26 de agosto de 2017

Law Students on Law School Reform

Brooklyn Law School students who want to have a voice inlegal education and law school reform have a new place to post their concerns. Law Schooled, a new blog, allows students to learn from other students and connect to faculty, so that students can work together to shape the future of legal education and help each other survive three grueling years with a bit of advice and a bit of humor. Its mission statement says “Law Schooled is an open forum for students to discuss legal education and law school reform. This blog and network aims to include all members of the law school community in a substantive discussion about how students can play a role in shaping the future of legal education.”Recent posts have covered law school reform, curriculum, bar preparation, and thinking like a lawyer. Law students are encouraged to submit a post to the blog. This experiment may work if students can find the time to speak out and take action. Consider becoming a contributor to the blog by submitting posts and establishing a law school reform organization to discuss financial and employment data and lobby for student interests.

Posted by Harold O’Grady at 1:13 PM, April 20, 2012

LawSchooled:  Putting the Student Back in Legal Education Innovation

April 19, 2012

Anyone who has stopped by our site knows that we’re building a robust set of resources for law professors and law schools committed to—or even just curious about—innovating legal education. From teaching strategies to course portfolios, we’re targeting the very people who can make an immediate difference in legal education by changing the way they teach law students.

But that doesn’t mean we’ve forgotten about the group of people who are most immediately impacted by the state of legal education: law students.  As “tomorrow’s lawyers,” students are at the heart of our work.

So we were inspired by the launch of LawSchooled, which is billed as a “Student Forum on Law School Reform.” This new blog brings the law student perspective—a perspective that’s been lacking in many legal education conversations—into focus in a refreshing way.

It brings with it an opportunity to issue a call to action to students to promote change. As Scott Fruehwald over at Legal Skills Prof Blog said, “it is time to ask what law students can do to help reform legal education.” He then provides a great list of suggestions, including reading in on the existing work (including ours) that is taking place, looking for law schools that “stress the connection between theory and practice,” taking skills courses and clinics, being an engaged and active learner, and pushing the conversation forward in their own schools (see Fruehwald’s full list here).

And it seems the students at LawSchooled are more than willing to push the conversation forward. In a podcast posted this week, three students had a conversation about a previous LawSchooled post: “What’s the point of law school when you don’t learn to practice law?” It’s worth listening to.

Welcome, LawSchooled.

-Alli Gerkman

Law Schooled!

April 14, 2012

There is a new blog by students (not my students, but law students nonetheless) on innovation and reform within the world of law school. Law Schooled covers some of the issues Doug Berman and I have discussed on Law School Innovation, but from a new angle– and an important one. I like it, and not just because one of their first posts was a reflection on a few of my screeds against rankings. 

I hope they keep up the good work! One truth of teaching law school is that there are many moments that the students are able to do something better than we teachers, if we give them that opportunity and the smallest bit of encouragement.

While you are at it, also check out Razorite Desiree’s most excellent Green Momster blog. It’s not only enviro-tastic, but it includes a photo of Desiree herself as both PFD Panda and Woodsy the Owl.

– Mark Osler

A New Blog About Law School Reform, by Students

April 13, 2012

It’s about time!

I got a message recently from Tina Tanhehco, who is a law student at UNC.  She and a hardy band of fellow students at a variety of schools have started a new and vibrant blog called Law Schooled, which already has built up an intriguing pile of thoughts (including this take on some of my posts here).

Here is their mission statement:

“Law Schooled is an open forum for students to discuss legal education and law school reform.  This blog and network aims to include all members of the law school community in a substantive discussion about how students can play a role in shaping the future of legal education.”

From what I can see, these guys are articulate, thoughtful, and use technology well.  I hope more students jump on their bus, and things really start to roll!

– Mark Osler

A Reply to a Question from the Law Schooled Blog.

April 7, 2012

The Law Schooled Blog has asked me to respond to their post Supply and Demand for Skills Courses: Some Clarification Please.  They ask, “When reading Legal Skills Prof Blog‘s post on some steps we students can take to increase skills courses at our schools, one tip sounded both promising and confusing:

3.  Take as many skills courses and clinics as you can. If students take more skills courses and clinics, your law school will have to hire more skills professors and offer more skills options.

This may have to do with the fact that I avoided business school and medical school because I have a certifiable phobia of numbers, but, I gotta ask:  How does this work?”

My answer to this question is below.  (I have also answered on the Law Schooled blog.)  Law Schooled is also requesting comments from others concerning how to get more skills courses into law school course offerings.  If you have some suggestions, you can post here.

(Scott Fruehwald)

You have asked a very difficult question. As you noted, the biggest problem is one of cost. Legal skills courses generally require smaller classes, and, thus, they are not as cost effective as large lecture courses. Consequently, the question is one of allocation of resources. Do law schools want to continue as they are doing now, or do they want to do what is best for their students and adopt better approaches to legal education? I believe that some schools will continue to do what they are doing. However, some schools will make the necessary changes, and, in fact, some already have.

The same thing concerning cost was said when legal writing classes and clinical classes entered the curriculum. Yet, the majority of law schools have developed strong legal writing and clinical programs. The same can be done for other skills courses.

To begin with, there are low cost ways to incorporate new approaches into doctrinal courses. Carolina Academic Press has published a series of casebooks (The Context & Practice Series), which incorporate legal skills and professionalism exercises with doctrine. Similarly, LexisNexis has published supplementary texts (The Skills & Values Series), which provide legal skills and professionalism exercises to incorporate into doctrinal courses. Accordingly, professors have easy ways of including skills in doctrinal courses.

Additional skills courses will require a reallocation of resources. Which is more important to you a shiny building or better instruction? A faculty known for their scholarship or a faculty known for their teaching?

You the students are the consumers. You need to make your preferences known to your administration. You need to sign up for skills courses. You need to go to law schools know for their legal skills offerings, such as those belonging to the Educating Tomorrow’s Lawyers Consortium.(at particularly at the Washington & Lee’s third-year program.), rather than obsessing over the U. S. News Rankings. It may take some time for your efforts to be felt and, in the meantime, you will may be lotteried out of skills courses. But, if enough faculty, students, alumni, and law firms demand better prepared lawyers, we will make significant changes in legal education.

I want to add that, in making your wishes known to your administrations, please do so in a polite manner. Adopting language like that of the scam blogs does no good; it alienates people.

P.S. Don’t forget that you will be alumni some day, and your law schools will be asking you for money. Not only can you let the fund raisers know what you want for your alma mater, you can make specific gifts to your law schools, such as donations for teaching grants or to fund clinics.

April 7, 2012 | Permalink | Comments (1)

Law School 2.0:  Law Students Come Together at Law Schooled

April 4, 2012

A new blog has come online that publishes and disseminates information about legal education reform for law students. This is an important development, because students need to be informed about the discussion so they can make good choices about which law school to attend, and how to get the education they need at the law school they attend. 

I think law students have not yet had much of a voice in this discussion for two reasons: first, they are focused on the experience for only three years, and in the first year (and even after) it is hard to think about anything else; and second, because we (legal educators) have not encouraged them to speak up enough or given them enough options.  When law students become informed about these questions, and vote with their dollars (in selecting a law school) and with their feet (in selecting upper level courses to take) the legal academy will have to take notice. After all, without students, there isn’t much reason for us to be here.

But it is critical that their effort not be a flash in the pan. I hope Law Schooled will have a succession plan in place, so that as students graduate and move into their careers, the discussion can be sustained.  In the meantime, it is good to see students joining in the discussion in an informed way.  Welcome! (Hat tip to Scott Fruehwald’s post on this).

(David Thomson)

Legal Skills Prof Blog:  What Law Students Can Do To Further Legal Education Reform

April 3, 2012

As one of my co-bloggers mentioned a couple of days ago, there is now a new blog, Law Schooled, for students to discuss legal reform. We welcome this blog to the law school debate. It is especially important that law students participate in the discussion that will determine their futures.

With a new blog on legal education, it is time to ask what law students can do to help reform legal education.

1. Learn about the issues in legal education. Regularly read Law Schooled, our blog, and Educating Tomorrow’s Lawyers. Read Best Practices in Legal Education (free download ) and The Carnegie Report. Post your ideas on Law Schooled.

2. When choosing a law school, look for law schools that stress the connection between theory and practice (legal skills courses, clinics, doctrinal courses with skills exercises). One place to look is Educating Tomorrow’s Lawyers Consortium. There are also other schools who are not members of the Consortium but have good skills options, such as Vermont Law School’s General Practice Program.

3. Take as many skills courses and clinics as you can. If students take more skills courses and clinics, your law school will have to hire more skills professors and offer more skills options.

4. Suggest to your professors that they adopt textbooks that have skills exercises. Carolina Academic Press has published a number of casebooks, The Context and Practice Series, that include legal skills and professionalism exercises. Similarly, LexisNexis has published a series of supplemental books, The Skills and Values Series, that include skills exercises. Similar books will come out in the near future.

5. When your dean has an open forum, go! Don’t be afraid to express your views. (Respectfully, of course.) Let your deans know what courses you want. Work for change in the law school curriculum. Encourage law school transparency. Talk to faculty members about what you want from your law school. Participate in law school organizations, and, if your law schools has students on faculty committees, volunteer for those committees.

6. Show as much respect to your legal writing, clinic, and other skills teachers as you do to your doctrinal teachers. Meet with these teachers frequently. Legal writing teachers and clinicians love to interact with students. It is the best part of our jobs. Value your professors for their teaching ability, not their rank.

7. Be an engaged, active learner; be curious. Don’t just sit passively in the classroom–participate. Question what you read in your textbooks. Consider the implications of what you read in your textbooks and what your professors say. Don’t settle for easy answers. Talk with your classmates about legal issues. Become excited about the law.

8. Take care of yourself. Don’t let law school get to you. If you are having a problem, discuss it with someone.

(Scott Fruehwald)

Legal Skills Prof Blog:  ”Law Schooled” – a new student edited legal blog seeking to connect law students and faculty

April 1, 2012

I just received an email from a 3L at UNC School of Law announcing the publication of a new blog called “Law Schooled” which is intended to serve as a forum where law students and faculty can exchange ideas pertaining to the future of legal education.  The blog’s editor, Tina Tanhehco, says that she hopes the blog will provide a mutually beneficial forum for students who want to learn how they can better support faculty efforts to reform legal education and where faculty can dialogue directly with students to better understand their concerns about legal education during this period of dramatic change and upheaval.

Although they just got started, here’s one post already that readers of this blog may be particularly interested in called What’s the point of law school when we don’t learn to practice law?  

The blog’s mission statement according to Ms. Tanhehco is as follows (including article submission and contact information):

As both investors and an investment, law students ought to have a voice when it comes to law school reform; we invest over 3 years of our lives and often over $150,000.  Until now, a national, egalitarian forum for students has not existed, and student voices have been marginalized.

  • Law Schooled is a network that allows students to learn from other students and connect to faculty, so that students can work together to shape the future of legal education and help each other survive three grueling years with a bit of advice and a bit of humor.  
  • Law Schooled aims towards goals that benefit students, such as lowered tuition and debt, higher employment, transparency in financial and employment data, improved skills training, the development of ethical and capable lawyers, and an emphasis on teaching, not scholarship for professors.  
  • Law Schooled can only achieve these goals when students start speaking out and taking action: consider (1) being a one-time, weekly or bi-weekly contributor to the blog – submitting essays, stories, or cartoons and (2) establishing a law school reform organization at your school to demand transparency in financial and employment data and lobby for student interests.
Friend Law Schooled on Facebook (or subscribe to it), follow lawschooled1 on Twitter, and check out Law Schooled at
A Call to Action:  Why Law Schooled?

The Faculty Lounge:  Law Schooled

March 29, 2012

Welcome to the blogosphere, law schooled, a student blog about law school reform.  Here’s why they’re doing this.  I’m very much looking forward to what they have to say.  And thinking about this new law student blog reminds me that I once thought I knew why I blog.  Tbat post needs an update at this point.

Posted by Alfred Brophy at 05:11 PM

On these blogrolls:

Best Practices for Legal Education

The People’s Therapist

Osler’s Razor

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