JD learning outcomes

Program goal #1:    Knowledge of the law

Our students will develop integrated knowledge of legal theory, the core elements of substantive legal doctrine, procedural rules, and specialized legal topics.

Learning outcomes:
  1. Knowledge of the black-letter law in the core areas of doctrine included in the mandatory curriculum.
  2. Demonstrate knowledge of substantive and procedural law on specialized topics within the individual student’s areas of interest.
  3. Explain and differentiate among key conceptual categories of law (public/private, civil/criminal, etc.).
  4. Recognize the law’s theoretical frameworks and trace their influence on the development of substantive doctrine.

Program goal #2:    Critical legal analysis

Our students will learn to read texts critically, and to analyze and apply law from diverse sources including case law, statutes, regulations, constitutions, and treaties.

Learning outcomes:
  1. Analyze and explain primary and secondary legal sources, and demonstrate the ability to synthesize the rules, standards, and policies in those sources.
  2. Identify the legal issues presented in fact patterns and apply legal rules to resolve problems.
  3. Evaluate critically the operation of legal rules, policies, and institutions in our society.

Program goal #3:    Lawyering skills

Our students will become skilled in legal research, written and oral communication, teamwork, advocacy, and problem-solving.

Learning outcomes:
  1. Conduct thorough and accurate legal research, produce high-quality legal writing of various forms, and engage in effective oral communication.
  2. Demonstrate the interpersonal skills necessary to work effectively with clients, colleagues, and others in professional contexts.
  3. Demonstrate the ability to combine relevant skills and legal knowledge in order to work effectively on behalf of clients in different practice settings.

Program goal #4:    Ethics and values of the legal profession

Our students will be ethical lawyers, adhering to the rules that govern lawyers’ conduct as well as the values that guide our profession, including a commitment to the rule of law, access to justice, and public service.

Learning outcomes:
  1. Master the rules of professional conduct, and recognize and resolve common ethical pitfalls.
  2. Demonstrate a commitment to serving the public, including through pro bono legal work.
  3. Demonstrate an understanding of the lack of access to justice in our society, and of the key roles that lawyers can play in addressing access-to-justice needs.
  4. Demonstrate an understanding of the rule of law and the essential role that lawyers play in upholding it.

Program goal #5:    Professionalism

Our students will empathize with and respect those affected by their work, take ownership of their own career development, employ the habit of dynamic learning, and engage with the communities to which they belong.

Learning outcomes:
  1. Identify, appreciate, and navigate cultural, social, political, and viewpoint differences in both personal and professional interactions.
  2. Identify personal skills, interests, priorities, and values, and incorporate them in developing a career plan.
  3. Exhibit the capacity for reflection, self-evaluation, and learning from experience, and demonstrate a commitment to professionalism in the workplace and lifelong professional development.
  4. Demonstrate intellectual and professional engagement within the law school and a readiness to contribute personally and professionally to other local, national or global communities.

Program goal #6: Passion

Our students will be inspired by their studies, by the nature and power of the law, and by the role law plays in society locally, nationally, and globally.

Learning outcomes:
  1. Display lively curiosity about the law and intellectual engagement in the study of law.
  2. Demonstrate an appreciation of the power that law has to shape and influence society, government, and people’s daily lives.
  3. Demonstrate an understanding of how the rule of law operates to restrain abuses of power, protect rights, and address discrimination and inequality.
  4. Demonstrate a personal commitment to the advancement of justice.