Saturday, July 20, 2013
One of the best ways to facilitate education reform is to write experiential learning textbooks. Such textbooks allow professors to teach courses that encompass the latest in learning research without having to start from scratch.
Daniel D. Bradlow & Jay Gary Finkelstein have just published an experiential text on business negotiations, Negotiating Business Transactions: An Extended Simulations Course.
They introduce their book: "The textbook accompanies our transactional law and practical skills course, International Business Negotiations, which we developed at American University Washington College of Law. The course is also profiled on the Educating Tomorrow’s Lawyers (ETL) website. The textbook, together with its online teacher’s manual, is the first book designed to facilitate the adoption of an extended transactional simulation course using experiential learning and collaborative teaching pedagogy."
The authors describe their book: "The course and textbook are designed to introduce students to business transactional practice and provide an innovative curriculum offering that focuses on building transactional and negotiation skills through an interactive, hands-on learning model, which replicates issues faced in an international practice. The course satisfies the ABA requirements for practical skills training."
"The course showcases collaborative teaching methodology by pairing classes at two different law schools or by pairing two parts of one class at the same law school to conduct the semester-long negotiation (each group of students representing one party to the transaction), thereby bringing a heightened element of reality to the training exercise. After conducting their analysis and developing their strategy, students must work in teams to negotiate with the opposing group to achieve a mutually acceptable result, memorialized in a letter of intent."
"The text includes the full simulation module (domestic and international versions), background materials for the business and legal context of the transaction, and chapters on transactional lawyering, negotiation skills, ethics of negotiation, and other key issues in business transactional practice. Also included are sample documents from comparable transactions that are illustrative of the legal agreements that would be used in an actual transaction. The teacher’s manual includes a sample syllabus, negotiating instructions for each side, materials on the pedagogy of the course, and detailed lecture and topic outlines."
Other law schools have successfully used the author's materials: "The International Business Negotiations course, which is one of the first ETL-profiled courses to be added to the curriculum at multiple law schools, has been well received by students at each school where it has been taught and meets a timely need for more practical skills and transactional law training in law school. The course was offered at five law schools during the 2012-2013 academic year and is being offered by nine law schools during the upcoming academic year (two of which will offer it in each semester), including four ETL consortium schools and five of the top 15 law schools: American University Washington College of Law (WCL), Berkeley Law School, Georgetown University Law Center, Hastings Law School, Northwestern Law School, Stanford Law School, University of Dundee (Scotland), University of Virginia Law School, and Washington and Lee University School of Law."
Daniel D. Bradlow is a tenured faculty member at American University Washington College of Law (WCL),and Jay Gary Finkelstein is an adjunct faculty member there who is also a transactional partner at DLA Piper US.
This is exactly the type of textbook that students need to prepare them for the complex business world.