Due to the spread of the new coronavirus infectious disease (COVID-19), online lessons and other remote classes have been started at various educational sites. In response to this situation, Web Japan criticism introduced a discussion about “education that does not require a classroom” (education and lesson considered through the Internet) in American legal education, and discussed its barriers, positive aspects, and notes., Jay Kesan P. “Information Technology (IT) and Legal Education in Law Schools in the United States: Clash of Civilizations or Happy Marriage” ( “Law Time” March 2002 issue “Special Feature/Information Technology Innovation and Law School Education – [IT and Legal Education Institutions, and Law Teaching Methods] will be re-published.
- “Classroom-Free Education”
- IT-oriented education
- Techniques and approaches for using IT inside and outside the classroom
- Impact of IT on curriculum
The world we live in has undergone a revolutionary transformation due to the development of information technology (IT), and now we are interconnected and united through technology. The information revolution has brought about higher-performance computers, high-speed communication networks, and technologies that can handle electronic text, audio, and video at the same time. Such IT development extends from social institutions to the lives of ordinary citizens., Is making a difference in society as a whole. In particular, the environment surrounding higher education institutions such as law schools has changed completely due to technological changes. The purpose of this paper is to examine the impact of IT on legal education. Below are issues such as cultural changes caused by the use of IT inside and outside the law school, the pros and cons of incorporating IT into American legal education, and the emergence of a virtual law school. Let’s handle it.
By the way, there are many obstacles and resistances to increasing the use of IT and the Internet in legal education. Some of these are institutional, others are based on educational considerations. However, on the other hand, there is a positive side to increasing the use of IT in legal education. In the future legal practice, it is required to be proficient in IT, so there is no objection to incorporating IT to some extent in legal education in order to prepare students for it. The Internet can also be an important tool to reduce the cost of law education and make it easier for people to access law education.
An extreme view of these issues can be found in the arguments between advocates and critics over “classroom-free education.” Professor Robert Oliphant (William Mitchell College of Law) commends Concord Law School’s efforts in distance law education and accredits the American Bar Association (ABA) to accredit law schools on the Internet. Criticize not to change the standard. Harvard Law School professor Arthur Miller lectures for the Concord Law School, supports the school’s efforts, and lends his fame. At the other end of the line is the US Supreme Court judge, Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She publicly criticized Concord and expressed concern about distance law education in general.However, there are few people who do not admit that there is a positive aspect to the use of IT in legal education. The “extended-classroom” that introduces IT may have the same problem as “education without classroom”, but its degree is not as serious as “education without classroom”. Concord Law School is the only law school in the United States that currently offers all education on the Internet, but almost all law schools use IT to promote legal education.
II. “Classroom-Free Education”
“Education that does not require a classroom” here refers to the education and classes that are accepted through the Internet. Teaching materials such as traditional case books are often used there. This type of education does not require humans to meet each other directly. This kind of “classless education” is the most controversial, so let’s start with the discussion.
A. Concord Law School as a typical example
Known for its bar exam prep school, Kaplan opened the Concord Law School in the fall of 1998 for the first time in the United States for the first time. Today there are more than 700 students enrolled in the school. Students can access the school through the Internet 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. With only $6,000 a year to study, the school is a low cost, convenient alternative to the traditional “brick and stone” law school.
Concord’s faculty is divided into three layers: (1) visiting lecturer/supplementary lecturer, (2) teaching professors, and (3) instructors. The first group consists of nationally renowned educators who develop curriculum and give video lectures. The second group conducts classes and manages the instructors of the third group. Instructors have a duty to score legal writing tasks before teaching professors. In addition, when students enroll in Concord, they will have access to personalized personalized homepages. Its home page contains news, contacts, office hours, discussion boards, and more. In addition, the website allows each student’s data to be collected and visually compared with an ideal learning achievement model, allowing students to monitor their learning progress throughout the semester. You can do it.
Concord classes are divided into multiple learning modules (learning units). Each module covers half a week of material. If a student fails one of the module exams, the computer refuses to proceed to the next module, so that the student must take classes in a certain order and pace. Is becoming
And to give students as much feedback as possible, Concord uses a computer testing program. If a student’s score is less than 70 in one test, the student will not be able to proceed to further learning unless they take a “review quiz”. This program keeps students from excelling in one subject and outrunning other subjects. Under the program, students who are progressing in one subject cannot take the test in that subject until the progress of all other lessons they have taken up. This is because the school believes it is worthwhile to finish the first year lessons at the same time, as it does in traditional law schools. At the end of the first year, students are required to pass a six-hour time-limited exam (three-hour alternative exam and three hourly essay exams).
One of the criticisms of this system is that it deviates from the tradition of the final essay exam. The one-time final exam system is used for a variety of reasons, but it allows faculty members to spend more time outside the classroom-research and dissertation writing. There is no doubt that this is one of them. This is because the teachers have to devote a considerable amount of time in order for the trainees to frequently test in less than 100 classes. However, Professor Robert Oliphant also points out the following criticism of one final essay test. That is, during the semester, students are unable to know their progress, and that the final exam results often do not accurately reflect their abilities due to illness or personal circumstances. There are imbalances in the treatment of the fields given in the exam, and the final exam is generally not an educational tool. The method used by Concord may deviate from the tradition of a traditional single-final exam, but it will solve some of the problems mentioned above.
Another criticism of Concord’s test method is that it was deliberately made in line with the California Bar Exam. However, unlike other ABA-accredited law schools, Concord students are required to pass state exams at the end of their first year, so the school requires it. I think that is the case. In other words, Concord does not currently meet ABA accreditation criteria, so its graduates are not eligible to take the bar exam in many states, but the California bar exam is eligible to graduate from an accredited law school. Not so, and the vast majority of Concord graduates take the California bar exam. However, the state does not certify law school students at the end of their first year, and is required to take a preliminary law examination, the First Year Law Students’ Exam. It is obligatory. The lack of ABA accreditation is one of the important institutional obstacles Concord is facing.
B. Problems faced by distance learning
1. Institutional barrier
ABA accreditation is just one of many institutional barriers facing Internet law schools.
a. ABA certification criteria
Most of ABA’s accreditation standards were written before IT became an important part of legal education and did not envision the Internet. The ABA regulations, by definition, assume that students are in the same classroom. For example, students are required to have a minimum of 1120 hours of “in residence” instruction. There are also standards for physical facilities and libraries. The fact that most states qualify for a bar exam by graduating from an ABA accredited law school is also a serious barrier to distance education. Professor Nicolas P. Terry said, “While these standards are legitimate if they ensure the quality of legal education, they said,” If the purpose is to prevent existing accredited law schools from providing services outside of their geographical territory,” there may be antitrust suspicions about the accreditation system. ing. Professor George B. Shepherd & William G. Shepherd also argue that:
“ABA has exercised its monopoly power not only in the legal education market, but also in three related markets: the law school recruitment market, the legal services market, and each university’s internal competition for funding. ABA graduates from ABA-accredited law schools are the only route to gain government support for this role and, as a result, to enter most areas of legal practice in the United States. It’s as if it’s been designated. This system raises the cost of law schools, but they benefit from the elimination of competition from new law schools.”
If these requirements are removed, various experimental legal education will be provided, and the use of IT will increase.
b. Negative incentives for faculty and management
Another institutional issue is the negative incentive that discourages teachers from introducing more IT into education and participating in distance education. Introducing IT into education requires investing a lot of time, which is the source of “opposition to the reform that requires decades of changing teaching methods.” Second, there is also the problem that the shift to distance education will reduce the total number of teacher posts.
Traditional law school executives will also be reluctant to have their law school faculty support the distance learning endeavors. Not only was Professor Arthur Miller of Harvard Law School commissioned to create a series of civil litigation law lectures for Concord, he also wrote the following recommendations on Concord’s website: “[Concord] is at the forefront of educational technology by teaching on the Internet. Being able to engage with Concord, who is working on this bold attempt that no one has done before, is In August 1999, shortly after Professor Miller became involved with Concord, Harvard revised its faculty manual so that no other follower would, without special approval. It forbids teachers from becoming teachers, researchers, or paid advisors in online schools on the Internet.
c. The tendency of legal education that changes are slow
Historically, law school has been slow to change. I can give you a number of examples. Many criticize the socratic method, but it is still the mainstream method of law education. When Computer-Assisted Legal Instruction (CALI) emerged in the 1970s, its future potential was touted, but it did not change traditional legal education. Similarly, an electronic casebook was published in the mid-1990s, but this technological development has been undermined. It remains to be seen whether Internet law schools will have a significant impact on established law education methods.
d. Information infrastructure, startup costs, competition
Other institutional barriers are typical of any business seeking to go online. In order for distance education and IT-based education to succeed, it is essential to have an information infrastructure. Only a limited number of people now have access to High Speed Internet Access, which is needed to watch video in TV-like quality. In particular, rural people and the poor are far behind the rest of the United States in terms of information infrastructure. Another problem is that the cost of launching Internet education is high. If these initial cost problems can be overcome, distance education has the potential to become a more cost-effective method of education than traditional law education. However, there are still problems such as the costs associated with technological advances and site security, and the need for constant updates to comply with legal revisions. Another typical problem for businesses is the fear that only premium products can seek the highest price. Professor A.Michael Froomkin said at the annual meeting of the American Association of Law Schools (AALS) that the Internet is a well-known brand name, or top It is said that only the law school of the level is required, and in order for the second and third group law schools to remain competitive, it is necessary to reduce costs in terms of salaries of professors and library collections. . These brand name and market issues can be significant barriers to education on the Internet.
2. Problems related to lack of face-to-face interaction in distance education
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, in his speech at Rutgers University on September 9, 1999, announced his position as a question of Internet Law School. She said, “I am worried about the class where students stay in their homes, sit in front of a computer screen, and learn without face-to-face interaction with other students or teachers… I’m confused by attempts like Concord that allow students to earn a JD degree without seeing fellow students or faculty, even if the school is not accredited. “We must strive to keep the Internet a tool that brings people together, rather than isolating them,” he said. Jin Ginsburg underscores the criticisms often made of distance education. In fact, the lack of a face-to-face interface is a big problem.
a. Visible problem
The practical or more visible problems that result from the lack of a face-to-face interface are the difficulty of using socratic methods, difficulty of skill workshops and clinical education, and tradition. It may be difficult to provide services such as talented librarians and employment instruction rooms provided by Matou Law School.
With distance learning, it may not be possible to restore the socratic method used in traditional law school classrooms. However, if the socratic method is a learning process in which teachers ask questions to facilitate learner-led debate, is Internet law school comparable to traditional law school? In some cases it may be better. For example, Concord uses a chat room where students meet weekly. There, a Concord professor leads the discussion, and even after the chat room ends, the online bulletin board allows students to continue the discussion asynchronously. In addition, the chat room allows teachers to meet students in a synchronized manner and ask questions by using a microphone. Students will write their answers and be evaluated by the faculty. Only the faculty member can see the answer, but the faculty member can post it if he or she finds it helpful to the discussion, or otherwise only communicates with that particular student. it can. The system allows professors to direct discussions more efficiently without being confused or distracted by distracting student remarks. Skills training and clinical lessons are problematic because they cannot be done solely on the internet. However, there may be skill training and clinical lessons that are perfectly adapted to the Internet. Harvard Law School Berkman Center for Internet & The Society offers cyber law clinical classes. It can deal with clinical cases such as establishing online companies to protect the public domain and prosecuting infomediaries who infringe consumer privacy. In addition, supporters of distance education have shown that skill training and clinical lessons have not been fully utilized even in traditional law schools, and that “less-class education” can be combined with externships and corporate training. Point out that it is possible.
If the Internet Law School also offers the services that the traditional law school has provided, then it must be adapted to the new medium. Without a library, librarians would be gone, and students would not be able to benefit from their research capabilities. Employment services and extracurricular activities also have to be very constrained or significantly modified to meet the needs of geographically dispersed students. Employment counselors will have to get information about students without looking directly at them and will also have to help find employment in more geographically diverse areas. These obstacles, as well as the problems associated with socratic methods and skill training, may be resolved by modifying traditional methods to fit new media.
b. Invisible problem
Some of the problems associated with the lack of a face-to-face interface are invisible, but they are also important. Internet law schools will arguably reduce opportunities for group and active learning. Students will also miss the opportunity of social life in a traditional law-school environment – interaction between students or students and teachers in informal settings.
Furthermore, there is concern that it is difficult to teach occupational responsibility and ethics without face-to-face. “In physical classrooms and clinical education, where intimacy is fostered through interactions between individuals, faculty can act as models of professionalism and value”, but not in distance education. The personal story the faculty tells may be more powerful and real when you see a real person speaking.
Also, more generally, teachers may have insufficient or no control over discussion in virtual classrooms. I have tried to teach at a certain place while delivering the video to a remote place and give a lesson, but from my experience, I am currently discussing It’s very hard to focus on a remote classroom while focusing on one student in front of the previous student.
Distance education may be possible with a smaller number of teachers. This means the loss of faculty as a role model for students in general and the loss of “strong agents of change” from society. Fewer professors will be writing papers, participating in professional bono cases, and writing expert opinions. The loss of faculty has an impact on students and society in general.
C. Positive aspects of distance education
On the other hand, “classroom-less education” has the merit of overcoming many of the barriers previously discussed.
1. IT direct experience
Perhaps most importantly, the use of IT in legal education can expose future lawyers to the skills they need in their jobs. Professor Henry H. Perritt, Jr. said, “IT, especially the IT used in the WWW (“web”) of the Internet, is changing the law, the function of the legal system and the role of lawyers”. ing. Online legal information is growing exponentially. A personal computer connected to the web becomes a virtual library, providing worldwide access to new statutes, judgments, and administrative regulations. Information about legislative work in international bodies such as the European Commission, the European Court of Human Rights, and the WTO is also available online. In addition, the Internet makes it easy to participate in politics and lawmaking processes. Lawyers, judges, legislators, and bureaucrats must be familiar with the technology that provides this information. One way to teach the technology that is essential to the practice of future lawyers is to incorporate it into legal education anyway, whether through distance learning or in IT-enabled classrooms.
2. Educational benefits
Another benefit of “classroom-less education” is that this new medium will enable each student to be provided with a personalized, student-centered education. A variety of techniques and educational tools are envisioned to help students learn at their own pace, enjoy the learning experience, and increase student access to teachers. If distance learning attempts to mimic a traditional law school classroom, it will not work as well as the classroom, but will be an inefficient replica of it. However, this new medium can realize benefits not possible in traditional classrooms. For example, in a large classroom lesson, a student may only contact the faculty once or twice a semester. Concord’s system is designed to maximize student-faculty and student-to-student communication, enabling more real-world interaction than in traditional classrooms. Thus, IT can use aspects that are superior to traditional approaches.
Access to teachers can be increased through the use of IT. Small rural law schools may not be able to hire full-time professors who teach highly specialized classes to a small number of students. Distance education is also beneficial for students attending such law schools, as they can attend.
Another major advantage of “classroomless education” is its cost. In many law schools, teacher salary may be the largest expense item. Distance learning can offer significant cost savings by hiring fewer teachers and providing education to more students. Furthermore, it goes without saying that internet law schools require extremely low facility maintenance and construction costs.
Professor Robert Oliphant accuses traditional law education of not paying attention to the huge debts that students would incur in law schools, and only reacting to “push their heads into the sand”. Distance education may be more expensive than traditional education – for example, Duke University’s virtual MBA program costs $40,000 more than its regular MBA program – and Concord’s tuition. Costs $6,000 a year and is significantly less expensive than most private law schools.
4. Improvement of access
Due to the high cost of legal education, traditional law schools have come to charge school fees beyond the reach of the average citizen. However, the low cost of distance education is only one reason for improved access. Concord students are often parents, have full-time jobs, or have geographic and time constraints to study at law school. Distance learning is available 24 hours a day, from anywhere with access to the internet, making it possible for those with these restrictions to obtain a law degree. Better access will also increase the diversity of lawyers by enabling legal education for poor students who do not have the resources to study at traditional law schools. Increasing opportunities for students with different social and geographical backgrounds to interact is another benefit of improved access. In addition, distance education will make a law degree more accessible to students with disabilities.
III. IT-oriented education
This chapter examines the use of IT to complement traditional law school lessons.
A. Concrete example
In recent years, many educational institutions, including most law schools in the United States, have been experimenting with various techniques to support education. Some higher education institutions have adopted more use of IT than traditional law schools. Unext is an education company that offers business administration courses through Cardean University. It is affiliated with Columbia Business School, Stanford University, University of Chicago Graduate School of Business, Carnegie Mellon University, London School of Economics and Political Science. Duke University offers both traditional and virtual MBA programs, and, surprisingly, virtual programs cost $89,000 a year, while traditional programs cost only 50,000. It’s $2,400. Stanford also offers online lessons, which are 50% more expensive than face-to-face education. Other educational institutions, such as the Western Governors University, founded by the Western Governors Association, offer undergraduate distance learning classes and degrees from many participating schools. Regents College is the first virtual university in the United States, where students can earn a bachelor’s degree by studying at their own pace. The State University of New York has also developed an online education program for its 64 universities and 400,000 students. The number of participants in these classes has increased from just 119 to 10,000 over the course of five years.Traditional law schools are also increasing the use of IT to support education. Typical uses of IT include the use of laptop computers in lessons, web sites for each lesson, electronic “handouts”, emails and discussion forums, Computer Assisted Legal Instruction (CALI) ), electronic case books, etc. In addition to those adopted by many law schools, some are also incorporating IT into their curriculum. At Harvard, the Berkman Center has integrated IT and distance learning into a Continuing Legal Education program. The program consists of interactive online lessons and a series of discussions. The Berkman Center is also making heavy use of IT in Cyber Law clinical programs. The program uses virtual assignments of students and physical externs to bring students into contact with the real world to prepare them for high-tech practice. The Chicago-Kent College of Law supplements traditional law school lessons with distance learning tools such as online tutorials and lesson modules. In my own lesson, a “threaded discussion group” for students, a common area where students can post answers to problems, and an area where the handouts for the lesson are stored Making “electronic commons”.
B. Positive and negative aspects unique to the “extended classroom”
In “extended classrooms” there is no complete lack of face-to-face interaction. Therefore, the “extended classroom” enables more student-centered education without the drawbacks of “classroom-less education”. If IT is used to promote education, it will be able to help students with different learning processes in their own ways. Computerized tutorials, emails, discussion forums, web-based material delivery, etc. allow individual students to learn at their own pace. These tools give students access to teachers regardless of class time or office hours. Some of the benefits of virtual classrooms include, for example, preparing students for IT-dependent legal practice, cultivating a different student population, and increasing the means of communication between students or between students and teachers. You can also find it in the classroom.
On the other hand, the same problems found in “classroom-less education” can be seen in the “extended classroom” setting. For example, teachers lack incentives, start-up costs, and the tendency for legal education to change slowly. In an “extended classroom,” one professor could give lectures to hundreds of students in different locations via video at a set time and place. One problem that can occur with such “extended classrooms” is that the number of students increases to a huge number, making feedback from professors virtually impossible. A very high student-to-teacher ratio makes it difficult for faculty to get to know students personally. Similarly, it is difficult for faculty to reach out to geographically dispersed students.
Since the use of IT in “extended classrooms” is less problematic and likely to have more benefits than “classroom-less education,” educators are now looking at the “classroom-less education” approach. It is expected that the use of IT in traditional classrooms will be increased and that the approach of using “extended classrooms” will be limited.
IV. Techniques and approaches for using IT inside and outside the classroom
There are many ways to introduce IT into the classroom. Lexis and Westlaw have traditionally provided databases of precedents, statutes, legal dissertations, and news, but in addition to those involved in legal education, web support systems such as West Educational Network and Virtual Classroom. Are also being offered. These tools help law teachers bring some of their lessons online and facilitate faculty-student communication. Computer Assisted Law Education (CALI), which has been around since the 1970s, allows students to do computer exercises at their own pace. Of course, more traditional IT, like word processors, has been around for years. Although electronic casebooks are not widely used, they can also be made more valuable to students than traditional casebooks by incorporating interactive lessons, electronic search, online databases, and more. it can. An electronic whiteboard for a digital display, an air mouse that allows the teacher to leave the computer during class, and other multimedia can also be used in the classroom, which can distract students However, it is important to note that the educational effect will decrease. Furthermore, multimedia presentations are time consuming and expensive to prepare. However, these approaches have the potential to accelerate the learning process by visually organizing the lesson. Video conferencing technology can also be a very useful help for distance education – whether it’s time or place.
Email and electronic discussion groups can also be a means to facilitate information exchange. Also, the Internet makes it possible for students to access a great deal of information. Because the Internet is a very powerful resource, it can outperform other IT such as electronic casebooks and make them meaningless. Many schools and teachers have introduced some or all of this IT into their education, but many are still in the future, and resistance to change may slow IT adoption.
V. Impact of IT on curriculum
The impact of IT on legal education goes beyond its use as an educational tool. Due to the increasing use of computers in education and the influence of computers on the law, law schools have come to offer lessons with the term “computer” added to the subject name. However, because IT is felt to affect all areas of law, the impact of IT is on existing areas such as commerce law, civil procedure law, constitution, contract law, privacy, freedom of expression and jurisdiction. Have been criticized for being incorporated into.
As IT becomes a part of everyday life, it is influencing positive law. For example, the effects that computers have on areas such as copyright are well known. Computers are also a means of commerce, but electronic commerce is creating a new type of dispute. The Internet is a new field of activity for criminals, and new criminal law is emerging accordingly. New laws and regulations are needed for this new medium, and law teachers have to keep up with these changes.
I have the ability to analyze the past, but the ability to portray the present is modest, and I am confident that I do not have the ability to predict the future. Nevertheless, it is almost certain that we are at the epoch of a major revolution that will fundamentally transform all higher education. Perhaps in this new world, universities will have to stop and re-examine what education is like to maximize the power of the university. Future institutions of higher education are subdivided into research colleges, four-year colleges, two-year community colleges and technical colleges, virtual colleges, and enterprise-specific colleges (eg: McDonald´s Hamburger University). However, it seems that IT will be affected in each way.
However, the focus of this paper is the discussion of the use of IT in legal education and its pros and cons. The problem with implementing IT is that the technology is improved so that it no longer has to rely on the new “ultra-high-end technology” so that we can focus our efforts on adapting our lessons to this new media. If so, it will be resolved. As legal practice is increasingly dependent on IT, there is no doubt that in order for legal education to survive in a networked society, IT must be incorporated into classrooms and curricula.
- UNEXT, at http://www.unext.com/about.htm. (Education company site)
- The Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School, at http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/ .
- Chicago-Kent College Of Law, Illinois Institute Of Technology, At http://www.kentlaw.edu/distancelearning/ .
- Martin Thompson, Online Classrooms Meet Growing Demand, International Herald Tribune, June 19, 2001, At http://www.iht.com/articles/23296.htm.
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[Additional note to the original author] In writing this article, we obtained the cooperation of Research Assistant Ms. Leslie Slavich (Georgetown University Law Center). I would like to express my gratitude in writing here.
(Assistant Professor, Keith Sun University of Illinois)
(No. , Hiroo Associate Professor, Kyushu University)