Tuesday, February 22, 2011
This one is by Professor Cynthia Baker of Indiana and Professor Robert Lancaster of Louisiana State. It can be found at 17 Clinical L. Rev. 71 (2010). From the synopsis:
This article examines how the economic downturn that began in the fall of 2008 has impacted externship pedagogy and practices through the lenses of the key participants in any legal externship experience: students, placements, and law schools. Using findings and empirical data from a survey conducted in February of 2010, the article explores how the economy's impact on externships is creating curricular, pedagogical, and logistical changes. The article also places identified pressures into context by surveying the other, continuing, and non-economic pressures on externships, such as those encouraged by Best Practices, imposed by the American Bar Association, and created by existing curricular structures within law schools. All of these pressures, if not managed, could lead to a diminution of a high quality externship program or a stanching of the growth of more externship opportunities within a legal community. The article suggests that changes to externship programs and placements must be a function of pedagogical purpose and the new economic realities facing our law students, our law schools, and the legal profession. It suggests ways in which to approach the rapidly changing legal externship landscape in these economic times and proposes that a considered understanding of these very real changes impacting externship programs could also open doors to a more dynamic, satisfying externship experience for all involved.