Regional Workshop in Jordan Focuses on Improving Skills-Based Legal Education

More than 20 legal educators from 10 countries participated in the workshop.

More than 20 legal educators from 10 countries participated in the workshop.

June 2010 

Teaching law students how to analyze, research and write about legal problems is essential to building and maintaining a skillful legal profession. To allow for sharing best practices for imparting practical lawyering skills in university settings, the ABA Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) hosted a workshop in Jordan on teaching essential legal skills. More than 20 legal educators from 10 countries participated in the January 25–27 workshop in Jordan. The workshop was led by professors Mark Wojcik and Steven Schwinn from the John Marshall Law School in Chicago and professor Nisreen Mahasnah, ABA ROLI’s Jordan-based legal education specialist.

Lectures and breakout sessions throughout the three-day event covered approaches for teaching legal analysis, the basics of legal research and writing, and ethical issues related to drafting legal memoranda. Participants also examined strategies for incorporating experiential and interactive learning methods into curriculum to make students exercise and apply practical skills in all their courses. The workshop was well received, with participants enthusiastically committing to bring new lessons and teaching techniques into their own classrooms, and to share them with colleagues from their universities who were not in attendance.

On January 28, Wojcik and Schwinn gave concurrent supplemental lectures at Yarmouk University and the Jordanian Judicial Training Institute, respectively. The discussion with recent Yarmouk University law graduates addressed continuing legal education and international law. At the training institute, discussions with prospective judges focused on statutory interpretation.

This programming was part of ABA ROLI’s ongoing regional legal profession initiative, which is supported by the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs, Office of the Middle East Partnership Initiative.

To learn more about our work in the Middle East and North Africa region, contact the ABA Rule of Law Initiative at <rol@staff.abanet.org>.

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