There are 5 short-answer questions, each worth a maximum of four (4) points. It is worth ten percent (10 %) of your final grade. You may write a maximum of 100 words on each question.
It will be available for download from the FIU Evidence Blog (www.fiuevidence.blogspot.com) beginning at Noon on Friday, October 24; your papers are due when class begins at 9 a.m. on Monday, October 27. Papers turned in after 9 a.m. will lose points.
Please write your answer on computer. You must work alone and may not consult or discuss the exam, your answers, or anything related to them with anyone else in the world. You may use your class notes and all course materials; you may not do any outside research or consult any additional sources.
Note on this Examination
This examination has several purposes. One is to perform a “spot check” and see how well you understand the material from the first part of the course. A second is to give you a general sense of the types of questions that will be on the final exam, although without the same time constraints.
A Note on the Hypotheticals:
The basic factual scenarios all are taken from actual cases; most underlying real-world facts and procedural and evidentiary issues are real, with some slight elaborations or changes. One case scenario/fact pattern often covers multiple questions, as indicated. When this is so, the introductory paragraphs present the basic factual and procedural situation; those facts apply to every question arising from that scenario. Subsequent questions may add additional facts or procedural issues relevant to the issue being tested in that question.
All cases are in federal court or in a state court governed by rules identical to the Federal Rules of Evidence. Names are tied (in obvious ways) to the role someone plays in the Hypo. Thus:
Name begins with P: Plaintiff (civil)
Name begins with D: Defendant (civil or criminal)
Name begins with V: Victim
Name begins with W: Witness who testifies at trial (may be multiple)
Name begins with C: Character in the underlying real-world drama who will not be a witness
Other characters (police officers, bystanders, etc.) are indicated at such
Read the facts carefully. While some are detailed, the questions and issues to be drawn out of each question are straightforward; don’t go looking for hidden balls. All necessary facts are provided; if some fact is not provided, that means it is not necessary to the analysis. You may draw appropriate conclusions from the absence of a fact. Do not assume facts.
Approaching Short-Answer Questions
You may write up to 100 words on each question. That is an intentionally wide figure to give you maximum room to write, although you probably will not (and should not need to) write that much on any question. Save your words and avoid throat clearing; jump right into your answer; write as you would in making making an oral objection or argument at trial.
Answer each question in a separate paragraph, clearly identifying the question being answered at the start (write the question number in bold above the paragraph--e.g. Question 1). In a parenthetical at the end of each answer, state the number of words in that answer. You can do this by highlighting the paragraph and doing “word count” for just the highlighted portion.
Each answer should be concise, brief, and direct. A good answer will identify and briefly state the applicable rule (or relevant portion of the applicable rule) and apply it to the facts at hand to produce a conclusion with a short explanation. The questions lend themselves to short, quick answers, as if you were making, responding to, or ruling on an evidentiary objection at trial. Answer only the question asked. Note that questions will ask you to play a particular role--Proponent, Opponent, or Judge.