This Week One simulation will introduce students to the essential concepts and competencies of social intelligence implicated in all forms of a law practice, including law firms, government agencies, corporations, non-profits and a solo practice. Students will learn about emotional intelligence and research that illustrates how basic brain function and other factors, such as strong emotion, influence how a person makes decisions. Using a combination of lecture, discussion, videos, skills exercises and simulations of common legal practice scenarios, this course will emphasize concrete, practical tools to increase students’ effectiveness in managing themselves and their interactions with others. The course will equip students with an improved ability to effectively communicate with others and make them feel heard; present information in the most persuasive light; recognize and address their own internal biases; act with assertiveness when necessary; learn how to effectively give and receive criticism; and deal with highly emotional or extremely difficult individuals. This course also will present positive strategies for dealing with common interpersonal relationships in the legal workplace: lawyer-client, lawyer-opposing counsel, and lawyer-co-counsel. Students completing this course will have developed a solid grasp on how to address the wide variety of interpersonal dynamics that commonly arise in the legal arena.
The main objectives of this course are to increase students’ awareness of the substantial role of social intelligence in the practice of law, and to provide students with concrete skills to effectively handle day-to-day interactions. Students will learn research-based skills and strategies from the fields of neuroscience, the study of emotions and emotional intelligence, negotiations and communication. As they learn theory, students will have the opportunity to practice techniques for harnessing these dynamics in professional interactions commonly involved in the actual practice of law. The simulations will emphasize positive strategies for dealing with common interpersonal interactions in a legal practice: lawyer-client, lawyer-opposing counsel and lawyer-colleague. At the end of the course students will have an improved ability to effectively communicate and negotiate, present information in a persuasive light; recognize and address internal biases; and deal with highly emotional or extremely difficult individuals -- skills that talented legal minds need to become great counselors at law.