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Academic Research and Writing as Best Practices in a 'Practically Grounded' Land Use Course

Pace Environmental Law Review Online Companion, Vol. 2, p. 49, 2011

20 Pages Posted: 4 Nov 2011  

Matthew J. Festa

South Texas College of Law; U.S. Army Judge Advocate General's Legal Center and School; Rice University

Date Written: November 1, 2011

Abstract

Land use is a discipline that involves diverse academic, practical, and social perspectives; it is also an ideal subject for applying nontraditional teaching methods, including those suggested by the “best practices” movement in legal education. In this article -- a contribution to the “Practically Grounded” conference on teaching land use and environmental law -- I suggest that a scholarly research and writing focus can help students develop their practical and analytical skills and values while achieving “best practices” goals in the context of a doctrinal land use course. In the article I set forth a pedagogical basis for including an academic writing component in a doctrinal land use course, and I discuss the experience of teaching a large land use class with a significant research and writing component. The benefits from an academic writing focus may also apply to teaching in other doctrinal fields.

Keywords: land use, environmental law, teaching, legal writing

JEL Classification: K11

Suggested Citation

Festa, Matthew J., Academic Research and Writing as Best Practices in a 'Practically Grounded' Land Use Course (November 1, 2011). Pace Environmental Law Review Online Companion, Vol. 2, p. 49, 2011. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1952789

Matthew J. Festa (Contact Author)

South Texas College of Law ( email )

1303 San Jacinto Street
Houston, TX 77002
United States
713-646-1857 (Phone)

U.S. Army Judge Advocate General's Legal Center and School ( email )

600 Massie Road
Charlottesville, VA 22903-1781
United States

Rice University ( email )

6100 South Main Street
Houston, TX 77005-1892
United States

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