Get Started - High School Mock Trial Competition
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How to Get Started

The State Bar Association of North Dakota High School Mock Trial Competition uses the Rules of Evidence and Rules of Competition established by the National High School Mock Trial Competition. Teams are encouraged to understand these rules prior to the competition.The competition is open to teams of six to ten students from public schools, private schools, and the home school community located in North Dakota.

SBAND Mock Trial Handbook

The SBAND Mock Trial Handbook provides basic information about the competition. It also includes provisions on scouting and scrimmages against other teams prior to the competition itself. This document should be the starting point before delving into the case materials so that you can properly prepare for the competition.

Rules of Competition

Before breaking down the case materials, it is important to review the NHSMTC rules of competition, which are the same rules of competition used by the SBAND HSMT. The rules contain everything from team composition, to whether or not voir dire of witnesses is allowed.

Rules of Evidence

One of the most important things that attorneys can prepare for prior to trial is to familiarize themselves with the NHSMTC Rules of Evidence. Rules of evidence outline the scope of the trial, as well as what is permissible during direct and cross examination. It goes into detail about what makes evidence relevant, how to impeach a witness, and how to use an affidavit to “refresh” the memory of a witness. Also included in this document is a detailed description of what constitutes hearsay.

2020 Mock Trial Full Case

Quite simply, mock trial is what the name implies -- students are going to take a fictional legal case and bring it to trial. But, mock trial is much more than that.

In mock trial, a team of six to ten students receive a set of case materials, including case statements, special instructions, stipulations of facts, witness statements/affidavits, and jury instructions, and are asked to create two structured presentations -- one that presents the merits of the case in the position of the prosecution or plaintiff and one that presents the merits of the case in the position of the defense. Once these presentations are created, students compete by presenting one side of the case against another school team that argues the other side of the case, requiring students to respond to the arguments presented by the other side. These presentations and arguments are structured within the scope of the National High School Mock Trial Rules of Competition and Rules of Evidence and require students to think quickly, critically and creatively to respond to the arguments of their opponents.

Team Roster
Trial Sequence & Time Limits
Score Sheet & Explanation
Timekeeper Materials


Example Trial:The 2017 NHSMTC championship video is linked here if you would like to view an exemplar:
Putting on Mock Trials - American Bar Association Guide

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