Spring 2012 Course Schedule

Supervised Externship Seminar (LAW-769-005)

Meets: 06:00 PM - 07:50 PM (T) - Room 403

Enrolled: 15 / Limit: 15

Administrator Access


Co-requisite: LAW-899 NOTE: CLASS WILL MEET IN SMALL GROUPS FOR AN EXTRA HOUR EVERY OTHER WEEK. TIME TBD. Registering for your field placement credits is a separate process. Students must first register for a seminar and then go to www.wcl.american.edu/externship to submit a Request for Approval, which generates the necessary forms. Students with concerns about placement approval should speak with a member of the Externship Staff. Students are not registered for field credits until they submit the signed Registration Form to the Registrar.


This is a three-credit, graded seminar. It is taken in conjunction with a field placement in a non-profit organization, government office, or a private law firm doing pro bono work. In this course, we will explore the meaning of being a lawyer and a member of the legal profession. We will think about the variety of roles lawyers may have and the wide range of experiences available to persons with law degrees. We will explore the lawyer-client relationship in public interest settings, as well as the skills and tools required for effective advocacy on a client’s behalf. We will also carefully examine the ethical obligations of lawyers and how they play out in various practice settings. Finally, we will consider how to be fulfilled and maintain a healthy balance in one’s career in the law. The course is open to all students in externship field placements and the format of the class will include simulations and guest speakers. In this course, you will be required to: 1) submit weekly journals regarding your fieldwork experience; 2) participate in small-group meetings (for one hour every other week); 3) write three “reflective essays” no longer than five pages each; 4) make an individual or joint class presentation in the last few weeks of the semester; and 5) come prepared and participate fully in all seminar discussions. Each of these requirements will be described in more detail in a syllabus that will be distributed on the first day of class.

Textbooks and Other Materials

The textbook information on this page was provided by the instructor. Students should use this information when considering purchases from the AU Campus Store or other vendors. Students may check to determine if books are currently available for purchase online.

The required text is J.P. Ogilvy et al. Learning from Practice (West, 2007), which is available for purchase at the Campus Bookstore. In addition, you will also be assigned supplemental readings in the form of journal articles, newspaper articles, and book excerpts. The volume of supplemental readings is available for purchase from the 4th floor Course Distribution Office.

First Class Readings

Not available at this time.


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