Critical Race Lawyering Civil Rights Clinic

Students in the Critical Race Lawyering Civil Rights Clinic learn to merge the tenets of critical race theory, with the practice of civil rights law. Students will engage in direct representation of individual and organizational clients in areas where discrimination and inequality are pervasive.

Topics that may be covered include but are not limited to:

  • Employment discrimination
  • Fair housing
  • Racial disparities in education
  • Enforcement of constitutional rights for incarcerated individuals
  • Collateral consequences of criminal convictions 

Students will also complete non-litigation-based advocacy projects such as creating policy briefs, formulating advocacy strategies to advance local legislation, and community outreach. Students may also draft amicus briefs advancing novel legal theories using critical theory frameworks.

Enrollment Options and Credit Hours

  • Full year (fall and spring semester) – 6 credit hours fall semester, 3 credit hours spring semester

Skills Learned

  • Learn fundamental lawyering skills such as client interviewing, counseling, negotiation, written discovery, and depositions
  • Gain experience in litigation planning, including factual investigation, case planning and development, and constructing case theories
  • Sharpen legal research and written advocacy skills through drafting pleadings, motions, memos, and policy briefs
  • Gain experience in oral advocacy through hearings, trials, and presentations
  • Learn to apply critical legal theories to actual cases and advocacy projects
  • Develop sound judgment as a lawyer
  • Learn to identify ethical issues and apply appropriate rules of professional responsibility
  • Understand how to engage in cross cultural lawyering
  • Develop client-centered rebellious lawyering skills
  • Introduction to reflective lawyering practices
  • Learn to engage in collaborative lawyering


  • Pre- or co-requisite courses: None


Professor of Law, Wade Edwards Distinguished Scholar, and Director of the Critical Race Lawyering Civil Rights Clinic
(919) 962-2552 |