Loyola University Chicago

Dan K. Webb Center for Advocacy

School of Law

Learning Outcomes and Competencies for JD Certificate in Advocacy

Learning Outcome I (Core): Students will develop knowledge and understanding of the substantive and procedural law of evidence as applied in an advocacy context.

Student Performance Criteria:

  1. Ability to identify and formulate basic evidentiary issues.
  2. Ability to formulate legal arguments orally and in writing grounded in applicable law and policy to resolve identified evidentiary issues.
  3. Ability to critically evaluate how the resolution of evidentiary issues impact litigation strategy.
  4. Successful completion of the foundational evidence course with a grade point of 3.0 or higher.

Learning Outcome II (Core): Students will develop the knowledge, skills and ability to try a case before a court of law in a bench trial and jury trial setting.

Student Performance Criteria:

  1. Ability to engage in critical case analysis that leads to the development of a persuasive theory of the case based on the facts presented.
  2. Ability to conduct witness examinations with appropriate forms of questions that adhere to the rules of evidence for direct and cross examination of lay and expert witnesses.
  3. Ability to lay the foundation for the admissibility of evidence including exhibits.
  4. Ability to make and respond to evidentiary objections, including motions in limine based on the facts of the case and the rules of evidence.
  5. Ability to develop a communication style that results in the delivery of persuasive opening statements and closing arguments.
  6. Ability to understand the correct application of the burden of persuasion and burden of producing evidence at trial.
  7. Successful completion of the trial practice I and trial practice II courses with a grade point of 3.0 or higher.

Learning Outcome III (Advanced Litigation): Students will develop knowledge and understanding of advanced litigation principles as applied in a substantive area of law.

Student Performance Criteria:

  1. Ability to identify, formulate and resolve advanced evidentiary issues.
  2. Ability to identify, formulate and critically evaluate complex litigation strategy.
  3. Ability to critically analyze advanced theories and concepts of substantive law as applied in a litigation setting.
  4. Ability to advocate persuasively orally and in writing for interests and positions in specialized fields of litigation.
  5. Ability to identify, analyze and address issues of professional and ethical responsibility as applied in a litigation and dispute resolution setting. 

Learning Outcome IV (Trial or Appellate Advocacy with Writing Focus): Students will develop the skills necessary to draft, present and defend a persuasive written document in the context of litigation at the pretrial, trial or appellate court setting.

Student Performance Criteria:

  1. Ability to compose a substantial written work of advocacy in a litigation, appellate or dispute resolution setting including motions, briefs, position papers and research papers. 
  2. Ability to receive and incorporate constructive feedback on a substantial written work of advocacy.
  3. Ability to improve upon a substantial written work of advocacy through the process of re-drafting. 
  4. Ability to understand the correct application of the standard of review in appellate proceedings and motion hearings.
  5. Ability to ethically and persuasively present a substantial written work of advocacy orally in diverse settings including the trial court, appellate court, and dispute resolution venues. 

Learning Outcome V (Alternative Dispute Resolution): Students will develop the skills necessary to assist clients in achieving goals in any dispute resolution setting by analyzing party interests and crafting creative solutions in a mediation or settlement negotiation, or employ oral and written advocacy skills in an arbitration setting.

Student Performance Criteria:

  1. Ability to understand the fundamentals of mediation, negotiation, arbitration and other dispute resolution venues, and assess the dispute resolution process appropriate to the situation.
  2. Ability to identify and analyze the interests of all parties to a dispute and propose a creative solution to the dispute.  
  3. Ability to ethically and competently practice the skills of problem solving, collaboration, counseling and negotiation in a simulated or real practice setting.
  4. Ability to ethically counsel a client and persuasively present the client’s interests in diverse dispute resolution venues. 

Learning Outcome VI (Co-Curricular): Students will expand upon their foundational knowledge of advocacy by participating in a co-curricular activity that allows for the application of advocacy skills in a live-client or simulated practice setting.

Student Performance Criteria:

  1. Ability to gather and critically evaluate case information through client and witness interviewing, discovery and other fact investigation techniques.
  2. Ability to develop a professional relationship of trust with a client that appreciates and is respectful of the client’s background and culture.
  3. Ability to ethically and persuasively represent a client’s interests in diverse settings including the trial court, appellate court, and dispute resolution venues through a live-client clinic, externship, advocacy competition or simulated practice setting. 
  4. Ability to professionally receive and incorporate constructive feedback from a supervising attorney, coach or faculty member in order to improve upon advocacy skills on behalf of the client.

The educational goals listed above directly correlate and apply to the application linked below.  Please keep these objectives in mind as you determine your coursework and complete your application.

JD Certificate in Advocacy Application

Sample JD Certificate in Advocacy Application (PDF)- DO NOT SUBMIT

Questions regarding the Advocacy Certificate should be directed to Gina Gerardi, Assistant Director of the Center for Advocacy, at ggerardi@luc.edu

Printable Version of Learning Outcomes Available here.