June 25, 2013

Washington & Lee's Revamped 3L Curriculum Appears to Make No Difference to Employment Outcomes

Stephen Diamond (Santa Clara) comments on a recent analysis by Deborah Merritt (Ohio State).

Posted by Brian Leiter on June 25, 2013 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

June 13, 2013

The MOOCs are coming...

...and it doesn't bode well for law schools.  Bar review courses have long been done via what were essentially "MOOCs," it would not be surprising were many law schools to start to incorporate them into core classes.  Of course, the so-called "Socratic" method of instruction is not feasible with a MOOC.

Posted by Brian Leiter on June 13, 2013 in Advice for Academic Job Seekers, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

May 08, 2013

Law faculty salaries 2012-13

Blog Emperor Caron breaks out the latest SALT data.

Posted by Brian Leiter on May 8, 2013 in Advice for Academic Job Seekers, Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

Decline in lateral hiring of faculty

The evidence.  Not surprising.

Posted by Brian Leiter on May 8, 2013 in Advice for Academic Job Seekers, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

April 29, 2013

Brooklyn Law's Dean Allard Replies to Concerns about Academic Freedom

On Friday, Dean Nicholas Allard at Brooklyn Law School, sent me a constructive reply to the concerns raised on Thursday about the proposed definition of "adequate cause" (and, in particular, "demonstrated incompetence") for termination of tenured faculty.  Dean Allard also kindly gave me permission to share his response with the academic community.  I post it below in its entirety:

I appreciate your acknowledgment of Brooklyn Law School as a school of long-standing and good reputation.  I also share, and applaud, your commitment to academic freedom, and I welcome a vigorous discussion about how best to achieve it.  It is a critical issue and a core value at Brooklyn Law School.

The recent change to our faculty regulations that you wrote about added the concept of “demonstrated incompetence,” which, as I understand it, is a long-recognized and widely accepted regulatory term supported by the AAUP and others.  Our regulations did not previously include any reference to “demonstrated incompetence.”

The definition of the term “demonstrated incompetence” that was also included in the new regulations was not meant to expand its scope, but quite the opposite: the intent was to offer additional language to clarify a term that seemed potentially vague without further explication.  The
particular language of the definition obviously has raised concerns and will be addressed.  To that end, I welcome further input from the faculty — and from other sources, like the AAUP, as referenced by the post on your blog — and that is exactly why the matter has been referred to our Faculty Hearing Committee for its review and guidance.

Last week I asked the Hearing Committee, which is the panel of BLS professors that applies internal regulations to tenured faculty, to review the definition for “adequate cause.”  Under our regulations, this committee assures that peers are responsible for performance review — an important safeguard of both due process and academic freedom.  I await their suggestions, concerns, and improvements, which I will take to our Board of Trustees to address. 

I have full confidence that faculty peers will apply the standard fairly and in alignment with Brooklyn Law School’s tradition of outstanding scholarship. 

I view this as welcome news, and will be interested to see the final standards that emerge from the process.  I think this will also be an instructive process for other academic institutions.

Posted by Brian Leiter on April 29, 2013 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

April 25, 2013

Academic freedom (and due process) under threat at Brooklyn Law School?

Details here.

Posted by Brian Leiter on April 25, 2013 in Advice for Academic Job Seekers, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

April 18, 2013

So which areas of law deserve more attention in the legal academy?

The results of our earlier poll, with over 200 votes cast:

1. Consumer Law  (Condorcet winner: wins contests with all other choices)
2. Energy Law/Natural Resources Law/Water Law  loses to Consumer Law by 109–73
3. Employment Law  loses to Consumer Law by 115–73, loses to Energy Law/Natural Resources Law/Water Law by 91–85
4. Alternative Dispute Resolution  loses to Consumer Law by 106–80, loses to Employment Law by 89–83
5. Immigration Law  loses to Consumer Law by 118–67, loses to Alternative Dispute Resolution by 87–86
6. Family Law  loses to Consumer Law by 123–61, loses to Immigration Law by 99–72
7. Insurance Law  loses to Consumer Law by 130–53, loses to Family Law by 100–77
8. Comparative Law  loses to Consumer Law by 117–68, loses to Insurance Law by 91–87
9. Elder Law  loses to Consumer Law by 135–47, loses to Comparative Law by 88–80
10. Wills, Trusts & Estates  loses to Consumer Law by 126–58, loses to Elder Law by 88–79

Thoughts from readers?  Signed comments only:  full name and valid e-mail address. 

Posted by Brian Leiter on April 18, 2013 in Advice for Academic Job Seekers, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice, Rankings | Permalink | Comments (1)

April 17, 2013

How hard are the different state bar exams?

This is informative.  Illinois's will be a bit harder to pass, but not a lot harder.

Posted by Brian Leiter on April 17, 2013 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink

April 15, 2013

Standard & Poor's Downgrades Albany Law School's Rating

Of course, the track record of these agencies is sufficiently poor that it's hard to know what to make of this, but it is still a "sign of the times," as it were.

Posted by Brian Leiter on April 15, 2013 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice, Student Advice | Permalink

April 11, 2013

Which areas of law deserve more attention/investment from law schools...

...in the form of more full-time faculty doing research in the area.  It's our topic du jour, so perhaps a poll of readers will prove informative.  No lobbying for votes by blogs in particular areas!  The poll only includes areas about which one hears with some regluarity concern that they are under-treated by law schools (so no constitutional law, corporate law, tax, criminal law, which almost all law schools are well-represented in or try to be).

When the results are in, I'll open them for discussion next week.

UPDATE:  Unfortunately, the Workplace Law blog linked to the poll, which resulted in a surge for employment law.  I've asked  them to remove the link, otherwise we will have to drop employment law from the results, which would be unfortunate.

Posted by Brian Leiter on April 11, 2013 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest, Professional Advice | Permalink