Professional Skills: Satisfies ABA Professional Skills Requirement
12:00 - 3:00 pm
This course focuses on the acquisition of professional skills necessary to perform two separate roles in the mediation process: legal advocate and mediator. During the course, students will learn the social and political bases for the development of alternative dispute resolution procedures; become familiar with different models of negotiation and mediation; study the legislation that regulates the practice of mediation, especially in Texas courts; increase awareness of personal strengths and weaknesses in communication and negotiation and improve those skills; acquire advocacy skills for representing clients in mediation; acquire the essential skills necessary to mediate interpersonal and legal disputes; and develop a framework for making ethical decisions as a legal advocate or mediator in the mediation process. Students will read textbooks, participate in negotiation and mediation role plays, complete exercises designed to enhance communication and negotiation skills, and prepare a reflective journal. The course is designed to fulfill the statutory minimum requirements in Texas for a basic training course in dispute resolution techniques. For students who are interested in fulfilling the requirements to become a court-appointed mediator, the professor will offer additional opportunities outside of class.