What Courses Should Law Students Take? Harvard's Largest Employers Weigh In
John C. Coates, IV
Harvard Law School
Jesse M. Fried
Harvard Law School; European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)
Kathryn E. Spier
Harvard University - Law School - Faculty; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
February 17, 2014
HLS Program on the Legal Profession Research Paper No. 2014-12
We report the results of an online survey, conducted on behalf of Harvard Law School, of 124 practicing attorneys at major law firms. The survey had two main objectives: (1) to assist students in selecting courses by providing them with data about the relative importance of courses; and (2) to provide faculty with information about how to improve the curriculum and best advise students. The most salient result is that students were strongly advised to study accounting and financial statement analysis, as well as corporate finance. These subject areas were viewed as particularly valuable, not only for corporate/transactional lawyers, but also for litigators. Intriguingly, non-traditional courses and skills, such as business strategy and teamwork, are seen as more important than many traditional courses and skills.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 25
Keywords: legal education, accounting, finance, law firms, legal practice, corporate finance, legal profession
JEL Classification: K20, K29, K40, K49Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: February 20, 2014 ; Last revised: February 25, 2014
© 2014 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
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