Student Perspectives on Legal Education: A Longitudinal Empirical Evaluation

Journal of Legal Education, 62:1 (August 2010).

26 Pages Posted: 1 Feb 2016

See all articles by Cassandra Florio

Cassandra Florio


Steven Hoffman

York University; Harvard University

Date Written: August 1, 2012


Few empirical evaluations of the student experience in legal education have been undertaken, which limits the data available to inform law school decision-making. An empirical evaluation and literature review was conducted to measure students' perspectives on their law school experience at the University of Toronto. Both a quantitative and qualitative analysis was undertaken. Findings suggested that students were overall satisfied with their overall academic experience, quality of teaching, quality of student life, and transition to law school. Multiple linear regressions highlighted significant predictors of happiness in attending the University of Toronto such as the year of study, parental income, quality of life etc. and the sense of community, and satisfaction with the transition to law school. While much of the literature in this area suggests that gender plays a huge role in the student experience, this study suggests it only has a noticeable impact on students’ transition to law school. This study highlights the potential value of empirical research for improving legal education globally, and provides interesting data that can be adapted to inform reform efforts at other law schools.

Keywords: student, experience, law, school, legal, education, University of Toronto, empirical, decision-making, perspectives, quantitative, qualitiative, predictors, happiness, commuity, qualiy, income, transition

Suggested Citation

Florio, Cassandra and Hoffman, Steven, Student Perspectives on Legal Education: A Longitudinal Empirical Evaluation (August 1, 2012). Journal of Legal Education, 62:1 (August 2010). . Available at SSRN:

Cassandra Florio

Independent ( email )

No Address Available

Steven Hoffman (Contact Author)

York University ( email )

Global Strategy Lab
4700 Keele Street
Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3
+1-416-736-2100 ext 33364 (Phone)


Harvard University ( email )

Department of Global Health & Population
665 Huntington Avenue, Building 1, Room 1104
Boston, MA 02115
United States


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