Law School Discussion

Anon LS Dean here taking questions...

Anon LS Dean here taking questions...
« on: January 19, 2006, 10:02:33 AM »
I hope my participation in this message board can enliven the debates many of you have.
Please feel free to ask any question.  I am a Dean at an ABA accredited law school with many years experience.

zemog

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Re: Anon LS Dean here taking questions...
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2006, 10:16:14 AM »
Why be anonymous?  If you really are a dean, you lose credibility when you do this and say you are one.  It's like saying you are a professional runner or famous coach on a running forum without listing any credentials to verify.

Re: Anon LS Dean here taking questions...
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2006, 07:49:14 PM »
Why be anonymous?  If you really are a dean, you lose credibility when you do this and say you are one.  It's like saying you are a professional runner or famous coach on a running forum without listing any credentials to verify.

I prefer it this way because many users would suredly poke fun at my law school.
However, I assure you that this is legit and I wish the best for all my future brothers and sisters in the law.

P.S.  Serious questions only.

nate

Re: Anon LS Dean here taking questions...
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2006, 07:56:05 PM »
many have criticized the "elitist institution" of legal academia. they have claimed that professors continue the (arguably) inefficient and negative teaching-model that is the socratic method, purely because it's how they succeeded in law school, and thus feel all that are going to succeed should do so through the same system that they do.

i am sympathetic to this argument, though i will admit, if it doesn't change i can deal with that just fine too.

i guess what i want to know is, why do schools continue to place such a strong emphasis on socratic method? why don't schools get more creative and pressure their professors to give their students periodic tests throughout the semester, or write papers for grades during 1L classes?

from what you say about people "joking" about your school, i'm assuming it's a lower-tier school, so that raises another question. why don't lower tiered schools get more creative with this stuff? is it an over-arching desire to be as much like the higher ranked schoools, as possible?

Re: Anon LS Dean here taking questions...
« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2006, 07:58:40 PM »
"Suredly" you don't expect us to believe that a law school dean can't spell "surely."

Wild Jack Maverick

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Re: Anon LS Dean here taking questions...
« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2006, 08:30:04 PM »
"Suredly" you don't expect us to believe that a law school dean can't spell "surely."

Anonymous Dean is in good company. "Suredly" is a term used in old literature and poetry, biblical writing, case law and a variety of other sources.

Wild Jack Maverick

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Re: Anon LS Dean here taking questions...
« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2006, 08:31:07 PM »
I should probably specialize in Defense....

Re: Anon LS Dean here taking questions...
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2006, 08:57:11 PM »
"Suredly" you don't expect us to believe that a law school dean can't spell "surely."

Anonymous Dean is in good company. "Suredly" is a term used in old literature and poetry, biblical writing, case law and a variety of other sources.

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=suredly

Re: Anon LS Dean here taking questions...
« Reply #8 on: January 19, 2006, 09:08:19 PM »
i guess what i want to know is, why do schools continue to place such a strong emphasis on socratic method? why don't schools get more creative and pressure their professors to give their students periodic tests throughout the semester, or write papers for grades during 1L classes?


That is the way it has always been and always will be.  Remember, this method teaches one to think.

You answered your own question as far as the "lowered-tier" comment.

I am old and "suredly" was what I grew up with.

nate

Re: Anon LS Dean here taking questions...
« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2006, 09:34:11 PM »
i guess what i want to know is, why do schools continue to place such a strong emphasis on socratic method? why don't schools get more creative and pressure their professors to give their students periodic tests throughout the semester, or write papers for grades during 1L classes?


That is the way it has always been and always will be.  Remember, this method teaches one to think.

You answered your own question as far as the "lowered-tier" comment.

I am old and "suredly" was what I grew up with.


I'm going to have to disagree. Granted I'm only a 1L, but I've already noticed a HUGE difference between last semester and this one. Last semester we were called on radomly- were expected to know all of the facts, the legal rule, all of the legal reasoning, the holding, etc, on the spot. It put so much pressure on us that we almost couldn't learn.

This semester, however, most professors have switched over to calling on people in alphabetical order. Obviously, it's more relaxed. However, those who are truly concerned with learning are able to read cases in order to learn, rather than read cases in order to get called on. Now our conversations in regards to the law, in my experience anyways, are much more lively and engaging before and after class. We're actually dedicated to what we learn, rather than being nervous about being put on the spot.

The socratic method is the way it's been, not always, but for a long while. And yes, being put on the spot teaches one to think, in some regards. But being put in a positive and cooperative environment also teaches one to think; often in a more efficient manner. In fact, I'd be willing to say that most people in my school would say that the Socratic method is more of a hinderance to learning than other alternative methods. What that's worth, I honestly don't know.

Is there no possible compromise or balance among such competing views? Must it always be purely socratic?