The following three items are the required materials for this class. (1) The basic textbook - Gregory E. Maggs & Peter J. Smith, Constitutional Law: A Contemporary Approach (West, 4th ed. 2018) (hereinafter "Text"). It is important to note that the purchase of a second-hand copy of the text will not enable you to access the online materials available on West's Interactive Casebook website. (2) The 2018 Supplement, available for free on West's Interactive Casebook website. (3) Philip Bobbitt, Constitutional Fate: Theory of the Constitution (Oxford University Press, 1984) (hereinafter "Bobbitt").  These required reading materials are available for purchase at the bookstore. Additional materials available on the Internet are hyperlinked in the Syllabus 

You will be held responsible for the information assigned, whether or not specifically discussed in class.


The ABA mandates class attendance, and the Washington State Bar application requires that a bar candidate disclose any class withdrawal due to non-attendance. Given those demands and the importance of participation in class discussion, you are expected to attend every class session. You are entitled to two unexcused absences, for which you are not required to give any notice. Thereafter, you can receive one excused absence, which must be appropriately documented and which will be accorded for only the most compelling of reasons. A fourth absence will result in an automatic administrative withdrawal.


On the first day of class, each 1L student will be paired with a 2L student. The two students will sit next to one another in class, and will constitute a "team" with respect to certain purposes. One such purpose is the evaluation of class participation.

Both students in a team will receive the same final class participation score, which will be a composite of the two individual scores. Thus, the more that both students in a team participate actively and well in class discussion, the higher will be the composite score for the team. .

Class participation does not constitute a fixed percentage of the final course grade. Rather, a "grade bump" (sometimes a very significant grade bump) will be awarded for class participation that is: (1) voluntary (i.e., a student raises his or her hand and is called upon), (2) frequent (i.e., de minimus participation will not result in any bump); and (3) clearly noteworthy or meritorious (i.e., the comment contributes substantially to the understanding of the class and materially advances the course of analysis).


There will be an in-class examination at the end of the semester.


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