How to Read a Legal Opinion

Reading a legal opinion for the first time can be difficult.  The textbook for HPER K511 contains a number of cases.  To date, the best “how to” guide I have come across will soon be published by Orin Kerr, a law professor at George Washington University Law School.  It can be found at http://volokh.com/files/howtoread2007version.pdf.  I recommend that all students print off and read the guide before tackling the first reading assignment.  In addition, the guide will be invaluable when writing your case brief, as you will need to know the case inside out before beginning the oral defense portion of the assignment.