Criminal Justice 481

CRJU 481: Forensic Law

Prerequisites:  CRJU 241 or CRJU 341

Credit Hours: (3)

Designed to introduce the student to the major concepts of law and evidence. The topics for discussion will include, but are not limited to: kinds of evidence, burden of proof, admission and exclusion of evidence, relevancy, witnesses, documentary evidence, judicial notice, the hearsay rule and its exceptions, and the best evidence rule. Students will be assigned a mock trial project.

Detailed Description of Content of Course

Topics for this course may include, but are not limited to:

1. Courtroom process
2. Kinds of evidence
3. Chain of custody
4. Burden of Proof
5. Admissibility of evidence
6. Commonly used objections in court
7. Courtroom strategies
8. Introduction  of evidence in court
9. Types of judicial notice
10. Inferences, presumptions and stipulations
11. Exclusion of evidence
12. Mercy Rule
13. Competency of witnesses
14. Types of witnesses and examinations
15. Impeachment of witnesses
16. Probability and Knowledge Theory
17. Privileged communication
18. Hearsay rule and exceptions
19. Courtroom strategies
20. Depositions
21. Documentary evidence
22. Best Evidence Rule

Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

The course will be taught primarily by discussion, legal case briefs, assigned readings, and a mock trial.

Goals and Objectives of the Course

Having successfully completed this course, the student will:

(1)  Apply concepts, strategies and theories of forensic law in a mock trial exercise.

(2)  Explain rules of evidence and courtroom procedure.

(3)  Evaluate the impact of new forensic technologies in a legal setting.

(4)  Analyze legal concepts as they apply to forensic evidence.   

(5)  Synthesize concepts of criminal investigation, forensic science, and forensic law, as applied in criminal court procedures.

Assessment Measures

Evaluations may include, but are not limited to: quizzes, tests, mock trial, legal case briefs, writing assignments, and informal and/or formal oral presentations.

Other Course Information


Review and Approval