Adaptive Learning Environments

The theme of the CALI conference this year is transforming legal education, picking up on the Best Practices theme and the Carnegie Foundation Report, Educating Lawyers.  One area where the horse already has left the barn involves learning environments.  In the 20th Century, the environment was entirely linear:  teachers taught, students learned, students studied in the library and then returned to class to learn some more.  In the 21st Century, that linearity has disappeared and a multidimensional set of environments has taken its place.  Learning is not so much a function of place anymore.  Students learn on the go — have laptop or Ipod, will travel.  Law school should adapt to the portability of learning in the 21st Century, encouraging TWEN, CALI, laptops and Ipod learning — because while these adaptive environments may be uncomfortable for us 20th Century dinosaurs, 21st Century students learn in this fashion.

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One Response

  1. I am fascinated by the resistance to change using technology and think there are many reasons for it. One may have to do with concern about assessment of learning when the new methods are used. In some sense this has to do with the in class assessment that a teacher can attempt by monitoring the discussion and the levels of attention and participation, and in some sense it may have to do with our reliance and comfort on final exams. Are there different ways of assessment appropriate for the new learning environments and have there been studies to show whether traditional subjects are mastered as well or better using new techniques?

    I would also be interested in hearing comments about why teachers are reluctant to use some of the new products and services and techniques.

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