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Trial Advocacy

The Danny and Mary Becnel Trial Advocacy program prepares Loyola’s students to transition from the study of law to the practice of law.  Since 1982, students who participate in the program acquire critical advocacy skills that are essential to any area of practice.

In their second and third years, students are invited to seek membership into the Becnel Trial Advocacy program by performing an opening statement and a cross examination.  To prepare, students are provided with demonstrations, resources, and a Trial Advocacy Lab to visit for additional help. Students are then chosen to advance to the intramural rounds.

In preparation for the intramural rounds, student teams are paired with practitioners who provide feedback to prepare the students for a mock trial.  The Trial Advocacy competition is held in late fall, after which one team is announced champion. With skills developed during the competition, students are then chosen to compete in regional and national trial advocacy competitions throughout the country.  

The Becnel Trial Advocacy program focuses on learning by doing with practical instruction, demonstrations, feedback, and critique. Students have the opportunity to represent a mock client in a courtroom setting—from pretrial motions through closing arguments. Through the program, students learn how to speak persuasively, conduct direct and cross examinations, and prepare and present persuasive opening and closing arguments.  Students are taught how to impeach witnesses, tender experts, and introduce evidence. Students learn to analyze facts, develop strategies, and think on their feet while displaying a dynamic and professional courtroom presentation.

Courses required

Trial Advocacy and Evidence*

Courses suggested

Evidence, Civil Procedure, Pre-trial litigation, Louisiana Civil Procedure, Federal Jurisdiction and Procedure

Skills courses suggested

Developing a Theory of the Case, Direct and Cross Examination, Closing Arguments, Oral Presentation Skills, Evidence/Objections, Demonstrative Evidence, Pre-filing Fact Investigation

*Students can be enrolled when seeking membership.

Faculty Advisor: Professor Blaine LeCesne

For more information, email