Mock Trial is...

...a highly competitive and exhilarating intercollegiate activity that is as fun for students as it is beneficial. With participation from more than 600 teams from colleges and universities across the nation, mock trial competitors not only develop high level communication skills, but also learn valuable critical thinking and teamwork skills. Students participate in all facets of an actual trial competing as attorneys as well as witness.

Who competes in mock trial?
Students from all backgrounds and majors compete in mock trial each year. While many students plan to attend law school after graduation, others do not.

What happens in the courtroom?
Attorneys give opening and closing statements, which are rehearsed speeches that open and close the trial. In between, attorneys question witnesses from their team as well the opposing teams. During trial, opposing teams can make objections and students must correctly argue the rules of evidence in order win the argument.

What is the difference between attorneys and witnesses?
As you may have seen in shows such as Law & Order, attorneys give opening statements, closing arguments, and argue the rules of evidence. Students competing as witnesses portray a character, and are questioned by attorneys from their own team as well as the opposing team.

When does the season run?
The season officially begins on August 15th when the governing body of intercollegiate mock trial releases the season’s case problem containing witness statements, relevant laws, and evidence created by the Case Committee. Teams then compete at invitational tournaments from October until January before the elimination season begins in February. Starting in February, teams who do not finish at the top of the leaderboard are eliminated. Northwood students compete in tournaments that consist of four rounds. Each round is a complete trial. During a four round tournament each team represents the prosecution (or plaintiff in a civil case) in two trials and defense the other two trials.

Where do you compete? 
Invitational competitions are held all across the nation. Northwood Mock Trial has traveled throughout the Midwest (to Columbus, Ohio and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) and throughout the nation (to Los Angeles, California, and Washington, DC).

Can I win awards?
In addition to team accolades, students can receive individual awards as an Outstanding Attorney or Outstanding Witness. However, only students who compete at the annual National Championship can be selected for a Mock Trial All-American Award.

What is Northwood’s Mock Trial team like? 
Mock Trial at Northwood consists of some of the best and brightest students from many diverse backgrounds, which we have found to be the key to our success. This program has traditionally attracted students from states such as Michigan, Ohio, Texas, Arizona, and California. Our international students have come to us from Canada, the United Kingdom, Sri Lanka, Ghana, and Bosnia- Herzegovina.

Who do I contact with questions?

For more information, or if you have any questions, please email: leapheart@northwood.edu