and all, but work product just isn’t subject to any debate any more.)

  3. Howard Wasserman says:

    I join in some of the questions that Bruce asks, especially as to how you cut down the personal jurisdiction portion. I would guess that I divide my class about how Spencer does and I probably still give too-short shrift to discovery.

  4. Spencer Weber Waller says:

    Other than deciding for the first time to skip Pennoyer itself, I pretty much plough through the usual suspects. I focus on International Shoe, Shaffer, World-Wide Volkswagen, Asahi, and Burnham. Don’t spend too much time on Burger King, Carnival Cruise and Mullane. I do spend some time on the concept of internet jurisdiction as the most important modern application of the concepts suggested by the cases.

  5. Howard Wasserman says:

    How do you cover Burnham without having taught Pennoyer?

  6. Geoff Garver says:

    I teach common law civil procedure at University of Montreal – a 3 credit course that is supposed to cover both the US and Ontario, with both litigation rules/procedure and jurisdiction. I even tackle the Erie doctrine. I use the Subrin casebook (which places jurisdiction later in the term, as you prefer). Does this seem feasible in a 3-credit course? If you were in this situation, what would you emphasize and what would you cut out?