Which of these courses are most important for a District Court clerkship? Forum

(Seek and share information about clerkship applications, clerkship hiring timelines, and post-clerkship employment opportunities)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are sharing sensitive information about clerkship applications and clerkship hiring. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned."
Anonymous User
Posts: 428449
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Which of these courses are most important for a District Court clerkship?

Post by Anonymous User » Thu Mar 28, 2024 8:34 am

Hi all,

I'll be applying for a number of district court clerkships this summer and I'm going to be picking my 3L Fall semester transcript soon. Which of these courses will district court judges, on average, most be looking for on my transcript:
(1) Admin
(2) Fed Courts
(3) Corporations

I've also heard warnings not to stack classes like Admin and Fed Courts in the same semester, so I'm curious about what y'all think.

Thanks!

Anonymous User
Posts: 428449
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Which of these courses are most important for a District Court clerkship?

Post by Anonymous User » Thu Mar 28, 2024 11:02 am

Full disclosure: I never took Admin or Fed Courts, but I wish that I did. There’s a lot that I learned by experience but I could have saved myself a lot of time in researching concepts that both courses would have likely covered.

Fed Courts is the most important of those, imo. My coclerks took it and were able to spot some things that I had to figure out from experience. Admin also seems really useful and I know some judges might like that. I clerked on a flyover district court and still had quite a few admin issues pop up.

I am struggling to think of an instance in which my Corporations course helped me beyond the benefit of taking a black-letter law course.

Anonymous User
Posts: 428449
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Which of these courses are most important for a District Court clerkship?

Post by Anonymous User » Thu Mar 28, 2024 11:09 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Thu Mar 28, 2024 8:34 am
Hi all,

I'll be applying for a number of district court clerkships this summer and I'm going to be picking my 3L Fall semester transcript soon. Which of these courses will district court judges, on average, most be looking for on my transcript:
(1) Admin
(2) Fed Courts
(3) Corporations

I've also heard warnings not to stack classes like Admin and Fed Courts in the same semester, so I'm curious about what y'all think.

Thanks!
Fed Courts is probably the most important. Then Admin after that. Corporations is less important because the rules governing the internal affairs of corporations (which is what a Corporations class will teach) are controlled by state law. And most litigants prefer to have their disputes heard in DE Chancery anyway, so it's unlikely you would hear a diversity case on DE corporate law.

Anonymous User
Posts: 428449
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Which of these courses are most important for a District Court clerkship?

Post by Anonymous User » Thu Mar 28, 2024 11:25 am

All of these are important. For clerking, I would agree Fed Courts is #1. It’s also maybe the hardest to teach yourself.

For practice, depending on what you do (private or public law), either admin or corporations is #1. I think business organizations is pretty essential knowledge for a commercial litigator, and admin is pretty essential knowledge for lit with a regulatory component. That said of course you can learn those things on the job or from a hornbook.

Hard Fed Courts questions don’t come up a ton in practice unless you regularly sue the government (e.g. if you’re a section 1983 civil rights or personal injury lawyer) or you practice postconviction review. But you get a ton of section 1983, habeas, etc. lit in a district court clerkship, much of it pro se.

Anonymous User
Posts: 428449
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Which of these courses are most important for a District Court clerkship?

Post by Anonymous User » Thu Mar 28, 2024 10:15 pm

I never took Fed Courts and it was fine, although it’s entirely possible there were things I’d have got more quickly if I had. But the overwhelming consensus is that it’s the most important for clerking.

I also actually didn’t find Admin any worse, workload-wise, than any other black letter course, but I’m sure that’s a school/prof specific thing.

Want to continue reading?

Register now to search topics and post comments!

Absolutely FREE!


Anonymous User
Posts: 428449
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Which of these courses are most important for a District Court clerkship?

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 29, 2024 12:19 am

Agree Fed Courts is the most important of these, but I would say Evidence is the best class you could take, and Civil Rights Lit (or whatever your school calls its 1983 class) is also helpful.

Anonymous User
Posts: 428449
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Which of these courses are most important for a District Court clerkship?

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 29, 2024 10:41 pm

This is technically off topic, but -- if your school offers any type of statutory construction/interpretation class, I actually think that would be more helpful than corporations. Agree with other folks' rankings - Fed Courts first, Admin second (although it might be a tad messier than normal in the fall given the likely rulings out of the court this June), and I'd put my hypothetical Statutory Interpretation class third.

Anonymous User
Posts: 428449
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Which of these courses are most important for a District Court clerkship?

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Mar 29, 2024 11:45 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Fri Mar 29, 2024 12:19 am
Agree Fed Courts is the most important of these, but I would say Evidence is the best class you could take, and Civil Rights Lit (or whatever your school calls its 1983 class) is also helpful.
I always forget to recommend Evidence, b/c my law school required it, but I agree that it's super useful, and if you're clerking, you're probably interested in lit, and Evidence is central to pretty much everything lit-related.

Anonymous User
Posts: 428449
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Which of these courses are most important for a District Court clerkship?

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Apr 01, 2024 8:34 pm

Any particular value in taking Advanced Civ Pro (especially if you haven't taken Fed Courts)? I can get my 3L spring schedule to only three days a week if I drop it and I'm so tempted.

Want to continue reading?

Register for access!

Did I mention it was FREE ?


Anonymous User
Posts: 428449
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Which of these courses are most important for a District Court clerkship?

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Apr 01, 2024 10:36 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Apr 01, 2024 8:34 pm
Any particular value in taking Advanced Civ Pro (especially if you haven't taken Fed Courts)? I can get my 3L spring schedule to only three days a week if I drop it and I'm so tempted.
Depends on what it covers, but typically that's a very useful class for litigation practice. Doesn't mean you shouldn't drop it anyway of course, 3L sucks, but that's the truth.

Anonymous User
Posts: 428449
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Which of these courses are most important for a District Court clerkship?

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Apr 01, 2024 10:48 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Apr 01, 2024 10:36 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Apr 01, 2024 8:34 pm
Any particular value in taking Advanced Civ Pro (especially if you haven't taken Fed Courts)? I can get my 3L spring schedule to only three days a week if I drop it and I'm so tempted.
Depends on what it covers, but typically that's a very useful class for litigation practice. Doesn't mean you shouldn't drop it anyway of course, 3L sucks, but that's the truth.
How much do you actually remember from class, anyway? I think I remember vanishingly little from any of my 1L classes; maybe the big things, but I hardly think my H in 1L contracts means I remember much more than offer + acceptance + consideration.

I'll go to the first day tomorrow and decide on that, I guess.

Register now!

Resources to assist law school applicants, students & graduates.

It's still FREE!


Post Reply Post Anonymous Reply  

Return to “Judicial Clerkships”