5th Annual Litigation Symposium
Tell a Friend About This EventTell a Friend
5th Annual Litigation Symposium

When: Thursday, August 22
9:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Where: Renaissance Indianapolis North Hotel
11925 N. Meridian St.
Carmel, Indiana  46032
United States
Contact: Rebecca Smith

Online registration is closed.
« Go to Upcoming Event List  


5th Annual Litigation Symposium

August 22, 2019

9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

6.0 hrs. CLE


Emory University School of Law Professor Timothy P. Terrell is back with new material:

"Writing to Persuade: The Rhetoric of Clarity and Confidence"


This full-day program focuses on writing briefs, but it is actually much more ambitious.  While briefs are the examples, the program’s advice about writing is universal:  It emphasizes writing “principles” rather than narrow “rules” or superficial gimmicks or tips.  It therefore extends well beyond the usual topic of clarity, for a strong brief requires a writer to demonstrate deeper qualities like competence and confidence as well.

Because the focus will be on advocative writing, the program will develop substantive guidance in part from the perspective of the fundamentals of rhetoric – in a modern, rather than traditional, form.  These abstract ideas are reflected in every level of writing, from a document’s overall organization to its paragraphs and sentences.  For example:

  • Logos (logic) is established not only in evident “roadmapped” structure, but in the grammatical pieces (subject, verb, object) of sentences;
  • Pathos (emotion) and axios (worthiness) depend on controlled story-telling that evokes, rather than invokes, emotion, which again is manifest in the organization of facts as well as in details like passive and active voice;
  • Ethos (character) is a function not only of syntax and diction, but of appropriate “command” of information and the “control” of its flow.

The program’s morning portion will focus on issues at the “macro,” organizational level of writing – meta-informational elements that provide context and flow.  The afternoon will begin with a similar emphasis on structure, but with attention to developing strong “legal stories” – the challenge of presenting compelling legal arguments and controlled fact descriptions.  The afternoon will also include important matters of detail at the “micro” level of writing:  strong paragraphs and sentences.  The program will conclude with an editing checklist that draws together a range of advice covering every level of drafting a persuasive document.



Tentative Agenda

8 – 9 a.m.                           Registration & Breakfast Buffet

9 – 10:30 a.m.                    Basic Strategies of Persuasion; Communication Theory; The Importance of Meta-Information (1.5 hr CLE)

10:30 – 10:45 a.m.            Break

10:45 a.m. – Noon            The Principles of Clarity Applied: Strong Introductions (1.25 hr CLE)

Noon – 12:45 p.m.            Lunch Buffet

12:45 - 1 p.m.                    Special Remarks

1 – 1:30 p.m.                      Principles of Internal Organization (.5 hr CLE)

1:30 – 2 p.m.                      Clarity and Coherence at the Paragraph and Sentence Level (.5 hr CLE)

2 – 2:15 p.m.                      Break

2:15 – 4 p.m.                      Rhetorical Flourishes at the "Micro" Level; Editing Exercises (1.75 hr CLE)

4 – 4:30 p.m.                      Style: Beyond Clarity to Rhythm and Character (.5 hr CLE)



Hurry! Early bird registration rates end July 19.


Registration Fees                                    Early Bird                          After July 19

Non-ISBA Member                                        $250                                      $275

ISBA Member                                                 $200                                      $225

ISBA Litigation Section Member                 $175                                      $195

Government Employee                                $150                                      $175

ISBA Affiliate Member                                  $150                                      $175

Law Student                                                   $50                                        $50

Guest (no CLE credit given)                         $132                                      $132


Registration includes breakfast and lunch.


Cancellation Policy

A $25 service fee will be applied to cancellations received at least seven days prior to the program. No refunds will be issued for cancellations received within seven days of the program. If you send someone else in your place, please provide the ISBA with that person's name.


Thank you to our Sponsors!