August 10-13, 2015 | Location Big Sky, MT | Tuition $1,245 | Conference Fee $395 What’s this?

This course is a must for judges who want to improve their evidentiary rulings. The expert faculty will review recent cases that impact evidentiary rulings, address problematic areas under the Federal Rules of Evidence, and explore the impact of these on evidentiary issues in state courts. After attending this course, you will be able to rule on evidentiary issues with greater accuracy and confidence.

PREREQUISITE: A law degree or completion of one of the following courses is required to attend: Fundamentals of Evidence (or its equivalent), Special Court Jurisdiction, or Special Court Jurisdiction: Advanced.
Course Closed
Terrific course. Faculty outstanding. Materials and charts signifying complex topics can be used immediately upon return to the bench. Very valuable.
Hon. John A. Schaefer, Clearwater, FL
The NJC promotes a very professional environment for learning. The instructors have never disappointed me.
Hon. Rick Varner, Sidman, PA

Why should I take this course?

Consistently rated as one of the top courses at NJC, Advanced Evidence is a must for judges who want to improve their evidentiary rulings. This course gives you the opportunity to analyze rules of criminal and civil evidence in a setting where you can debate the rules with other judges from around the country. The expert faculty will not only lead you through the quagmire of the Federal Rules of Evidence, but will also compare and contrast the common law rules of evidence. The course is “advanced” in the sense that you have the opportunity to examine the various rules of evidence in depth. It is helpful if you can bring your state’s evidence rules with you, so you can compare and contrast those rules with the federal rules.

What will I learn?

During this course, you will learn to:

  • Rule on evidentiary issues with greater accuracy and confidence.
  • Ensure that the baseline relevancy issues are met and their probative value outweighs unfair prejudice.
  • Re-evaluate pre-hearing and post-hearing procedures in your court.
  • Effectively examine your administrative hearings for implementation of ADR techniques.
  • Analyze quickly whether character evidence is admissible, particularly with regard to prior bad acts.
  • Describe when habit and custom evidence may be admitted.
  • Rule on impeachment objections after analyzing bias, capacity, and prior inconsistent statement rules.
  • Outline an analytical scheme for ruling on hearsay objections and the exceptions.
  • Recognize the judicial role of gatekeeper.
  • Confidently rule on issues relating to lay opinion and expert opinion testimony.

Who should attend?

This course has been specially developed for general jurisdiction judges or special court judges who hear criminal and/or civil cases. If you are a legally trained administrative law judge, you certainly are welcome; however, some of your practical concerns may not be specifically addressed. Appellate judges are encouraged to enroll not only for an update on evidence, but to hear the practicalities of applying evidentiary rules from a trial court judge’s perspective.

Who are the members of the faculty?

Faculty members are judges recognized as experts in the field of evidence, as well as law professors who understand the real-life
concerns that judges face.

How is this course taught?

The faculty uses a number of adult education techniques including lecture, audio-visual aids, question and answer, debate, and class problems. Participants will also be directly involved in solving hypotheticals in your small group discussions.

What should I tell my presiding judge or funding agency so that my attendance will be approved?

Judges must have a good understanding of the rules of evidence to make appropriate decisions in their courtrooms. This course gives the participant judge the rare opportunity to contrast their state rules of evidence with those of their colleagues from around the country. Each participant will also be given in-class problems that they must present to their colleagues. Ultimately, the judge participant will come away with a greater grasp of the rules of evidence and the reasons underlying those rules.

Whom should I contact for more information?

For more information, please contact the Registrar’s Office at (800) 255-8343 or

Big Sky Resort

The hotel for this course will be at Big Sky Resort. Just outside of Yellowstone, this alpine campus offers a plethora of activities and views. Here, try your hand at golf, take a class in their wellness center, or enjoy a day of relaxation in their Solace Spa.

The group room rate is $140 per night (plus applicable sales and resort taxes, currently 17%) for single or double occupancy. This special rate will be available until July 10, 2015, unless our room block is filled earlier. Please contact our Registrar’s Office with any questions.

Make your reservation by calling the reservation center at (800) 548-4486 and referencing “The National Judicial College.”

This course qualifies for 2 credits toward the Master of Judicial Studies Degree Program and Judicial Studies Doctoral Program at the University of Nevada, Reno upon successful completion of the course and passing the course exam. In addition, this course qualifies for The National Judicial College Certificate in Judicial Development Administrative Law Adjudication Skills, General Jurisdiction Trial Skills, Special Court Trial Skills, and the Tribal Judicial Skills disciplines.