Developing skills critical to the practice of the law.

The WVU Law’s Legal Analysis, Research and Writing consists of two courses (one two-credit course taken in each semester of the 1L year). The courses focus on skill-building for practice readiness in three critical skill areas:

  1. legal analysis,

  2. legal writing, and

  3. oral advocacy.

The LARW Program is designed to give students many opportunities to build skills and achieve the level of competence they will need to successfully handle a variety of written and oral communication tasks during summer experiences and immediately after graduation.

The general objectives of the LARW Program are:

  1. to give first-year students the basic foundation in skills that they need to ultimately become competent practitioners,

  2. to prepare students to succeed in summer associate positions after the first year of law school,

  3. to prepare students for writing and oral advocacy tasks they will encounter in upper-level writing and advocacy courses,

  4. to sensitize students to ethical issues that arise in the legal analysis and writing process,

  5. to prepare students for the level of professionalism expected in law practice, and

  6. to assist students in becoming better problem-solvers.


The rigorous LARW program is carried out by a team of seasoned, full-time professors (one of whom directs the program). The LARW professors are assisted by student teaching assistants. In addition, the program is supported by full-time writing specialist Melanie Stimeling. She works closely with the professors to provide workshops and individual assistance for all College of Law students who desire to improve writing skills.