June 8-18, 2015 | Location Reno, NV | Tuition $1,595 | Conference Fee $495 What’s this?

Also offered July 11–21, 2016

This course is designed for special court judges who were recently appointed or elected. Filled with valuable information and practice opportunities in all of the areas that new judges encounter in the courtroom, participants will devise strategies and learn skills to assist in traffic court, small claims, misdemeanor cases, and cases involving alcohol/drug use and family violence.

PREREQUISITE: A law degree or completion of Special Court Jurisdiction.
Course Closed

Why should I take this course?

This course is designed for recently appointed or elected special court judges who have some familiarity with special court jurisdiction. This course is taught in a symposium fashion and is filled with valuable information and practice opportunities. The program format will encourage you to interact with experienced judicial faculty and judicial participants from across the country. You will devise strategies and learn skills to assist you in traffic court, small claims, misdemeanor cases, and cases involving alcohol/drug use and family violence.

What will I learn?

During this course, you will learn to:

  • Describe the role and responsibilities of a judge.
  • Recognize the evolving role of the judge as a change agent in the community.
  • Apply a practical approach to Fourth Amendment issues and use approved guidelines for issuing search warrants.
  • Conduct criminal hearings and trials in compliance with constitutional and statutory standards.
  • Make better decisions regarding the admissibility of evidence.
  • Work effectively with court interpreters.
  • Create an environment of fairness and impartiality in the courtroom.
  • Communicate effectively in the courtroom and with the media.
  • Determine appropriate sentencing alternatives for specific offenses and offenders.
  • Recognize and utilize the psychological profiles of criminal personalities in sentencing.
  • Manage the courtroom and individual cases efficiently and comfortably, including cases involving pro se litigants.
  • Mitigate potential trial disruptions and utilize effective courtroom control measures.
  • Increase litigant, attorney and public confidence in the courts by using proper case, calendar and trial management techniques.
  • Improve writing skills.
  • Identify and practice numerous stress reduction techniques.

Who should attend?

This course is designed for special court judges who have graduated from law school, or more experienced judges without law degrees who have already completed the introductory two-week Special Court Jurisdiction course. In addition, any judge of limited jurisdiction from urban or rural areas, who serves full-time or part-time, and has been recently elected or appointed to the bench should attend.

Who are the members of the faculty?

The faculty is composed of experienced judges, professors, physicians, and consultants who have a mastery of teaching the skills needed to effectively manage a special court docket, and will provide valuable best practices information regarding limited jurisdiction adjudication.

How is this course taught?

The course is an introduction to every substantive and skill area a new judge will encounter on the bench, with an emphasis on practical application. The faculty encourages you to interact, and are available outside of the classroom for informal discussion of issues and problems. The class also meets in small discussion groups daily. Trained group facilitators will assist each group in working through problem solving exercises, while examining new ideas and complex issues. These facilitators are experienced judges who are graduates of the course and are willing to guide discussion and mentor members of their group. Friendships and networking among these groups often extends years after the course. Some segments of this course are held in conjunction with the Special Court Jurisdiction course.

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

Increasing caseloads, public criticism, community demands and legal complexities make the judge’s job more difficult than ever before. This investment in judicial education will be returned to the court and community through the judge’s increased efficiency, better decision-making skills, better understanding of the law, and more confidence on the bench.

Whom should I contact for more information?

For more information, please contact the Registrar’s Office at (800) 255-8343 or registrar@judges.org.

This course qualifies for 4 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 program Dispute Resolution Skills, Special Court Trial Skills and Tribal Judicial Skills disciplines.