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Australian Journal of Asian Law

Abstract from Volume 7 No 3 (2005)

Legal Education Reform in Japan: Teachers, Leave Us Kids Alone?

Stacey Steele is Associate Director (Japan), Asian Law Centre, University of Melbourne Law School.

The recent legal education reforms in Japan largely tracked traditional reform processes in Japan and did not reach out to constituencies like students in a structured and meaningful way. This article considers why this was the case and provides an insight into student opinions. Using a modest survey and group interviews of students in Japan, I sought to find out what students were thinking about their individual situations and teh reforms just three months after the new system of postgraduate law schools was introduced in June 2004. This article also considers disadvantages involved in student evaluation and how this may impact on law schools in Japan in future, based on a comparative analysis with Australia. Now that the reforms have been put in place, student evaluations are being collected and analysed by law schools and the Ministry of Education, but the question remains -- will this lead to better education? Finally, this article concludes with some predictions and an examination of student aspirations from my perspective as a practitioner.

(2005) 7 Asian Law 264-87

   
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