Tag: Legal Education

Before you go to law school… read this (Or: Should I go to law school?)

So you want to go to law school.  You’ve spent years watching legal dramas, stomach tingling at every argument spoken in a Hollywood courtroom. You’ve honed your skills in argumentation, practicing on your parents, siblings and intellectually inferior friends. You’ve trodden through the history books, digging out biographies of Nelson Mandela, Gandhi and Jefferson. You ...

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 ...

Researching law schools and legal education in Nottingham, UK

I have just arrived in Nottingham to conduct research into the differences between UK and Australian law schools. Let me know if you have any thoughts on this and keep in touch for further updates.

Is law a social science? Lessons from a Canadian law school

From their very first lectures, law students are told not to equate legal ethics with morality, to ignore emotional responses to cases and to ignore any idea of reforming the law. Instead, they are taught legal positivism or ‘pure law’. Pure law is the teaching of law without the ‘baggage’ of the social sciences: without history, politics, ...

Law Schools in Canada: Writings of the First Toronto Law Dean W.P.M. Kennedy (2)

My purposes in this article are narrowed to two points : (i) a statement of the teaching of law subjects in Canadian Universities for purposes and aims other than those to which Dean Falconbridge has done full justice ; (ii) to outline the work with which I am most familiar, in the University of Toronto.

Thomas Jefferson: How Law Should be Part of a Broad Training in the Liberal Arts

I find it interesting sometimes to contrast the narrow, vocational-based education system we have today with the kind of education system envisaged in the late 1700s. Often, the aim back then was to receive a broad-education in what today we understand as the liberal arts and sciences, before advancing onto a broad education as to ...

Law as a social science: Toronto Law School and WPM Kennedy

In the process of writing my PhD, I have stumbled upon the writings of WPM Kennedy, the former Dean of Toronto Law School and writer of 'Law as a Social Science'. Writing in the 1930s, Kennedy believed that law should not be taught as a mere vocation or trade, but as a "fundamental social science." ...

Legal education- success but at what cost?

The following is a review of my book by Edwin Montoya Zorrila from the blog, Notes From The Wreck.   I preface this review with a disclosure. The author, Joshua Krook, is a friend of mine, and we have studied law together at the University of Sydney. I have also supported this book by helping ...

The “Employer’s Voice” in Australian Legal Education

‘The Employer’s Voice’ Shaping Graduate Attributes: In the early 1990s, Australian universities were placed under increasing pressure from ‘the state, industry and other agencies’ to produce graduates who possessed specific market-relevant skills.[i] By the mid-2000s universities had enshrined graduate attributes at the core of their teaching objectives.[ii] Now it is common to see graduate attributes ...

Legal Education, Privatization and the Market: The Decline of Justice, Fairness and Morality in Australian Law Schools

Chapter 1: The Problem Since the early 2000s there have been warning signs of the ‘health of [Australia’s] democracy’ being threatened by the abandonment of universities as communities of intellectuals, in favour of a new model driven by ‘market forces’ and a ‘user pays’ mentality.[i] Prolonged funding cuts in the 2000s and the dominance of ...