The New Japanese Law Schools: Putting the Professional into Legal Education

26 Pages Posted: 29 Aug 2008 Last revised: 3 Aug 2017

See all articles by Keiichi


Kansai Law School

James R. Maxeiner

University of Baltimore - School of Law

Date Written: April 1, 2004


In April 2004, more than sixty law schools began operation in Japan. Legal education, previously treated as a combination of undergraduate education in law and extra-university training in professional skills, will now be concentrated in new professional law schools. The reforms of Japanese legal education are intended both to produce more attorneys in a nation that has a shortage of legally trained professionals, and to help increase the role of law in Japanese society generally.

In order for Japan's new law schools to achieve their educational objectives, they must successfully address a host of conceptual, pedagogical and organizational challenges. Foremost among these challenges is making legal education professional by placing a focus upon legal reasoning.

Keywords: legal education, legal reasoning, subsumption, syllogism, practical training, judicial training

Suggested Citation

Yamanaka, Keiichi and Maxeiner, James R., The New Japanese Law Schools: Putting the Professional into Legal Education (April 1, 2004). Pacific Rim Law & Policy Journal, Vol. 13, No. 2, 2004, Available at SSRN:

Keiichi Yamanaka

Kansai Law School ( email )

3-3-35 Yamate-cho, Suita-shi
Osaka, Osaka 564-8680

James R. Maxeiner (Contact Author)

University of Baltimore - School of Law ( email )

1420 N. Charles Street
Baltimore, MD 21218
United States
410-837-4628 (Phone)

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