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Future of Legal Education: Draft Report and Recommendations Sept. 2013

Submitted by Bucky Askew on Mon, 11-18-2013
Long title
ABA Task Force on the Future of Legal Education: Draft Report and Recommendations (September 2013)
Author(s) or Editor(s)
ABA Task Force on the Future of Legal Education
Author(s)' contact information
United States
This is one of a series of working documents created in the course of the Task
Force’s deliberations. It is neither the final report of the Task Force Report
nor a document that reflects the policy of the American Bar Association.
The American legal profession, the nation’s law schools, the American Bar
Association, the states’ Supreme Courts, and others have collaborated over several
generations to create a system of legal education widely admired around the world.
The system is decentralized, involves both private and public actors, and is
grounded in the J.D. programs of ABA-approved law schools. At present, the system
faces considerable pressure because of the price many students pay, the large
amounts of student debt, consecutive years of sharply falling applications, and
dramatic changes, possibly structural, in the jobs available to law graduates. These
have resulted in real economic stresses on law schools, damage to career and
economic prospects of many recent graduates, and diminished public confidence in
the system of legal education. The predicament of so many students and recent
graduates who may never procure the sort of employment they anticipated when
they enrolled in their law schools has been particularly compelling.
The Task Force on the Future of Legal Education has been charged to examine
current problems and conditions in American legal education and present
recommendations that are workable and have a reasonable chance of broad
acceptance. This draft Report and Recommendations constitutes the conclusions of
the Task Force about the problems and their potential solutions.
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