Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

A forum for applicants and admitted students to ask law students and graduates about law school and the practice of law.
User avatar
guano
Posts: 2268
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 9:49 am

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby guano » Mon Jul 01, 2013 11:41 am

jwinaz wrote:Wow, leave it to TLSers to go crazy with answers and debate! :o

...In terms of the whole making law an undergrad degree, I remember reading that law school tuition subsidizes many universities' lesser funded departments. So, they are sort of money-making machines for many schools. I'm totally for an undergrad law degree, but then universities would have to figure out how to make up the lost revenue (not to mention faculty having to take less money).

Maybe I'm cynical, but I think these big powerful institutions would want to protect their power and money. ... :roll: But perhaps if there was a large enough chorus of voices advocating for change something could be done.

Nope - as long as enough people are willing to pay the price, tuition won't drop

User avatar
scifiguy
Posts: 575
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:41 pm

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby scifiguy » Mon Jul 01, 2013 12:32 pm

I don't know if a straight up UG law degree would work. I think what that other person proposed in my other thraed would work maybe. I think a UG law degree + one- year of grad study (where studetns fight it out for grades or doing some advanced research of some sort and where biglaw could recruit) could work.

If you made law only a BA, then how would biglaw differentiate folks? There'd be sooo many law BAs. You could use UG law to weed people out (like UG pre-med). And only the top GPAs + LSAT get to attend a one-year law grad program.

User avatar
guano
Posts: 2268
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 9:49 am

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby guano » Mon Jul 01, 2013 1:10 pm

scifiguy wrote:I don't know if a straight up UG law degree would work. I think what that other person proposed in my other thraed would work maybe. I think a UG law degree + one- year of grad study (where studetns fight it out for grades or doing some advanced research of some sort and where biglaw could recruit) could work.

If you made law only a BA, then how would biglaw differentiate folks? There'd be sooo many law BAs. You could use UG law to weed people out (like UG pre-med). And only the top GPAs + LSAT get to attend a one-year law grad program.

Outside of the US, law grads need to train under experienced attorneys.
Some states still allow this
It makes sense to require a JD where such training is not mandatory

User avatar
mindarmed
Posts: 959
Joined: Sun May 27, 2012 2:16 pm

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby mindarmed » Mon Jul 01, 2013 10:04 pm

dj_spin wrote:I could teach you everything you need to know to do stresses and strains analysis of a truss bridge in two and a half-hours. Does this mean that no one should get a degree in civil engineering but should proceed to apprentice as a civil engineer and begin learning on the job? How about after a summer-long intensive course in drafting, mathematics for civil engineering, and of course, CAD?


(actual retard)

timbs4339
Posts: 2733
Joined: Sat Apr 02, 2011 12:19 pm

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby timbs4339 » Mon Jul 01, 2013 11:27 pm

IMO JCougar is closer to the mark than anyone else ITT. And I'm an appellate clerk- my job is mostly to sit around and "think like a lawyer."

Law school classes are a really inefficient way to teach. If you pour your heart and soul into it, you might learn something- Prof. Campos once summed it up as "a certain vocabulary, certain stylized forms of argument, certain rhetorical devices, certain modes of professional acculturation, and so forth." But if you're a biglawyer or a government lawyer, by the time you've reached any level where you'll be putting "thinking like a lawyer" into practice you won't know whether it was law school or your time in practice or just normal maturation that gave you those skills, never mind how much credit to assign to each. And if you're a small-time private practitioner, then what you learned is such a small aspect of what you do day to day that the investment of time and money vastly outweighs the benefits of that very limited skill. Working and observing a lawyer for three years would give the future small-time lawyer a much more well-rounded education.

For a long time law professors taught and students made a good faith effort to make sense of it all. Students were then ranked, got jobs, and since they weren't paying $40,000 a year, weren't particularly militant even if they didn't get exactly what they wanted. There's always been that cynical undercurrent of "what a waste of fucking time this is, what am I doing here" (you can find articles every few years) but it wasn't till a few years ago that this sentiment exploded. At that point, a lot of people from a lot of very good law schools were graduating with 150K and 200K of debt and no job. And people started asking: why, if law school teaches a mystical skill that you can't get anywhere else, does nobody want to hire law students?

User avatar
guano
Posts: 2268
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 9:49 am

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby guano » Mon Jul 01, 2013 11:41 pm

timbs4339 wrote: why, if law school teaches a mystical skill that you can't get anywhere else, does nobody want to hire law students?

If you think nobody wants to hire law students, take a look at the job market for sociology or poli sci majors

It's a universal trend - too many graduates, not enough jobs

timbs4339
Posts: 2733
Joined: Sat Apr 02, 2011 12:19 pm

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby timbs4339 » Tue Jul 02, 2013 12:04 am

guano wrote:
timbs4339 wrote: why, if law school teaches a mystical skill that you can't get anywhere else, does nobody want to hire law students?

If you think nobody wants to hire law students, take a look at the job market for sociology or poli sci majors

It's a universal trend - too many graduates, not enough jobs


But I thought it was a versatile degree that taught skills prized by many employers outside law!

User avatar
dj_spin
Posts: 40
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2009 12:12 am

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby dj_spin » Tue Jul 02, 2013 1:09 am

armedwithamind wrote:
dj_spin wrote:I could teach you everything you need to know to do stresses and strains analysis of a truss bridge in two and a half-hours. Does this mean that no one should get a degree in civil engineering but should proceed to apprentice as a civil engineer and begin learning on the job? How about after a summer-long intensive course in drafting, mathematics for civil engineering, and of course, CAD?


(actual retard)

Not sure what to say to this. I know what I'm talking about.

timbs4339 wrote:IMO JCougar is closer to the mark than anyone else ITT. And I'm an appellate clerk- my job is mostly to sit around and "think like a lawyer."

Law school classes are a really inefficient way to teach. If you pour your heart and soul into it, you might learn something- Prof. Campos once summed it up as "a certain vocabulary, certain stylized forms of argument, certain rhetorical devices, certain modes of professional acculturation, and so forth." But if you're a biglawyer or a government lawyer, by the time you've reached any level where you'll be putting "thinking like a lawyer" into practice you won't know whether it was law school or your time in practice or just normal maturation that gave you those skills, never mind how much credit to assign to each. And if you're a small-time private practitioner, then what you learned is such a small aspect of what you do day to day that the investment of time and money vastly outweighs the benefits of that very limited skill. Working and observing a lawyer for three years would give the future small-time lawyer a much more well-rounded education.

For a long time law professors taught and students made a good faith effort to make sense of it all. Students were then ranked, got jobs, and since they weren't paying $40,000 a year, weren't particularly militant even if they didn't get exactly what they wanted. There's always been that cynical undercurrent of "what a waste of fucking time this is, what am I doing here" (you can find articles every few years) but it wasn't till a few years ago that this sentiment exploded. At that point, a lot of people from a lot of very good law schools were graduating with 150K and 200K of debt and no job. And people started asking: why, if law school teaches a mystical skill that you can't get anywhere else, does nobody want to hire law students?


Not sure what to say to this either. My whole point about truss bridges and stresses and strains is that the perception that law is "a certain vocabulary, certain stylized forms of argument, certain rhetorical devices, certain modes of professional acculturation, and so forth" and that civil engineering or mathematics or medicine aren't is just an illusion. I hate to burst your bubble in case you thought that there was a categorical difference between learning the specialized language of mathematics and the specialized language of legal argument.

Anyway, they do talk about math majors learning to think like mathematicians by the way. Try and solve a very difficult proof. Absolutely nothing about the formal knowledge of symbol manipulation will help you to solve it. Only having thought creatively about all the ways in which those manipulations can interact in new and unexpected ways (much like learning a new syntax, grammar or language) will make you capable of solving hard mathematical proofs.

Law is the same.

QED

timbs4339
Posts: 2733
Joined: Sat Apr 02, 2011 12:19 pm

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby timbs4339 » Tue Jul 02, 2013 11:03 am

dj_spin wrote:
armedwithamind wrote:
dj_spin wrote:I could teach you everything you need to know to do stresses and strains analysis of a truss bridge in two and a half-hours. Does this mean that no one should get a degree in civil engineering but should proceed to apprentice as a civil engineer and begin learning on the job? How about after a summer-long intensive course in drafting, mathematics for civil engineering, and of course, CAD?


(actual retard)

Not sure what to say to this. I know what I'm talking about.

timbs4339 wrote:IMO JCougar is closer to the mark than anyone else ITT. And I'm an appellate clerk- my job is mostly to sit around and "think like a lawyer."

Law school classes are a really inefficient way to teach. If you pour your heart and soul into it, you might learn something- Prof. Campos once summed it up as "a certain vocabulary, certain stylized forms of argument, certain rhetorical devices, certain modes of professional acculturation, and so forth." But if you're a biglawyer or a government lawyer, by the time you've reached any level where you'll be putting "thinking like a lawyer" into practice you won't know whether it was law school or your time in practice or just normal maturation that gave you those skills, never mind how much credit to assign to each. And if you're a small-time private practitioner, then what you learned is such a small aspect of what you do day to day that the investment of time and money vastly outweighs the benefits of that very limited skill. Working and observing a lawyer for three years would give the future small-time lawyer a much more well-rounded education.

For a long time law professors taught and students made a good faith effort to make sense of it all. Students were then ranked, got jobs, and since they weren't paying $40,000 a year, weren't particularly militant even if they didn't get exactly what they wanted. There's always been that cynical undercurrent of "what a waste of fucking time this is, what am I doing here" (you can find articles every few years) but it wasn't till a few years ago that this sentiment exploded. At that point, a lot of people from a lot of very good law schools were graduating with 150K and 200K of debt and no job. And people started asking: why, if law school teaches a mystical skill that you can't get anywhere else, does nobody want to hire law students?


Not sure what to say to this either. My whole point about truss bridges and stresses and strains is that the perception that law is "a certain vocabulary, certain stylized forms of argument, certain rhetorical devices, certain modes of professional acculturation, and so forth" and that civil engineering or mathematics or medicine aren't is just an illusion. I hate to burst your bubble in case you thought that there was a categorical difference between learning the specialized language of mathematics and the specialized language of legal argument.

Anyway, they do talk about math majors learning to think like mathematicians by the way. Try and solve a very difficult proof. Absolutely nothing about the formal knowledge of symbol manipulation will help you to solve it. Only having thought creatively about all the ways in which those manipulations can interact in new and unexpected ways (much like learning a new syntax, grammar or language) will make you capable of solving hard mathematical proofs.

Law is the same.

QED


You haven't even begun to show what the "specialized language" of legal argument is and how it differs from regular argument. That's without even getting into whether law school actually teaches you that language, if it does so efficiently, and if simply following around a lawyer for three years could help learn not only that specialized language, but much more.

There is an important pedagogical difference. In math, the sciences, or in language, you learn a foundation and then you build on that foundation. At your job, you would have little opportunity to learn that foundation because it is assumed that you have it. For example, in learning a language, you start out pronouncing the sounds, then learn simple sentences and how they are constructed, learn the types of nouns and verbs and other such things. When you move to another country, nobody even acknowledges their existences. It's assumed you have this foundation.

In law school, there is no foundation. You are practicing the same skill on the first day of class as you do on the last day. In other words, you are dumped right into the foreign country and start speaking the language immediately, poorly, but immediately. If that's what lawyers do, then there is no reason that actually practicing as a lawyer and doing that skill every day for three years won't produce better results than doing it in a classroom setting.

jwinaz
Posts: 179
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 6:03 pm

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby jwinaz » Tue Jul 02, 2013 12:57 pm

scifiguy wrote:
Uusally graduate schools are a more intense study of something covered in UG...but there isn't a law BA you can study/get in UG. You're not really advancing the frontiers of legal knowledge in a JD. You're literally learning the subject and how to do it for the first time.


I think this is key.

If law isn't the advanced study of anything, then why is it a graduate program at all (compared to all the other grad programs out there)? I never understood as a kid why they had the "doctorate" part of the JD. And now this makes me wonder more. Should it just be a bachelor's?

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse
Posts: 22835
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Tue Jul 02, 2013 1:32 pm

jwinaz wrote:I think this is key.

If law isn't the advanced study of anything, then why is it a graduate program at all (compared to all the other grad programs out there)? I never understood as a kid why they had the "doctorate" part of the JD. And now this makes me wonder more. Should it just be a bachelor's?


See earlier in the thread:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:The JD in the states used to be a BA, but lawyers eventually got it changed to a JD because a graduate degree looks fancier. (No, seriously, especially once more and more people were going to college, it was a way to elevate the profession and keep it more "elite.")

User avatar
sinfiery
Posts: 3308
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2011 2:55 am

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby sinfiery » Tue Jul 02, 2013 3:20 pm

Isn't the bar testing for a specific set of base knowledge? It may not be difficult but most fields aren't.




Is the actual practice of law more competitive than other jobs? Rarely do you see other fields where a professional competes against a professional. (Doctors, lawyers, engineers, etc)
In movies/court rooms this seems to be the case but is it so in practice?

timbs4339
Posts: 2733
Joined: Sat Apr 02, 2011 12:19 pm

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby timbs4339 » Tue Jul 02, 2013 3:29 pm

sinfiery wrote:Isn't the bar testing for a specific set of base knowledge? It may not be difficult but most fields aren't.




Is the actual practice of law more competitive than other jobs? Rarely do you see other fields where a professional competes against a professional. (Doctors, lawyers, engineers, etc)
In movies/court rooms this seems to be the case but is it so in practice?


You'd be more likely to pass the bar with bar prep classes and no law school than with law school and no bar prep.

User avatar
stillwater
Posts: 3811
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2011 2:59 pm

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby stillwater » Tue Jul 02, 2013 4:12 pm

i thought lawl school teaches you a passion for the lawl

User avatar
scifiguy
Posts: 575
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:41 pm

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby scifiguy » Tue Jul 02, 2013 8:47 pm

sinfiery wrote:Isn't the bar testing for a specific set of base knowledge? It may not be difficult but most fields aren't.

Is the actual practice of law more competitive than other jobs? Rarely do you see other fields where a professional competes against a professional. (Doctors, lawyers, engineers, etc)
In movies/court rooms this seems to be the case but is it so in practice?


I'm 0L, so can't say too much about the bar. But isn't it just a small set of laws/facts you memorize?

Whereas, in a traditional field of study, you learn stuff from years and years of work that gets tested. E.g., PhDs have to pass some kind of candidacy/field exam prior to beginning their research.....if you take math....the stuff you learn all the way back in kindergarten on up builds on itself.

From the articles I linked to about con artist Frank Abagnale, he said he took two months to study and passed the bar (having never attended law school). You couldn't pass a PhD candidacy exam for history...philosophy....chemistry, etc. with only two months of studying.

As for competition, that does seem to make law school uniquely tough. But I wouldn't say other fields aren't competitive. You may not have career-killing curves in medical school, but the competition to get into medical school with the pre-med curve can be tough. All sorts of professionals compete directly (from big/small businesses to athletes, to PhDs on tenure-track ...and so on), but I think it may stand out more apparently with law for some reason.

User avatar
guano
Posts: 2268
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 9:49 am

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby guano » Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:44 pm

scifiguy wrote:
sinfiery wrote:Isn't the bar testing for a specific set of base knowledge? It may not be difficult but most fields aren't.

Is the actual practice of law more competitive than other jobs? Rarely do you see other fields where a professional competes against a professional. (Doctors, lawyers, engineers, etc)
In movies/court rooms this seems to be the case but is it so in practice?


I'm 0L, so can't say too much about the bar. But isn't it just a small set of laws/facts you memorize?

Whereas, in a traditional field of study, you learn stuff from years and years of work that gets tested. E.g., PhDs have to pass some kind of candidacy/field exam prior to beginning their research.....if you take math....the stuff you learn all the way back in kindergarten on up builds on itself.

From the articles I linked to about con artist Frank Abagnale, he said he took two months to study and passed the bar (having never attended law school). You couldn't pass a PhD candidacy exam for history...philosophy....chemistry, etc. with only two months of studying.

As for competition, that does seem to make law school uniquely tough. But I wouldn't say other fields aren't competitive. You may not have career-killing curves in medical school, but the competition to get into medical school with the pre-med curve can be tough. All sorts of professionals compete directly (from big/small businesses to athletes, to PhDs on tenure-track ...and so on), but I think it may stand out more apparently with law for some reason.

If you knew that the history or philosophy exam would only cover X, Y and Z, I don't know why you couldn't. As an example, the CFA institute suggests 250 hours to prepare for their exam, and that is some hard shit (37% pass rate)

User avatar
nothingtosee
Posts: 865
Joined: Tue May 03, 2011 12:08 am

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby nothingtosee » Tue Jul 02, 2013 11:00 pm

Making law a bachelors isn't going to work out...
...because the top schools (HYP, etc.) aren't going to offer a vocational degree. They could offer finance in a business school for undergrads if they want to. They don't. And they aren't going to offer a law bachelors for the same reason.

Whether that reason is "because they can" or "because they want to open young people's minds" or "you're too young to make this career decision now and how would this work for older graduates," if the top schools aren't minting the top lawyers, it won't work out.

Counterpoint: (But Goldman loves Princeton grads now, so why won't Skadden love Yale philosophy majors when the law BA goes into effect)

User avatar
scifiguy
Posts: 575
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:41 pm

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby scifiguy » Tue Jul 02, 2013 11:06 pm

^^^I'm not going to speak too much more on this, b/c I don't know too much about the bar.

I'm going to speculatively disagree that you can learn everything you need to know from scratch to pass a PhD candidacy exam in 60 days. But that's a "weak" disagree, b/c I ultimately don't know.

I do have several friends and relatives who have either done a PhD or are donig their's right now, so I could ask them for further info. My history PhD friend (UCLA grad program) told me that one of his professors told him the first semester of grad school that he should be averaging roughly a book a day (4-5 days a week) for the next two years straight to sufficiently be ready for his candidacy exams. The good thing is that many of the books they read in normal coursework would overlap with what they'd need to know. But there are a bunch that don't as well and they have to read them on their own. But the cumulative list of works they'll be tested on and need to do good research is massive .....I wouldn't think you could read all of that and process it with analysis in just 60 days. Reading is one thing (which I still don't think you could do), but you have to actually digest it and analyze it to be able to go beyond facts and discuss it intelligently as well.

I have another friend doing an electrical engineering PhD at Carnegie Mellon (top 5 engineering), who I can ask as well. I would speculate that you simply cannot learn everything you need to know for your candidacy exams in 60 days.

With the bar exam, from Frank Abagnale's story and Elie Mystal's article, it seems you can learn everything in six weeks to several months to pass it. But I don't know, becuase I haven't taken it. so I won't say more at this ponit.

User avatar
guano
Posts: 2268
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 9:49 am

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby guano » Tue Jul 02, 2013 11:23 pm

scifiguy wrote:^^^I'm not going to speak too much more on this, b/c I don't know too much about the bar.

I'm going to speculatively disagree that you can learn everything you need to know from scratch to pass a PhD candidacy exam in 60 days. But that's a "weak" disagree, b/c I ultimately don't know.

I do have several friends and relatives who have either done a PhD or are donig their's right now, so I could ask them for further info. My history PhD friend (UCLA grad program) told me that one of his professors told him the first semester of grad school that he should be averaging roughly a book a day (4-5 days a week) for the next two years straight to sufficiently be ready for his candidacy exams. The good thing is that many of the books they read in normal coursework would overlap with what they'd need to know. But there are a bunch that don't as well and they have to read them on their own. But the cumulative list of works they'll be tested on and need to do good research is massive .....I wouldn't think you could read all of that and process it with analysis in just 60 days. Reading is one thing (which I still don't think you could do), but you have to actually digest it and analyze it to be able to go beyond facts and discuss it intelligently as well.

I have another friend doing an electrical engineering PhD at Carnegie Mellon (top 5 engineering), who I can ask as well. I would speculate that you simply cannot learn everything you need to know for your candidacy exams in 60 days.

With the bar exam, from Frank Abagnale's story and Elie Mystal's article, it seems you can learn everything in six weeks to several months to pass it. But I don't know, becuase I haven't taken it. so I won't say more at this ponit.

A PhD is not one exam. I'm sure that for any one single exam a highly intelligent person could learn it all in two months.
Also keep in mind that a PhD often requires individual research and/or publication, which doesn't compare. Case in point, my brother has a PhD in something medical (he's a surgeon). To my knowledge, he only had one examination, and that was related to the research that he had done and the articles he had published. Even then, I believe that with his notes, studies and clinical trial results, with two months of full time prep I could have taken the exam.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to diminish his accomplishments, but the real work was in designing the studies, running the trials , analyzing the results, and publishing the articles. The exam was almost an afterthought.

Same can be said for my cousin's history PhD - his research, publications and lectures are what it was about.

User avatar
scifiguy
Posts: 575
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:41 pm

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby scifiguy » Tue Jul 02, 2013 11:42 pm

^^^I think there's some possible cnofusion?? over what I said.

I did not mean to imply that a PhD is obtained based on an examination. It's a combinatino of things culminating in original research that produces new knowledge in the field.

But leading up to that research and dissertation defense is a candidacy exam/qualifying exam/field exam (called diff. things in diff. programs) that you must pass in order to even get into the reserach phase. I guess I was just taking that exam to compare to the bar exam (sorry if that was confusing).

Whtehr or not that's a good analogy/comparison is up for debate. I'm just saying that to even qualify to do research, you must have passed a competency exam that I believe is more rigorous, useful (to the field....i.e., you cannot do electrical engineering PhD research without those two years of course work...same with English lit., etc.), and comprehensive than the bar exam. I think another poster earlier questined whether the bar exam cnotent was even useful for a lawyer?? Can't remember.

I think at debate here is whether or not a lawyer's training should really be a graduate program requiring three years and lots of money. As was stated before, JDs do not engage in advaned study of any topic (the way other graduate students/programs do), nor do they advance the frontiers of legal knowledge. They are literally learning the subject and how to do stuff for the very first time. So, my question was why is that not basically a UG degree (e.g. a BS in Statistics, a BA in Anthropology....and BS in Chem, etc.)? Why is it a "graduate degree" is what I was asking?

User avatar
guano
Posts: 2268
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 9:49 am

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby guano » Wed Jul 03, 2013 12:01 am

scifiguy wrote:^^^I think there's some possible cnofusion?? over what I said.

I did not mean to imply that a PhD is obtained based on an examination. It's a combinatino of things culminating in original research that produces new knowledge in the field.

But leading up to that research and dissertation defense is a candidacy exam/qualifying exam/field exam (called diff. things in diff. programs) that you must pass in order to even get into the reserach phase. I guess I was just taking that exam to compare to the bar exam (sorry if that was confusing).

Whtehr or not that's a good analogy/comparison is up for debate. I'm just saying that to even qualify to do research, you must have passed a competency exam that I believe is more rigorous, useful (to the field....i.e., you cannot do electrical engineering PhD research without those two years of course work...same with English lit., etc.), and comprehensive than the bar exam. I think another poster earlier questined whether the bar exam cnotent was even useful for a lawyer?? Can't remember.

I think at debate here is whether or not a lawyer's training should really be a graduate program requiring three years and lots of money. As was stated before, JDs do not engage in advaned study of any topic (the way other graduate students/programs do), nor do they advance the frontiers of legal knowledge. They are literally learning the subject and how to do stuff for the very first time. So, my question was why is that not basically a UG degree (e.g. a BS in Statistics, a BA in Anthropology....and BS in Chem, etc.)? Why is it a "graduate degree" is what I was asking?

Because unlike a BA in bullshitilogy, you don't take a few classes related to your major and a bunch of classes in Mayan fingerprinting, Mongolian literature and zombie astrology (is there any other kind?)

Compare the US system to that in England, where a BA takes only three years, but you only take classes related to your field of study

User avatar
scifiguy
Posts: 575
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:41 pm

Re: Truth to Stereotype that "Top" LS Teach More Theory-based?

Postby scifiguy » Fri Jul 05, 2013 7:30 pm

^^^
I don't have any problems personally with universities' "General Education Requirements." Having breadth of knowledge and experience in a variety of subjects can be very helpful for life (and it can lead to students discovering some interest or skill they never knew they would have). But even having knowledge & skills of some other subject otuside of your major may help you do well in your own major as well. Different majors/subjects aren't so disconnected that there's no cross-pollination of knowledge/skills that can be gained.

It's the cost of education that I have an issue with. It's so much more nowadays than when my family's college grads went. I think the requirements for degrees as they traditionally stand are fine, however, as I said above.




Return to “Ask a Law Student / Graduate”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Londonbear, ModerateRisk and 4 guests