In the same tradition of prior editions, this Sixth Edition examines and presents each evidence topic in the following format:Common Law: The authors introduce this topic through narrative explanations of the common-law principles.Federal Rules of Evidence: This edition presents the applicable Federal Rule of Evidence with a brief overview of how that rule changed the common law. Judicial opinions exploring contemporary issues then follow. This portion of the materials most closely resembles the classical law school casebook.Relationship to Other Rules: At the end of each topic, the discussion centers on how the rule under study is part of a larger cohesive code and works in conjunction with other rules.Problems: To broaden students' learning experience and give them an opportunity to test the level of their understanding of basic principles, each subject area ends with hypotheticals taken from recent cases.
In this latest edition, the authors reduced the size of the text by deleting and abbreviating lengthy and complicated opinions, producing narrative summaries and more manageable opinions, and excising lengthy articles and excerpts. These changes simplify and clarify the learning experience. In practice, the subject of evidence is large, deep, and complex, particularly when examining existing problems with the Federal Rules of Evidence, teasing out inconsistencies in them, accounting for constitutional implications when the Confrontation and Due Process Clauses are incorporated, applying traditional rules to digital evidence, and evaluating the necessity of modernizing the codified rules.