A case brief can be described as a succinct summary of a case which specifies the facts, procedural history, legal issue(s), court decision and legal reasoning supporting the judgment, even though exact formats may vary. Case briefing is a demanding activity which is required from students during their law studies. The goal is to teach students to focus on the essential parts of the case and to obtain a thorough understanding of the case and the reasoning, which means the students need to employ their analytical and critical thinking skills.

The course of English for academic legal purposes (as part of English for specific purposes) can also benefit from implementing case briefs. Students are exposed to useful legal vocabulary while the cases themselves bring real life examples of the law, which can increase students’ interest and motivation.

The paper briefly introduces the literature on the methodology of teaching case briefing and on case briefs within the linguistics research and then describes a sample activity on case briefs from legal English classes. My experience shows that it is important to provide students with sufficient scaffolding for completing the task successfully. Even though the students feel they are easily and quickly acquainted with the format and the language used, they encounter problems when preparing particular cases. The activity combines both individual and collaborative work, oral and written outputs and peer reviewing.

Case briefing is a valuable learning activity; nevertheless, some students may find it difficult as they need not only language skills, but also general critical thinking skills. The teacher should therefore facilitate their work, help them practice the ability to find relevant information, identify the issue, and comprehend the reasoning behind.

Calendario de la edición:
4 veces al año
Temas de la revista:
Philosophy, other