Jordan’s Applied Science University First to Adopt More Practical Legal Curriculum

April 2008

The Applied Science University, a private Jordanian University, recently increased its number of credit hours for law students and is adding new,mandatory courses to its curriculum in response to recommendations from the second National Legal Education Conference organized by the ABA Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) and supported by USAID.

At the March 2007 Conference, stakeholders agreed that law faculties should increase credit hours to 141, and add practical skills building courses such as“Legal Research and Writing,” and “Legal English.”  ABA ROLI has been working with a committee of professors from several Jordanian universities to develop these two courses.

As part of ABA ROLI efforts to roll out the completed Legal Research and Writing course, staff is meeting with the administration of law faculties to discuss the integration of this new course within Jordanian law curriculum.  On March 12, 2008, the President and the Law Faculty Dean ofthe Applied Science University hosted staff to discuss continued cooperation with ABA ROLI in legal education reform efforts.  He approved the use ofthe legal research and writing course name and materials at his law faculty forthe next academic year.  “Legal Research and Writing” will be a mandatory course.  

Applied Science will be among the first law faculties in the Kingdom to teach this new course.  The President of the University indicated that heand his colleagues were impressed with experts speaking on the need to adoptmore interactive, practical courses and activities during last year’s national legal education conference organized by ABA ROLI in Jordan.  Convinced that stakeholders will eventually push for all universities to adopt the conference recommendations, including increased credit hours, they decided to commence plans to implement the recommendations at the Applied Science University.  The University has already begun teaching a new ADR course, which includes materials developed by ABA experts.  The Dean indicated that“Legal English” was also added as a mandatory course, and the University is waiting for the curriculum committee to develop materials for this new course.