About the Legal Research and Writing Program

in the nation
consecutive years
in the top ten

This ranking reflects wide recognition of Oregon Law’s excellent program for students and the national leadership of its faculty.


Our Awards

     Five of our six LRW professors have received the law school’s Orlando J. Hollis Faculty Teaching Award, and two have received university teaching awards. In addition, Professor Megan McAlpin was recognized with the law school’s highest award for meritorious service. Professor Suzanne Rowe has been honored with two national awards for leadership and service.

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Our Leadership

     LRW professors at Oregon Law are leaders of the most important organizations and publications in the discipline. Professor Elizabeth Ruiz Frost is the Editor-in-Chief of Legal Writing: Journal of the Legal Writing Institute, a peer-edited journal for law review articles on legal writing pedagogyProfessors Rebekah Hanley and Megan McAlpin each served as president of the Association of Legal Writing Directors. Professor Joan Rocklin was treasurer of the Legal Writing Institute. Professor Suzanne Rowe chaired the AALS Section on Legal Writing, Reasoning, and Research. All have organized national and regional conferences attended by legal writing colleagues from across the country.

Our Publications

    Oregon Law’s LRW professors publish books and articles that make an impact. Professor Joan Rocklin is co-author of two legal writing textbooks that are used by law schools nationally: A Lawyer Writes and An Advocate PersuadesProfessor Megan McAlpin is the author of Beyond the First Draft, now available in a second edition; she has an article on law student learning forthcoming in the Journal of Legal Education. Professor Elizabeth Ruiz Frost’s articles have appeared in Stetson Law Review, the Journal of Legal Education, and the Oregon State Bar Bulletin. Professor Rebekah Hanley is publishing articles on the constantly changing use of generative AI in law school and legal practice. For many years, Professor Suzanne Rowe was editor of a national series of research books. Professor Bryan Dearinger, who joined the faculty in Fall 2023, is writing on Name, Image, Likeness (NIL) in college athletics.       

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Our History

Oregon Law's Legal Research and Writing (LRW) Program was established in 1978, making it one of the first in the nation to ensure fundamental lawyering skills were taught by full-time professionals.  The founding director was Professor Emerita Mary Lawrence, who led Oregon’s program until 2000 and whose work continues to have an impact on the national legal writing community. Professor Lawrence was a national leader in the LRW field and received numerous awards recognizing her pioneering work. She received an early award for distinguished service given by the Section on Legal Writing, Reasoning, and Research of the Association of American Law Schools as well as the inaugural Marjorie Rombauer Award from the Association of Legal Writing Directors. In January 2013, she received a special lifetime achievement award from the boards of both the Association of Legal Writing Directors and the Legal Writing Institute. Also in 2013, she was selected to receive the Burton Award for Outstanding Contributions to Legal Writing Education.

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