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JEFF MINNETI
they are active members in the legal community, practitioners and judges
should provide insight into what law students ought to be learning in law
school that will help them effectively advocate when they graduate. Finally,
because they set the threshold for entry into the profession, bar examin-
ers should also be consulted in determining the substantive knowledge law
students should acquire during their first year of school. Upon consulta-
tion with each group, there is a risk that the list of topics students should
know will grow lengthy. However, because the law is essentially comprised
of repeated patterns and policies, a student need not know every possi-
ble pattern and policy. Instead, once the student learns how to detect the
patterns and employ the policies, the student can learn new areas of law
on his or her own. Thus, schools must resist the pressure to “cover it all”
and instead be selective about the topics they include, choosing those that
empower students to become self-sufficient learners and organizing the
topics in a simple to complex sequence that will enable the student to de-
velop proficiency with the material over time.
2. Deciding what law students should be able to do with what they
know
Having decided precisely what students should know, attention now turns
to what students should be able to do with what they know. Bloom’s taxon-
omy is useful in describing the way students use information. The taxon-
omy is organized from simple tasks to complex, and includes the following:
remembering, understanding, applying, analyzing, evaluating, and creat-
ing
.
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