Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Major Curriculum Changes at Case Western

According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Case Western Reserve School of Law is making major changes to its curriculum to make its students more marketable.  "The new curriculum will require students to write more, work with clients beginning their first semester and spend at least a semester during their third year in an externship or clinical position. Students must also take leadership courses taught by faculty at the Weatherhead School of Management."

"We are not just teaching them skills,” [Dean Mitchell] said. “I don’t hear that students need to know how to draft complaints or legal forms. What I’ve heard was students need to graduate ready to sit in front of a client and understand how to assess a client’s needs and relate to the client. They need to come out with an understanding that law is a business and part of the responsibility is obtaining clients.”

"Many of the concepts were developed from meetings he had since he became dean in 2011 with about six-dozen law firm hiring partners, chief executive officers and other employers about qualities they sought in candidates."

“I have to admit I stole shamelessly from the medical school because it puts students in the role as soon as they can,” he said. “Nothing produces professionalism faster than being put in the role of a professional.”

(Scott Fruehwald)


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