|Committee on Curriculum|
Welcome to the new AALS website devoted to innovations in legal education, sponsored by the Committee on the Curriculum. Its purpose is to provide legal educators with a way to gain information and share ideas about innovations in the basic design of the educational program we provide for our students. This is not intended as a place to talk about specific lessons or topics, or even specific courses. Instead, we want to think in bold and general terms – how should law school be structured, how should it incorporate new intellectual developments, how should it prepare students to practice law in the 21st century. Legal education has not been re-conceptualized since it was incorporated into the university over one hundred and twenty years ago. But there are many changes in the air; they are being discussed within and among American law schools on a regular basis, and are beginning to appear in law school curricula. One of the plenary sessions at the 2008 Annual Meeting was devoted to this topic. This website, which was announced at the meeting, is designed to encourage and support the emerging movement to re-think legal education.
We fully expect the website to develop over time. For now, it will have four main components:
1. An overview of curricular innovation, based on a survey that the Committee conducted in the Spring of 2006
2. Descriptions of particular innovations that have already been implemented
3. “Starter documents” -- brief discussions of important themes relating to innovation
4. Resource documents – brief surveys of published materials, websites and other resources on themes relevant to innovation.
At some time in the future, we may establish a chat room or other forum where legal educators can speak directly with each other about legal education. For now, we invite your comments, suggestions and ideas. Please send them to me, and I will transmit them to the Committee as a whole, or to the relevant Committee member. I look forward to hearing from you.
Edward Rubin, Chair and Vanderbilt Law School
Victor Fleischer, University of California at Los
Vicki C. Jackson, Georgetown University
Conrad Johnson, Columbia University
Orly Lobel, University of San Diego Law School
Larry Marshall, Stanford Law School
Martha L. Minow, Harvard Law School
Brian Tamanaha, St. John's Law School
Merle Hope Weiner, University of Oregon