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Scientific and Expert Evidence, Third Edition

  • John M. Conley
  • Jane Campbell Moriarty
Series / Aspen Casebook Series
Teaching Materials
Table of contents

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Using representative cases, comprehensible scientific readings, and the authors’ insightful introductions and explanatory notes, Scientific and Expert Evidenceprovides a comprehensive treatment of the law and science relating to scientific and expert evidence. The Third Edition provides more explanation of scientific concepts and full coverage of recent scientific and legal developments, but in a shorter book that focuses more intensively on core legal issues.

New to the Third Edition:









  • An entirely redesigned chapter covering developments in Opinion Evidence, including new cases exploring the complexity and boundaries of expert evidence that are suitable for student projects
  • A fully redesigned chapter on Social Science, Behavioral Science, and Neuroscience, with new cases and commentary
  • Inclusion of cutting-edge cases that highlight courts’ growing recognition of the importance of scientific accuracy in the areas of eyewitness identification, false confession, and child sexual abuse evidence
  • A reorganized and more tightly focused treatment of forensic science, with excerpts from national science organizations focusing on accuracy and reliability of pattern matching evidence and the problems that still remain
  • Full coverage of evolving DNA science, including the “database mining” approach to cold cases, continuing developments in the statistical analysis of matches, and the vanishing notion of “junk” DNA
  • Elucidation of the sometimes-conflicting legal and scientific ideas of causation and proof, including updated cases involving toxic exposures and medical devices
  • Additional cases involving economic analysis in evidence, coupled with expanded explanatory notes
  • Updated exposition of the current state of the law of scientific evidence
  • An expanded explanation of basic statistical concepts, with additional examples and illustrations



Professors and students will benefit from:















  • Complex issues presented clearly and concisely
  • A consistent and logical internal chapter organization and pedagogy
  • Accessible but not simplistic discussion of statistics and DNA chapters
  • The exploration of the differences and synergies of legal and scientific methods and goals
  • A new case in Chapter 2 that permits students to pull together multiple concepts in FRE 702 and the Daubert trilogy, perfect for a written assignment or classroom discussion


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About the authors
John M. Conley

John Martin Conley is the William Rand Kenan Jr. Professor of Law at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill School of Law. His areas of expertise include civil litigation, intellectual property law, e-commerce and technology issues, and law and social science. Conley holds a BA from Harvard University and a JD from Duke University, where he was editor-in-chief of the Duke Law Journal and elected Order of the Coif. He completed a PhD in anthropology at Duke University in 1980, and later practiced law in Boston and in Charlotte, N.C., specializing in civil litigation. He joined the UNC faculty in 1983; he also has served as an adjunct professor at Boston College Law School. Conleyrsquo;s scholarship has appeared in a variety of legal and interdisciplinary journals, including the William and Mary Law and Policy Review and Law and Social Inquiry. His recent publications explore issues related to genomics and gene patents; he also has studied diversity on corporate boards; corporate social responsibility; and narrative and language associated with the law.

Jane Campbell Moriarty

Professor of Law Jane Campbell Moriarty has been with The University of Akron School of Law since 1997. She currently teaches Evidence, Expert Evidence, Employment Discrimination and Professional Responsibility. Professor Moriarty received her B.A., summa cum laude, from Boston College where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and awarded the Bapst Philosophy Medal. She earned her J.D., cum laude, from Boston College Law School, where she served as managing editor of the Boston College Third World Law Journal. Prior to joining the Akron Law faculty, Professor Moriarty practiced law in Boston and Pittsburgh and clerked for The Honorable Ralph J. Cappy, Justice of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania. Professor Moriarty is author of numerous publications including Expert and Scientific Evidence: Cases and Materials (Aspen Publishers, with Professor John M. Conley) and Misconvictions, Science and the Ministers of Justice 86 Nebraska Law Review 1 (2007). She was the recipient of the Outstanding Professor of the Year Award in 2002 and in 2008, received awards from both the faculty and alumni for her scholarship. Professor Moriarty is currently working on a book for NYU Press entitled, MISCONVICTIONS: WHEN LAW AND SCIENCE COLLIDE, (forthcoming 2009) and recently published Flickering Admissibility: Neuroimaging Evidence in the U.S. Courts 26 Behav. Sci. L. 26 (2008). She chaired the Neuroscience, Law and Government Symposium in fall 2008, which was held at The University of Akron.

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Third Edition
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