As I wrapped up my last class at Robson Hall last week, I remarked to that whip-smart group of 1Ls that I hoped they had learned at least half as much in their two terms of Legal Methods as I did in the teaching of the course. This was my first experience teaching in a law school setting and looking back, I know for certain that I learned more than I likely imparted.
Archive for ‘Education & Training: Law Schools’
Starting this fall Harvard Law School will allow applicants to submit their scores from either the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or the Law School Admission Test (LSAT). This is a significant departure from the last 70 years, where LSATs have been considered a rite of passage.
Even though the LSAT provides a “neutral” way to measure students from diverse schools and programs, it’s continued use must be questioned.
An inspiring event began late last week and rose to a crescendo on Saturday: the law student-driven Research-a-thon for Refugees. The 12-hour distributed pro bono legal research marathon was kickstarted in a whirlwind of spark of initiative, quick communication, outreach, collaborative effort, and perhaps a bit of collective consciousness.
The goal of #Research4Refugees was to produce a collaboratively researched document for a Canadian NGO, focusing on interpretation and application of the US-Canada safe third country agreement for arriving refugees, on a project managed by the NGO. The Canada-wide event took place on Saturday in classrooms and libraries of the . . . [more]
McGill law has started something new when students return from the winter break. The first-year students are participating in an intensive course on indigenous legal traditions.
Dean Robert Leckey explains in the Montreal Gazette,
. . . [more]
It’s a first for us at McGill and possibly a first at any Canadian law faculty. It’s a promising step toward remedying some of the legal system’s wrongs toward indigenous peoples.
Guided by guests as well as by McGill professors, our students are starting the complex process of learning about indigenous peoples’ law. Doing so involves attending to sources of law — and resources for
When Trinity Western University first suggested it should have a law school, I emphasized here all the market reasons they should not; there are enough law schools already, not enough articling positions, and too much job competition for junior lawyers.
What it was ultimately about though is that we don’t need a new law school, doing everything the old way of doing things, and adding exclusionary criteria that runs contrary to human rights principles.
Since then, we’ve had new law schools at Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, and Thompson Rivers University in British Columbia. The former has gained some notoriety . . . [more]
In the 4,000-year history of the legal profession, unbiased information sharing has never been the norm. Instead, insights have remained siloed in large institutions—or traded anecdotally among groups at networking events.
That changes with today’s release of the Legal Trends Report. The Legal Trends Report is being published by Clio, the world’s most widely-used legal practice management platform (disclosure: I am the founder and CEO of Clio). By leveraging anonymized, aggregate data from 40,000 active Clio users and over $60 billion in billing volume, the Legal Trends Report provides new insights into topics including average billing rates by state, . . . [more]
I noticed it first this past summer when I attended the joint International Journal of Clinical Legal Education – Association for Canadian Clinical Legal Education conference in Toronto. It was my first time attending and I had no idea what to expect.
What I found was a group of very smart, dedicated and focused academics and lawyers engaged in the field of clinical legal education. What I noticed was that the gender balance among conference attendees was weighted heavily in favour of women.
Upon returning to the office after the conference, I looked around at our summer students – 5 . . . [more]
So far, so good. My first few weeks at Robson Hall have been uneventful. We’ve had a few full group lectures in Legal Methods, where first year students are being immersed in practical topics ranging from basic legal research to how to think like a lawyer to exam-writing tips. Right now they ought to be finishing off their first case brief assignment, struggling with how to summarize 87 dense pages from the Supreme Court into no more than 6 double spaced pages.
It’s orientation week on university campuses across the country. This September marks my first back-to-school since 1991 (yikes!), although this time as a sessional instructor instead of a student. While much has changed in the past twenty-five years, I’m more than a little curious to see what has not.
When I started out as a 1L student at Robson Hall in 1989, my school supplies included a couple of 500-sheet packs of looseleaf, several binders, a clipboard for daily notetaking use and of course, dozens of pens and highlighters in all colours. I loaded it all up in a canvas . . . [more]
The site is developing a syllabi commons, a list of software, websites and resources, a collection of articles and videos about teaching tech in law schools, and a list of courses that will be taught this fall.
It has an American focus but looks like it will contain useful information for anyone teaching in this area. If you’re interested in learning more contact John Mayer (email@example.com) to join the Tech-For-Law-Students . . . [more]
The Legal Marketing Association recently hosted its annual conference on project management, process improvement and pricing (P3) in Chicago. Billed as a forum where innovative practice management approaches are shared, the event continues to showcase progressive ideas and practical experiences from firms transforming the business of law.
It’s wise to take any presentation of best practices with a proverbial grain of salt. But you also have to give credit to those who proactively invest in new ideas and risk failure. That’s something we don’t see enough of in law.
Here are some of the ideas heard at this year’s P3 . . . [more]
An accused has a constitutional right to a fair trial and may raise concerns about race and discrimination if they identify it as an issue in their case. Furthermore, lawyers have an obligation to remind their client of this right. This very issue arose in R v Fraser (Fraser). In Fraser, a white student accused a Black high school teacher of committing “sexual improprieties”. The appellant raised concerns about racial bias both before and during the jury selection, but his lawyer nonetheless failed to tell Fraser that he had the right to challenge for cause. Upon . . . [more]