Course Description

601:747. Forensics and Expert Testimony  (3 cr)

Lore, Moran

Enrollment limited to 16 students

Prerequisite or Corequisite: Introduction to Trial Advocacy or Intramural Mock Trial Team

Since the late 19th century, forensic science has played an important role within criminal justice. Recent media attention has thrust forensics reluctantly into the spotlight to both positive and negative effect. This course aims to introduce the theoretical framework of forensic science from both an academic and practitioner viewpoint. Students will be familiarized with a range of forensic techniques, forensic terminology, and forensic procedures and protocols. We will examine the strengths and weaknesses of a number of common forensic techniques as well as the pitfalls of relying too heavily on forensic evidence. Forensic regulation and policy issues will be addressed. Finally, we will consider a number of related disciplines and issues, such as evidence admissibility, the CSI effect, human rights, and forensic regulation to gain a broader understanding of forensics' modern role and future development within criminal justice. We will cover pretrial hearings including Daubert hearings. You will also learn expert witness preparation, direct examination, and cross examination.

This course will offer writing skills credit.