May 11, 2007

We interrupt this blog....

by Dave

... for a few final exams. Some of us even taking them for the last time. Congratulations to the rising JD's, and good luck to all of the law students out there.

Steve Vladeck, a regular at PrawfsBlawg and currently guest blogging on Concurring Opinions, asked a question a few weeks back about whether professors should insert current events into their exams. I got in on the discussion, arguing that profs should not only put current events into the exams, but should test ongoing developments in the area of the law being tested, whether they covered them in the course or not (within reason, of course).

I had an interesting parallel to that conversation in my Contracts exam yesterday. Our professor, who is amicus curiae on the technical issues in in re NSA Telecomms (the consolidated NSA domestic wiretapping cases), wrote a fact pattern that centered around someone writing a program that would use wiretapping information to detect terrorist patterns, and then selling it to US spy agencies.

Talk about current events! Our professor, who is very active in the case, putting the facts of a major case into an exam. Curiously, I was offered an internship with the ND Cal. District Court judge hearing the case, but unfortunately had to defer until I could get credit next spring.

But, of course, the exam questions had nothing to do with the issues in the real case, and any knowledge of the case wouldn't help a student whatsoever. All of the K's on the exam involved the employment contracts of the programmers, and the transactions between the software company and the buyers (NSA, FBI, CIA).

But interesting nonetheless.

I have two more exams to go, then I am off for the summer to work in Vietnam for a international law firm, focusing while I am there on international trade, WTO and IP issues. Stay tuned for more on that subject this summer.

May 11, 2007 05:00 PM | TrackBack
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