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Spring 2023

5514 Judicial Externship I - POWERS/VAN ARSDEL- 13523

Professor(s): Bill  Powers (DIRECTOR/SUPERVISOR )
Kristina Van Arsdel (ADJUNCT)

Credits: 5

Course Areas: Practice Skills - Clinics and Externships 

Time: ARRANGED    Location:  

Course Outline: Well in advance of the semester during which they want to work, students should secure their own field placements with a state or federal judge at either the district court or appellate court level. Many judges/justices in the Houston area participate as field placement supervisors, and welcome applications from Rising 2Ls, 2Ls, Rising 3Ls, and 3Ls. If a student wishes to work for judge outside of Houston, s/he should first contact the Externship Director to discuss the possibility, and should do so before accepting a position with that judge.

Once a student secures a position, s/he must apply to the Judicial Externship Program at Students should not attempt to enroll themselves in these courses via PeopleSoft: if you’re approved, the Externship Director will enroll you via the Office of Student Services.

Any JD student doing his/her first-ever judicial externship for credit is required to attend an on-campus orientation. The date/time of the orientation is TBD. Students are responsible for reading their law school email and The Lex consistently to keep up with this information as it becomes available.

Students will be required to work at their placements for 60 hours to earn each hour of academic credit.

Course Syllabus: Syllabus

Course Notes:    Paper: Yes, at semester’s end. Additionally, students will be required to email weekly time logs, journal entries and/or reflective writing assignments to the ED, and complete placement evaluation forms.

Time: Work days/hours to be determined between the student and the field placement supervisor.
Location: Work will be done on site at the field placement (i.e., judicial chambers)

All students will meet for a mandatory orientation of roughly one hour to review the nuts and bolts of the courses’ requirements, discuss matters of ethics and professionalism, and address any initial student concerns/questions.

The date and time of the orientation can be found on the Externship Program’s webpage at

Prerequisites: Yes   - Completion of 30 hours, good academic standing, no honor code violations, and the Externship Director’s approval. The ED will review the online applications and then email each student regarding his/her application status.

First Day Assignments:

Final Exam Schedule:    

This course will have:

Satisfies Senior Upper Level Writing Requirement: No

Experiential Course Type: field placement

Bar Course: No

DistanceEd ABA: No

Pass-Fail Student Election:

Course Materials

No book required for this course