Thursday, January 17, 2013
This article considers whether law professors should have a Continuing Practice Experience (CPE) requirement, just as lawyers in most jurisdictions have a Continuing Legal Education (CLE) requirement. In the face of criticisms of legal education for failing to prepare students to be practicing lawyers and for generating scholarship that is of little to no use to practicing lawyers and judges, CPE offers one way to facilitate a connection between legal education and law practice. This article considers the potential benefits of CPE (and reasons why law professors might be resistant to CPE). The article also discusses ways in which the American Bar Association’s Standards for the Accreditation of Law Schools and the Association of American Law Schools’ Statement of Good Practices by Law Professors could be revised to adopt (or, at least, endorse) CPE. Finally, the article addresses two questions relating to the development of a CPE requirement: specifically, what types of activity should “count” as CPE and how much of such activity should law professors have to engage in?