LawWithoutWalls: Preparing Students for Global Work

A bleak hiring market, legal education that has seen little change over the past several decades, and a shift in services offered by many law firms, has resulted in the creation of LawWithoutWalls. This project takes advantage of technological advancements and couples working professionals and universities worldwide with law classrooms. The goal of this project is to further examine the new reality of law practice in a global economy. This Time magazine article poses the question, “Does [this] risk diminishing legal education by effectively turning a J.D. into an M.B.A., by training managing partners instead of competent lawyers?” Read on to learn more.

For further information about LawWithoutWalls, visit www.lawwithoutwalls.org.

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ASEAN Higher Education

An article in the New York Times titled, “Asean Nations Put Education Front and Center” discusses how the 10 countries that make up ASEAN plan on improving higher education systems.

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations consists of 10 countries that very widely in their higher education systems. Higher education is recognized as a vital tool to stimulate economic growth in regions, which is an appealing aspect that has created an effort to raise standards and encourage greater collaboration among the universities in Asean. Some of the countries that make up this collaboration include Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.  The countries have created a regional quality-assurance system to assess undergraduate programs and various countries have been meeting regularly to learn from each other. They have also been encouraging students to spend time studying in other Asean countries.

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Using Twitter to increase student engagement

Facebook. LinkedIn. Twitter. There is a plethora of social networking sites grabbing attention of people worldwide. But is it useful in the classroom? An experimental study of undergraduate students found that, when Twitter was used in discussions, students were not only more engaged in the learning process but also had higher grade point averages.

For a survey of Twitter usage among college faculty in 2010, click here.

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Education Riots in Chile

Education debates are sparking mass riots and protest in Santiago, Chile.  The protests began in May and  offer no sign of letting up.

An article publsihed in Aljazeera on October 18, 2011, reports on the protests, and the gap between government and student understanding.  The students are calling for free higher education.  Currently, 40% of Chilean students qualify for free education based on their parents’ income.   The President of Chile calls the protests “violent” and the actions of the protesters “absolutely condemned.” Student reject to talk with the government, and the government is not willing to negotiate what the students and trade unions are asking for.  The protest come at a time  when the President’s popularity is at an all time low.

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US Threatens UK’s World Dominance in Law

A recent article published by the Guardian warns that Britain may no longer dominate the international legal market. Until now, UK lawyers have not felt the effects of the economic crisis. The article reports that London is a top destination for dispute settling for international companies and that English law is the choice system for drafting international contracts.

United States law is threatening UK’s world dominance, particularly New York law. Reasons for this shift in dominance is that UK’s legal education “is messier and less outwardly prestigious than the US version.” In the UK, prospective lawyers can obtain pursue a law degree at 18 or take law as a graduate, 10-month, course. Then students must complete a year of professional skills and two-years of training with a firm. In contrast, the US legal system is taught in a three-year post graduate degree.

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Welcoming Global Education

Most of us either know someone that studied abroad or have ourselves.  This is not a coincidence.  The access to global education is on the rise according to the director of the Center for Higher Education at Boston College. A recent article in The Harvard Crimson discusses the growth of accessibility to higher education and the international opportunities.

The article uses the United States as an example to illustrate how higher education, only 50 years ago, was mainly left to the elite.  Today, many low and middle income people have access to college and are attending.

Apart from the growing number of lower income students, universities are also experiencing a growing number of international students and student that study abroad.  This seems to be a global trend and universities around the world are structuring their curriculum to attract more international students.  The verdict is still out on whether there is a drastic need for global education.  However,  universities are welcoming the movement.

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Congress Takes the Lead to Broaden Technology in the Classroom

Today’s politicians have a hard time seeing eye to eye.  Rarely do they agree on procedure, programs, or the use of government money. However, just this past week they reached an agreement on one very important issue facing our nation, increasing the use of technology in the classroom.

In an article posted in Ed.gov US Department of Education, the White House and Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan, announce a new program created by Congress to further the research and the use of technology in the classroom.  This bipartisan effort will focus on bringing U.S. schools into the 21st century.  The program will be overseen by a board of prominent leaders in both education and technology.   A main duty of the board will be to find what technologies are working and what’s not.  This “Digital Promise” is in-line with President Obama’s mission to create jobs.  He believes that by providing more technology in the classroom, the children will be better prepared to compete in the world job market.  This will be a non-profit program that encourages private sector investments and recommendations.

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US Economy Depends on Global Education

An article in the Orlando Sentinel titled, “Economy’s future lies in a global education” discusses how the United States is no longer the center of the world, and how the US is sorely lacking an education about international countries, which is the reason our economy is suffering.

The United States is no longer a world leader in secondary education. Other countries no far more about the US than we know about other countries. Because of this, the United States is slowly falling behind other countries. In order to deal with today’s global challenges of reducing American indebtedness, combating terrorism, ending foreign wards, protecting the natural environment and effectively responding to humanitarian crises, we must reform education to focus more on global education. Students need to immerse themselves in the study of international law and international business. Global education is necessary and essential to improving the US’s standing.

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Global Education and the English Language

An article for the New York Times titled, “English as Language of Global Education” emphasizes that speaking English has become the standard for all global education.

The author describes English as becoming “as commonplace as creeping ivy mortarboards”. In Madrid, the elite Instituto de Empresa allows its admission test to be taken in English. The Lille School of Management in France does not consider English as a foreign language. Schools in France that offer master’s programs offer these programs in English at a doubling rate over the last 3 years. Schools in France see the advantage that foreign students who speak English can bring.

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Global Education

An article titled, “The Importance of Global Education” discusses the importance of global education as well as what it is.

The article defines global education as an education that prepares young people to understand and interact within a culturally diverse and globally interconnected world. Technology today is helping students not only understand different cultural differences, but is also helping students interact with different cultures. Global education is focused on K-12 to teach students how to connect with the world. It teaches students to understand different perspectives and diverse people, as well as understand and recognize stereotypes.

The author stated tha the most effective ways of teaching global education is to:

First, teach against stereotypes and simplifications of other cultures.

Second, foster the habit of examining multiple perspectes

Third, teach about power, discrimination, conflict and injustice, because these impact knowledge, language and people’s world views.

Fourth, provide students with cross-cultural experiential learning.

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