Saturday, September 15, 2012

Important New Book On Legal Education

David M. Moss & Debra Moss Curtis have just published an important new book on legal education, Reforming Legal Education: Law Schools at the Crossroads.  It is available from Amazon.

The editors have posted the Introduction and front matter on SSRN.  Abstract: "In today‚Äôs volatile law school environment, curriculum reform has emerged as a significant focus. It is commonly understood that law schools effectively teach certain analytical skills, but are less successful in other areas, and often scramble to adapt to evolving aims. This book demonstrates how law schools are successfully reforming their curriculum - and lays the framework to show how all schools of law can engage in a continuous reform model that proactively shapes our profession.

It is expected that faculty and professional staff engaged in legal education will utilize this book as a primary resource to guide their respective reform efforts. Each contributed chapter presents a case study of a data-driven curriculum reform effort. The initial chapters set the conceptual context for the book, while the final chapter offers summative recommendations for considering legal education reform as derived from the earlier case study chapters. This book adds significantly to the literature in legal education, as we gain first hand insight into evidence based reform for the legal education community."

The book includes chapters on education reform at particular law schools, including Washington & Lee, Washburn, Iowa, Nova Southeastern, Golden Gate, Charlotte, and Western State.  There is also a chapter on innovation in academic support programs.  The book concludes with a chapter by the editors on the essential elements of education reform.

I have already discussed the chapter on Washington & Lee's innovative third-year program here.  I will discuss this book more over the next couple of weeks.

(Scott Fruehwald)

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