Flipping The Law School Classroom

Flipping The Law School Classroom

Flipping The Law School Classroom

The California Desert Trial Academy College of Law (CDTA) adheres to a modern, innovative learning platform that improves on the traditional model of educating law students. The CDTA utilizes this more practical and modern approach not only to train, educate, and develop students to be exceptional attorneys but to also train them to be exceptional trial advocates. Flipping learning refers to a growing educational practice that is increasingly being used by institutions of higher learnings to teach doctrinal subjects.

Flipping the classroom involves showing videos to students who watch these short presentations outside of the classroom and following it with person-to-person classroom instruction for active, problem-based learning that reinforces those concepts presented earlier through online video instruction.

In the context of providing legal instruction, video could be used to present the black-letter law of legal doctrines, thus allowing classroom time to be used for studying the application of these concepts rather than what they are in the basic sense. This makes the classroom experience a more interactive process for students allowing the instructor more time for assessment, and, therefore, more time for constructive feedback for students.

Flipped learning typically utilizes short videos that are 15 minutes or less on law, including both substantive and procedural areas, as well as law-related topics that focus on the practical and professional side of practicing law. To “flip” the law school classroom allows more face-to-face classroom time for active, problem-based learning.

For example, videos on a substantive law area such as contracts could be assigned to students for viewing outside the classroom, thereby freeing up class time for activities that bring in more training on other competencies and skills necessary for a law school graduate to assume the role of attorney-advocate.  The video could introduce the basic concepts of offer and acceptance thus freeing classroom time to apply these concepts to examples of both, as well as more complicated scenarios where both may occur.

Flipped learning is a blended model of teaching that uses passive learning, i.e., listening to lectures, and frees classroom time for more exercises that require students to use and develop their soft skills, i.e., those attributes that comprise a student’s analytical and interpersonal skills.

Flipped learning may not be for every professor, or student, for that matter. Not many professors are trained to teach using this new method. However, it seems here to stay.  The California Desert Trial Academy College of Law was founded with the philosophy of not only teaching students the substantive law, but on training, educating, and developing students to be exceptional attorney-advocates. The development of trial advocacy tools is essential to success in any judicial or administrative setting. Call us today at (760) 342-0900 or find out more online here.

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