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29 August 2012

Skills gap triggers call for legal education overhaul

The system of educating and training English lawyers needs reforming to give students the skills to survive in an evolving legal marketplace, an on-going review suggests this week.

In a 50-page document produced by a legal education and training review research team, led by law professor Julian Webb of Warwick University, ‘gaps’ in the current system could handicap legal professionals in the future.

Core knowledge

According to the paper: ‘Evidence to date suggests that there are gaps ... in core knowledge and commercial skills. More fundamental gaps have been highlighted as regards client relations/communication skills, ethical awareness and organisational skills. If this is correct, it is difficult to see that the system as a whole is fit for purpose.’
Professor Webb adds: ‘The aim of the paper is to inform our stakeholders of our progress, encourage debate, support the on-going work of the researchers in identifying both the key issues relating to the possible reform of legal education and training in England and Wales, and to map out a range of possible solutions.’

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