Survey of Law School Information Literacy Practices
We asked the question: Does your law school require any form of information searching or literacy training for graduation?
The overwhelming majority of surveyed law schools require some form of information searching or information literacy training for graduation (78.57%). There is a stark difference by funding status – while almost all public schools (90%) maintain the requirement, it is only in place at half of private schools. This is not surprising, as private schools are bound by a different set of curriculum rules at the federal level than public ones. The least expensive schools (those with tuitions of less than $25,000) all have the requirement, while it is less prevalent at those costing $25,000 - $45,000 (60%) and over $45,000 (75%). Similarly, all schools with the lowest enrollments (less than 350 students) maintain the stipulation, while it is less common at those with 350 – 500 students (60%) and those with over 500 (75%).
This 100+ page report presents extensive data and commentary from 14 North American law schools about their information literacy and technology training practices. Among the many topics covered: information literacy requirements, the number and status of information literacy instructors in law schools, the role of information company reps in instruction, number and type of courses offered, specialized instruction for faculty and summer associate programs, assessment, spending on training materials such as webcasts, courses and info literacy conferences, use of video and other tutorials, and evaluation of the importance of training in the products of specific suppliers such as Lexis, West, Bloomberg and Hein, as well as Google Scholar.
The report also includes data on the pervasiveness of training in various software packages and other information technology such as Adobe and Microsoft products and cloud storage services such as Google Drive and Dropbox. In addition, the report covers emerging training in artificial intelligence in legal information searching.
To allow for easier benchmarking, data in the report is broken out by size and type of law school and law school ranking.
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