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Join Maryland Mock Trial

Are acting and performance your passion? Are you the most charismatic person you know?

Do you love public speaking or winning every argument? Want to get experience for law school and your future legal career?

Are you a writer that loves crafting a compelling narrative or thinking up quips and jokes for an eccentric character role?

Or maybe you just love How to Get Away with MurderLaw & Order, or Suits.

Join the tradition.

Join Maryland Mock Trial.

Who can join?

Undergraduate students from any major and in any year of their studies, including incoming freshmen, are eligible to join the Maryland Mock Trial Program.

Do I need mock trial experience?

Not familiar with mock trial? Don’t worry. We’ll teach you everything you need to know. Every year, we have students join the program with little to no mock trial experience who become award-winning attorneys and witnesses. Mock trial is a great opportunity for anyone interested in acting, public speaking, debate, performance, or storytelling. The only requirements are an ambition to be the best and a commitment to helping the team win (though being naturally charismatic, a great actor, and a polished public speaker are all very helpful traits).

When do students join?

Students typically join at the beginning of the school year, which provides the opportunity to attend our trial advocacy workshops to learn the basic skills and knowledge required for collegiate mock trial. Joining at the beginning of the year, also allows you to register to earn three credits by enrolling in a GVPT217.

Students can also join after meeting us at the First Look Fair, which is usually the second week of September. Unfortunately, the First Look Fair is after the drop/add deadline, which prevents these students from registering for GVPT217 (but you can still join and compete on a team).

In limited circumstances, students with acting, mock trial, or substantial public speaking experience may be able to join the program later in the fall semester or prior to the beginning of the spring semester if team needs arise. Contact us for more information.

How often are team meetings and practices?

Our goal is to compete at the highest level and win our sixth national championship, so we invest a substantial amount of time throughout the year preparing for competitions. Preparation includes practice trials as well as team meetings to prepare for those trials. Teams preparing for tournaments typically have practice trials on Wednesday evenings and Sundays during the day. Development teams may only have practice trials one of those days each week and team meetings the other. Though the time commitment may be daunting, many students find mock trial to be the most rewarding academic experience they have at Maryland.

Can I join if... I have a job? I'm president of __? I'm in __? I'm interning on the Hill?

Of course. We can almost guarantee you that we had have a successful student with similar commitments. Maryland Mock Trial has had students who worked full-time, students who were president of their sorority or fraternity, and even the starting running back on the football team. With that said, you must trust your time management skills because you will be competing against students that may not have similar commitments.

Are there tryouts?

Yes and no. Maryland Mock Trial strives to accommodate students of all skill and experience levels, and we work hard to support every student willing to dedicate the time necessary to improve and help the team win. Most years, we are able to accept all students who meet that standard. If interest exceeds capacity in any given year, we may be required to hold tryouts.

With that said, even with our large program, attorney and witness roles are finite. As a result, tryouts and evaluations occur throughout the year to determine team placement as well as the attorney and witness roles.

What are the mock trial courses? What can I register for?

The Mock Trial Program includes co-curricular courses that provide academic credit for being a member of the mock trial team. The courses are offered through the Department of Government & Politics. The first course in the program is GVPT217 — Mock Trial: Intro to Trial Advocacy, which is offered in the fall semester. In the spring semester, student can register for for GVPT317 — Advanced Trial Advocacy. Returning students are eligible to enroll in GVPT388M for one credit per semester. For more information:

GVPT217 (PermReq): Mock Trial: Introduction to Trial Advocacy (3 credits) [Fall only]

GVPT317 (PermReq): Advanced Trial Advocacy (3 credits) [Spring only]

GVPT388M (PermReq): Topical Investigations: Mock Trial (1 credit) [Fall & Spring]

Note: Credits earned from mock trial courses are experiential learning credits. Please contact your academic advisor to determine how these credits count toward your major or elective academic requirements.

Are there info sessions I can attend?

We typically hold three information sessions in the late spring and two more at the beginning of the fall semester. Our fall info sessions are held the first Wednesday evening of the semester and also shortly after the First Look Fair.

Follow us on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for specific dates, times, and locations or check out our events on our Terp Link page.

I have a question about __. How can I get more information?

Feel free to contact us with any questions you have about the program, courses, or college mock trial in general.

I want to join. What do I do next?

Great! Fill out the Maryland Mock Trial Interest Form and contact us to confirm your submission.