Category: Law

There is a Logical Fallacy at the Heart of the Case Method

This post was originally from the Oxford Political Review here. Since the late 1800s, the best law schools in common law countries have taught law by way of the case method. Invented by Professor Christopher Columbus at Harvard Law School, the case method is based on the idea that law can be understood by reading ...

Law Schools: Alternative Assessments & Teaching Methods for a Liberal Arts Education

In this article, I argue that alternative assessments should be used in law schools to re-orientate student learning towards a broader, liberal arts education in law. Students should be given new assessments that challenge them to think for themselves about the origin of law, the purpose of law and the effect of law on society. ...

Hypotheticals by Geoffrey Robertson (1985 – 1990): A TV Review

In the early 1980s, Geoffrey Robertson was approached by a CBS broadcaster to create the first of his ‘Hypotheticals’ for American television. [1] The premise of the show was simple. In each episode, Robertson, an established QC, would pose hypotheticals to a panel of top-profile guests, guiding them through the scenarios with interogative questioning. The ...

Book Review: Inside Family Law: Conversations from the Coalface

I was recently given an advanced copy of Zoe Durand's Inside Family Law: Conversations from the Coalface. I decided to review the book, in part because it sounded interesting to read firsthand accounts of family law in practice. Below is my review in full: Family law is an area of law known for emotional and psychological ...

Law Schools are Failing Their Students

This is a brief excerpt from my book Legal Education, Privatization and the Market, about the role universities play in guiding young law students away from charity and towards private practice. 

A History of Law Schools: A Battle Between Law as a Science and Law as a Liberal Art

The history of law schools is a battle of ideas. Ideas over what the law is, how it should be taught and the kinds of student a law school should produce. Frequently, law schools have been the battleground of fierce intellectual rivalries, with rival schools of thought battling for supremacy.

The Real Socratic Method: Law Schools Fail to Understand Why Socrates Asked So Many Questions

In a true Socratic law school, I suggest, students would be instructed to ask questions to those in authority instead of answering them. Nothing and no one would be beyond a student’s questioning, especially by virtue of claims to authority or expertise alone.

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