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UC Berkeley School of Law Library UC Berkeley School of Law Library BerkeleyLaw Library

Prep for Your Clerkship Interview: Congratulations!

Introduction

Congratulations! You've scored an interview with a judge and now you want to prepare for this crucial process.

This guide covers some of the research resources you can use to help you feel confident and knowledgeable about the judge, the jurisdiction, and the job you are aiming for, before you walk into those chambers. Not all of these steps are necessary for every judicial clerkship interview, but you must at least do three things as Basic Prep for your interview:

  • read up on basic biographical and career background about your judge
  • find key decisions by your judge and get an idea of your judge's decisional output
  • review recent legal news about your judge

The other sections of this guide provide tips for more in-depth research, including where to:

  • get an overview of your judge's (or the court's) current caseload or docket
  • find topical analysis and news coverage of your judge's decisions
  • do in-depth background research on your judge, such as 
    • find articles or books written by your judge
    • find out more about your judge's litigation history and treatment on appeal
  • learn more about the jurisdiction's characteristics
    • caseloads - criminal versus civil
    • local demographics and socio-economic profile
    • the state and federal court systems and their geographical/political boundaries
  • review some general guidance about what the job of the clerk (and the interview) may entail

Starting out

If you are just starting your research about judicial clerkship opportunities, please refer to the CDO's comprehensive Judicial Clerkship Application Guide, available at the CDO webpage on Judicial Clerkships (BerkeleyLaw login required).

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