U.S. Law School Pilots iPad Program

Monterey College of Law in California is partnering with BARBRI, a law exam review/prep provider, to bring iPads to students in their first year law program this season. Students in their law school program tend to be older (average age 38), and the iPad is meant to help them better keep up with readings and study for bar exams.

From the August 25/10 article in Campus Technology:

“Many of our law students work the equivalent of three jobs. Between law school, work, and family, it is a constant challenge for them to set aside enough time during the week to study,” said Wendy LaRiviere, dean of admissions, in a written statement issued today. “…[T]he iPad will provide time-challenged students an easy way to add 30 to 45 minutes of studying each day … during a lunch break, waiting in the car-pool line, or even getting their oil changed. The result will be an additional three to five hours per week of valuable study time. If our students use this ‘found’ time to do additional reading and incorporate a more extensive use of their class notes, study guides, and practice exams, we expect to see a positive result in law school performance and continued improvement in the bar pass rates of our graduates.”

The school and the law exam review provider have worked to absorb the cost of the iPads so that students do not need to pay for them above their tuition fees.

The comments in the article mentioned above shed additional light on the program. From Mitch Winick from the Monterey College of Law:

The educational publisher (BAR BRI) is a unique source of law materials that 90+% of our students will purchase and use either during the JD program or as a post-graduate review program. Traditionally it would be delivered in print volumes. There are new iPad applications (and uses) that are being developed specifically for this program. In fact there are 16 e-books of review material that were made available this week only through iBooks. The text material is so voluminous that a smart phone delivery system is not appropriate . . . this is a case where size (and readability) does matter.

Has anyone heard of other schools developing similar technology programs? I had a quick look around but couldn’t find anything comparable.

Comments

  1. That’s all well and fine until the devices break, crash, fall, get stolen, run out of power, or any of the myriad of disasters big and small that can befall electronic devices. Integration of technology is great, but having students (or anyone) totally reliant on a single device is dangerous.

  2. Well, books & photocopies can get lost, stolen, spindled & mutilated, too. I’m sure they’ve got contingencies in the program. Besides, iPads are easy to back up on iTunes and content can be easily restored as needed. The students are going to need to know how to deal with technology in their working lives, if they don’t already!

  3. Ben:
    Use the Ipad to work on your arguments.

    I think the ipad is a great idea. I work shift work full-time so it would be a useful tool for me. Besides, it sounds like there would be less to carry. I like the idea.

    Prospective law student.