Certificate in Advocacy

The goal of the Certificate in Advocacy program is to enable students who are interested in a career in litigation or the study of advocacy to follow a specialized course of study, to work closely with other students interested in the area and to receive guidance from faculty members with an interest and expertise in the area.

This program will enable you to work alongside other students and professors to prepare you for a career in litigation. A student who receives the Certificate in Advocacy demonstrates knowledge of fundamental principles of trial and appellate advocacy, as well as competence in the skills essential to a career in litigation. In turn, Certificate in Advocacy graduates are attractive to law firms seeking to hire litigation attorneys who enter the practice of law with practical training.

For more information about the Certificate in Advocacy program, please contact Prof. Barbara Kritchevsky at bkrtchvs@memphis.edu or (901) 678-3239.


Students in the Certificate in Advocacy Program not only take courses that teach legal rules and principles in a traditional classroom setting but also put those ideas into practice through client representation, skills courses and participation in Moot Court, Mock Trial and Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) travel teams. The out of class component enables students to work with practicing attorneys and make contacts in the legal community.

Course Requirements

A student must successfully complete at least 15 hours of advocacy courses. At least 2 hours of study must be in trial advocacy courses and 2 hours must be in appellate advocacy courses

Non-class Requirements

Students seeking the certificate must also complete work outside the classroom, allowing them to gain invaluable experience and see advocacy in action. A student must complete 25 hours of non class work in the advocacy field. The student must complete at least 5 hours each semester. Students in the program must keep a log of their activities in accordance with the Director of Advocacy's guidelines and must attend one meeting each semester with other students enrolled in the Certificate of Advocacy program.

Grade Point Requirement

To satisfy the requirements of the Certificate in Advocacy, each student must demonstrate a successful understanding of the fundamentals of advocacy by receiving a grade of at least a C and obtaining an overall GPA of at least 2.5 in the building-block courses of Legal Methods I and II, Civil Procedure I and II, Evidence and Professional Responsibility. Students must receive at least a 3.0 GPA in all courses taken to satisfy the certificate.

To receive the certificate with honors, a student must complete the graded courses to satisfy the certificate with a GPA of 3.5 or higher and receive a grade of Excellent in at least two-thirds of the non-graded coursework taken to satisfy the certificate requirements.

Learning Outcomes

Students who complete the Certificate in Advocacy will:

  1. Through completion of the background course requirement, show mastery of the substantive legal building blocks of advocacy (Civil Procedure, Legal Methods, Evidence, and Professional Responsibility);
  2. Through completion of the Trial Advocacy component, demonstrate the ability to represent a client in an initial dispute resolution (trial, mediation or arbitration);
  3. Through completion of the Appellate Advocacy component, demonstrate the ability to represent a client on appeal;
  4. Through completion of the additional course requirement, gain experience and knowledge in advocacy through completion of clinics, externships, simulation courses, and/or advocacy-related substantive courses;
  5. Through completion of the out-of-class component, gain practical advocacy-related experience through client representation, participation in advocacy-related simulation programs, or witnessing advocacy in practice.

How to Enroll

Students in good academic standing may enroll in the Certificate for Advocacy program after completing one year of full-time law study (or 30 hours for part-time students). A student may not enroll after the add deadline in the student's fourth semester of full-time study (or the semester after a part-time student has completed 45 hours of study).

A student enrolls by submitting the Certificate Declaration Form.   After you submit the form, you will receive a confirmation email providing next steps for enrollment.