The Rights of the Criminally Accused

We will tackle important and controversial questions surrounding criminal procedure and the role of the Supreme Court in the development of the rights of the criminally accused from a social scientist perspective.

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  • Coursework Overview

    The coursework for this Endeavor community involves taking a one-unit course in the fall semester and a half-unit course in the spring semester, both taught by Dr. Bowie.

    Fall 2019 Semester Spring 2020 Semester
    FYS 100: The Rights of the Criminally Accused (1 unit) IDST 190: The Rights of the Criminally Accused Seminar (.5 unit)

    FYS 100 satisfies a general education requirement; students are required to take one first-year seminar (FYS) during each of their first two semesters at Richmond.

    IDST 190 is a half-unit project based course part of the Endeavor program.

  • Specific Course Information

    FYS 100: The Rights of the Criminally Accused

    Through the study of key decisions made by the U.S. Supreme Court along with other readings regarding the criminal justice system, students will be able to critically examine the substantive and procedural aspects of criminal law. During the course, we will wrestle with the approaches taken by the Supreme Court to balance the constitutional protections of the criminally accused with legitimate law enforcement goals and practices. We will study the decisions of the Supreme Court and law enforcement practices with a critical eye in understanding the real-world implications each has on the criminal justice system and the world around us. Finally, we will develop research projects that examine criminal justice reform as it relates to the rights of the criminally accused.

    IDST 190: The Rights of the Criminally Accused Seminar

    The spring semester project will entail two Supreme Court simulations. For the Supreme Court simulations, student teams are assigned the roles of justices or attorneys (representing either the appellant or respondent in the case). The students are given a hypothetical case (on an issue the Supreme Court has not decided yet). Each legal team will research and submit their written arguments to the class. Prior to the oral argument the justices read over the written arguments and prepare questions to ask the legal teams during the oral argument. At oral argument, which I hold (usually if available) at the law school’s Moot Court room, each legal team has 25 minutes to make their case to the justices. The justices have the opportunity to ask questions. In addition to developing a range of skills, the simulation projects advanced the students’ research, analytical, communicative, critical thinking, and creativity skills. Additionally, the simulations provided the students with an opportunity to understand the Supreme Court’s work firsthand.

  • Faculty Information

    Dr. J. Bowie
    Dr. Jennifer Bowie is Associate Professor of Political Science and Pre-Law Advisor.

  • Roadmap Short Course Information

    As part of the Endeavor program, you will particiapte in the popular Roadmap to Success pre-orientation program, where you will take a short course led by Dr. Bowie.

    Short Course Description: Capital Punishment and the Supreme Court