The Future of Legal Education:


Comparative Perspectives


This Course is Not Scheduled to be Taught During the Current
Academic Year




All students at the National Law School
of India are required to take three semesters
of clinical education.

Two law students from the National Law School of India enter the village community center to meet with clients. The community has placed a traditional welcoming design at the entrance for them.

Clark D. Cunningham
W. Lee Burge Professor of Law & Ethics
Office: Law School 442
Phone: (404) 413-9168
Fax: (404) 413-9225
Faculty Assistant: Karen P. Butler
    Room 402   (404) 413-9082 kpbutler@gsu.ed

Law 7599/53643 2 credits
Summer/Fall Semesters 2007

Web Site Address:

Class meeting times:
Fall: Wednesdays, 4:10 - 5:50 -- Room 653

Copyright 2007
Last updated: October 13, 2009


-- Draft Paper due at end of summer segment

-- Fieldwork in other countries

-- Final Paper (due November 26)
-- Independent Research Credit
-- Human Subjects Research

Resources about innovative legal education

Books on Reserve

Can the Carnegie Report Spark Fundamental Reforms of Legal Education?(powerpoint presentation or slides in pdf format)

International Conference on the Future of Legal Education (February 20 - 23, 2008)


Course Description

This is a one-time course linked to the College of Law's 25th Anniversary International Conference on the Future of Legal Education to be held in Spring 2008. Students will learn about the history and structure of American legal education and then evaluate reform proposals by studying innovative law schools in the United States and other countries. A central text will be the 2007 Report of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching: Educating Lawyers: Preparation for the Profession of Law. Students may apply for an additional 1-2 credit hours of Independent Research in order to write a proposed chapter for the book to be published from the proceedings of the 2008 Conference. A limited number of travel grants will be available for Independent Research students to visit law schools overseas that are the subject of their proposed book chapter and to work with their potential co-authors on the faculty of those schools. The course will be taught in two segments: Summer 2007 and Fall 2007. The summer segment will enable interested students to present Independent Research proposals. Approved Independent Research students will then be encouraged to conduct their fieldwork before Fall 2007 and present their findings in the Fall segment. Students who do not conduct fieldwork will complete their papers using conventional research resources.

Potential fieldwork sites include innovative law schools in Argentina, Columbia, Australia, Scotland, South Africa, and India..

Professor Cunningham is a leading American scholar on the legal system of India and has consulted around the world on reform in legal education. He has been a visiting scholar at the Indian Law Institute, Sichuan University (China), the University of Sydney (Australia), University of Palermo (Argentina), and the National Law School of India. He directed a three year Ford Foundation project to support the development of human rights clinics in Indian law schools and was recently elected as Convenor of the Global Alliance for Justice Education, an organization of over 450 law teachers, lawyers and civic leaders from more than 50 countries on every continent working to promote justice through legal education. In 2006 he was admitted to membership in The Society of Writers to Her Majesty's Signet in recognition of his work which is leading to fundamental changes in the ways client relationship skills are taught in Great Britain. He was at the time only the second American to become a member of The Society, the oldest professional association of lawyers in the world, which is charged with custody of the royal seal of the British monarchy.

Prerequisites. This course is open to all law students. No specific courses are required as prerequisites.. Enrollment is limited and by permission of Professor Cunningham. Students must submit an application (click here to view application). Students will be admitted to the course as applications are received, so interested students are encouraged to apply immediately.

Grading: The course grade will be based on the draft paper submitted at the end of the Summer segment (30%), the final paper submitted at the end of the Fall segment (50%), and on class participation (20%). The final paper should be at least 25 pages (double-spaced) and of publishable quality.

Class Schedule:
Fall 2007:

Wednesday, August 22: 4:10 - 5:50
Wednesday, August 29: 4:10 - 5:50
Wednesday, September 5: No class
Thereafter: To be announced

Required Materials :

Susan K. Boyd, The ABA's First Section: Assuring a Qualified Bar (American Bar Association 1993) (purchase from Karen Butler)

Educating Lawyers: Preparation for the Profession of Law (March 2007)
By William M. Sullivan, Anne Colby, Judith Welch Wegner, Lloyd Bond, Lee S. Shulman
Jossey-Bass ISBN: 978-0-7879-8261-4 Hardcover
Publisher's List Price: $40.00
"Educating Lawyers is no doubt the best work on the analysis and reform of legal education that I have ever read. There is a call for deep changes in the way law is taught, and I believe that it will be a landmark in the history of legal education."—Bryant G. Garth, dean and professor of law, Southwestern Law School and former director of the American Bar Foundation

Other: All other readings will be distributed in class or through the course web site.