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Archive for ‘Education & Training: Law Schools’

Risk of Cyber Attacks on Law Firms

The inaugural UCLA Cyber Crimes Moot concluded today, with participants from across the U.S. and an international judging panel. Yes, my participation in the preliminary and final rounds of the event is what qualified the event as internationally judged. The winners this year were from GW School of Law, and their coach was none other than Orin Kerr.

The competition focused on a fact pattern based on the 2010 case of United States v. Warshak, dealing with the unconstitutional search and seizure of e-mails under the Stored Communications Act, and whether they should be excluded as evidence . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Practice of Law: Practice Management

Law Students Offer Great Perspectives on Issues in Legal Profession

I have been privileged to teach legal ethics at the University of Ottawa and before that at Osgoode Hall and U of T. I love teaching legal ethics because students have fresh and valuable perspectives on so many important issues in the legal profession. Legal ethics is a branch of “professional ethics”, special ethical rules that apply to members of a profession. What we think it means to be “a good lawyer” , “a good soldier” or “a good doctor” may differ from society’s general understanding of what it means to be “a good citizen”. In legal ethics we struggle . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Law Student Week

US Law School Market Collapse

Some interesting data about law schools and the broader ecomony is collected in this Atlantic article. The main point is that while a slow job market has meant rising demand for education in the past, today’s law school enrollment has fallen off along with the rise in unemployment numbers. . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools

Université De Montréal Obtains (With Conditions) Juris Doctor National Program

The law faculty at l’Université de Montréal (UdM) has obtained accreditation (with conditions) from the Council of the Federation of Law Societies of Canada (FLSC) to implement their new national common law program and degree of Juris Doctor (J.D.).
Posted in: Education & Training, Education & Training: Law Schools, Practice of Law

The Top Ten US Law School Websites

As rated by Roger Skalbeck of the Georgetown University Law Center, on behalf of the ABA in their annual effort. The 200 law school websites evaluated ranged from a low of 25% to a high of 98.5%. Given the very elementary standards against which they were compared, it is surprising that any really could fare very low at all. This summary of the evaluation criteria should give you an idea:

. . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Technology: Internet

Systemic Discrimination in Law Firms: Perception or Reality? My Point of View

According to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (Section 15 (1)):

Every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination and, in particular, without discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability.

Of course, and unfortunately, this is not always the case in practice. Many people continue to deny others equal treatment, intentionally and not. Law Times offers a recent example of alleged systemic discrimination; the case Law Society of Upper Canada v. . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Practice of Law

Should There Be Parttime Law School in Canada?

Like Darryl Mountain in today’s column, I have been thinking about law school lately. Or rather, I have been reminded about past thoughts on this topic. Whether law school should be changed or not is a current hot topic in the U.S. In addition to the New York Times article that Darryl points to, The National Law Journal has also just published the article What is Law School For, Anyway? by Karen Sloan about law schools not keeping up with what is needed in the profession.

One thing I believe the U.S. law school system has gotten right, however, . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools

Introducing the Twitter Moot

Given my moot history in law school it’s no surprise that I’ve been approached repeatedly by a number of different international moots now that I’m a lawyer. But I’ve never seen anything like this before.

A non-profit environmental law organization, West Coast Environmental Law (WCEL), is hosting the first-ever moot court held entirely on Twitter. Participants from different Canadian law schools will make their submissions in 140 characters or less. The intent of the exercise is to bring environmental law issues to a broader audience.

Yes, I’ve always dreamed about being a tweeting judge, and it seems that dream might . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools

1L Exam Advice

Looming right around the corner is that magical time of year, we all get more busy, tensions rise and people run around in oddly coloured clothing…. of course I’m talking about Law School Exam Time. Personally, I do not think that CERN needs to go on trying to break the speed of light because this semester seems to have already done so, which brings us to exam time. Back in September I posted, what I hoped were, a few nuggets about being in law school. What follows are a few more with regards to preparing for and executing exam . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools

A Framework for Teaching Good Legal Writing

A recent working paper by Mark K. Osbeck of the University of Michigan Law School, proposes a framework for understanding, and teaching, good legal writing.

Available via SSRN, What is “Good Legal Writing” and Why Does it Matter?, the paper provides an overview of the major reports and other documents that have called for increased attention in US law schools to practical “lawyering” skills, starting with the MacCrate Report of 1992. It then provides a conceptual framework for defining good legal writing, and a detailed discussion of its various elements:

[The paper] argues that legal readers judge a document

. . . [more]
Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Reading

Articling Crisis in the Headlines

Today’s Globe and Mail features an articling discussing what is being called a “crisis” in articling positions,

Some blame law firms, accusing them of reducing their hiring in the face of economic uncertainty. But according to Law Society statistics, there has also been a steady increase in the number of law graduates, as law schools have increased their enrolments. The number of law students successfully landing articling jobs has increased each year since 2007, but it has not kept pace with demand.

The article features interviews with Meagan Williams, a colleague of mine from UWO Law (and occasional law . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools