Beginning this Summer Seattle University Law School will offer an online course entitled “Visual Litigation and Today’s Technology." It is a 2-credit course that I’ll be teaching. In this Visual Litigation and Today's Technology online course, students interested in litigation learn how to integrate technology into their pretrial and trial visual presentations. Just as technology has become a centerpiece in modern life, it is the centerpiece in litigation. Mediators, judges and jurors expect lawyers to use technology.
The course is taught in the context of mock civil and criminal cases, giving students simulated real-world experiences working with visuals and cutting-edge technology. This course is comprehensive in its exploration of visual communication strategies and technology, including, among other topics: the ethical and legal boundaries to what visuals may be displayed in trial; evidentiary foundations for visuals (animations, demonstrations, laser scanner images and so on); visual advocacy in both a pretrial venue and a courtroom, from opening statement through closing argument; the creation of visuals; litigation software, such as Sanction, TrialPad, and SmartDraw; and meeting the trial judge's expectations of a trial lawyer's competency when employing technology.
The text for the course is my newly launched book Visual Litigation: Visual Communication Strategies and Today’s Technology, which is being published by Full Court Press, the publishing arm of Fastcase. My co-authors are Thomas O’Toole and Patrick Muscat. Tom is the President of Sound Jury Consulting, and he has practiced across the nation for over fifteen years in nearly every field of litigation. Pat is an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney and Deputy Chief of the Special Prosecutions Unit in Detroit where he has tried over 100 homicide jury trials using courtroom technology.