Julie Baker, UMass Law faculty

Julie Baker

Assistant Teaching Professor

Law School / Faculty



UMass School of Law 243


Boston College Law SchoolJD
Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyBS Economics


  • Legal Skills I and II
  • Transactional Drafting
  • Appellate Advocacy
  • National Moot Court


Research interests

  • Legal Communications
  • Legal Education and Law Learning
  • Principles of Advocacy and Persuasion
  • Cognition and Cognitive Biases in Decision-Making

Professional Background

After graduating from law school, Professor Baker clerked for one year in the U.S. District Court, District of Massachusetts. She then spent 10 years in law practice as a public defender and a litigation associate, specializing in trial and appellate advocacy and juvenile defense. Before joining UMass Law in August of 2016, she taught Legal Practice Skills, Appellate Advocacy, Moot Court, and Transactional Drafting at Suffolk University Law School for 14 years, and was then a Clinical Fellow in the Suffolk Juvenile Defender Clinic for three semesters. Professor Baker is passionate about written and oral advocacy, and she is a member of the Massachusetts CPCS Post-Conviction and Appeals Panel, which assigns counsel to indigent adult and juvenile defendants in state appellate matters.

Select Publications and Presentations


Print Matters! Micro-Essay, Perspectives: Teaching Legal Research and Writing, vol. 25, no. 2 (November 2016).

Blumenson, et al., MASSACHUSETTS CRIMINAL PRACTICE, 2012 updated Chapters 13 (Summoning Witnesses) and Chapter 26 (Motions re: Pretrial Publicity) (www.law.suffolk.edu/MCP/) .

And the Winner Is: How Principles of Cognitive Science Resolve the Plain Language Debate, 80 UMKC L. Rev. 287 (Winter 2011).

Write On!, monthly legal writing column in Mass. Lawyers Weekly (co-authored with Prof. Lisa Healy) (May 2007 – June 2010).

Teaching Difficult Concepts: Teaching Students to Write Specific, Detailed Analogies, 20 The Second Draft 11 (2005).

Arizona v. Hicks; Schmerber v. California, THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF CIVIL LIBERTIES (Rutledge, 2006) (4 vols.; Paul Finkelman, ed.).


Social Justice Advocacy – Shifting the Balance, at the Re-Imagining Advocacy Conference, Stetson University College of Law, Gulfport, FL (November 3, 2019)

Teaching Emerging Adults: Providing Critical Context, with Professor Rebecca Flanagan, at the Empire State Legal Writing Conference, New York Law School, NY, NY (May 17, 2019)

Teaching Emerging Adults: A “New” Approach, AALS Section on Balance in Legal Education, at the AALS Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA (January 5, 2019)

Teaching Emerging Adults: The Need for Context, Legal Writing Institute One-Day Workshop, Northeastern University School of Law, Boston, MA (December 7, 2018)

“Where Do I Find Social Justice?” Incorporating Social Justice Advocacy in the LRW Classroom, at the Annual Clinical Education Conference, Suffolk University Law School (October 20, 2017)

Legal Writing Throughout the Curriculum: A Modular Approach, LWI One-Day Workshop, Boston University School of Law (October 21, 2015)

Advanced Brief-Writing Seminar and Individual Workshops, full-day training, Office of the General Counsel, Social Security Administration, Boston MA (September 22, 2016)

Using the Science of Adolescent Brain Development for Effective Juvenile Advocacy, Social Law Library (December 9, 2015)

Drafting Persuasive Memoranda in Criminal Cases, MCLE (April 2015; May 2016)

The Art and Science of Persuasive Legal Writing, Social Law Library (October 21, 2014)

Teaching Skills Through an Intensive Negotiation Mini-Course, LWI One-Day Workshop, Suffolk University Law School (December 6, 2013)

The Written Word – Enhancing the Effectiveness of Written Arbitration Awards, College of Commercial Arbitrators 2013 Annual Meeting, Albuquerque, New Mexico (October 2013)

Applying Cognitive Principles to Legal Writing Pedagogy, LWI One-Day Workshop, New York Law School (December 7, 2012)

Enhancing Persuasion – How Implementing the Principles of Cognitive Psychology Can Help Us Teach Our Students to be Better Legal Writers, 2012 Legal Writing Institute Biennial Conference (May 29-June 1, 2012, Palm Desert, CA) (with Professor Ann McGonigle Santos)

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