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									          Today’s Lecture:

           Course Introduction


Lecture Organization for Topic 1:

     Attendance Sheet                Website
     Greetings!                     Website Registration
     Teaching Philosophy            Course Subject Matter
      Syllabus                       Course Rules
     Absences                       Grading Criteria
      Clickers                       How to Use Clickers
Attendance Sheet
                Attendance sheet
              Consistent Signature!
       (May not get credit otherwise)

Only partial credit given if you leave
print    sign

        If your name is not on the
                  roll …

        Do this every day, in the
              same place

How many of you have
  had me before?

Who Am I?

      -- Name: Sean Wilson
      -- I’m a lawyer and a college professor
      -- practiced law for 10 years (mostly criminal defense)
      -- went back to school to get my Ph.D.

1/6/2011                 Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.      7


      -- anything where law and history/philosophy
      -- “judicial politics,” philosophy of law
      -- American colonial history
      -- Ludwig Wittgenstein

1/6/2011                  Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.   8

 What I Like

      -- I’m a Pittsburgh Steelers fan

1/6/2011                  Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.   9

 What I Like

      -- I’m a West
      Virginia fan

1/6/2011               Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.   10

 What I Like

-- Favorite philosopher:
      • home to no intellectual
      • “bird’s eye view” (see
      culture from atop rather than
      from within)
      • how well we think is more
      important than what we think
1/6/2011                 Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.   11

 What I Like

      -- I have a wonderful daughter
      -- Starting college next year

1/6/2011                  Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.   12

 What I Like

      -- I have a wonderful daughter

1/6/2011                  Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.   13

 What I Like

      -- I like movies
      -- I like dogs

1/6/2011                  Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.   14

Distributed Online

  Link emailed

                           Has anyone NOT
                               seen it?
Course Subject Matter
                    Subject Matter

 Basic Inquiry
How should a supreme court judge, judge?
How has this question been answered through the ages?
When a judge judges, how is this different than when you judge
something (if at all)?
What is “judgment” and how has history or science affected it?
                    Subject Matter

 Basic Inquiry
Are the decisions of Supreme Courts necessarily political,
ideological – and if, so what is meant by that?
What would the decisions look like if they were not?
When did legal judging begin and how has it developed
What is “law,” anyway?
                    Subject Matter

Two Courses?
Originally, I had two courses here:
   • Foundations of American Legal Thought
   • “Empirical” Judicial Behaviorism

There’s no empirical studies in this course. I’m going to teach
that elsewhere in the future.
                   Subject Matter

Developmental Focus

What hegemonic legal culture says about its orthodoxy
   • What is “good judging” to the Romans?
   • What is “good judging” to the English?
   • What is “a correct legal opinion” during the enlightenment
   and during Colonial America?
   • What is “a correct legal opinion” in the modern American
   legal regime?
      Teaching Philosophy of Law Through History

       Using History to Develop Philosophy
                    Subject Matter

“Ideology Theory”
   A. Are justice decisions dominated by ideology?
       -- are yours, right now?
   B. What is ideology?
       -- is it merely a way of talking?
   C. Under what conditions can we say it exists in judging?
   D. Could we ever make a science out of this subject?
       (what would it look like?)
                    Subject Matter

Outsider’s Perspective

Three basic sources of “authority” that we will consider


              Legal                Philosophers

                                   Mention Wittgenstein’s
                  Teaching Approach

excessively philosophical

-- this class is so abstract in its approach to legality that some
will not like it
This is not an ordinary political science course or a law course

        (stress point immensely)
                 Teaching Approach

 Some original material

-- some of the material you will be exposed to is completely
-- some of my book material I may assign to you
My Teaching Philosophy
                Philosophy of College Life


-- I don’t respect students who will not put forth effort (just
try to get by)
      (you make my job more difficult)
-- Mike Ditka philosophy
-- Some students have to work harder than others (that’s

1/6/2011                 Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.       26
              Philosophy of College Life

Model Professor

… probably, professor Snape

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Each Week = 10 points

     (a) University-sponsored event
     (b) Your own health emergency
     -- documentation required
     -- must be pre-approved (unless impossible, physically)
     [See syllabus for more info]

1/6/2011                Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.          31
 Buying                         Philosophy of text
-- check on Amazon or           -- are supplemental
    elsewhere                   only.
   (very cheap)                 -- never teach from a
                                -- Extra material for you
-- roughly 20% of your exam     to read on your own.
will be from the textbook.
                                Book = bonus
Borderline Students             knowledge.

   -- if you are within 3%
   points of a grade, reading
   can make or break you.
 Right Model

-- RF response card
-- Turning Technologies
-- anywhere from $38 to $45.
Key to buying

 -- selling it back.
      (explain why)
Where to buy

 -- bookstore.
 -- bookstore across the street.
 -- ebay?

 Will start using them next time
Key to buying

 -- selling it back.          Question:

      (explain why) How many of you have
                       them (raise your hand)?
Where to buy

 -- bookstore.                 Question:
                      How many
 -- bookstore across the street. don’t (raise
                           your hand)?
 -- ebay?

 Will start using them next time
How to find it.

• See link in email (will send again)

• Or, go to & press
yellow button “Judging”
               document embedded

                 copy &     full screen
menu options     paste
  (1) Can view the document
  (2) Can print it
  (3) Can copy segments of text
  (4) Can download it
    numerical order

Don’t Confuse Topic
Numbers With Session

… after clicking the title
            Table of Contents

Click to Play Segment
Take a moment to load

        Pause, Play
Full Screen
Exact Spot
Advance to specific slide
Start Over will cause the Table of
Contents to re-appear
Just the Slides
Full Screen
             Full Screen

Website Registration
The one you use and
check the most
Ignore this!
Serial Number on the back
of the clicker
• You can’t do the registration
until you have the clicker
• Will use this to post exams
• Up to 5 characters
• Numbers and letters
• You make it up
• Can’t be from social security
or UID.
• Don’t share it w/anyone
• Ignore this
• Your first assignment in class is to register
in the manner I have shown

• Do it immediately upon getting your clicker
Grading Criteria
The Plan

 -- two given (midterm and final)
 -- complicated multiple choice
    (the bar exam is multiple choice)
 Writing Component

-- Each exam will have a take-home portion.
-- You will have to write a 6-8 page essay at
midterm AND at final.
-- Essays are 50% of the exam grade
Philosophy of exams

-- Difficult exams are good for you
   (Harry Potter & Lord of the Rings)
-- Come ready for the battle.
   (In life, you should welcome your “Helm’s
   Deep” moment)

• leaving early -- won’t get full credit.
    (sit close to the isle if leaving early)
• Don’t ever sign someone else’s name.
Could get you in trouble (academic

 -- your course notes are graded
 • hand them in after midterm, and after final.
 • only ORIGINAL notes (hand-written)
    (laptop users who want to type in class
    should email me)
What they should look like

  -- clearly distinguish each lecture
  -- the more thorough the better
     • “outlines” are not “notes”
  -- if you miss a lecture, go to the website,
  listen and take notes
When are they due?

 -- when you take the exam, no excuses
    “I left them in the car”
    “my computer crashed”
Why This is Good

-- buffers your grade (with attendance)
-- you should be doing more than “watching”

                   Questions about Notes
                      or Attendance?
Quality Points

  -- three items that contribute to the course
     • class participation (with clickers)
     • course Wiki
     • donating typed notes
  -- graded on how well you do any of these
  items at the end of the year
  -- can do a little of each or a lot of one. If you
  are average on 1, supplement with another.
Course Wiki

 -- not exactly up yet.
 -- when it is, I will let you know
 -- Great opportunity for us to make a perfect
 set of notes for others to have.
-- poor effort (“busy work”) won’t get you
anything good for any of the three items.
Class participation

-- Follow these simple rules:
1. No credit if no clicker used
2. No credit for “bad faith”
 • commenting just to get points
     (explain what this looks like)
 • devil’s advocate (always be sincere)
                Final Course Grades

 No Favors

-- Grades are only an indication of how often you scored
in the game
-- No favors are given

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                     Final Course Grades

 No Rounding

-- If you end up with a 59.99%, the grade is F
           (89.99% is B)
           [note: see policy for borderline students]

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                 Final Course Grades


-- I will flunk you if you don’t earn above a 59.99%
(some professors “spare” people for reasons of grace and
“life excuses.” I do not do this. Poor marks are given
where earned)

1/6/2011               Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.   102
             Borderline Students

Year-End Bonus

-- there are 1-to-3 year-end course percentage points
available at the end of the year
-- if you get 3, it would make an 87% an A.
-- I use this for people who end up on the border
(there is no rounding of grades)
              Borderline Students

-- bonus is awarded for:
(a) Quality Point Score one letter higher than your course
(b) exam grades one letter higher than your course
(c) reading questions one letter higher than your course
    average    most important
(d) attendance one letter higher than your course avg
                   Merit Adjustment

notes/attendance can only help
-- Notes/Attendance (as a composite) can only ever help your
grade, not hurt it
-- If you have a grade of B in the course but notes/attendance
brings it down to a C, grades will be calculated without regard
to notes/attendance. (You get the B).

                         Email Policies

   Receiving it
       -- you must have a working university email
       -- it is no excuse if it is “bouncing”

1/6/2011                     Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.   106
                       Email Policies

 My Tone

-- Tone of my replies: “quick” or “curt”
      (Don’t take anything from that)

Use Course Number

-- Indicate what class you are from (preferably in the subject

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                        Little Things

pre-class muggings

-- I can’t talk to you before class
      (setting up the technology)
-- see me after class for any question or concern you might
have (or: email me, come to office)

1/6/2011                   Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.      108
                        Little Things

  oblivious students

-- “professor, l missed yesterday, what did we do?”
      (translation: give me a special summary)
      (translation: give me a corner-cutting answer) [examples]
-- everything is online. The class plays 24/7 (in theory)
      • No excuses for not reviewing lectures if you miss
      • if you ask me “what did we do,” I’m going to say – see the

1/6/2011                   Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.        109
                         Little Things

no teacher’s pets

-- some students want to have personal relationships with
-- they want to be on a one-to-one with them
-- I don’t like this character trait.
-- My pedagogy doesn’t include trying to make you feel that you
are more special than other students (who don’t need this)
-- I don’t form friendships easily, and you shouldn’t be looking
for one out of this class.

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                       Little Things

  problem students

-- don’t interfere with class environment (e.g., talking with your
neighbor during class)
(mention disciplinary procedures)

1/6/2011                 Copyright, Sean Wilson. 2007.         112
                      Little Things

   Pet Peeves
-- If you see me out in a bar, give me my space

                             Questions about

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