Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Video project documents the lives of eight 1L's as they make their way through law school

This sounds amazing - like the Michael Apted "Up" series but focusing instead on law students.  I wish I had the time to preview it for you (too busy Twittering, I guess).  Maybe some of you can leave your thoughts and comments below after watching it.

This project, called The Trials of Law School, comes to us from the Social Media Law Student blog and is described as follows:

The Trials of Law School provides a captivating and real, in depth look at eight students, with different backgrounds and expectations, through their first year of law school as they encounter a new language, a new way of thinking, and a new way of life.

A heart-felt look at the lives of eight students, the film captures both the stress and emotion, both inside the classroom and out, as they try to juggle family and relationships with school commitments. These students, including a single mother looking for a fresh start, a husband and father of four, and a military wife trying to raise six children, compete with competitive and highly successful peers for grades and jobs that will determine their future.

Their journey is contrasted with insight from over 25 acclaimed law professors and legal scholars from around the country.

In an equation set up for disappointment and failure, some succeed and some don’t, and others learn to redefine success. Who will make it, who won’t?

Read and watch the whole thing here.

A big 'ol hat tip to Stephanie West Allen - please check out her blog at idealawg.

I am the scholarship dude.

(jbl)

April 22, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

NYT Op-Ed: "To Tweet or not to Tweet?"

Here's my 2 cents on the whole Twitter 'thang:  What, you're not already busy enough dealing with daily tidal waves of email, Facebook, MySpace, YouTube, blogging, eBay, Zappos, Amazon, work, family, friends not to mention reality TV and keeping up with 5 new episodes each week of In Treatment that you actually have time to follow, moment-to-moment, other people's lives?  Seriously?!?  You have that kind of time on your hands?!?  If so, and you don't mind, i could really use some extra help around the house.  Just sayin'.

Oh, yeah - you can read the New York Times Op-Ed here.

I am the scholarship dude.

(jbl)

April 22, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Harvard offers course for students on how to take rejection

Hey kids, save your tuition dollars and come see me - I'll give you a Ph.D in rejection.  If this story wasn't true, you might think it came from The Onion instead of the Boston Globe.  Here's an excerpt:

The dirty secret is out. Harvard students fail sometimes. They are denied jobs, fellowships, A's they think they deserve. They are passed over for publication, graduate school, and research grants. And when that finally happens, it hurts. Big time.

To help students cope, Harvard's Office of Career Services hosted a new seminar last week on handling rejection, a fear job-seekers are feeling acutely in the plummeting economy. The advice from panelists could have come from a caring, patient parent. No rejection is the end of the world, they said, even though it might feel that way at the time.

Participants, who wore snappy buttons with the word rejected stamped in red, also received a road map of sorts on handling failure, a pink booklet of rejection letters and personal stories from Harvard faculty, students, and staff members.

Among the tales of woe: the 2004 alumnus and aspiring actor rejected for a barista gig at a Los Angeles Starbucks for being overqualified and the medical school professor who was wait-listed at every medical school he applied to.

If you're already not too dejected, you can read the rest of the story here.

Hat tip to Inside Higher Ed.

I am the scholarship dude.

(jbl)

April 22, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Return of the living dead - more about disappearing websites

Returnofthelivingdead2

This is the story that just won't die.  Silver bullets, wooden stakes . . . nothing seems to work.  If you follow this blog at all (and who doesn't?), you know that we've reported several stories in the past week or so about disappearing websites and how to avoid the risk of citing to online authority that can go "poof!" quicker than the value of your retirement portfolio.

Now comes yet another story, this time from Inside Higher Ed., about the disappearance of "Paper of Record," an online digital archive of newspapers that has had scholars up in arms.  According to IHE:

As digital archives have become more important and more popular, there are varying schools of thought among scholars about how best to guarantee that they will be around for good. Some think that the best possibility is for the creators of the archives -- people generally with some passion for the topic -- to keep control. Others favor acquisition, thinking that larger entities provide more security and resources for the long run.

The fate of "Paper of Record," a digital archive of early newspapers with a particularly strong collection of Mexican newspapers, may be cited in the years ahead as an example of the dangers of purchase by a large entity. Paper of Record was purchased (secretly) by Google in 2006, and shortly after Google took over management of the site, late last year, the archive disappeared from view. After weeks in which historians have complained to Google and others about the loss of their ability to work, the previous owner of the archive has received permission to bring the archive back for some period of time, and resumption of service could start as early next week.

You can read the whole story here.

I am the scholarship dude.

(jbl)

April 22, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Stetson hosting a legal writing-discourse colloquium

Ritchie_dr According to the Legal Scholarship Blog, Professor David Ritchie of Mercer School of Law has organized a colloquium at Stetson School of Law called Legal Writing: Gateway to the Legal Discourse Community.

I don't know anything more about it than that - if you do, please leave your comments below.

 I am the scholarship dude.

(jbl)

April 22, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

U. Texas begins its own program to help 3L's in their job search

We reported earlier this week on the innovative program begun by UCLA School of Law to teach 3L students practice skills in order to give them a leg-up in this extremely difficult job market.  Well, UT just launched its own version, this time with an emphasis on public service work.

Here are the details:

The University of Texas School of Law (UT Law) is proud to announce the Long Career Launch Program, which is designed to make it financially possible for our recent graduates to obtain legal work experience in unpaid internships while they are awaiting bar results and looking for permanent employment. Graduates who are selected to participate in the Program, which is generously funded by a grant from the Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long Foundation, will receive a $6,000 stipend to support work in an unpaid legal internship with a government agency or a 501(c)(3) public interest organization.

Hat tip to our good buddies at Above the Law.

I am the scholarship dude.

(jbl)

April 22, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Budget crunch in Nevada results in departure of UNLV law faculty

The Las Vegas Sun ran a story today reporting the departure of at least three professors from William S. Boyd School of Law, including legal writing Prof and a friend of this blog, Michael Higdon, due to a proposed 36% cut in state funding for higher education.  Ouch!  

Professor Higdon will be leaving for University of Tennessee School of Law to be closer to family according to the paper. 

FWIW - we went through the same thing at University of Colorado in 2003 when the state legislature was forced to slash educational funding to comply with a constitutionally mandated balanced budget amendment. 

Just like CU did then, UNLV will come through with flying colors.

Hat tip to the ABA Journal blog.

I am the scholarship dude.

(jbl)

April 22, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

New "plain-English" online scholarly journal by conglomerate of top law schools is launched

The legal blogosphere is all a twitter (no pun intended) over a new online journal begun by the law reviews of seven top schools - Stanford Law Review, New York University Law Review, Cornell Law Review, Duke Law Journal, Georgetown Law Journal, Northwestern Law Review and University of Chicago Law Review.  The new journal, called The Legal Workshop, is intended as a counterpoint to the  turgid, impenetrable and overly footnoted traditional law review article - plus, the online format gives it an immediacy that printed volumes lack.

The journal's website states its mission as:

The Legal Workshop features short, plain-English articles about legal issues and ideas, written by an author whose related, full-length work of scholarship is forthcoming in one of the participating law reviews. But The Legal Workshop does not house a collection of abstracts. Instead, it offers an engaging alternative to traditional academic articles that run 30,000 words with footnotes, enabling scholars to present their well-formulated opinions and their research to a wider audience. In addition to making legal ideas understandable, The Legal Workshop seeks to house the best of legal scholarship in one place -- making it easier for readers to find the best writing about all areas of law.

Read the first issue here.

Hat tip to The Legal Blog Watch.

I am the scholarship dude.

(jbl)


April 22, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

USNWR - Full list of legal writing program rankings

the admissibility of Wikipedia

Wikipedia Too Malleable to Be Reliable Evidence

By Mary Pat Gallagher

New Jersey Law Journal

April 22, 2009

A New Jersey judge who allowed a lawyer to plug an evidentiary gap with a Wikipedia page has been reversed on the ground that the online encyclopedia that "anyone can edit" is not a reliable source of information.

"[I]t is entirely possible for a party in litigation to alter a Wikipedia article, print the article and thereafter offer it in support of any given position," an appeals court held. "Such a malleable source of information is inherently unreliable and clearly not one 'whose accuracy cannot reasonably be questioned,'" such as would support judicial notice under New Jersey Evidence Rule 201(b)(3).

 

hat tip:  Sharon Blackburn, Texas Tech librarian extraordinaire

 

(njs)

April 22, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

overheard at oral argument

Yesterday the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in a case about the constitutionality of a strip search of a 13-year-old girl in school; another student had accused her of bringing ibuprofen to school. Under consideration was whether a female school official acted appropriately when the girl was told to move aside her bra and underwear, to check for the pills.  Then Justice Breyer mentioned what children put in their underwear:

“In my experience when I was 8 or 10 or 12 years old, you know, we did take our clothes off once a day.... We changed for gym, O.K.? And in my experience, too, people did sometimes stick things in my underwear.”

And yes, even in the U.S. Supreme Court, everyone laughed.

hat tip:  Cindy Buys

(spl)

 

April 22, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

recently published

Blog readers may be interested in these articles recently published by legal writing professors at Stetson and Rutgers-Camden in the Loyola Law Review:

  • Joan Catherine Bohl, Generations X and Y in Law School: Practical Strategies for Teaching the "MTV/Google" Generation, 54 Loy. L. Rev. 775 (2008).
  • Carol L. Wallinger, Moving from First to Final Draft: Offering Autonomy-Supportive Choices to Motivate Students to Internalize the Writing Process, 54 Loy. L. Rev. 820 (2008). 

(cmb)

April 22, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

newly tenured

StephanieVaughan--Stetson

  KateBohl--StetsonHearty congratulations to Kate Bohl (at left) and Stephanie Vaughn (at right), who have just been awarded programmatic tenure at Stetson. Way to go!

hat tip: Darby Dickerson (via Twitter)

(cmb)

April 21, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Strunk & White redux

Images In case you were busy celebrating a religious holiday or two at the end of last week and missed NPR's send-up of The Elements of Style, you can still find it here.

hat tip:  Sam Jacobson

(spl)

April 21, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Scholarship alert: The subject that won't die! Disappearing websites and what to do about them.

Night_off_the_Living_Dead Folks, this topic appears to be harder to kill than a zombie in a George Romero movie - what to do about web authority that may go AWOL before the court decides your case.  We reported on this story last week here and here

Now comes this new article by Professor Patricia A. Broussard entitled Now you see it now you don't: addressing the issue of websites which are "lost in space". available at 35 Ohio N.U. L. Rev. 155 (2009).

Here's the abstract:

[B]ecause Internet websites now have a place in scholarship, how does one prevent an article from going up in smoke because of shifting websites? ... Certainly a law professor, who is serving time for embezzlement in a prison that does not have a law library, but does have a fully loaded computer room, can be forgiven an excess of footnotes that utilize Internet websites. ... Without this invention, both law and scholarship would be all talk and no reading, rather like rap music without the bling. ... Publish or Perish Thus far the focus of the rise of law journals has been on the needs of the students and of their benefits to law schools. ... Dreading the thought that one of these new journals would go without articles, causing them to collapse and fold, most law schools instituted mandatory minimum articles for untenured faculty to publish before even being considered for tenure. ... The Internet is at once a world-wide broadcasting capability, a mechanism for information dissemination, and a medium for collaboration and interaction between individuals and their computers without regard for geographic location. ... That information, and its reliability is the source of potential problems for scholars who desire to use the Internet to prove (or at the very least support) the thesis therein. ... Here again, all is not lost, because the Internet can be used to discover if the material exist in another media, thereby, freeing the scholar to use the Internet website for convenience, but with the knowledge that the material can be found elsewhere. ... This author suggests that the context of the article be considered and the availability of other sources.

I am the scholarship dude.

(jbl)

April 21, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Scholarship alert: "Law Firm Legal Research Requirements for New Attorneys"

Thanks to our very good buddies at the Law Librarian blog for tipping us to this new article by Associate Library Director Patrick Meyer of Thomas Jefferson School of Law.   Here's the abstract:

This article collects in one place the results of previously published and unpublished surveys as they pertain to law firm research requirements of new hires. The article also summarizes results from the author's recent law firm legal research survey, which determined what research functions, and in what formats, law firms require new hires to be proficient.

The article concludes that there is a need to integrate the teaching of online and print-based research resources for the following tasks: federal and state-specific legislative codes, secondary source materials, reporters, administrative codes and digests. There must also be a strong emphasis on the teaching of cost-effective research strategies.

The full article is available on SSRN here.

Please visit the Law Librarian blog when you get a chance, eh?  We support them;they support us.  That's how it works in the 'ol blogosphere.

I am the scholarship dude.

(jbl)

April 21, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Videogames prove addictive - literally - what are implications for classroom surfing?

Here's an interesting story from yesterday's Washington Post reporting that researchers have concluded that approximately 1 in 10 some video-gamers show symptoms of addictive behavior that can interfere with life activities and lead to "lying to family and friends about how much they play games, using the games to escape their problems, and becoming restless or irritable when they stop playing."

"They may also skip homework to play videogames or spend too much time playing the games and do poorly in school" according to the story

Perhaps this research helps dispel the notion, even if only to a small extent, that surfing the net during class is nothing more than the manifestation of bored students who long for a more interesting teacher. That certainly may be true in some - or even many instances - but it isn't always true and that's the point.  The internet - it isn't your grandfather's classroom distraction.

Hat tip to BNA Internet Law News.

I am the scholarship dude.

(jbl)

April 21, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Law student who didn't pay back college loans denied admission to New York bar

This story comes to us from our very good buddy Professor Mitch Rubinstein at the Adjunct Law Prof blog.   According to Professor Rubinstein:

[The] moral of this case is that law students should expect to be required to pay back their student loans and, if they do not, very unpleasant circumstances will follow. Was this an extreme case? Of course it was. However, where is the line between this case and another case where a student has not repaid his or her loans? I do not know where that line is and would not want to be the person who is drawing it.

Additionally, law students will hopefully become lawyers one day. Your name means something. You would not want it to be documented that you have not repaid your loans. If this case is not enough motivation for you, I also can tell you that many employers would not want to hire someone who is not repaying their loans. Would you??

Please pay the Adjunct Law Prof blog a visit now 'n again.  They're good people.

I am the scholarship dude.

(jbl)

April 21, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Role play games used to predict future of BigLaw practice and it ain't pretty

The online ABA Journal blog is reporting on role playing game experiment last weekend at Indiana's Maurer School of Law led by Professor Bill Henderson whose expertise is in the empirical analysis of the legal profession and legal education.

Here are the predictions reached as a result of the exercise:

The big firm bubble is about to burst, due to pressure from clients, the competition for associates and business, and the exodus of talented of lawyers.

• Associates will be paid less, earning starting salaries ranging from $80,000 to $125,000. Promotion will be tied to competency and bonuses will be tied to law firm performance. Firms will offer more training and exposure to the real world of law practice.

• Partners will be organized in one-tier partnerships and will earn less money. More money will be saved by allowing lawyers to work at home or by moving offices from cities to suburbs.

• Firms will adopt a variety of alternative fees, and will share risk with clients whenever possible. They will also learn more about client businesses and will send lawyers to client offices to learn more about the companies.

You can read the full article here and a more in depth coverage by the American Lawyer here.

I am the scholarship dude.

(jbl)

April 21, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

National media picks up story of law schools trying to help deferred 3L's

The Chronicle of Higher Ed is running a story on the problem 3L law students are having either finding work or the financial strain to them caused by start dates that have been deferred until 2010 and what law schools are doing to help.  You can read the full story here.

I am the scholarship dude.

(jbl)

April 21, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)