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Mock Trial FAQs
What exactly is Mock Trial?
Mock Trial is an academic competition. More than 500 teams from over 300 colleges and universities compete in invitational, regional, and national competitions every year. During a mock trial, two teams (one portraying the plaintiff, or prosecution, and one portraying the defense) compete in front of a panel of judges. During competition, students present opening statements, examine witnesses, portray witnesses, object to improper testimony, and make closing arguments. The Texas A&M Mock Trial team has three teams that compete to give as many people as possible a chance to learn different roles.
Can I do Mock Trial if I have no previous experience with Mock Trial?
Absolutely yes! While some students join us with years of high school experience in mock trial, many come to us with no experience at all. Previous mock trial experience is not a prerequisite. Iin fact, many of our most successful competitors came to Texas A&M without any previous experience. Don’t worry, we will teach you everything you need to know about the fundamentals of mock trial and how to be a competitive mocker!
Do I need to be “Pre-Law” to excel at Mock Trial?
Absolutely not. Historically, some of our most successful competitors had absolutely no interest in law school – they just loved the activity. Of course, students interested in law are encouraged to try out, but so are students interested in public speaking, debate, and theater. We are looking for students of all years and interests.
What is the time commitment for Mock Trial?
Students are expected to attend the team’s regular practices, held Tuesday and Thursday at 8:30 PM. In addition to regularly scheduled practices, we encourage members to work on learning the fundamentals of mock trial and the case packet outside of regularly scheduled practices each week in addition to preparing upcoming competition materials. Students can expect to travel for competition anywhere between 1-3 weekends a semester. All of the competition weekend dates will be available upon applying for mock trial, and you will be given a calendar at the first meeting with most of the dates for the semester, including extra practices. Mock trial is certianly time consuming, but there are many people and resources available to you for help and to make it fun and enjoyable!
Do you hold auditions?
Yes. Due to the high level of competition we strive for in mock trial, we require all students, including returning members of mock trial, to participate in an audition and interview each school year. It consists of a short speech and cross examination followed by questions to get to know you. We hold auditions every September and membership lasts the entire school year (Fall - Spring semesters). If you are interested in joining mock trial or have any questions about auditions, check back around September, or contact us!
Where do you compete?
We typically compete at universities all around Texas, but Mock Trial competitions can also take place all over the country. Historically, Texas A&M Mock Trial has sent teams to Tennessee, Pennsylvania, and Florida each year. In the past three years, Texas A&M Mock Trial has additionally sent qualified teams to the Opening Round Championships (ORC’s) in Memphis, Tennessee and Santa Monica, California. We also competed at the National Championship in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 2019.
Can I do Mock Trial if I am thinking about joining another club/getting a job/getting involved on campus in another way?
Sure! Our team members are all incredibly involved on campus (we’ve had RAs, TAs, researchers, members of Greek Life, students with part-time jobs, etc.). While mock trial is a time commitment, it does not (and should not) need to be your only commitment. We find that some of the best members are often ones that are involved in other organizations and learn how to balance all aspects of life. We firmly believe that Mock Trial should not be held above your academics and life and try to replicate that concern through our organization structure.
Where do I submit my application?
Please email your completed application with the appropriate documents attached to firstname.lastname@example.org!
Check out AMTA’s (American Mock Trial Association) website and learn all about past cases, results, and tournaments: http://www.collegemocktrial.org/
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