Law Course Catalog

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7730. Statutory Interpretation and the Judicial Process

3.00 credits

Prerequisites: None.

Grading Basis: Graded

This course is a seminar that examines the processes by which courts interpret statutes. Topics include the nature of the legislative use of language, the use by courts of the canons of statutory construction, ways of approaching the interpretation of different types of statutes, and various judicial approaches to the process of interpreting statutes. Because a central thesis of the seminar is the engaging in the process of writing statutes is helpful in learning how to read statutes, each student is required to write a paper that involves drafting a statute, preparing an explanation of the statute in the form of a legislative committee report, preparing appropriate hypothetical legislative floor debate on the statute, and explaining the linguistic choices that were made in the course of drafting the statute.