Here at Texas Tech University School of Law we are gearing up for our ABA site inspection. In the past few years the ABA has required law schools to create “Learning Outcomes.” Here’s the language from Section 3.02:
A law school shall establish learning outcomes that shall, at a minimum, include competency in the following:
(a) Knowledge and understanding of substantive and procedural law;
(b) Legal analysis and reasoning, legal research, problem-solving, and written and oral communication in the legal context;
(c) Exercise of proper professional and ethical responsibilities to clients and the legal system; and
(d) Other professional skills needed for competent and ethical participation as a member of the legal profession.
This is the first year that the site teams will be evaluating a law school’s compliance with the new standard. We knew it was coming and I have been on a committee for the past three years that has been trying to translate this standard into operation. While I believe we have done a good job with it, I also believe the standard to be of questionable value.