Molly Bishop Shadel

  • Professor of Law, General Faculty
  • Senior Fellow, National Security Law Center

Molly Bishop Shadel has been a member of law faculty at the University of Virginia since 2005. She teaches oral advocacy, negotiations and public speaking.

Shadel is the author of two books: Finding Your Voice in Law School: Mastering Classroom Cold Calls, Job Interviews, and Other Verbal Challenges (Carolina Academic Press, 2013) and Tongue-Tied America: Reviving the Art of Verbal Persuasion (with Robert N. Sayler, Wolters Kluwer Law & Business, 2011, 2d ed. 2014, 3d ed. 2019, Shadel is an instructor in the Great Courses “Law School for Everyone” series published in 2017, and “How to Speak Effectively in Any Setting,” published in 2021. She also teaches in the University’s Leadership in Academic Matters program, a leadership course for University of Virginia professors and administrators, and served on the core planning team for the program from 2015-20. 

Shadel graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University with an A.B. in English and American literature and language. She earned a J.D. from Columbia University, where she was a notes editor for the Columbia Law Review and a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar. Shadel clerked for Judge Eugene H. Nickerson of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. She practiced law with the firm Covington & Burling and at the U.S. Department of Justice's Office of Intelligence Policy and Review, where she represented the United States on terrorism-related matters before the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. She taught oral advocacy classes at Virginia for a year as a lecturer before joining the faculty in 2005. She also served as the Law School’s director of public service from 2005-07. Prior to attending law school, Shadel studied theater at Northwestern University’s graduate directing program and directed plays professionally in New York.


  • J.D.
    Columbia University School of Law
  • A.B.
    Harvard University


Finding Your Voice in Law School: Mastering Classroom Cold Calls, Job Interviews, and Other Verbal Challenges (Carolina Academic Press, 2013).

Tongue-Tied America: Reviving the Art of Verbal Persuasion (with Robert N. Sayler) (Wolters Kluwer Law & Business, 2011; 2d ed. 2014; 3d ed. 2019).

Book Chapter:

“The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act,” in John Norton Moore, Guy B. Roberts, Robert F. Turner, eds., National Security Law & Policy 1201 (Carolina Academic Press, 3d. ed. 2015).


"When Privilege Fails: Interstate Litigation and the Erosion of Privilege Law" (with Graham C. Lilly), 66 Ark. L. Rev. 613 (2013).
HeinOnline (PDF)


The Great Courses, How to Speak Effectively in Any Situation (The Teaching Company, 2021).

The Great Courses, Law School for Everyone (with Edward K. Cheng, Joseph L. Hoffmann, and Peter J. Smith) (The Teaching Company, 2017).




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