Civil Practice – PLST 220

CG • Section 8WK • 01/03/2020 to 06/11/2020 • Modified 09/05/2023

Course Description

This course is the study of the rules and principles governing the process by which courts adjudicate civil disputes. The subject matter covered includes study of the judicial process and the relationship between procedural and substantive law; pleadings; principles of jurisdiction, including jurisdiction over persons and subject matter; service of process and allocation of jurisdiction between state and federal court systems; and the discovery of evidence.

For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.


Every lawsuit involves two primary and equally important components: substantive law that governs the litigants’ rights and obligations, and rules and principles that govern how the court will apply the substantive law. This course’s primary focus is the latter. Because mastery of civil procedure enables lawyers to plot sound strategy for their clients, it is essential to being an effective legal assistant and to being fully prepared to provide the necessary guidance. Moreover, the law of civil procedure represents our judicial systems’ best efforts to provide for fair and just resolution of disputes; therefore, this course emphasizes the need for litigants’ strong commitment to operate with “the rules” to achieve justice, integrity, and civility.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in the Course Overview.

Discussions (6)

Discussions are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student is required to provide a thread in response to the provided prompt for each Discussion. Each thread must be 300 words and demonstrate course-related knowledge. In addition to the thread, the student is required to reply to 2 other classmates’ threads. Each reply must be 150 words.

Article Review Assignments (2)

The student will submit brief reviews discussing current news articles related to a trial or other actions that directly relate to the subject matter of civil litigation. News articles used for this assignment must come from the newspaper, a news program, or some other reputable news source (either traditional such as a newspaper or news magazine, or from a reputable online source). Each review must be in current Bluebook format and be 1–2 full pages, double-spaced.

Course Review Assignment

The same instructions for the two Article Review Assignments apply. However, instead of reviewing an article, the student will focus on the one or two areas of law practice that they found most interesting throughout this course and why. The student will include relevance from the course materials and summarize by positing how they think what they've learned in this course might benefit them in their future career. No citations required.

Quizzes (5)

Each quiz is composed of 25 randomized multiple-choice and true/false questions. They will cover each Module: Weeks respective textbook reading. The student will have 1 hour to complete each open-book/open-notes quiz.