Evidence (Burchill)

Course Number
LAW 2602
Course Description

The primary objective of this course is to provide students with a general overview of the legal principles that are relevant to the presentation and admissibility of evidence in court. Evidence, in all its forms, represents the building blocks of proof; a case can be won or lost on whether or not evidence is admitted. A sound understanding of the law of evidence is essential to all lawyers, regardless of their practice area.

The course begins with an explanation of the lawyer’s role in the Canadian adversarial system; burdens of proof; and the essential concepts of relevancy and materiality.  We then proceed towards an examination of selected rules that govern the flow and admissibility of evidence in court.

Evidence is a complex and constantly changing area of the law. This course offers an outline of the rules, procedures and substantive statute and common law. The course will not provide a comprehensive examination of all aspects of evidence law. It is an introductory course that is designed to provide students with a basic working knowledge of the mechanics of proof and exclusionary rules of evidence.

Teaching Method

This course is predicated on a case-based learning model, combined with statutes and secondary sources. Over the term, you will be asked to engage critically with the course material in order to deepen your understanding of evidence law. Students will also be teaching their classmates by presenting case briefs throughout the course.


2 Hour Final Exam [Open book] – 80%
Case/article Brief & Presentation – 20%

Course Materials

Students will be provided a core reading list of cases and articles. Reading assignments are subject to change.


John Burchill