Virtual Events Expand AALS Programming, Faculty Resources

AALS expanded programming for law school faculty and scholars in 2023, hosting several virtual conferences over the summer in addition to annual in-person events including the Annual Meeting, Conference on Clinical Legal Education, and Workshop for New Law Teachers. 

These one-day virtual conferences provided opportunities for law school faculty to observe and participate in conversations around some of today’s most pressing legal issues. Another virtual workshop offered teaching and pedagogical support for adjunct faculty and lecturers ahead of the fall semester.

Conference on Defending Democracy

May’s Conference on Defending Democracy was organized by AALS President Mark Alexander around the theme for his presidential year. In light of the critical role played by law schools in the future of democracy, the conference sought to explore the responsibility of law faculty as educators of future lawyers. Speakers included 11 law faculty experts from across the country and special guest Ellen Weintraub, a current commissioner and former chair of the U.S. Federal Election Commission. The three conference panels focused on the State of the Union three years following the January 6 insurrection; the role legal education plays in defending democracy; and identifying the challenges to our democracy that are specifically rooted in Election Law. 

Recordings of the three panels are available online.

Conference on Affirmative Action

July’s timely Conference on Affirmative Action was spearheaded by AALS Immediate Past President Erwin Chemerinsky and held just days after the Supreme Court issued its decisions in Students for Fair Admissions v. University of North Carolina and Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard College. Speakers included a variety of experts from states that eliminated affirmative action via voter initiative before the Supreme Court decisions, who shared their experiences and offered practical suggestions for how to achieve diversity without affirmative action. 

Recordings of the one-day conference are available online

AALS Webinar for Adjunct Faculty and Lecturers: Best Practices (and Common Pitfalls) in Law School Pedagogy

The late July Webinar for Adjunct Faculty and Lecturers was timed to assist these instructors with best practices in anticipation of the fall semester. Experienced instructors offered tips on preparing a class, conducting class sessions, assessing student performance, and learning from student feedback. 

The two-hour webinar and associated materials are available to download and watch.