Tessa L. Dysart

Tessa L. Dysart

Assistant Director of Legal Writing & Clinical Professor of Law

Tessa L. Dysart is the Assistant Director of Legal Writing and Clinical Professor of Law at the University of Arizona, James E. Rogers College of Law. She also serves as the Editor-in-chief of the Journal of Appellate Practice & Process, which was acquired by the University of Arizona Law in June 2020.

Professor Dysart writes and speaks nationally on appellate advocacy issues. With the Hon. Leslie H. Southwick of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, she co-authored the third edition of Winning on Appeal: Better Briefs and Oral Arguments . She manages the Appellate Advocacy Blog, which was added to the ABA’s list of best law blogs in 2018. Professor Dysart has also written  on human trafficking and constitutional law and lectured nationally on developing effective state anti-trafficking laws.

Professor Dysart is a graduate of Willamette University and Harvard Law School. She clerked for the Hon. Dennis W. Shedd of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. Her practice experience includes working for the United States Department of Justice Office of Legal Policy and the Senate Judiciary Committee. Prior to joining the College of Law faculty she taught appellate advocacy and constitutional law courses at Regent University School of Law, where she coached award-winning moot court teams and advised the program to a national ranking.

Curriculum Vitae

SSRN Published Papers

Representative Publications


  • J.D. Harvard Law School
    Co-managing Editor (2004 - 2005), Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy
  • Fullbright ScholarshipMoscow Institute for Advanced Studies, Moscow, Russia
    2001 - 2002
  • B.A. Willamette University, Salem, Oregon
    Graduated magna cum laude

Work Experience

  • Assistant Director of Legal Writing & Associate Clinical Professor of Law
    James E Rogers College of Law
    2017 - present
  • Adjunct & Assistant Professor of Law
    Regent University School of Law, Virginia Beach, Virginia
    2011; 2012 - 2017
  • Associate Counsel, American Center for Law & Justice
    Washington, D.C.; Virginia Beach, Virginia
    2009 - 2012
  • Counsel, United States Senate Judiciary Committee
    Washington, D.C.
    2008 - 2009
  • Counsel, Office of Legal Policy
    United States Department of Justice, Washington, D.C.
    2006 - 2008
  • Judicial Clerk
    Hon. Dennis W. Shedd, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, Columbia, South Carolina
    2005 - 2006
Constitutional Law
First Amendment Law
Legal Education
Legal Writing & Research
Media Law