Program Learning Outcomes - College of Law

Program Learning Outcomes

The Faculty of the College of Law has adopted the following student learning outcomes for the J.D. program and expects its graduates to demonstrate competency in each through completion of required courses and programs in the J.D. curriculum:

I. Graduates will demonstrate knowledge of substantive and procedural law necessary for effective and responsible participation in the legal profession and related professions and industries by:

A. Understanding various sources of law and legal authority, their relative priority, and how they interact;

B. Demonstrating ability to identify, describe, and apply fundamental rules of law; and

C. Understanding the relationship and interaction between substantive and procedural law.

II. Graduates will demonstrate competency in legal analysis, reasoning, and problem solving by:

A. Demonstrating capacity to identify issues relevant to resolving legal questions and differentiate issues based on their importance;

B. Demonstrating ability to research applicable legal authority;

C. Demonstrating capacity to resolve legal problems thoroughly and methodically by:

1. Critically reading applicable authority;

2. Synthesizing the relevant rules of law into a logical framework for analysis;

3. Applying the identified rules to the facts, including evaluating potential counterarguments; and

4. When appropriate, analogizing the facts to or distinguishing the facts from those of precedent cases; and

D. Demonstrating ability to take multiple or opposing perspectives and assess the strongest arguments from each perspective.

III. Graduates will demonstrate competency in written and oral communication with members of the legal and related professions as well as the public by:

A. Demonstrating ability to write legal documents that are clear, concise, well-reasoned, organized, professional in tone, appropriate to the audience and circumstances, and, if appropriate, contain proper citation to authority;

B. Demonstrating ability to effectively advocate for a position, both orally and in writing, taking into account the standpoint of the recipient of the communication and the context in which it is made.

IV. Graduates will demonstrate competency in the professional skills lawyers need to meet their responsibilities by:

A. Demonstrating capacity to improve performance based on feedback;

B. Demonstrating ability to advise a client regarding available options, including advantages and disadvantages of each option;

C. Demonstrating ability to work collaboratively;

D. Demonstrating ability to identify and elicit relevant facts that support or undermine a legal argument; and

E. Demonstrating ability to negotiate effectively on behalf of a client.

V. Graduates will demonstrate competency in professionalism and ethics by:

A. Demonstrating ability to identify and analyze ethical issues raised by various aspects of the attorney-client relationship;

B. Demonstrating ability to identify and analyze attorneys’ conflicts of interest;

C. Demonstrating ability to identify and analyze ethical issues in relation to the attorney’s duties toward tribunals, opposing parties and counsel, unrepresented persons, or the public; and

D. Demonstrating understanding of how ethical standards are enforced.