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Full-Text Articles in Law

Debating Is The Constitution Special?, Richard Primus, Kevin M. Stack, Christopher Serkin, Nelson Tebbe Sep 2017

Debating Is The Constitution Special?, Richard Primus, Kevin M. Stack, Christopher Serkin, Nelson Tebbe

Articles

In 1890, Louis Brandeis wrote The Right to Privacy. Within a matter of years, the courts began adopting his theory, creating a newly articulated legal right. This article likely represented the high-water mark of legal academia in terms of real world impact. In recent years, the academy has lost much of its relevance. Chief Justice Roberts ridiculed academic work, suggesting that legal scholarship has become esoteric and irrelevant. This should not be the case. The quality of legal scholars is higher than it has ever been—young scholars now often enter the academy with doctoral degrees in related fields. Likewise, technology …


Assignments With Intrinsic Lessons On Professionalism (Or, Teaching Students To Act Like Adults Without Sounding Like A Parent), Beth H. Wilensky Jan 2016

Assignments With Intrinsic Lessons On Professionalism (Or, Teaching Students To Act Like Adults Without Sounding Like A Parent), Beth H. Wilensky

Articles

There is little question that law schools ought to teach their students professionalism – indeed, they are required to do so to maintain accreditation. And there is little question that the required legal writing and research course is one of the places it ought to be taught. But teaching students to adopt the norms of professional behavior — both in law school and after graduation — is a challenge to law faculties, and particularly to the experiential learning faculty who frequently are on the front lines of teaching professionalism. While there are many ways to teach students what professional and …


When Should We Teach Our Students To Pay Attention To The Costs Of Legal Research?, Beth H. Wilensky Jan 2016

When Should We Teach Our Students To Pay Attention To The Costs Of Legal Research?, Beth H. Wilensky

Articles

It is axiomatic in legal research pedagogy that law schools should teach students how to conduct cost-effective legal research. To do that, we need to teach students to consider the amount of time and money their research requires, how paid legal research platforms like Westlaw and Lexis charge for their services, and how to research in an efficient and cost-sensitive way. But we shouldn’t do those things. Or at least, we shouldn’t do them at first. Instead, we should tell students not to worry about the costs of legal research during their first year of law school—with the possible exception …


Religious Shunning And The Beam In The Lawyer's Eye, Edward R. Becker Jan 2012

Religious Shunning And The Beam In The Lawyer's Eye, Edward R. Becker

Articles

Some LRW professors design assignments so that students begin learning fundamental legal skills in the context of issues of particular interest to the professor-–what Sue Liemer calls “teaching the law you love.” Recent articles have explained how this might work when applied to such varying matters as multiculturalism or transactional practice. But exposing LRW students to diversity of religious belief does not appear to have found as much traction, at least in the literature. This essay describes one attempt to design a problem that grounds students in just such a larger firmament, while not distracting students (or the professor) from …


Using Ethics Codes To Reinforce Lessons Of Statutory Interpretation, Edward R. Becker Jan 2008

Using Ethics Codes To Reinforce Lessons Of Statutory Interpretation, Edward R. Becker

Articles

To increase my students' exposure to statutory interpretation, I assign them early in the second semester to argue a motion to disqualify counsel based on imputed disqualification under Michigan's ethics ruls. Interpreting ethics rules involves many of the same "pure" statutory interpretation techniques I introduced the previous semester, and the students appear to easily make any needed translations. This exercise also helps prepare students to interpret other quasi-legislative authorities like court or evidentiary rules, administrative codes, and municipal ordinances.


Computer Models For Legal Prediction, Kevin D. Ashley, Stephanie Bruninghaus Jan 2006

Computer Models For Legal Prediction, Kevin D. Ashley, Stephanie Bruninghaus

Articles

Computerized algorithms for predicting the outcomes of legal problems can extract and present information from particular databases of cases to guide the legal analysis of new problems. They can have practical value despite the limitations that make reliance on predictions risky for other real-world purposes such as estimating settlement values. An algorithm's ability to generate reasonable legal arguments also is important. In this article, computerized prediction algorithms are compared not only in terms of accuracy, but also in terms of their ability to explain predictions and to integrate predictions and arguments. Our approach, the Issue-Based Prediction algorithm, is a program …


Capturing The Dialectic Between Principles And Cases, Kevin D. Ashley Jan 2004

Capturing The Dialectic Between Principles And Cases, Kevin D. Ashley

Articles

Theorists in ethics and law posit a dialectical relationship between principles and cases; abstract principles both inform and are informed by the decisions of specific cases. Until recently, however, it has not been possible to investigate or confirm this relationship empirically. This work involves a systematic study of a set of ethics cases written by a professional association's board of ethical review. Like judges, the board explains its decisions in opinions. It applies normative standards, namely principles from a code of ethics, and cites past cases. We hypothesized that the board's explanations of its decisions elaborated upon the meaning and …


Designing Electronic Casebooks That Talk Back: The Cato Program, Kevin D. Ashley Jan 2000

Designing Electronic Casebooks That Talk Back: The Cato Program, Kevin D. Ashley

Articles

Electronic casebooks offer important benefits of flexibility in control of presentation, connectivity, and interactivity. These additional degrees of freedom, however, also threaten to overwhelm students. If casebook authors and instructors are to achieve their pedagogical goals, they will need new methods for guiding students. This paper presents three such methods developed in an intelligent tutoring environment for engaging students in legal role-playing, making abstract concepts explicit and manipulable, and supporting pedagogical dialogues. This environment is built around a program known as CATO, which employs artificial intelligence techniques to teach first-year law students how to make basic legal arguments with cases. …


The Gift Of Language, Joseph Vining Jan 1998

The Gift Of Language, Joseph Vining

Articles

Style and substance cross-are genetically related as we now might want to say. Each draws on and is implied by the other. One point at which they cross is our sense of the nature of human language, what language is and can be, what it is not and can never be. The language of law is part of human language. Law is a distinctive form of thought, but it lives in human language. "Rule" might be thought synonymous with "law," but for all its talk of rules, the practice of law does not begin with a descriptive statement, or a …


Selecting And Designing Effective Legal Writing Problems, Grace C. Tonner, Diana Pratt Jan 1997

Selecting And Designing Effective Legal Writing Problems, Grace C. Tonner, Diana Pratt

Articles

Legal research and writing courses are unlike most substantive first year law school classes in that they teach using the problem method. The success of a legal writing course depends on the quality of the problems. The purpose of this article is to provide some guidance for legal writing professors in designing legal writing problems. The article addresses (1) general considerations in problem design, (2) designing expository problems, (3) designing persuasive problems, and (4) sources of problems. In the first section, we discuss problem design as it relates to the overall goals for teaching the basic forms of legal analysis, …


Theorists' Belief: A Comment On The Moral Tradition Of American Constitutionalism, Jospeh Vining Jan 1996

Theorists' Belief: A Comment On The Moral Tradition Of American Constitutionalism, Jospeh Vining

Articles

The Moral Tradition of American Constitutionalism is one of those rare works that leads us to face, at the center of law and legal thought, the largest questions about human life and human purpose. There is a special reader's shudder, a certain gestural shift in the chair, reserved for that moment of realizing where one is being led-not to the edge, but to the center, so that the questions become insistent, and whatever we and others say and do in the face of them becomes our response to them.


Judging The Judges: Three Opinions, James Boyd White Jan 1990

Judging The Judges: Three Opinions, James Boyd White

Articles

For some time I have been working on the problem of judicial criticism, focusing especially on the question: What is it in the work of a judge that leads us to admire a judicial opinion with the result of which we disagree, or to condemn an opinion that "comes out" the way we would do if we were charged with the responsibility of decision? The response I have been making is that this kind of judicial excellence (and its opposite too) lies in the sort of social and intellectual action in which the opinion engages: in the character the court …


Generalization In Interpretive Theory, Joseph Vining Jan 1990

Generalization In Interpretive Theory, Joseph Vining

Articles

There are arguments at large about the nature of legal interpretation, proceeding from an implicit proposition that interpretation is the same phenomenon or experience whatever its setting. An assumption that there is one phenomenon can be found in discussions among lawyers of interpretation and in discussions among nonlawyers of legal interpretation-and as often in the work of those who would deny there is any significance to theorizing about interpretation, as of those who think persuasion to a particular theory will have the utmost consequence for law and society. Proceeding from such a proposition, rather than toward it, raises the risk …


Justice And The Bureaucratization Of Appellate Courts, Joseph Vining Jan 1982

Justice And The Bureaucratization Of Appellate Courts, Joseph Vining

Articles

The author notes the growing bureaucratization of appellate justice in the United States and, in particular, the drafting of opinions by law clerks rather than by judges. Taking the Supreme Court of the United States as an example, and comparing its internal procedure with that of large administrative agencies, he questions whether the method of analysis familiarly used by lawyers to arrive at an authoritative statement of law is applicable to legal texts bureaucratically produced. He suggests that legal method and its presuppositions are ultimately associated with the authority of law, and concludes that there may be critical losses not …


Justice, Bureaucracy, And Legal Method, Jospeh Vining Dec 1981

Justice, Bureaucracy, And Legal Method, Jospeh Vining

Articles

In the real world justice denied is not justice. Talking from the beginning about access to justice, rather than simply justice, emphasizes in a salutary way this commonplace of citizen and client. Justice that is inaccessible, delayed, refused does not just sit there glowing like a grail, which those separated from it may contemplate and yearn for. It is only in imagining that justice is available to someone, and in imagining what it would be like to be that someone, that one can see the thing as justice at all. To put it in economic terms, justice is not a …