Beyond Externships and Clinics: Integrating Access to Justice Education into the Law School Curriculum
Journal of Legal Education, Volume 62, Number 4 (May 2013)
10 Pages Posted: 16 May 2012 Last revised: 30 May 2015
Date Written: October 15, 2011
In January 2011, at the AALS Annual Meeting, the Section on Pro Bono and Public Service held a panel discussion on “innovative curricular components.” The call for papers asked for proposals describing projects that engage faculty in teaching that is likely to fulfill the promise of Bylaws 6-1 -- to instill in all graduates a commitment to justice and to public service as core values. Six papers were selected and presented, and will be published in the Journal of Legal Education.
This introductory paper, drawn from my contribution to the prior year’s AALS workshop on “Exploring the Role of Pro Bono” in legal education, sets the context for the others. First, it provides a quick overview of the development of law school pro bono programs, a history that explains the gap that grew between the law school curriculum and pro bono programs. Second, it sets out the research basis for the call to integrate the teaching of the ethic of pro bono service throughout the curriculum. Finally, it notes how the programs described in the other papers meet this challenge.
Keywords: Pro Bono, Access to Justice, Curriculum
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