Courtroom Skills: Assessment of Training Quality and Participant Learning
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The purpose of the Courtroom Skills training was to improve the skills of juvenile officers and Children's Division case workers in the area of court preparation and testimony. The major objectives of the training were for Children's Division employees and juvenile officers to: Understand their role in the court process and improve their ability to persuade the judge of their position; Understand and work within the timeframes for the judicial process and the Children's Division; Prepare for and testify with competence and confidence; Grasp basic evidentiary rules and their uses during hearings; Knowing how to be responsive to questions and when to elaborate; React positively to cross-examination. The Courtroom Skills training was a one-day, seven-hour training, held in six locations around the state. While there was only one presenter per location, there were three presenters total, each of whom taught at two locations (see Table 1). All presenters used the same curriculum including the PowerPoint prepared by Mary Kay O'Malley. The first half of the day consisted of education on courtroom terminology and processes. The second half of the day was devoted to mock trials for participants to apply new knowledge. The mock trials were presented in slightly different fashions in each location. In Kansas City, law students served the role of attorneys and provided the questioning and cross examination. Another attorney for the juvenile office assisted in Springfield, while a prosecuting attorney served the same role in Benton.
Stokes, S. D. and Sanders B. (2006). Courtroom Skills: Assessment of Training Quality and Participant Learning. Report 9-2006. Retrieved 09-21-09 from University of Missouri Columbia, Institute of Public Policy Web site: http://www.truman.missouri.edu/ipp/
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