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Mock Trial

Thank you for your interest in Mock Trial! Our website can provide you with useful information on what mock trial is all about, how to join the team, and links to other useful resources about mock trial and the law in general.

During the season, the Mock Trial team will typically meet two times a week to prepare for competition. We will also travel for scrimmages and tournaments several weekends each semester.

 

mock trial team

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What is Mock Trial?

"The purpose of mock trial is to educate the youth of America about our legal system, our jurisprudence and the work of our attorneys. To that end the educational function in all of our activities is primary and any competitive aspect of mock trial is secondary. The ideals of fairness, civility and justice should guide our actions.

Through engaging in trial simulations in competition with teams from other institutions, students develop critical thinking and public speaking skills, as well as a knowledge of legal practices and procedures. AMTA sponsors regional and national-level competitions, as well as providing interesting and complex case materials for academic use." - AMTA website

Learn more about the intricacies of mock trial at the American Mock Trial Association’s website.

Why should you join Mock Trial? 

Learn About the Law

We've all seen the law dramas on TV, but what really goes into a winning case? How do you know what the jury needs to hear, and how can you get the critical information before the jury? You will learn how to prove your case, evidence rules, techniques for questioning witnesses, and how to structure arguments.

Build Your Resume

Employers like to see that you can carry out commitments, seek challenges, and go above and beyond class performance. They look for students who excel in and out of the classroom and are engaged in extra curricular activities.

Prepare for Law School

Law schools like to see demonstrated interest in law. Mock trial can show that interest, as well as preparing you for questioning under the Socratic method. It can also give you an opportunity to see if you might like being a litigator. It can also boost your confidence, since you will go into law school knowing something about evidence, the prima facie case, burden of proof, etc.

Have Fun with Other Students

Above all, mock trial is a lot of fun. You are getting to argue and pit your wits against other students. There is nothing more satisfying than getting an opposing witness to cave, or showing up another student attorney. But among the competitiveness, friendships are forged and laughs are shared. It is great being a part of something worthwhile and sharing the experience with other people.

Use and Improve Acting Skills

If you play an attorney, you are putting on an identity. Beyond this, and especially for witnesses, acting is key. You will have a basis for your testimony, an affidavit, and perhaps other evidence, but the actual words you choose and how you express yourself when being questioned is up to you. In the past, students have enjoyed playing, among others, a teenage troublemaker, a chief of police, a disgruntled former cop, a radio show host, a psychologist, the bereaved sibling of a cop who had committed suicide, a minister, and a forgetful addict who lives in a van down by the river. Each year there is a new case with a host of interesting and distinctive witnesses.

Improve your confidence and public speaking skills

It isn't easy to get up in front of other students and give an opening argument or question a student, but we are supportive of you. You will be amazed at how much you can improve just by doing it over and over. You will start to sound like an attorney and think like one. This can have many beneficial consequences in the rest of your life. Are you scared to ask your professors questions in class? Not anymore; if you can question an intractable witness, you can question anyone!

Compete against other schools

Traveling to other cities for the weekend and competing against other schools is fun and exciting. You can meet other students with a common interest and represent WKU in competitions. Being with your teammates for the weekend is great for bonding and an experience not to be missed. Now you can finally put all of your hard work to use and show what your team is made of.

Win Awards

During the 2018-2019 season the team advanced past the regional tournament to compete in the Opening Round Championship Series in Hamilton, OH where they went 3-5 on ballots while defeating a team from Dayton and splitting with Notre Dame. Individual team members frequently earn Outstanding Witness and Outstanding Attorney Awards at tournaments.

The WKU Mock Trial Team needs you!

The American Mock Trial Association will put out its new case for the year in August and competitions will start in October. That's why we need you to get involved and prepare to compete starting in the early fall. If you are interested in learning more about WKU Mock Trial, please email polisci@wku.edu.

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Testimonial about Mock Trial:

"Every attorney remembers the first case they won, as every Mock Trial member remembers their first trial they won. The sense of self-accomplishment and pride in hard work is what many members take away from the Mock Trial Team. I am proud of dramatically improving my public speaking skills, which I will use through my future career as a trial attorney. Bi-weekly Mock Trial Classes and bi-weekly Mock Trial Team sessions forced me to speak regularly in front of a classroom full of people. The trials ended any fear of public speaking and eventually being in a courtroom felt more natural." - Neil Woods, Former Mock Trial Team Member

 

 

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 Last Modified 4/16/21