Moot Court is a mock appellate advocacy experience that helps law students develop the following skills to practice law:
- Strong writing and oral advocacy skills
- Intellectual flexibility
- Ability to function well under pressure
- Self-confidence necessary to be successful advocates
Moot Court gives law students an opportunity to focus on a single issue, prepare an in-depth written product and improve their writing. Similar to Law Review, employers recruit directly from our Moot Court Board.
Moot Court sends 16-17 teams to compete in competitions across the country in a variety of subjects. Competitors, also known as “mooters,” work on teams to write briefs and prepare oral arguments as if they were appearing before an appellate court.
UW Law News on July 13, 2021
2022 1L Tryout Competition - Winner
2022 1L Tryout Competition - Best Oralist
2022 1L Tryout Competition - Best Brief
Joining the Moot Court Board
First-year students are selected for the Moot Court Board at the end of the spring semester through a competitive tryout that simulates a Moot Court competition.
Generally, the tryout consists of an appellate brief and oral argument. The Moot Court Board invites 20-40 first-year students to join Moot Court every year.
A limited number of invitations to join the Moot Court Board are available to second-year students through the Heffernan Appellate Advocacy Course in the spring semester, a one-semester seminar devoted to appellate advocacy. This seminar is named in honor of former Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Nathan Heffernan.
Students write a brief and compete in a mock appellate advocacy competition. The finalists are invited to join the Moot Court Board for competition.
In addition, several student organizations provide moot court opportunities outside of the law school’s official Moot Court Board. For example, students interested in a similar program that focuses on the trial court experience, should check out the Mock Trial Program.
Equality of Opportunity & Promotion of Diversity
From the Moot Court By-Laws
Equality of Opportunity: The Moot Court Board is committed to providing equality of educational opportunity. It is the policy of the Moot Court Board to encourage and foster, to the full extent practicable, the participation of all qualified individuals in its programs and activities. The Moot Court Board will not discriminate on the basis of age, ancestry, arrest record, color, conviction record, creed, disability, gender, marital status, national origin, parental status, political affiliation or belief, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, pregnancy, or socioeconomic status.
Promotion of Diversity: In keeping with its commitment to equality and its statement of purpose, the Moot Court Board will conduct an ongoing review of its programs and activities and will take such affirmative action as may be necessary to assure the equality of educational opportunity to all qualified individuals.
Each team, composed of 2-4 members and 1 coach, competes in 1 competition only. Each competition requires a brief, and generally about one month is allowed for brief preparation.
Following service of briefs, another month is allowed for the preparation of oral arguments. Most competitions require teams to argue both sides of the case, which provides an excellent learning experience and helps deepen analytical thinking.
Moot court teams compete with other law schools. Travel and most expenses associated with competing are funded by the Moot Court Board. Competitors receive three (3) course credits for their work during the semester that they compete.
Moot Court President
- Jesse Castañeda
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